As a former college distance runner, I used to be pretty proud of my fitness level. However, that was (ahem) quite a few years ago and let's face it, it's harder to be motivated to maintain that kind of fitness when you aren't getting paid to do it! So the years have marched on and my once-prized calf and quad muscles have seen better days.
I've done some road races here and there but I'm not gonna lie--it's been demoralizing at times and a huge mental battle for me to race and be infinitely slower that I was when I was running like it was my full-time job. I'm working on overcoming this ridiculousness but it's been a challenge for me.
NOTE GLARING ABSENCE OF PHOTOS OF ME EXERCISING. NO ONE WANTS TO SEE THAT, TRUST ME.
Here, look at this cute cat instead. She is not dripping with sweat and looking like she is going to kill the person taking the picture. How serene and peaceful she looks.
Where am I going with all this? Diet goes hand in hand with exercise. Eating healthy is awesome and totally groovy but I've found that (for me, at least) I've got to combine it with some good, dig-deep-and-try-not-to-throw-up exercise time. I got an eight-week Groupon deal to a local boot camp that my co-workers go to and it is knocking my socks off. It's horrible and wonderful at the time time, much like a 10-mile training run used to be and I hope can be in the future.
But here's the deal, folks, you've got to do something that you ENJOY and that motivates you to keep going. I honestly needed a break from running (well, so did my nagging back injuries but that's for another post) and now that I'm working on a basic level of fitness I look forward to getting back to that. If you love Zumba (I do, I do!), then dance your little heart out. If it's biking, walking, swimming, basketball, yoga, circuit-training, boot camp, whatever...just do it. Wait, I think that's a copyrighted phrase.