Finding Time for Fitting in Fitness

My back is aching. Not my whole back but my lower back seems to carry the brunt of the issue. My morning ritual has been disrupted by a sinus headache and I wonder if I am feeling the effects of the sudden change in weather or just the lack of preventive care for an ongoing problem. Despite all of this, I wake up and work out.

100 +100 +100 Just to Start

I start my morning workout with a mini stretch session that by most standards is not enough to relieve me of my lingering back pain. It is more of a warmup than a stretch at less than 3 minutes, but it gets my blood flowing a little bit and keeps me motivated for the morning workout.

My typical morning workout finds me doing this regimen:

  • 100 modified push-ups
  • 100 bodyweight squats
  • 100 jumping jacks

I try to down a full glass of water along with that regimen to get started. Otherwise, I dive right into my coffee and I can see my water intake getting thrown off track throughout the day. Combining the water intake with the workout makes me feel like I have conquered something, as if I have overcome a challenge or leaped a major hurdle.

I’ve got my reasons.

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Problematic Pandemic Conditions

Pre-Pandemic, I would go to the gym at least three times per week, shooting hoops 2-3 times per week and doing walk-jog-run intervals on the treadmill every time I hit the gym door. I would walk at least 3 times per week and do a 5K distance run on Sundays weekly. That was my routine. I found the time to make it work for me and add jumping rope and other exercises within my gym sessions and seemed to have my weight under control, making gains on my weight loss goals month by month.

Then came this coronavirus curveball. . .

I had to start working from home remotely. Joining Zoom sessions every other hour and organizing emails along with responses to emails in the midst of coordinating and calibrating with others on my team at work. By the time that I got this figured out, I believe that my routine had been severely thrown off course.

Gym closed. Parks closed. Golf courses closed. Cities and counties went on lockdown with curfews. States declared pandemic regulations and provided updates daily from the governor and leading public health officers. In the meantime, my waistline expanded and my weight loss crept back to prior numbers and beyond as I just tried to figure out what working from home meant and how it worked for me.

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Finding the Right Fit for You

I have spent a great deal of time trying to make fitness fit into my schedule. It can be a challenge, but it can be done. What I truly learn in the midst of all of this confusion is that you have to make certain things a priority in order for them to get done throughout your day or week.

  • Schedule fitness breaks throughout the day
    • Use your smartphone’s alarms
    • Set reminders on your wearable tech like your FitBit or other device
    • Create and post a schedule on your fridge or mirror for you to reference throughout the day
  • Keep your water bottle filled and close by
  • Take a walk for 10 to 15 minutes before your lunch break
  • Stretch and walk around the house every 30 to 45 minutes
  • After work, take another walk or do some form of indoor workout before dinner

You have to find the right fit for you. The most important thing is that you work in some time to get your fitness in and make it happen. Don’t give up. You have more to lose by not making it work than you do by not doing anything about your health.

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So I Walk 9 Holes

You got to start somewhere. If I mix in walking 9 holes with my regular routine, I am doing okay. Yeah, my goal with golf is to break 90 on a consistent basis. That’s my goal. Does walking 9 holes fit into that? It helps me practice and get into a rhythm. Does walking 9 holes make me more fit? It certainly does that, too.

My next move is to get a cart for when I walk. I have seen some pretty good deals on them, so I would like to snatch up a good deal before spring comes along. That would keep me from slinging my bag across my back (right where the pain seems to sit) and pushing through round after round. by the time I get to spring break, I would like to walk 18 on a fairly flat course on a regular basis like biweekly. That way I can walk 9 on the alternate week when I am not walking 18. After all, in some places golf means walking-only these days.

It’s a start. You got to find the right fit and right the right time. I just have to remain consistent with it. I just have to tick with it and commit to making it happen.

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Fit by 50

To get fit by 50 is the goal.

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#PRESSURE

I am not in the best shape.

Don’t get me wrong. I am thankful for what I have mainly the ability to get up and get out, working out or walking, even playing golf. I see the condition others are at my age with aches and pains, especially former high school and college athletes, and i thank God that I got what I got.

But here’s what I see as what is wrong.

I am not in the best of shape.

To be turning 50 in less than 50 months, I need to make some real life changes. My cholesterol is in line and no high blood pressure. I do not have diabetes. I do not have major joint or back problems or pain.

On the other hand, I tip the scale at just over 280 lbs over the last 3 to 4 months. Call it COVID-19 weight or whatever, but I need to shed it. The last time I was this heavy just over 275 lbs with a limited active life, I was diagnosed with “pre diabetes.” That simply means that I am on the verge if I don’t make changes. And I did make changes. I got active. This time I have been diagnosed with sleep apnea. I do NOT like the machine or the mask. The mask shifts around too much and the hose annoys me. I look like a lost Jedi fighter pilot out of Star Wars or something. I decided to continue with the sleep study and try my best, but I am also determined to get in shape before 50 and NOT need this machine at night or 2 Advil in the morning.

I want to be fit by 50.

#FitBy50

Everything that is wrong with me is under my control: Sleep, Nutrition, and Activity.

Sleep: I do not sleep long hours. I got sleep apnea. But the sleep that I do get isn’t always restful. It’s time I take sleep seriously due to its impact on my ability to lose weight and maintain a healthy diet.

I will commit to eliminating the things that disrupt and rob me of a good nigh’s rest, interfering with my sleep and my health.

Nutrition: I have added more fruit and vegetables to my diet, but my problem is that bread dominates my diet. It can be tortillas, pizza dough, sourdough slices, or biscuits. I drink too much coffee throughout the day (and evening). Too much coffee leads to added sugars because I am that guy. I also do not drink enough water.

I will commit to eliminating bread from diet for 2 weeks initially. I will commit to removing white bread and white sugar from my diet by July 20th. I will focus on the transition to a plant-based diet as I begin again with “clean” eating.

Activity: I am inconsistent and too sporadic with my activity. Prior to COVID-19, I played basketball once per week if not 2-3 times. I also went to the gym at least 4 days per week (treadmill, free weights, weight machines, and stationary bike). I would do Zumba and body combat classes. I would run an average of 8 to 10 miles per week. Now gyms are just reopening. When it comes to golfing, a lot of golf courses are just getting back to up and running again. I should have read those blog posts on getting fit while at home. And we are all supposed to wear face coverings and maintain social distancing. I might be doing 4 to 6 miles per week run, jog and walk at best. I am sort of at the starting block as Eleanor Sophie put it in her recent June post.

I commit to maintaining a consistent activity schedule, including logging at least 10 miles per week. I will also add variety to my workouts to attack my problem areas.

I want to be fit by 50.

Join me on the journey.

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