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My Relationship With Exercise

June 21, 2011

Today I really crashed and burned – I hardly had any sleep last night and my hayfever was playing up. I made it into work, but only lasted a few hours before I realised I wasn’t going to make it. I headed home and straight into bed for over 3 hours. I’m starting to feel more human now, so I have high hopes for tomorrow. I have a random day off work, so I’m meeting my Mum in Manchester.

After I was very pleasantly surprised at my performance in the 10k at the weekend the first thing I said to my parents was “I wish my PE teachers could see me know”. I was never a sporty child – I had always had my head in a book and I would have long conversations with my Dad about history, geography and current affairs. I achieved well at school, but I always had one blot on my end of year report – PE. I tried hard, but I was completely uncoordinated and very unfit. My ultimate nightmare was athletics in the summer. At school I never ran in a race that I didn’t finish last in.

I decided I needed to do something about my weight when I was 15 and knew that I needed to exercise. It was the days when “rebound” was all the rage (remember that anyone?!), so I bought a little trampete which I used to do a routine on every night. Unfortunately they didn’t make that robust enough for a hefty teenager and I got through at least 10! I was so excited when I turned 16 and I could join the local gym. It was then that I actually started to enjoy feeling fitter and I became a dedicated gym bunny.

By the time I got to university I had gained a lot of fitness and decided to try out my first sport. I am still totally uncoordinated, so I’ll never be much good at ball sports, but there’s lots of other things to try. I started rowing and loved it – I loved the focused training and the social element of team sport. I also discovered my competitive side and loved racing.

The past few years I’ve been a exercise class addict. I’ve tried loads of different classes – circuits, pilates, yoga, boxercise, BodyCombat, step, toning, swiss ball … I really enjoyed the group element and the fact that there is a instructor keeping me motivated and focused. At the moment I’m just taking yoga classes because I’m concentrating on running, but I’m sure that there are lots of other classes out there that I’d love – I really want to try BodyPump!

Now I’m running, doing yoga and trying to fit in some strength and core work. I enjoy doing lots of different types of exercise now and I change it up quite often as I don’t want to get bored doing the same thing over and over. I can’t imagine being that unfit girl ever again – I will always make time for exercise, even if it’s just lots of walking.

Have you always been active?

How has your relationship with exercise changed? Do you like doing the same things, or do you like variety?

7 Comments leave one →
  1. June 21, 2011 9:22 pm

    I hope you feel better after having a rest.

    I think you must be psychic! I’ve only recently become active and have often wished my school PE teachers could see me when I’m out running so I could prove to them that yet, I could do it! It’s silly, but I can’t help it…

  2. June 22, 2011 1:53 am

    I have definitely not always been active! I’ve spent most of my life dreading physical activity, actually- only in the past year and a half has it changed!

  3. June 22, 2011 6:37 am

    I always hated PE. I never faked sick notes like others did (I was too scared) but I was rubbish at catching, running,anything. I got to do the dregs that no one wanted at sports day (shot putt/ high jump) and I always did badly. But as a family we were active- walking, swimming, cycling at the weekends. I much preferred individual rather than team sports.
    I still prefer that now- even when I do classes we are working individually and I still would not consider a team sport like hockey. I think that is why running appeals as I can go at my own pace. But yes, I love being active and could not imagine not – I feel awful and antsy when I do not exercise for a few days.

  4. June 22, 2011 8:47 am

    I was always the child that was last to be picked in team sports at school.

    I loved netball but was stuck as goal keeper as I couldn’t run and had the size to block any shots (although not the height).

    It really is only in the last 5 years that I’ve discovered my love of exercise, although I have flirted with aerobics and step classes in the past (both of which I loved) but these days I tend to do all my working out on my own – mainly I suspect due to the fact I’m a shift worker and so have to fit in exercise around that.

    I can’t imagine not being active and like Maria, I get withdrawal symptoms when I don’t exercise for a while. My trainers ALWAYS go into the suitcase now when going on holiday and I try to run at least every other day – there’s no better feeling in the world than a run along the sea front in Playa Blanca 🙂 🙂 🙂

  5. June 22, 2011 12:36 pm

    This was really great to read. I too was never a particularly accomplished “athlete”! I went to music school, and we had to be careful about what sports we did because of our hands (seriously!), so we did a lot of swimming, trampolining, gym stuff. I never got to do all the ball sports stuff, and as a result have a mortal fear of them! I have always kept active though: my parents made us go walking and cycling a lot, and I’ve pretty much always been a member of a gym on and off since I was 18 or so. It is only in the last 3 years or so that I’ve made fitness and sport a focus in my life though, and I still feel a bit self-conscious about it sometimes, like I’m an imposter…

    I hope you’re feeling better today 🙂

  6. June 22, 2011 7:07 pm

    Sorry to hear your hayfever is giving you jip, it’s the worst thing and I really feel for people with it. Hope you feel better tomorrow and enjoy your day off!

    My story is similar to yours acually! I was overweight and hated exercise in school, joined a gym when I was 16 and have been active since. I still can’t do team sports, but I’d love for my old PE teachers to see me now too! I like variety too as I get bored easily, and I love to be active in my every day life too, ditching the car etc.

  7. June 23, 2011 11:28 am

    I think you could say that I have fallen in love with exercise. I love the adrenaline rush that it is almost addictive. I love the way it makes me feel too. I really do feel better on days that I workout .

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