A Rough Start

When I finished boot camp three weeks ago, I made the decision that I would sign up for another session.
After a week off, we would begin a two week session, immediately followed by a six week session. I was so thrilled with the progress I made in the first six weeks, I wanted to see what kind of success I could have with another eight weeks.
I only made it to three classes the first week (Monday was a holiday, no class. Friday was my 40th birthday. I gave myself the day off.) I was excited to start the second week the following Monday. But that didn’t happen because I got sick. I’m not talking about a hangover from my wild 40th birthday celebration, I’m talking chills, fever, congestion, body aches. I didn’t start to feel better until Thursday. And even then, I wasn’t 100%.
I missed the entire second week.
I wasn’t happy about it– waste of time, of money, but I also know that it was out of my control so I didn’t waste much time being upset about it. I was looking forward to getting well and getting back into the swing of things on Monday.
Yesterday was my first day back. I was feeling pretty nervous about the workout after having had so much time off without any type of exercise whatsoever.
I felt it as soon as we started warming up. My legs felt tight and sore (but not the good kind of sore. The I’ve Been Laying Down Too Much kind of sore.) I began to feel upset with myself. I had been doing so well, I was getting so strong! And now, there I was, feeling weak and tight and sore. I tried to shake it off, to stop focusing on My Feeeeeelings and my get my mind and body completely focused on the workout.
Because it was the first workout of a new six week session, we had to do a timed mile run. The minute I started running, I wanted to stop. I just didn’t feel right. I felt weak, I felt tight. I felt defeated. I immediately fell behind the group. I came in second to last place at 11:01. (Which was faster than my first timed mile, but slower than my last time mile, which was 10:52.) After the run, we completed the workout. Squats. Crunches. More squats. More crunches. For the first time since doing boot camp, I thought “maybe this isn’t for me. Maybe I’m not cut out for this after all.” I was completely frustrated.
During the cool down, the instructor asked one of the newbies if she had enjoyed the class. She responded with “yes!” Then, the instructor was all “You guys, she just had a baby!”
I kind of felt like someone had just kicked me in the stomach because a woman who had JUST HAD A BABY runs faster than me. Not only had she just given birth, but she was also new to the class. Double Gut Kick.
After the work out was over, I grabbed my mat and bag and headed to the car without saying good bye to anyone.
I drove home feeling pretty down about myself, about my progress, about my ability to do this.
“How was your workout?” My husband asked as soon as I walked in the door.
“It sucked. It was awful. I’M SO PISSED AT MY BODY.”
I used to be athletic. I used to be able to run. I used to be strong. I used to be fast. I used to be the picture of perfect health. And then I got sick. And then I had a doctor who didn’t listen to me. And then I ballooned to 237 pounds. And then I was so unhealthy. And then I tried to lose weight and couldn’t. And then I couldn’t even walk on a treadmill without feeling like I was going to die. And then I took charge of my health care. And then I got the proper medication and was able to lose 59 pounds. And then I started to feel like myself again. And then I gained 11 pounds back. And then I joined boot camp to get back on track and try to lose the last 50 pounds. And then I lost 10 pounds. And then I started to feel strong again. And then I RAN THREE MILES. And then I got sick. And then I had one really bad workout and suddenly I felt weak, scared and angry with my body all over again for betraying me. For getting sick. For not working the way that it should, the way that it used to.
I know that one bad workout doesn’t erase all of the progress I’ve made health wise nor does it erase the success I’ve had with boot camp thus far. But I wanted to write this down to keep an honest account of the next six weeks. I want to be able to know that even during my darkest moments, I have what it takes to keep going and come out stronger and hopefully SO MUCH FASTER. At the very least, I want to be able to keep up with WOMEN WHO JUST GAVE BIRTH.
That is officially my new fitness goal.

22 thoughts on “A Rough Start

  1. Beth

    Y, you will do it. I’ve read your blog for a long time now and I know that you are strong. Don’t lose your confidence now, you have come so far and have farther to go.
    You are an inspiration to me.

  2. Y

    Thank you, Beth.
    I know it was just one bad workout. I will go back tonight and try all over again. I don’t want to quit after coming so far. You know.

  3. Neeroc

    You have kicked major butt! I’m not going to tell you not to feel that way, but don’t dwell on it or let it get you down. Own it and move on, stronger and healthier.
    And I love that goal!

  4. Carrie - A Sassy Redhead

    Well, you might not run faster than a woman who just had a baby, but you certainly run faster AND farther than a woman who has NEVER had a baby and has been walking/jogging for over a year!
    I can barely make it through one Beyonce’ song before I’m grabbing on to nearby shrubs and bushes.
    Keep it up…you’re on a roll now!

  5. mommabird2345

    Please don’t be so hard on yourself, you are stronger. Besides, since you were so sick recently, your body is probably still recovering even though you feel better. I’m sure by next week you will be able to work out like you want to. Wishing you luck.

  6. Beth N

    My body, too, has gotten out of control.
    14 weeks ago I started a 5K training program. Ran my first 5K at the end of August. Took a week off. Started at it again and, without a doubt, I suck.
    It’s like the last 14 weeks didn’t happen at all. FOURTEEN weeks. I only lost ONE pound. Running, at all, is exhausting. And, unlike you, even after 14 weeks, I’m MUCH MUCH slower than you. I’m lucky if I can run a 13 minute mile.
    But I’m not quitting.
    And neither are you.

