Today was momentous.
Today was glorious.
Today was my triumphant return to the gym.
After a one month hiatus.
Yep, that's right. Yours truly, who is into fitness, health, and productivity took a one month break from the gym. Now that doesn't mean I took a break from all working out, but it does mean that I haven't worked out intensely in a month.
This is is what I learned from taking a month off:
1. Don't take a month long break from the gym. - Although I partially did it out of necessity, I don't recommend taking that much time away from intensive workouts. Sometimes we need to take a break to regain perspective, but I discovered that a month was way too long.
2. When you return, take it slowly. - My husband worried that I would return to the gym and go all "beast mode," but I didn't. That's mostly because I couldn't. When I was in my 20's and 30's, I could jump right back in where I left off. Now that I'm 48, I've gained a little wisdom and know that my body needs to build back slowly. Today, I did the rowing machine for 1 mile, weights for 30 minutes, and walked 1 mile on the treadmill. I was there roughly an hour, and that was enough for today.
3. It's all about the vibe you bring to the experience. - Going to the gym is something positive I do for myself. I lost sight of that. I expected the gym to provide all the motivation and positive vibes. I didn't think about my part. It's up to me as to what I gain from each experience and workout. It is not a necessity to have a goal in and of itself. However, it is necessary to have a positive attitude and work ethic.
4. Pack everything you need...then double and triple check. - I haven't packed a workout bag in a month, and I was bound to forget something. I did. My earphones. While I like to listen to podcasts during cardio and music while I lift, today I learned I can do just as well without them. In fact, it was such an interesting experience without them. I was more aware of my own breathing, the sounds of the machines, and the activity going on around me. While plugging in gets me into my zone, unplugging has its benefits as well.
5. Lift the pressure. - It was a little daunting for me to admit that I had not been to the gym in a month, but then I thought more about the fact that as humans we are all flawed. Rather than feel like I had failed, I decided to focus on what I learned from that month away and how it will help me grow in the long run.
I'm a lover of life, an eternal optimist, and I have an intense desire to add value through simple living and positive vibes.