It should come as no surprise to you that I don’t really love working out. For me, keeping my body healthy usually starts in the kitchen and I’ve rarely ever found myself excited to go to the gym. However, with age (and a baby) it becomes more and more difficult to keep those lbs off! I decided to challenge myself and see if working out consistently was all it’s cracked up to be. So, I worked out for 7 days to see if I could change my mentality and actually start to enjoy it. Here’s my story…
Like most people, I definitely have a bit of gym anxiety. I often feel like I don’t belong and have zero business being there. Walking into Midtown Athletic Club though, the staff does a really great job greeting you and encouraging you to get the most out of your workout. Since it was my first day back “at it”, I decided to start light, or what I thought was going to be light. I knew that group fitness at Midtown was something people raved about so I signed up for Mat Pilates. The class is traditional pilates movements on the floor but uses bodyweight resistance to focus on core stability, body awareness, and flexibility. Admittedly, I struggled through this class and was self-conscious, but the second it ended and I was walking out to my car, I felt a total sense of accomplishment. Regardless of how the rest of my day went, I had done something different, and good for me.
I woke up feeling sore. The exercises from the day before may have been on the floor, but I felt like I had climbed a mountain. There was a moment, or two, that I considered skipping, but I had challenged myself and I cannot resist that. I climbed onto one of the elliptical machines and it made my work out a no brainer. You put in what your goal is and it basically sets everything for you. I opted for interval training. Like I said, I can’t resist a challenge. Despite all the sweating, it went by quickly and I felt like I was really working out. It didn’t hurt that I could log into my Netflix and binge watch Shameless…again.
Day 3 & 4
I was crazy busy these two days and procrastinated for way longer than I should’ve, but I got myself to go. It made me realize that the biggest hurdle of working out is getting yourself there. These two days I just did cardio and a little bit of kettle bell. I also noticed that my energy was way up and I felt as if I could push myself harder than the first two days.
I wanted to learn more about the machines at the Midtown. Walking in, I was set to jump in on a class or hop on one of my “comfort zone” machines, when I saw one of the trainers. He was standing in the middle of the floor there for any questions a member may have. I don’t know what came over me, but I decided to ask him about the different machines. He was so incredibly helpful! He showed me a bunch of different machines based on the areas I wanted to work and made sure I had the right form and number of reps. He didn’t care that I mistakenly called my tricep the wrong name. He just wanted to ensure I had a safe and productive work out.
After feeling the burn from the previous day, I decided to try another class. This time it was cycling! Midtown has this amazing cycling studio and you don’t need any special shoes! I thought for sure within the first 5 minutes, I had made a grave mistake, but I pushed through and after that 6th minute I felt powerful, strong, and wanted to prove to myself I could do it. While I’m not sure I would make it a part of my regular fitness routine just yet, it’s motivated me to want to keep incorporating fitness into my weekly routine.
I woke up and couldn’t believe it had only been a week since I began this challenge! And oddly enough, I woke up itching to get to the gym! Talk about a 180. I got into Midtown and decided to make my own routine based off what I had learned. I hopped on the elliptical for some high intensity cardio to get my heart rate going and found myself having to increase the resistance (I was shocked too). Next, I hit the weights and I didn’t have any anxiety walking around the gym because I knew how and what to do! All it took was asking for help, which seriously, everyone should take advantage of!
The staff of Midtown is more than thrilled to help. I mean, it’s their job! Overall this was an amazing experience. I found myself with way more energy, my skin was glowing, and I had a sense of accomplishment everyday regardless of what else I got done. I noticed too that taking the time to go to the gym made me want to be healthier overall. I realized I reached less for Elia’s graham crackers and more for a piece of fruit when that 3:00 snack hunger hit.
In all fairness with my schedule, and I’m sure many of yours, 7 days in the gym is a lot. But doing these 7 days made me see how easy it is to get in there 2, 3 or even 4 times a week. I suggest everyone challenge themselves to get active, I promise you’ll never leave the gym regretting you went.
Final Verdict: I don’t know that I fully ENJOY my workouts yet, but I don’t hate them as much as before…:)