Underlying my 2011 goals of running a half marathon and trying to eat healthier, was the general goal of trying to get in shape and lose some weight. I didn't outwardly mention it at the time because 1) I didn't want to air my "inner secrets" (aka, my insecurities) to whoever decided to read my initial post and 2) I wanted to sound somewhat optimistic and come off as relatively happy with myself. I know, I was not completely honest, but seriously, this is a blog, not my diary.
Anywho, long story short, grad school kicked my butt. Well, it actually did the opposite of kicking my butt, because my butt, along with other areas of my body, got sllliiiiightly bigger over the course of those grueling semesters. Wendy's and McDonald's runs after work and before class, along with the Lay's potato chips, french onion dip, and Dr. Pepper-infused late-night writing sessions will do that to you... Anyway, since I've been out of grad school for a year now I've been trying to get back into the habit of being nicer to my body - you know, feeding it more nutritional food and actually getting it away from a desk chair once in a while. Hence the decision to run my first half marathon and repeat Insanity. (Although, those Mint Julep cupcakes didn't quite help the situation). While I haven't been great at it, I've definitely gotten better at being more active and eating well. I can tell the difference good food and good exercise makes on my body, and it feels great.
To continue with this theme, I decided to give myself another challenge - to practice Yoga 6 days a week for 6 weeks. This challenge came to my head for a few reasons. 1) I had bought 3 Groupon/LivingSocial deals for yoga that I needed to start redeeming; 2) I like to run, but I do not like running every day on a treadmill and I physically cannot run in this heat. Too hot, too humid pour moi. So yoga seemed to be a good alternative exercise option; and, 3) I was genuinely interested in seeing how doing yoga everyday would transform my body. I've done yoga before, but never 6 days in a row, much less almost daily for 6 weeks! OH, and 4) We're going to be finally going on our long-sought-after-"honeymoon" in October and I WILL be proud of what I look like in my swimsuits! (no more hiding behind a towel!)
So, I began my challenge last Saturday with a Bikram yoga class. For those non-Yogis out there, Bikram is the HOT yoga. Like, 105 degree-room hot. I decided to do it on a day where it was already pretty much 105 outside. Can't be too bad when it's the same temp. outside, right? I thought. Wrong. It was the worst bikram class I've ever taken (I've done it 4 other times). I know I drank enough water, but my body just did not like me that day. It was rough, but I at least got through it without leaving the room. I continued the week with some Ashtanga and Vinyasa flow yoga classes at a local studio, and did yoga at home with Ashley Turner's Yoga for Weight Loss DVD (which isn't as challenging as a real class, but is pretty good when you don't have time to get to a studio). All in all, it was a pretty successful week. I am standing up taller, feeling stronger and healthier, and even think I see some muscles taking shape, especially in my shoulders. Wish me luck as I continue with week #2 of 6!
(I also just signed up for my second half marathon this morning! The marathon series that I ran in DC last March is now apart of the Rock N Roll Marathon series and it is only $60 to register for the half in the first 48 hours of registration! And, I might be signing up for a half in November. AND, I definitely bought a real road bike last week that I plan on riding around and exercising on once it cools off here!)
Here's to doing new things and getting in shape! Ommmm!