I have a moderately embarrassing confession to make: I've gained 23 pounds since the middle of October and I've barely noticed. What makes this even more shocking is that I have a small frame (towering under most people at only 5'3″), so typically 5-10 pounds is extremely noticeable.
How did it happen? Well, for starters I clearly haven't been committed to fitness over the past six months. I've set a goal of exercising three days a week every month since the beginning of the year and failed epically. Plus, I've eaten whatever I've wanted on a daily basis for most of this year.
But how did I not notice? I stopped going to the gym last summer, my scale began malfunctioning sometime in the fall (last weigh-in read 17 pounds), and I can still button my pants. Plus, other than my monthly reviews, I've barely thought about fitness or my weight. Kind of the perfect storm of ignorance.
How'd I finally find out? I mentioned in my last monthly review that the super fancy gym in my building is 100% free this month. So, last week, I walked down a couple flights of stairs after work to try it out.
Then I saw it out of the corner of my eye, taunting me: the dreaded physician beam scale.
I waiting until I knew no one was looking, took off my shoes, held my breath, and stepped on. Silently praying, I moved the slide to the right.
153, 156, 157, 158, 159, 159.5, 160.
I was ready to pick a fight with someone until I noticed a lonely sticky note, just above the scale, stating one of the most soul-crushing phrases known to man: scale was calibrated 6/1.
Let's back up just a bit…
Last summer, after a particularly indulgent long weekend (July 4th) of hot chicken, BBQ, Vietnamese food, and booze, I went back to boot camp to shed the extra weight. In addition to hardcore workouts 4 days per week, and regular cardio 2 days per week, the program also includes giving up sugar, bread, and alcohol.
Torture, I know.
But it works! Within a month, I had lost seven pounds and felt motivated to continue following the program. The only problem was the price tag: $400 per month for bootcamp plus $50 per month for a gym membership. $450 per month for fitness was absolutely not in my budget, so I quit the program and ditched the gym.
I continued following the diet and began working out with the Insanity videos (borrowed from a friend) in the comfort of my living room. As it turns out, Shaun T is a total badass and that workout is way harder than bootcamp. By mid-October I had lost nearly 20 pounds!
Then work got incredibly busy, I started traveling excessively, and I majorly fell off the wagon. When I say fell off, I mean that I began running at full speed in the opposite direction and haven't caught a glimpse of a wagon since.
Fast forward to last week…
That damned scale may have been cruel, but my level of motivation went from nonexistent to committed in about 30 seconds. I stayed at the gym for 90 minutes that night and have exercised every day this week so far!
So, clearly having a super nice gym four flights of stairs away from my desk makes working out during the workweek significantly easier, and dare I say it, enjoyable. But what happens when the free month is over?
Word on the street is this utopia of a gym's membership will set me back a cool $65 per month.
Do I suck it up and pay for a couple of months until I'm in shape enough to return to my Insanity workouts with Shaun T? Or do I cheap out and brainstorm another plan?
– ability to workout during my lunch break, immediately before or right after work
– access to a super nice locker room / showers that may finally make biking to work a viable option
– open 24 hours a day
Readers: How much is physical fitness worth to you?