Sunday, April 1, 2012
Over the past several months, I discovered a very large downside to not riding on a regular basis (actually not riding at all would be more like it). I am way out of shape.
Of course, I realized riding was good exercise. What did surprise me was how many parts of my body are affected by not riding horses. While I haven't actually put on weight, I am definitely more out of shape in ways I didn't predict. My usual 30-minute walk at lunch leaves me huffing. Mowing the lawn hurts my arms. Walking up four flights of stairs to my office is next to impossible because my leg strength is gone. Even gardening is a chore. Okay, we could chalk it up to getting older, but riding horses did keep my body younger than most women's bodies of my age group.
Something needs to change. No, I don't plan on buying another horse anytime soon, if ever. Nor do I plan on leasing one. A new horse is not part of my current or future plans. Paying off bills and carving out time to write are along with working on my property.
When a writer friend of mine, Lucy Monroe, invited me to be a team captain for her fitness challenge, I jumped at the chance. I'm competitive so what could be better than almost three months of competing with others to lose weight and get in shape. Even better is the added pressure of heading a team (I've always been better under pressure) and being a good example. Also, the team captains have a side bet in which the winning team gets to donate the proceeds to the charity of their choice.
So today is the first day of Lucy Monroe's Fitness Challenge and what I hope will be three months of eating better and exercising more. We're using MyFitnessPal.com as our fitness/weight tracker. If you haven't used this tool before and are interested in losing weight, I strongly recommend it. It's free, and it's pretty simple to use. There are also apps for iPhones and Androids. What I love is that it tells you how much you need to eat to lose so many pounds in so many weeks. I find that extra incentive quite helpful.
Wish me luck as I embark on yet another attempt to lose weight. I'm hoping the team concept is what I need to finally stick with it. If you'd like to join us, I don't think it's too late to sign up either. Lucy is offering some nice prizes, especially if you're a fan of romance novels.
I'll keep you posted on my progress.