Everyone’s got a vice, a bad habit, something they know they need to change. Unfortunately, everyone also has a million excuses why they just can’t do it. Not anymore. Every month we will be following a different CollegeCandy writer as she takes on a personal challenge. This month we’re following Norah on her quest to bring exercise into her life. Last week she climbed aboard the elliptical, what’s she up to now?
At some point this week, exercise stopped being something I had to do and started being something I wanted to do. I’m honestly not sure what changed. Maybe it was the physical pain and exhaustion I felt after Irish dancing at a pre-St. Patrick’s Day event last weekend. And then watching all my old friends performing on St. Patrick’s Day, so full of energy, making it all look so easy.
I guess I liked to think that at any time, I could just get right back into Irish dancing, that it would be just like riding a bike. But it was so much more difficult than I ever remembered. I was frustrated with myself for letting my laziness cancel out the years of strength and endurance I built up through dancing. Whatever the cause of this new-found motivation, though, I knew I needed to take advantage of it.
The weather here has been beautiful, and Spring Break gave me a little more free time than I have back at school. So I set my sights on venturing into the great outdoors this week. Now, here’s a confession: I love Rollerblading. I know Rollerblading is something that probably should have stayed in the ’90s, but for someone who can’t run, Rollerblading gives me the chance to cover a bit of ground outside in a way that doesn’t leave me clutching my sides in pain. So on Thursday afternoon, I strapped on my Rollerblades and set out into the crisp air.
Last week I wrote about my struggles on the elliptical–15 minutes left me tired and bored. Rollerblading was completely different. It was anything but boring. I bladed through a few parks, through some new housing developments, explored my hometown a little bit. Now, my hometown is relatively small, but I actually got lost in one of the developments while I was out there doin’ my thing. And that’s when I realized the main benefit of Rollerblading (or running or walking or biking, I suppose): you can’t just stop. For someone who tends to give up a little too early during exercise, the added challenge of having to make it back home was just what I needed. I ended up Rollerblading for AN HOUR–by far the longest period of continuous exercise I’ve had in probably four years.
And if that’s not enough to motivate me, I bought my first sports bra! I know it’s ridiculous that I didn’t have one, but whatever. I don’t buy new clothes that often–really only a couple times a year–and so it always feels like a bit of a treat. So I’m going to set specific goals for myself (go to Pilates twice a week for a month, etc.) and then reward myself with a pair of cute yoga pants or another new sports bra. If you’re noticing a trend here, yes, I’m excessively motivated by physical rewards. What can I say? Last week’s Shamrock Shake was delicious.