Category Archives: #EveryDayActiveChallenge

Day 21: Just Do It June–Cartwheels

 

School Pictures | Every Day Active Challenge
Always obese, I only wanted to be like every other little girl on the playground.

As a child, I was over weight. By today’s standards, I was most likely obese even then. That didn’t stop me from wanting to be like all of the other little girls. I wanted to run without end and do cartwheels around the playground.

I did one cartwheel around the time this picture was taken and landed so hard and wrong that I couldn’t walk the next day. That may be owing to me trying to impress the other girls with a back bend and front walk-over to boot. My body just couldn’t do it. So I gave up even trying.

This was also the year that I made my first “bad grade” when I barely passed PE with a 70. This was the year that the coaches graded us on a sliding scale of how many sit-ups and push-ups we could do (3 and 1, respectively). There was also the requirement to run one mile in 10 minutes (last one on the field at the end of PE being laughed at by my peers). This was also the year the coach called out my weight (150 pounds) in front of those peers. That was a rough year for a nine-year-old.

I have had rougher years, and I have had better years. This one is one of those better years full of successes of which I only ever dreamed.

For example, today after my hour on the treadmill for #JustDoItJune and the #EveryDayActiveChallenge, I asked my Darling Daughter to video me doing a cartwheel.

She asked, “Have you ever done a cartwheel?”

“Not that I can claim was any good,” I replied. “But I watched some youTube videos. Let me practice first.”

Then I just did it.

Now, I spent the usual five minutes criticizing my gym hair (#GymHairDontCare) and thinking about how loose the skin is everywhere, and then I shut that crap down! YOU FREAKING DID A CARTWHEEL AND IT DIDN’T HURT! I think I will try a hand/headstand next.

What was your victory today?

Day 20: Just Do It June–Vacation from Work not Workout

It may have been 14 days since my last blog but not since my last activity. If you’re following on Facebook, then you know that, aside from two days of migraines that kept me in bed this past weekend, I have kept up with the #EveryDayActiveChallenge in #JustDoItJune.

I cannot express how monumental that is! For 18 of the last 20 days, I have completed one to two hours of physical activity! The most I had done before this endeavor, or experiment in fortitude, was three days in a row.

Then the little devil on the right would mentally appease my guilty conscience with platitudes of, “You can take a break. You did three days. Take a week off.”

I kicked that wee evil voice out at 30,000 feet on my way to Hawaii. I was making a list of all the fun that I had always wanted to do when the niggling whine began.

“You know you aren’t going to actually do all of this, right?” She whispered. “You will never last! You will find a way to get out of it, and that is alright, darling. Vacation is time off from life.”

No, I proved, it is not! Our Hawaiian vacation turned out to be the springboard to the launch pad that I have been seeking. I discovered the following about myself on vacation:

  1. I refuse to pay $10 a day for a gym that is listed in the amenities for the hotel. It’s not cheap; it’s the principle! There are more fun ways to spend the time, even walking around in the heat is beautiful if you’re chasing rainbows!
  2. Yoga on the beach sounds like a romantic notion but is quite messy. I don’t like being dirty was the discovery there and that near the beach on the grassy hill will work for ambiance.

    William Wisdom About Fear | Every Day Active Challenge
    #DontLetFearHoldYouBack
  3. Five year old wisdom is priceless. My nephew’s comment fortified me to go parasailing, something I had always wanted to do and something from which I was close to walking away. I learned I can swallow my fear to experience something new (proof is trapped in the GoPro).
  4. I found that I am thankful to my trainer for all of the upper body workouts! That Wahoo fish took every ounce of strength to reel into the boat while we were deep sea fishing.

    Deep Sea Fishing | Every Day Active Challenge
    WAHOO! I caught this gal with a cheering crowd encouraging me not to give up while my arms felt the burn of effort!
  5. Although it felt like my brain was trying to exit via my ear, I also learned that I am able to dive down while snorkeling and not just placidly float on the surface, hoping fish will swim by my fear-stricken, no-swimming self (the GoPro and I have an appointment after I publish this).
  6. Body surfing is dangerous and requires a lot of stamina to tread water waiting for the wave that wants to pin you to the sea floor and hold you there! Also, bathing suits come off in tumultuous waves entirely too easy! We survived and decided we needed lessons so we didn’t die. That will have to wait till next time.

