Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Thorn in My Side

Everyone has one. Something that irritates them that won't go away. Something that continues to thrive despite a ferocious hatred. Something you wish just didn't exist. That follows you everywhere you go. That you know in your heart you'd be better off without. And to make matters worse, its something that doesn't seem to bother anyone else. In fact, your friends like this thorn. They're glad it's there. It keeps them going and helps them feel alive. But to you, it's a burden you don't want to carry. The gum stuck to your shoe. That you want to bury deep within the earth in hopes that it will never resurface.

What is that burden to me? That thorn that every morning I wish I could ignore?

Exercise. Yep, good old fashioned jogging, weight-lifting, ab crunching exercise. That keeps you from heart attacks and obesity, and makes you skinny and toned. I. loathe. exercise.

So let me be honest: I don't like to breathe hard. I don't like to sweat. My legs hurt when I run and I always feel dehydrated. If warm blankets and kittens are my love languages, exercise is my hate language.

That sounds harsh, and maybe I don't mean to sound as harsh as I'm sounding. But it's true, I wish I could be skinny, toned, healthy, AND fight heart attacks and obesity WITHOUT the dreaded treadmill and sweat.

HOWEVER, and there is a second part to this, I've learned that there are several things that make me want to exercise. Good thing I'm not totally hopeless right? Right. I know you were worried we weren't getting anywhere productive with this.

First things first: exercise clothes. I love to shop, and if I have the right outfit that makes me not look as huge as I feel, then I'll want to wear it out and about with all the other sporty, trim girls.  I want to exercise if I feel like I look somewhat stylish and coordinated.

Second thing that makes me want to exercise: Friends. In my previous post I mentioned wanting to work out only if I can shamelessly guilt friends into doing it with me. Recently I've been working out with some GREAT great friends, and that makes me feel socially connected whilst sweating and breathing hard. So its really a win-win. I don't think about the workout, but I actually do the workout, and I get closer to my friends. Perfect for my inner social butterfly.

Although I'd rather get skinny by watching a Bachelorette marathon and drinking a pina colada, I am being honest when I say that I tend to make healthier life choices when I work out regularly. I buy better groceries, manage my time more, stay hydrated, and just plain feel better. So despite my lack of desire for working out, I realize the variety of lifetime benefits it allows.

So in conclusion, the thorn in my side is still a thorn in my side (who am I kidding, this feeling doesn't change overnight). But I'm actually exercising now each week and that's a HUGE step in the right direction. So maybe the thorn isn't so bad after all.


Dana said...

*EXHALES* ... wow, finally, someone put into words what I've been feeling, thinking, loathing all these years. I've just never had the nerve to actually say out loud in front of God and everybody what you just said. The good thing though, Mary, is you aren't size 20 and needing to drop 75 pounds. You're tiny and needing to stay toned and have a healthy heart and lungs. So instead of exercising, do what our fore-mothers, scrub floors, clean clothes on a washboard, whip egg whites, walk everywhere you go and churn butter...Ha! Seriously though, get a dvd on belly dancing. My friend does it each morning and lost weight and stays toned. You and Patrick can do it together. :)

Kristen said...

Oh Mary West. How I love you. I love Dana's suggestion of "churning butter." Please do that. And then please invite me over.
I've gotta tell you... working out in the morning has been really disciplining me, too. It's a great way to start off the day, with all the fun girl talk, and then by 8:30 I am ready to go for the day (if not a bit groggy.) And might I say that I always think you look very stylish for those early morning sessions.
You're workin' it!