I really admire people who have great discipline when it comes to fitness. They can’t possibly enjoy sweating for an hour on a machine, running in place…can they? Treadmills kinda-sorta drain happiness from my soul. But that’s me…if you enjoy that sort of thing, more power to you! However, if you’re like me, you need exercise to be fun, and there tend to be roadblocks. My roadblocks were:
Finances. I didn’t think I could afford a bicycle, or a gym membership.
Time. I was working full time so the gym classes I actually liked weren’t offered in the evening.
Location. I took a most wonderful adult ballet class. With a live piano player and everything. That was in Seattle. I’m in Iowa.
Weather. I love longboarding and biking, but 3/4 of the year here is generally not the right weather (we had a blizzard in April this year).
Insecurity. I sweat. I’m too old. My body isn’t perfect. I don’t want to be seen in a bathing suit, etc.
Fear. I didn’t want to fall when I was longboarding or biking.
The thing about these “roadblocks” is that they’re really just excuses. So then I asked myself questions…
What is it I really want to do?
What is keeping me from doing it?
What needs to change so I can do it?
Don’t get me wrong…roadblocks are valid. I now enjoy gym classes since I left my job to be a stay-at-home mom, but do I wish I would have quit earlier to be able to take the classes? Absolutely not. It wasn’t the right time. But here’s what I did: I made a temporary solution. I bought Dance With Julianne so I could dance at home (I highly recommend this very inexpensive and fun option). I also went to GameStop and bought an old Play Station 1 console, controller, dance pad, and DDR game (Dance Dance Revolution). It’s really fun too (though I wish it was less expensive). I even took it to my desk job so I could do it on my breaks.
But the thing I really wanted to do was BIKE. Did I want to spend a large chunk of money on a bicycle? No, but I did, and I’m so glad I did! I absolutely love it, and actually loving exercise feels so good. We bought Pure Fix bikes (now called Pure Cycles). I didn’t know at the time that they were fixed gear ‘hipster’ bikes…I just thought they were cute…we get compliments everywhere we go. We were even photographed for an article about healthy lifestyles in Iowa, can you believe it?! I got the Delta (teal blue/gray), and Kevin got the India (black/yellow).
We’ve biked every summer for years on the gorgeous trails here, and it’s been such a blast and adventure. I had a great time decorating, adding a basket, flowers, glitter hand grips (in white), a bell (I originally got it just for fun but it’s quite handy on the busy trail), and cup holder and phone holder of course. But most importantly, I got a helmet. if you bike, please, PLEASE wear a helmet! I like my teal one that matches my bike, by Triple Eight (and comes in a large size for my large head).
We thoroughly enjoyed Pokémon GO…biking is the best way to play because you can cover the most distance.
We’ve also seen lots of real creatures…all kinds of beautiful birds, including: red-winged blackbirds, cranes, goldfinches (the state bird), cedar waxwings (one of my FAVES), woodpeckers, and pelicans. We also saw frogs, lots of turtles and even an adorable mink.
This summer we got a bike trailer now that we have Lily. We love our Burley Bee! We ordered it from our local bike shop, but it’s less expensive on Amazon since it’s not assembled. I also didn’t realize we would need the Baby Snuggler, because that’s a separate accessory. And fenders are a must (if you don’t already have them on your bike) because dirt still gets through the screen (and so does the sun…make sure to use some baby sunscreen).
Biking has made my life really fun. So my advice to you, if you are struggling to find some kind of exercise to enjoy, is to find out the strength of your area (or find another area) and don’t let roadblocks stop you. I even broke my arm and that hasn’t stopped me. It actually kept me from going down a wrong path in life, but that’s a story for another time. What do you want to do? Have you done it yet? What stops you or almost stopped you? Let me know in a comment!