    Body Surfing | Every Day Active Challenge
    Darling Daughter taught her old lady to body surf.
  7. ATV riding takes a lot of core strength not to be slung around, and I really don’t like being dirty. Really! Sweaty, okay…dirty, no way. Poet. Know it.
  8. I fit on a water slide! Also, much like a kid with a new toy couldn’t wait to do it again and again.
  9. I like hiking! Also, I cry like a baby, snotty nose and everything, when I have a non-scale victory like hiking up and down a mountain to witness one of mother nature’s amazing features…a blow hole.

    Hiking | Every Day Active Challenge
    You cannot tell clearly, but the background is way far below me in this pick.

Speaking of…I will end this here and go get un-sweaty after tonight’s treadmill and yoga routine. Wait…I need to go help with the yard work. Durnit! That is dirty. Yuck!

What about you? Did you do something amazing today?

Day 6: Just Do It June–Liquid Life

Drink Water | Every Day Active Challenge
Drink water to wash your insides and give balance to your body.

Water! The majority of the planet and the majority of your body are made up of water. You should be drinking double your weight in ounces each day. Or is it 8 glasses each day? You know…I have heard it all.

Water loss happens constantly throughout your day (think of all those body functions that are too gross for me to mention). You have to intake as much as you lose to be healthy.

Since we are participating in the #EveryDayActiveChallenge for #JustDoItJune, you should also know that your muscles need the fluid to avoid muscle fatigue. When the cells don’t have water, they shrivel.

Aunt J-Me….water is boring. I don’t like the way it tastes. It’s such a chore to drink water. Can I have tea? It’s made of water. So is pop/cola/soda/coke (if you’re from the south, it’s all coke. “You want a coke? What kind?”).

The line that has stuck with me since my first round of Weight Watchers at age 7 was, “Tea doesn’t count. You wouldn’t wash your stockings in tea would you? Or your favorite white blouse?”

Think of it that way. The water is washing your insides. You know what is on the inside? Yuck! You cannot run those organs through the dishwasher and then put them back to work. Therefore, just tell yourself it is like bathing…you do it every day (or you should).

Day 4: Just Do It June–I LOVE YOU!

Run For Your Life | Every Day Active Challenge
Rey in Star Wars: The Force Awakens had me clapping when she screamed, “I don’t need you to hold my hand to run!” Run for your life is an idea…not recommended…but an idea nonetheless.

What is the difference between like and love? There is some controversy on the origin of the quote but I love the explanation all the same.

“When you like a flower, you just pluck it. But when you love a flower, you water it daily.”

Buddha or not, it is an appropriate meditation for our endeavor here at #EveryDayActiveChallenge. Do you like yourself or love yourself? Are you committed to yourself only when it is convenient or every day in every way?

Anyone who has dieted knows the motion of the yo-yo. That is why I am not committing to lose weight or to diet. Our challenge is to be active for one hour each day. It is not to eat X number of calories or buy a gym membership and workout.

What are some out-of-the-norm ideas for being active for one hour?

To help you out, here are some ideas that you may not have considered:

  • Housecleaning, car washing, gardening (groan…chores…)
  • Walk or play with your pet (In my case Pets)
  • Bowling with Friends (Make your activity social!)
  • Go fishing (Oh, how Husband Friend will remind me of this one often!)
  • Snorkeling (Next Week in Maui for sure!)
  • Dance around your house (No one is watching!)
  • Play with your children. (I was ridiculously soar from throwing my nephews around the swimming pool last weekend.)

Whatever you do, enjoy it! Love what you do! Who ever created a habit with something they didn’t love? Now if crocheting counted I would be set!

I don’t like you…I love you so I will see you again tomorrow, my Flowers.

 

Day 3: Just Do It June–Habit Forming

Be Active Everyday! | Every Day Active Challenge
Go ahead and creatively acquire this picture if you want. I share…myMama raised me right. Also, if you’re interested in creating your own Meme, I used the App ReType.

Full disclosure…I smoke. I know I shouldn’t. I wish I wouldn’t. I have read it all and heard it all. I know from witnessing it, the cruel and painful death that awaits me with Emphysema, heart disease or cancer.

I wish I had never begun smoking. It started as a coping mechanism when I was in my mid-20s and living in Hoboken, NJ. Alone for the first time in my life, I started smoking when out with others (stupid little joiner I was). Then I slid into buying my own packs and eventually had a habit that I couldn’t kick. Now the little follower is a pariah most of the time! Ironic?

The proverbial “they” say that it takes 23 days to make a habit. We are well on our way to forming one by taking the #EveryDayActiveChallenge in #JustDoItJune. Well, three days down, twenty more to go! We can do it!

