Today I am thankful for Jillian Michaels. Ok… That might sound trite after my previous posts, but I thought I’d go lighter today. And ok, maybe it’s not specifically Jillian Michaels, but really exercise in general.
I’ve always been a very active person. I played soccer from age 4 through high school and most of that time, it was year round. When I was done with soccer and went off to college, I was at the gym a lot. I coached soccer, and I loved getting out for a walk or a hike.
I started running races a few years ago and usually use that as my motivation to keep moving. This year was my busiest in terms of races. I ran a 10-miler with my sister in March, then a 10k with my friend in early June, then was part of a triathlon relay with Jeremy and his sister in late June and then did the annual Four Miler with family in September. After all that I vowed to myself that I would not run at all through the winter. I wanted to let my body recover since running is so hard on my knees and back. I told myself I would focus on my core. This is where Jillian comes in…
I’ve been doing her 30 Day Shred workouts for a couple of years. And I wanted to use those as my core strengthening workouts this winter. They are great because I can do them in less than 30 minutes, and they really do push me to my limits. After staying consistent with the Shred workouts and walking on the treadmill for a few weeks, I was feeling great. Even with the dark winter mornings, I’m motivated to get up and exercise. (It might have a tiny bit to do with wanting to eat all the delicious food the holidays bring and needing to work off all the calories, but that’s another post for another time.) After working out in the morning, I feel great throughout the day knowing I’ve already gotten it done.
One of my favorite recent quotes I found on Pinterest is “You can feel sore tomorrow or you can feel sorry tomorrow. You choose.” It is so true. And most days while I lay in the dark wondering if I should just get more sleep or get up and workout, I now think about this and choose to be sore rather than sorry.
And now that I’m feeling stronger, I couldn’t stop myself from running despite my vow to not do it all winter. I used to say that I wasn’t a “runner.” Even though I do all these races, I didn’t consider myself a “runner.” But the fact that I couldn’t go 2 months without breaking down and hitting 6 on the treadmill must mean something. I enjoy it (usually), and I need it (most of the time). So thank you Jillian Michaels for getting me out of bed every day and for pushing me beyond my comfort zone. And thank you exercise for helping me remember my need to stay active.