  7. The Tutugirl

    I’ve been running for the past few months (after being a couch potato), and my running coach, an old roommate who can run a half marathon a week after having the plague and be in the top of her age group, still encourages me to listen to my body and take it easy when things don’t feel right. Getting sick is a major event for you physically, and takes a lot of energy. I bet you’ll be back to kicking butt in no time!

  8. Dawn

    You are not alone. We have all felt betrayed by our bodies at one point or another. In fact I am feeling that way right now, but you can do this. You will go on to have some awesome workouts again. Some will still suck, but the awesome ones will keep you going! Good luck!

  9. Liz

    Some people are freaks of nature. I know a woman who in her mid-thirties was able to walk out of the delivery room in her size 2 jeans. And they weren’t draped over her arm. She was WEARING THEM.
    I’ve been in a similar situation as you. I’ve had foot problems for nearly a year. (Hi, I’m the girl that said hi to you at the CheezburgHer party with an aircast on.) I haven’t worked out since last fall. I’ve gained weight. And just when I thought I was getting back to normal and just a few days away from hitting the gym again, I injured my foot AGAIN. It’ll be at least another week or more until I can start working out again. So frustrated with my body.

  10. liz

    Cut yourself some slack. Your body is still putting energy into creating white blood cells to fight infection, and putting more energy into your liver and kidneys to rid your body of the infection.
    This is not the same thing as recovering from pregnancy.
    And remember that her delivery may have been relatively easy.
    Drink plenty of fluids, eat well, and take it slow.

  11. Alexa

    You know, you have been such an inspiration to me as I have struggled with my own weight issues this past year–I have PCOS and was finally diagnosed with a thyroid condition as well, and was so discouraged when the diagnosis didn’t magically make all my weight gain disappear (I KNOW!), and then when months of working hard at exercising and eating well produced a scant 2 lb loss. I gave up for a while, but knowing you have accomplished so much gives me hope, and so does seeing you fall backwards and get right back up again. You are a strong, amazing woman.

  12. Michele

    I love reading your blog and can appreciate the challenges you have with your weight loss and excerscise journey. However, whenever I read your posts they inspire me to want to do more and be healthier. Plus giver yourself a break! You were sick and your body needs time to heal, you’ll be back to kicking butt in no time. GOOD LUCK!

  13. Cindy

    You know there is not alot of things that we cant change in life but the one thing we can change is our perspective of our life. How we feel about it and how we live it. You have to change your mindset of how you go into the next six weeks. Dont compare yourself to someone else. Compare yourself to yourself. You know you can feel strong and be athletic, your mind has to get there first and then your body will follow. You want to be the best you not the best women who just had a baby. I really hope the next six weeks is more welcoming cause we all know you can do it.

  14. Y

    You’re so right,Cindy. I went with a completely different attitude last night and had a GREAT experience. I hope to have time to write about it today.

  15. Angela

    Y i just want to cry reading about your frustration. Because you? YOU have come so freaking far in the short time since I started reading your blog. So far!! You know what was going wrong with your body and how to deal with it, and have accomplished so much!
    You are such an inspiration to us all out here. You can totally do this!

  16. Rachael

    It sucks so much when your momentum is broken, and it can be so hard to get it back. But, you’ve already proven that you CAN DO IT! We believe in you!

  17. Tricia

    Y, you can totally do this. As a woman who JUST GAVE BIRTH 18 months ago, and is still struggling with getting back into shape and wondering if I will ever feel like myself again, I totally understand the feeling of comparing myself to others who make it look so easy.
    I’m so proud of you for keeping on. It’s so hard, and if anyone can do it, it is you. For the past five + years, I’ve read your blog and have been so thankful that you are willing to share so much of yourself. It has made me laugh, cry, and feel like someone else has a touch of the crazies, so it must be okay.
    Kick Boot Camp’s ass so hard that it feels like it has the flu. You know you can.

  18. Theresa

    I know your first workout didn’t feel as great as the others did – that happens sometimes. That happens to me sometimes even when I haven’t taken any time off.
    But you know what makes that first workout a HUGE success? That you showed up. Showing up after more than week off is monumental. It would have been so easy to quit forever after you got sick, right? Just never go back? But you didn’t. You showed up and you committed. That’s huge.

  19. Michelle

    I’m thoroughly impressed by your sweat ethic. I tried just going to the gym for 20 minutes a day five days a week, and I ended up not going at all. So I decided to go to the gym 2 days a week for 45 minutes. It might not be much, but you know what? I go those two days every single week without missing one.
    Always better than nothing.

  20. Nancy P

    I am so in awe of you and your determination. After cancer surgery in 2008 I got all serious about my health and signed up with a trainer for a 12 week period. I thought I was going to die in that gym but ended up doing things I never thought I could do. I kept going to the gym for about a year and 1/2 and then for some reason or another stopped. Every freakin week I tell myself I have to get back at it ….. My weight is back, my high blood pressure is back, my high blood sugar is back, and yet… I am SOOOOO disgusted with myself. I wish I lived near you and I would hire you to train me. Serious.

  21. Courtney

    You’re doing GREAT! Try not to compare yourself to the others in that class – they all have their own reasons for being there, and you have your own. Do it because it’s good for YOU. And I’m super-impressed with your initiative!!
    And just as an aside, I could barely WALK for months after my difficult delivery, so that lady is cuh-razy. :)

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