Leo Babauta has a nifty little blog named Zen Habits, and he recently wrote about two ways to form habits, slip into them and use your smart phone. Take a gander for the full explanation.

Basically baby steps become bigger steps until you’re sprinting along.

The second point coincides with my post from yesterday about making the most of our technology. Where I hope you have created a calendar of appointments with yourself to plan your activities, now use the cover or lock photo to remind yourself to “Be Active!”

Think about how often you check your phone in one day’s time! Babauta wrote, “Then, when you check your phone and notice this message, slip into your new habit…and soon you’ll be on your way to a healthy habit that could change your life.”

What did you do today to be more active?

I exchanged the plan to try Latin Fusion again and opted for Slow Burn Yoga instead. Husband Friend wants to do couples dance class tomorrow. I hope my arms can hold the frame after that workout! Slow Burn is right! #SpeghettiArms

NOTE TO SELF: Stop smoking, Woman! Your run will improve…promise.

 

Day 2: Just Do It June—Make a Plan

Oliver Wendall Holmes Quote | Every Day Active Challenge
Keep Moving Forward…Make a Plan for the Trip!

Oh the joy of being a type A personality! Planning comes so naturally to me that I wouldn’t be surprised if myMama told me that I erupted into this world with a planner attached to my tiny baby hand [hyperbole much?].

I was reading Mackenzie Wagoner’s Vogue Magazine article from the May 2016 issue, “It’s Not a Diet: 5 Lifestyle Changes for a Better Body (And Life!)” and thought, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

THAT is Mackenzie’s tip to “Plan Ahead.” I had never really considered that in the grand scheme of a week packed with work, dance classes, chores, errands, laundry, visits, trips, etc., that I should also put in the plan my fitness activities.

Because of course I am that anal planner, I took it to the extreme and planned out my workouts for the entire month of June (#JustDoItJune), sometimes giving myself multiple options for some of the days.

Choices, people! Choices empower you to own your experiences!

I am blessed that my gym posts its group class calendars to its mobile app. I discovered while choosing my activities for the month that I could actually save the classes to my smart phone’s calendar. And wouldn’t you know it, that is a SMART phone! It sent me a reminder that I had an event today, and it factored in my drive time.

Phone: Beep-it-y Beep! Go to the gym, Aunt J-Me! Traffic is light.

Me: Why thank you, smart phone. Let’s go!

So, Friends, grab your chosen life organizer and add appointments for your fitness activities. If you can’t plan the month, at least plan the week. Tell me about your plans. Otherwise, for what else is an accountability partner?

Day 1: Just Do It June–Never Give Up

Aunt J-Me Never Giving Up | Every Day Active Challenge
If you give up, then you aren’t giving yourself the chance to succeed.

It’s kind of a weird thought to start the beginning of the #JustD0ItJune #EveryDayActiveChallenge with the advice to never give up. However, I have a good reason. I give up when something is not easy even sometimes giving up before getting started. Let me adjust that statement, I USED to give up.

Last night was a perfect example of how this mentality has changed in me. I tried something new, Latin Fusion, which I was later told is my gym’s version of Advanced Zumba. The instructor took the stage and spent the next hour making love to himself in the mirror and thoroughly enjoying watching himself move to the groove, never once noticing the struggling newby or showing the class the basics of the steps.

I was angry…livid in fact. Even with many years of dance class and just as many years in group fitness classes, I had no clue what the instructor was doing. The regulars in the class tried very hard to show me what I should be doing.

My anger was on my face as if it were painted in place. Every time I would catch a glance at myself in the mirror, I would see that horrible straight line of my pinched lips and think, “Good God, Woman! Fix your face!” But then I would realize that the momentary glance also left me lost to the class’s momentum.

The thought sprinted through my mind in the first five minutes of class, “I am LEAVING! This is ridiculous! I will NOT stay here and be humiliated!”

Then I started having the rational thought conversation with myself. You will not give up. That is no longer your impetus for life. So what if you aren’t the best. So what if you look ridiculous. Whether you hit every mark or sway with the beat in the most attractive way, you are burning calories and being active. You are changing your life for the better.

If you’ve been on social media at any point in the last few years, then you have seen the Meme with the morbidly obese person walking. The catch-phrase says, “You may be slow, but you are lapping the person on the couch.” It’s cheesy but true!

You may not be the best at it, but just don’t give up on trying to be better at it.