Today I just wanted to update you guys on how my fitness journey has been going since I wrote the prologue of this series. It's been many months since then and I've been making health a huge priority in my life, and something that's sustainable. That includes both fitness and food. I'll also be pulling all these images from my fitness instagram.
So here are numerous highlights from my fitness journey, as the months have gone on, in no particular order. It's just a decent amount to unpack.
that darn pushup challenge
Through the month of June, I attempted to complete a pushup challenge. This challenge was something I saw on a snapchat story, where a random guy did 80 pushups a day for 30 days. And like, I don't ever work on my upper body. I don't know why. I just never prioritize it. So for some reason I thought this would be a good idea. Well, surprise surprise, I couldn't do actual pushups. So instead, I did elevated pushups, and through the month, if I didn't do pushups, I'd go extra hard at the gym (once it reopened) on the arm machines.
Despite me kinda disliking the challenge, it was really good for me to focus on a portion of my body that gets zero attention. By the end of the month, I definitely feel a lot stronger. Because my body fat ratio is still not the greatest, it's hard to tell I've made any improvements. But I at least feel it, and it's encouraged me to take more time out of my workouts to focus on my arms.
"starting over" on my legs
For some reason I've always just had intensely strong legs, compared to the rest of my body. Before quarantine hit, I was easily pressing 115lbs on the leg press / calf extension machine. But when I was absent from the gym for months, then returned, I was back down to 85lbs, comfortably. This was discouraging, but I've trying to up that number again since the reopening of the gym.
Since the gym reopened, I've been aiming to attend at least 5 days a week. I try to distance myself from others who are working out and I clean the machines before and after I use them (because I don't trust humans, hi).
I digress. Basically, I'm back up to a comfortable 115lbs. On to 130lbs!
finding solace in hiking
The major thing that's helped me mentally through COVID-19 and unemployment has been hiking. I've been exploring so many different trails and parks, taking in the sounds and smells of the trees and leaves and flowers. It's much hotter now that it's July, but through the entirety of Spring, I was hiking once or twice a week. And when I wasn't hiking, I was going for daily brisk walks and runs in my local park. Every day I got to watch the flowers bloom and the leaves sprout more and more. There's a blessing in disguise with quarantine, and it's being with nature more.
My step goal on my Pacer app is 10,000 steps. So when I go for a long hike or run, it feels good to meet that goal. My longest hike thus far was seven miles, and it felt amazing. I'd love to complete ten miles before this season is over. I will add that I've never hiked much at all until this year. Even in this last fall and winter, I hiked so often. You just need to find that hiking / quarantine buddy to join you for these adventures, no matter what season it is.
attempting to eat cleanly
The biggest challenge with my fitness journey has been the food. I've had people recommend counting macros, but I also hear that counting macros can ruin people's mindsets about food. So to have a sustainable dietary change, I've resorted to eating as cleanly as I can. This means I try to eat incredibly simple, basic foods. Things that I know what ingredients are inside of them. I still have my occasional bowl of ice cream, and I do cheat and order pizza or drink a hard cider here and there. But when I'm at home and I'm going to make myself something, I reach for frozen veggies, eggs, and grilled chicken.
I'll only allow myself to stuff my face if it's with fruits and veggies. Other than that, I try to avoid snacking. My only snack lately has been applesauce, and that's when I'm doing late night gaming.
not just a gym shark, but a swim shark
Sometimes I feel unmotivated and burnt-out from my typical land exercise. So to mix it up, I'll occasionally swim. I've always wanted to learn how to really swim. I'm still not the best at it, obviously. I've only been swimming for a couple months. But I'm definitely much faster and much better at breathing than I was when I first started.
There are still more fitness methods I want to learn, like some basic gymnastics, cycling, and crossfit. So hopefully one day an opportunity will arise where I can take classes like that.
my current headspace
I've made progress over the months, but I'm still nowhere close to where I physically want to be. Mentally, I feel so much better than I did before I started this journey. And that's huge. my anxiety has lowered, my motivation has only grown. I found a hobby and a lifestyle that works for me and helps me cope with all the stresses and uncertainties of today. It makes me feel hopeful.
And, yes, sis wears crop tops now. I'm still thicc, but this is the body I'm in. So I'm going to embrace it and have fun through this fitness journey. Time to keep moving!
Thank you guys for all of your support so far! If you want to see my daily shenanigans, you can follow my fitness account here.