Saturday, July 21, 2018

Getting in Shape for My Journey: Joining a Gym

One of my goals in the next year is to lose 40 pounds and get into shape. So far, I've done nothing toward that goal. I keep promising myself that I will work out, in fact, I go to bed every night saying
that I'll do it "tomorrow," but as we all know, tomorrow never comes and neither has my exercise program. One of my weaknesses is on following through with what I say I'm going to do.

I've balked at joining the gym down the road, only a few blocks away. I don't want to spend the money, I can do it at home, I can't walk down there and back in the heat -- those are just a few of my many excuses. The truth is, it's only $21 a month, I'm never going to do it at home, and I've walked a lot further in the heat for a lot worse reasons.

So Monday (I start everything on Mondays), I'm going to walk down there and join. I can't go on the road in the physical shape I'm in now. Living in a van is difficult enough without being tired and overweight. If I'm going to be in a minivan, I need to take up as little space as possible.

Silver Sneakers 

There's an exercise program for seniors called "Silver Sneakers," and this gym has all the classes. I think that's an excellent way to start, since I don't have much stamina or strength.

I figure I'll probably have to drop out of some of the aerobics classes before the full 30 minutes, but that's o.k. I also need to gain strength, so even if I have to drop out of a routine after 5-10 minutes, I can spend the extra time doing strength training. Baby steps are best for someone like me who is so badly out of shape.

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Goals, or Wishes?

I have a goal to lose 40 pounds in the next 12 months, but that may just be a wish. Still, it's a reasonable goal of about 4 pounds a month, so I think I can do it. When I first started trying to lose weight, I was shooting for doing it in 3 months. OMG! I would have had to STARVE myself to do that!

I'm full of unreasonable expectations, so I'm trying to pace myself. I figure with the exercise and tracking my food, I can do it.

Weaknesses I Have to Overcome

In order to lose the weight and get into shape, I have to overcome some pretty big weaknesses. I won't be perfect at it, but I'm going to put forth my best effort. My worst weaknesses are

  • Laziness - Yep, laziness. I went through a few years where I just worked enough to pay the bills, so disciplining myself to do more is a real challenge. 
  • Procrastination - I have a million excuses why I can't do something today, and can catch up in the future. This simply has to stop! Playing catchup all the time is exhausting and fruitless.
  • Health challenges - I have lupus, thyroid problems, and other assorted ailments that come with old age. Figuring out how to do everything I have to do without making myself sick is going to take a lot of discipline and planning. 
  • Junk food and fruit - Fruit? How can fruit be bad? Well, it can be if that's all you eat. I'm totally addicted to sugar, so to avoid sugary foods, I eat a lot of fruit. Unfortunately, although fruit has "good" sugars, it's still sugar, so I need to start cutting back on it. I also love salty junk food, so that has to go as well. 
  • Poor eating habits - I've always been a grazer, eating all day long. Unfortunately, it's hard to track your food when you eat mindlessly. I also have Night Eating Syndrome, where I eat hardly anything during the day, and take in most of my calories after 7 pm at night. It's really hard to fight that compulsion, so I'm trying to eat sensible meals and stop eating at 7 pm. So far, I've not succeeded.
You can see that I have a lot of challenges ahead of me in my quest, but I hope with the support of a couple of good forums and that of my friends, I can succeed and reach my goal.


  1. learn what B M R is. Basic metabolic rate. its the calories your body burns everyday just to keep you alive. once you learn this number you adjust your caloric intake accordingly. example, if your BMR is 2000 calories and you consume 1500 thats a negative of 500 calories that day. to loose 1 lb you must burn 3500 calories. good luck.

  2. Thanks, Ray. I'm using a calorie calculator on a health and fitness site that does all that, and tells me how many calories to eat a day to achieve my weight goals at different activity levels. Anything I burn less than those calories is extra weight lost. I'm tracking everything that goes into my mouth, even water, and so far, so good. Haven't lost any weight, but haven't gained any either, but then I've just started and I'm going slowly since I've been out of shape so long. My goal right now is to build muscle and increase my endurance, and hopefully, lose weight along the way.


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