Wednesday, June 25, 2008

And Then There Are Those Days….

Ever have those exercise moments when you are SOOOOO in the zone, SOOOO with the rhythm of the movement that you don’t want it to end? For every three, nine or maybe 25 times I’m on the elliptical or bike or arc trainer thinking, “OK, five more minutes. I can do FIVE more minutes,” there is one completely pure Zen moment of, “God this feels good….I don’t want to stop.”

That’s what happened today. I plan my weekly workout schedule usually on Sundays, and this week had “penciled in” a 15-minute warm-up before a 45-minute strength training routine for today. But once on the elliptical, I fell into a groove. Maybe it was the music, maybe it was the day off yesterday, but I felt fabulous. So I cranked that sucker to a high incline and stayed there way longer than usual.

I’d still be on it probably if I didn’t have, well, a LIFE.

After the longer-than-usual workout, I showered and went to a friend’s house. We went for a walk through the woods and then walked one of her neighbor’s dogs because his owners are on vacation. My friend lives on one of the most beautiful pieces of land in western Pennsylvania and is surrounded by woods and hills and the most beautiful wild flowers. Even though I’d had a near cosmic experience on the elliptical earlier, nothing could replace the walk with her today, both for the natural beauty and the time talking to one of the most important people in my life.

It made me realize that exercise is a lot of things. It’s not just sweating or agony or numbing out. Look around you the next time you’re in the heat of it. Who’s there? What’s there? What do you see outside the window or to your left and right? Yes, we exercise to improve our bodies, but surely there is another reason. Surely there is something else that keeps us coming back to it.

When I ride my bike along the bike trails or go canoeing or hiking, I’m not thinking, “Gosh, this is helping me keep my weight off.” I’m thinking on a totally higher plain.

Am I alone in this? Tell me….what goes on in your head when you’re moving?

4 comments:

  1. Hi Lynne, Hey I had a day like that today too! So good that it was hard for me to slow down and relax when I finally got home. But your post made me think of something I wrote on another blog this morning. They had posted some gorgeous pictures of landscape/walking areas in the hills in Scotland, and it made me want to go there and walk in those places. And I realized that that was a new way of thinking for me. In the past I'd want to visit places like Scotland to see the textiles, and view the scenery from the comfort of my car. It is great to come across unexpected places you have changed in your life in this weight loss journey.

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  2. I am almost there. I do in the moment think about my surroundings and stuff but also do say to myself that it's also great because I am adding in more activity to my day. I hope to be there soon, but I have a feeling it won't happen until I take the weight off and truly not be consumed by it. It's happening, just not there yet. BUT I LOVE to read these posts because it makes be believe that it can happen, I smiled when I read the paragraph about Western PA... you sound so at peace, relaxed - enjoying life for what it is - and I think that is just great!

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  3. Don't you just LOVE those moments, Lynn? So often we view exercise is such a negative light - especially "purposeful" exercise - the type that takes place at home on my treadmill or at your gym with fancy weight machines and ellipticals.

    Sometimes (not often at all, I regret saying) when I'm running I really do feel like I can run forever - I get past focusing on each stride and each heavy breath. I focus instead on just being in that moment.

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  4. I can relate Lynn. I have these moments when I am at the gym. You get into that moment and you just keep going and going. Great post and so inspiring.

    Mara
    http://24stepstogo.blogspot.com/

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