Something I’ve been promising myself for years is that I will get fit. Today, that journey started.
Without going into my entire life history I’m blessed with a fast metabolism, I don’t work out and maintain a size 8 (US 4) figure. A few years ago that was a size 6 (US 2) figure but a switch from waitressing to office work saw me gain 10lb.
I’d be lying if I said I didn’t mind. It wasn’t fun having to throw away my favourite jeans but I wasn’t bothered enough to do anything about it other than buy new jeans and continue to nibble on cookies at my desk.
However, I’ve recently noticed a decline in my health and fitness levels. I’ve been a sporadic yogi since I was 21 but recently the poses have been getting harder to fall back into. Walking has always been my preferred mode of exercise but a hike up Mam Tor a few months ago saw me taking regular breaks to catch my breath under the guise of checking out the view.
After getting back from LA I decided now was the time. I wanted to be fit and healthy when I passed into my next decade on this earth.
So I ordered BodyBoss.
You’ve probably seen the instagram pictures, the facebook videos. Workout anywhere, anytime. Just 24 minutes, three times a week!
I ordered their book and online combo, which was on offer and the same price as the book only. I decided to use the book rather than the online thing as I will only end up opening my iPad and sitting on YouTube watching make up tutorials and Shane Dawson for hours in my yoga pants.
The book came about two weeks ago, maybe three. I read through it and, I don’t want to call anyone a liar but this is not a three times a week programme, this is not a 24 minute a day exercise, this is not a do it anywhere no equipment needed thing either.
Maybe if I’d researched online more I would have known that. But I didn’t so I didn’t.
The workouts are 24 minutes long, the warm up and cool down are ten minutes long each. With set up and showering, that’s at least an hour of my day.
The anywhere claim is fine, as long as your anywhere has the props needed for the work out. Such as a treadmill for the 4 minute walk, a workout bench for the tricep lifts etc etc.
And while they only want you to do the HIIT work out three times a week, they also want you to do a yoga class one day a week for ‘gentle exercise’ and some ‘old fashioned cardio’ once a week.
I felt lied to and intimidated so I put the book on a shelf and promised to start next Monday. Monday saw the start of my period so I passed, promising myself the following Monday would be the day. But then there was a heatwave and I didn’t want to. So I was meant to start yesterday but it was Game of Thrones night and we ate a lot of pasta.
Instead I started today, a Tuesday. Crazy I know. I’m going to pretend it started on a Monday night so I can stick to the schedule. This means tonight I have to do yoga for gentle exercise.
The workout begins with a four minute warm up, it suggests using an exercise bike (don’t have one) or a treadmill (don’t have one) or going for a quick walk (don’t have any four minute walk routes in my area, I guess I could walk down the street and back in my active wear and look like a knob but I’m not going to). I improvised by doing the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred warm up and a few extra star jumps until my four minutes were up.
Oh yes, that’s another thing – you’ll need some kind of timer.
Then begins seven minutes of hell, followed by three minutes of rest time before you start again. Looking at the pictures of a sumo squat (x30) you think ‘how hard can that be?’, or you see the leg lifts (x25) and think ‘Easp Peasy, I probably won’t need a 3 minute break!’
But you’re lying to yourself and you’re about to look like a fool in front of your cat who watches the entire workout while licking her paw and yawning.
The workout itself is intense but yes, I felt great afterwards. That;s wahat people say, right? And I suppose it’s true. I mean, not immediately afterwards but after I’d finished laying down gasping for breath and calming my heart rate so I didn’t vomit. After the shower which I had on as cold as possible. After laying on my bed for ten minutes staring at the ceiling and wondering why I was bothering.
Basically, an hour later, sitting on my sofa sipping tea and eating a digestive I feel fabulous.
On a recent visit to California a friend of a friend asked, upon finding out that he and I were both turning 30 next year, if I was freaking out.
I calmly replied no, that I had no career goals I wanted to smash and no family plans dependant upon my ovaries so turning 30 was no worse than turning any other age.
I think I might have even used the cringe-worthy ‘age is just a number’ phrase.
And it wasn’t a lie, but it wasn’t a frequently examined truth either.
When I left school at 18 I didn’t have any career goals beyond the vague idea that opening a cafe on the coast of Cornwall would be nice, and I’d decided I didn’t want kids when I did my GCSE childcare and had to spend time with my 18 month old cousin who did little more than drool and scream.
With that in my mind I spent my late teens and early twenties following punk bands around the UK, dating a few musicians, having fun travelling to various places and just being young until; aged 23, I met my now husband. The past six years have been a long distance relationship, a fiance visa process, a Vegas wedding, a California house wife life, homesickness, a year long visa process and a move back to the UK.
During this time I’ve never reassessed my vague goals for my life, I’ve been happy enough with a great group of friends and a wonderful family on both sides of the Atlantic. We work Monday-Friday and spend our weekends doing whatever we want, we have enough of a disposable income for that, maybe for a second cat too. And I never stopped to think if this is enough… until that bloody question!
I’ve been back in the UK for a week now and I’m still sitting up at night thinking if I should be doing something a bit more fulfilling with my life, and what the more fulfilling thing may be.
Gone are my days of late night partying and early morning shifts serving smoothies between naps on a store room freezer. I’m happy, don’t get me wrong, but I have a creeping suspicion that I’m turning into a boring old married lady.