Tuesday, April 13, 2010

What is Exercise?

I can't even convey how upset I was when I injured my left knee.  And then my right knee.  And I saw my dreams of 125 pounds at my wedding and a 10 mile race on May 2nd go up in smoke.  And then an amazing thing happened.  I just realized that these goals are not impossible to reach.

In my head, I had taken a month off from exercise.  March 9th-April 9th.  Nothing.  Nada.  Zilch.  In my mind, I saw the pounds piling back on, and my newly toned muscles withering away.  I continued to eat rationally, and maintained my love affair with CalorieCount.com     And....the weight continued to come off.  Probably 8 pounds since "I haven't exercised."  But the reality is, I have.

I always say that walking my dog doesn't count as exercise.  This might be true if I had a purse dog (no offense to those of you that do) that only required a traipse around the yard.  But the "non-exercise" of walking my dog is about 4 miles a day.  What else didn't I count?  Home renovations.  We're not talking about sewing some pillows or slapping up a coat of paint, either.  (Both of which I really enjoy doing, but didn't happen this month.)  I dug foundations.  Moved dirt.  Planted flowers and a garden.  Dug up fence posts.  Lots of HEAVY lifting.

Throw in that I was still even doing an occasional aerobics class or yoga video, and you realize that I was completely deluding myself.  I might not have been getting my miles in on the treadmill, but I was EXERCISING.  This morning I went to the gym for my first "serious" run, and ran a 5k in pretty decent time, without much pain.  So now the challenge is...do I still try and train for the 10 mile race?  Chris votes that I don't.  He thinks my knees won't hold up, and I'll be limping at the wedding.  A friend that is an avid runner thinks I can do it, as long as I get in 2 long runs before then, and just plan on walking when necessary.

The question is:  When is it too much of a challenge? 

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