I Was THISCLOSE To Joining A Gym

20120319_97I’ve been saying for a few years now that I’m going to lose weight. I’ve done “Biggest Loser” competitions at my previous job, I’ve tried “lifestyle changes”, I’ve made resolutions year after year, I’ve even walked a half-marathon in the hopes that it would “keep me motivated”…yet I never seem to stick to what I’m doing. I always find a way to “fall off the wagon”.

So here I am…back to a weight I’m uncomfortable with and wanting to do something about it.

As recently as one week ago, it looked like Sunshine and I were going to join a gym. As it was, we went to the local YMCA to discuss membership options. While it wasn’t cheap, it seemed quasi-affordable and we were give a few free day-passes each to test out the facilities and see if joining was something we wanted to do.

We’ve been there a few times now and I have to admit that I enjoyed it there. I was only doing the treadmill, but I was doing an hour on various speeds and inclines, which for me is a big change from just sitting on the couch doing nothing. The idea was to join for the next three months or so…until the weather improved. At that point, we’d see if I was ready to tackle the sidewalks again or if I still enjoyed the indoor high-tech atmosphere.

This is how I felt at 15km at last year's marathon.
This is how I felt at 15km at last year’s marathon.

I was trying to figure out what I wanted out of exercise. Did I just want to continue on the treadmill? Would that help me achieve whatever goal I set for myself? Or did I want to try other machines and try to work my entire body into a better overall shape?.

I always felt a bit embarrassed when I was on the treadmill and walking at a 3.5 pace with a 4.0 incline. For me, that’s a great pace that I need to take breaks from, but then I’d look at the person next to me who SLOWS DOWN to a 3.5 after running a 10.0 for five minutes. I asked myself, “Do I want to hit that point? Will that make me happy?”

I’m not quite sure what my goals are at this point. And even though I really enjoyed the atmosphere inside of the gym, Sunshine didn’t care for it at all. She was still willing to join (because she’s awesome and all that), but then we sat back and looked at the financial aspect. At this point, especially where we’re trying to pay-off debt and start saving for our family trip to Florida…it just didn’t make sense to spend a good chunk of change on a gym membership. If we both loved it, then maybe we’d consider it. But with only one of us loving it, it just didn’t make sense…especially when she’s outside running all winter like a frickin’ BOSS.

So I’m back to square one. I’m wanting to get outside but I hate doing any kind of walking or jogging in the snow and ice. I started two years ago when preparing for my “big race” in the dead of winter…but I was motivated by not wanting to wear a dress at work or pay $50 to the guy I was up against. My motivation right now? Fitting into clothes and looking good for summertime photos. I want to sign up for another half marathon, though…so I’m hoping that motivates me a bit.

I was thisclose to joining a gym.


3 thoughts on “I Was THISCLOSE To Joining A Gym

  1. I’ve been sitting here for the last hour + since reading this blog post for the first time trying to decide what to say. I have lot of thoughts on this, as this desire of yours to get healthy, get in shape and lose weight has been ever-present in your life in the 5+ years that I’ve known you. Longer, really, when you consider the almost year I read your blog before we’d ever met.

    Here’s what I have observed. A guy unwilling to get out of his own way long enough to succeed at this, once and for all. You have made countless blog posts about wanting to make a change or about embarking on a new change. Almost every single one of those posts contains the statement, “Yes, I’ve said this before, but this time it’s different”. I know that when you write those words you want that statement to be true, but I don’t believe for a second that deep down you really believe it yourself.

    You know what you need to do to be healthy. You have made small steps toward health in the past. You’ve even made some big steps that you’ve sustained for a little while. But nothing sticks. You always reach a point where you give up yourself. Why is that? Why is your health and happiness not worth it to you, to do what is necessary to achieve and maintain it? You have tackled many other difficult things in your life, and have succeeded at them….so why is this particular issue such a big stumbling block for you?

    Why don’t you believe that you’re worth it?

    It’s so frustrating to watch you go through this cycle that always ends with self-loathing. Particularly when I can see so clearly that you’re worth more than that. On the one hand, you say that you want to learn to love yourself, but then on the other, you actively do things that prevent that from happening. Just get out of your own way, dammit!

    You know what you need to do to be healthy. Sure, it requires a big committment and a lot of work. You’ve committed yourself to a lot of other important things in your life — scary, difficult things — children, a long distance relationship, marriage. If you can commit to those things, things that involve other people, then why are you unable to make a similar commitment to yourself?

    What do you have to lose by finally, FINALLY allowing yourself to become the person that you both WANT to be and CAN be?

  2. Reading this, and Sunshine’s comment…I am a firm believer that you have to be ready emotionally AND physically for the change, not just one or the other. Or else it won’t stick. It has to be a committment of the mind too and sometimes that is the hardest part. I am not saying you don’t have this, because I think you do, it is just my observation from all of the clients I see at the studio each day. The ones that succeed most are the ones that do make it a lifestyle and find ways to get active and stay active, and making themselves a priority. Find what works for you, and only you, and it will stick. That doesn’t mean you have to walk or run in the snow and ice (though Sunshine is a BOSS for doing it, agree!), or run at 10.0 (who can do that, not me!), but what works for you and you can stick with. End long meandering comment. long story short: you can do it, we all know it and have seen it. now find your path and do it up my friend:)

  3. Remember that you have to do this for YOU. If you liked the gym then join. You don’t need Sunshine to join with you. Her gym is outside. If you prefer not to spend time away from each other then go to the gym while she’s out running. Be careful not to use her as an excuse for not joining the gym. She doesn’t have to like it or go with you. You can go on your own.

  4. Hi there!
    Just wanted to mention that the Y is a great place ( I joined and also need to lose weight and have always hated gyms!) I started on cardio machines and lifting weights but quickly grew bored of cardio machines but have discovered the Y has a lot of great group classes
    ( most are free!) like spinning ( fun music !)boot camps etc etc I always detested group classes all my life but tried a bunch and discovered a few I love . So now I will stick with it whereas the machines would have eventually bored me to death ! Also it has been great meeting others at classes and provides inspiration !
    I totally recommend joining the Y – but try some of their group classes ( except their Jane Fonda type ones ha !!)
    It has been a lifechanger for me and really helps boost my mood even though still need to lose weight ( I need to eat less , that’s where the root of my weight issues lie and exercising won’t help that unless I eat less !!)
    Best wishes and hope you join the Y ( why don’t you join on your own since Sunshine has a workout she loves already ?)

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