Studies have shown that as little as 20 minutes of brisk walking is enough to help your body stay relatively healthy in it’s basic functions, studies have also shown that exercise of any kind is a great way to de-stress and the perfect way to increase the level of endorphins and serotonin released into the blood stream. These are your happy hormones, and they are so very crucial to someone who faces anxiety and depression on any level.
With my recent change in medication and my life circumstances changing I have ALSO added regular exercise to my daily routine to help me get fit, strong and give me an outlet for all my built up steam (there’s plenty, trust me).
Here’s a little breakdown of my journey over the past three weeks.
Week 1 – it was a slog. Get up, get dressed, go sweat on a bike that I don’t even enjoy and come home, have sore legs the next day and be too tired at night to stay awake past 19h30.
Week 2 – started getting better, easier to get up and get dressed, a little bit of routine setting in. Managing the bike at the gym alright, making it through my 20min session without dying and adding an ab work out every day to the mix with my back stretches from the Chiro.
Week 3 – Gang busters! This week has been amazing. Amped to get up and go to gym, ride that bike like I stole it! Doing my ab exercises at the gym now too, and at home every day! Motivated and settled into a familiar routine, also, hubby started joining me this week!
- When I started in week 1 I could barely make 5km on the bike in 20min, now, at the end of week 3 I can do over 6km in the same amount of time.
- I am sleeping better, deeper and I’ve stopped waking up at 2am.
- I am a lot more chilled out with stressful situations, I am starting to see the forest for the trees (my new meds play a huge role in this too!).
- I am craving healthier food options by default, where in week 1 I’d have to make a conscious choice, now I “feel like” fruits and veg more often than chips and coke.
- I can feel and see that I’ve lost a few centimeters around my chest and waist, and this is amazing! I no longer feel so enormous (even though visually I am probably only .5cm smaller).
- I can lift my 25L buckets of water for the washing machine (we save our grey water for the next wash) with ease, and zero straining. Before I would have to get my hubby to help me do this, but now, I can do it myself with no injury to my back
The change is slow on purpose.
I am taking it slow with my fitness journey because I usually dive in all guns blazing and injure myself two weeks in then I give up. I don’t want to give up this time, I want to create a routine that is sustainable for my life right now, that means that 40min is my max time frame, I do mostly cardio and then my ab work out.
Hubby tried to get me on the circuit today, but after one sets of stairs and a weight machine I was dying…nope, not yet babe, back to my bike.
The key with any fitness routine is that it should fit into your life. My life doesn’t have a lot of gaps in it, my kids are young, they need someone with them 24/7. I do not have a nanny, and my family all live out of town, so it’s myself and hubby handling everything. So my fitness routine needs to fit within this boundary.
Also, with just having been through a mental relapse and changing my depression medication means that any other changes that happen in my life needs to be gentle and sustainable. So this is another big reason for my ‘slow and steady wins the race’ approach. I am also in my 40’s, having had three babies through c-section (loosing the first one) having the second one go through major surgery at 8 months old, and having zero exercise or fitness in between. It’s going to be a long road to strength and my goal is to get there as gently as I can.
Thanks for stopping by! Kim.