Family + Fitness

Sorry in advance for the longest blog I have ever written. I was feeling extra motivated and the words just started pouring out much like my sweat did when I was running three miles this evening, thinking about writing this post.

I’m sure that I have mentioned it before, maybe a million times, my husband is a personal trainer. Has been since long before he became my husband, before he became my boyfriend and before I ever met him. Fitness is his passion, it is his calling and it is what brings him happiness.

It is pretty hard to be the girlfriend of a personal trainer and have absolutely no idea what to do in a gym. A lot of people gush about how lucky I am to live with a trainer, I must be in such good shape. Others ask if we work out together all the time. When I answer no, I got some weird looks.

I am someone who was really active when I was young; I played soccer, basketball, softball, gymnastics, and danced (that didn’t last long though, I misplaced my tap shoes very quickly.) When I was in high school, I left the athletics behind which was not a good idea. I spent the next (too) many years completely idle. I’m not talking sitting on the couch all day every day eating spray cheese watching Oprah idle (no offense to anyone out there.) But, other than going out with my friends for the occasional walk to the gas station to pick up cigarettes, a lunchable and a mountain dew, I didn’t do much. My family has always been active, there were a lot of afternoons hiking at Fort Snelling and Taylor’s Falls but I don’t think you can consider the occasional family outing a work out when you complain the whole time.

Now, as I also mentioned before, my dad is a marathon runner. There have been countless times over the past 10 years that I have aspired to be more like him. When I was 16, I talked him into buying me pretty new tennis shoes so I could start running. It took a lot of convincing as my father (still to this day) believes that you need to do the running before you get the new shoes. I’m not going to freely admit that he was right…. but…. I ran halfway around the block, hobbled home to my bed, and spent the next 30 minutes convinced my lungs were collapsing. (Okay dad, you can say I told you so.) I still get a reminder from every time I show off new running shoes that you are supposed to wear out old ugly shoes by running so much in order to deserve shiny new running shoes.

There were sporadic work outs in the fitness center of my best friend’s condo building. Strength and Fitness class in highschool (we did a lot of calf raises and wrist curls while gossiping.) A short bout with a personal trainer when I was 20. Lots of wearing yoga pants and converse to make it look like maybe I just got back from the gym. Nothing really stuck.

My husband ran the Warrior Dash, a 5k obstacle race, for the first time in 2011. My dad was intrigued when he heard about it so the following year, he and my brothers joined the team. In 2013, my sister and I decided to be brave and run it with them. Okay, we didn’t really run it… we walked.

In order to prepare for it, I downloaded Couch25K for my phone and started running three days a week. I hated it. It was terrible. The first time I ran outside, I got shin splints and couldn’t walk for 3 days. We also started Sunday Run Clubs where a group of us would run down by the River. We ran hills and stairs to help prepare our calves for the awesomeness that is running up and down hill (Warrior Dash is hosted at a ski resort, lots of hills.) I really hated running but really loved run club. It felt good to get up and DO something on Sundays, even if I only did half of the laps that the other runners did. Even my parents and siblings came to run club a couple of times to join in the fun!

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Run Club very much became a social thing with a touch of exercise mixed in. Warrior Dash came and went and we continued Run Club until fall turned into winter. Needless to say, when run club stopped – so did my exercise. In an effort to spark it up again, we signed up to run again in 2014.

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2013

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2014

I never did start running to prepare for WD this past summer and only ran once afterwards. The weekend following Warrior Dash, my mom, sisters, brother-in-law and brother ran the Bacon Chase 5k. It was a flat course 5k, thankfully, that promised bacon and bloody marys at the finish line. We were in it for the bloodys. But, it was the first 5k that my sisters and I did with our mom. She is usually stuck out of town for Warrior Dash. Overall, it was a fun time, despite the running!

Dance

I have never wanted to work out. Never had a desire to be fit. I thought women looked better without muscles. Funny how things change, huh? When I started eating Paleo, the first couple weeks were just about controlling my diet. I loved it. Though I was not in it to lose weight, a couple pounds fell off really suddenly and I could see changes in my body. My stomach flatter. My arms getting thinner and the muscles showing through. Now I can’t wait to see what other muscles pop up as I continue to work out and lift weights. Now I appreciate muscles on women. I appreciate STRENGTH in women!

I have been on track with my work outs for about a month now, Paleo for almost two. Now, my husband trains me so I can learn to bench press and weight lift. We will soon be able to work out together (but right now, he is on a whole other level!) He has been eating Paleo with me – though with a little more flexibility (he just can’t give up oatmeal and peanut butter). Now fitness and nutrition is something we can do together which has been great and brought us closer together.

Some would think that my excitement about my success is a little premature. Its not though. This is different. I love cooking. I love eating healthy. I love FEELING healthy. I catch myself smiling on the treadmill. I really enjoy the feeling of having sore muscles the day after weightlifting. And I have goals now that I didn’t have before.

I will run Warrior Dash in less than 50 minutes (last year’s time was 65). I will dead lift and bench press in April in a competition, in front of 200 people.

We all have to start somewhere and something feels different this time, like I am on the track I was supposed to be on the whole time. I was just a little late to the party. And anyone who knows me knows, I really hate being late! So now, I don’t think – I just do. When I have a long day of work and want to sit on the couch watching Gilmore Girls, I hit the eliptical for 30 minutes first. Don’t give yourself the time to talk yourself out of it and it will be a lot easier.

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A plank to end the post – me and Landon.

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