Muscle Memory

So I’m finished week #2 of my 6-weeks to a new body experiment. And I have to say, I’m a little surprised at the results so far. Maybe to look at me it is not so noticeable, but I can feel the differences. Quite frankly, that is all that counts.

What is strange, though, is my muscle memory. It has been 30 years since I have worked this hard. Yet my muscles seem to be building up as if no time has passed. They are stepping into line, just as they should. My willpower gets me going in the morning, but my muscles are carrying the day. Kind of shocking.

I would have thought that my poor old body would protest all lot more than it has. The program so far has been challenging, but nothing crazy. And I already moved into running this week, when I could have been walking still.

But I think next week goes up another notch. I flipped ahead in the book and noticed the strength training portion is amped up. So we shall see how much memory my muscles have then!

I am also surprised that it has taken me so long to dig into a program like this. My husband had an interesting notion about that. He said, “you are always all-in with everything you do. Before you started this program you were all-in against exercise.” Hmmm, might be some truth in that. It has taken me a long time to work up to this.

And no-one could have convinced me that I would even LIKE it. No-one. No matter what kind of factual and convincing argument they came up with, and many people have tried. I had to figure it out for myself.

So I look forward to my one day of exercise rest and then back at it Saturday.

Countdown

With less than a week to go, my start date of February 21, 2015 is starting to feel pretty real. And the panic is starting well up. I have much to get ready for and my work schedule is crazy this week. 2 very full days in the office and 3 days traveling, home on Friday night. Start Saturday. 6 weeks to a new body.

It has been a dozen years since the birth of my youngest child. My body was not in particularly good shape before I started having children. I liked to joke that it was a body in perfect condition to have children. Not so many muscles to impede the baby’s comfort. But now, in my mid forties, it is time to change.

In preparation, I have a few things sorted. First was some shopping for essential supplies. The active bra top. I am not very experienced with these things because I don’t exercise, really. But, I’ve worn a bra every day for many, many years. My best choices are all about comfortable support. And of course I want to look good too. Rather I want to look young. For me, the “Armour Bra” made by Under Armour is the most comfortable bra I have ever owned. When I get strapped into that thing I don’t want to take it off! But, I think these are very personal choices. Like finding a great pair of running shoes, (has not happened yet), every person is slightly different. Probably why so many brands can stay in business, they all offer something a little bit different.

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The other essential is anything made by Helly Hansen with “LIFA technology”. I have used HH baselayer for years, and in the sport of skiing I have worked hard enough to sweat. What happens is the heat vapor coming off your body passes through the LIFA sitting next to your skin. It does not have a chance to condense into water. And even if you are working that hard and water was pouring off you, it passes right through the LIFA layer. Anyway, when you have no moisture on your skin, you have no discomfort by being too hot or too cold. Just like baby bear’s porridge, it will be just right. The challenge now is to exercise with enough intensity to take advantage of all this LIFA I own!

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Now comes the sobering part. Taking stock of where I am. And writing it down. And taking photo’s. I know I will be happy, later, that I fully completed this first step. But I am dreading it. Other than my doctor, nobody really knows all these details. (Not even me). I just know roughly what size I think I am when I buy clothes. Then I waste a lot of time trying items on and being disappointed with how they look. Man, if I would just exercise for all those hours of time spent in changing rooms, I would be a different person today!

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The reward will be in the 6th week. At that time, I will be visiting my parents in Phoenix. I am bringing an extra duffel bag. A large one. And I plan to fill it up with lovely new things. My Mom and I have not shopped like that in a long time. My daughter is going to love it. My Mom is an awesome shopper. Even as a teenager, if she invited me to shop with her I would refuse any other invitation from my friends.

I’m also realistic. This change in body shape, whatever it will be has to be maintained. So there is no going back. Starting in a few days, my life begins new. Everyday I will be having a different conversation with myself. Instead of, “what can I do to bring me instant gratification?”, I’m going to be asking, “what can I do to bring me and my body pleasure?”. Because my mind will be very pleased by a healthy body, rather than one that whines and complains with every effort.