Went out in the cold this morning to do some jump rope.

A new beginning for fitness + me?

It's always been hard for me to find a fitness routine I liked and could maintain. In college I took a raquetball class that I actually liked, and I got pretty good at it. Until the semester ended. Five years ago I joined a boxing gym and killed at that for a little while, until my mom got sick again and passed, then it was a struggle to keep up going to that gym.

Two years ago, my alarm went off at 5:30 a.m., I rolled out of bed, pulled on workout gear, and stumbled to an hour long small-group yoga/pilates/weight training class with a close friend in the basement of an apartment building in Grant Park. It was crazy, but we'd psyched each other into it. As I got ready for work later that morning, jacked up on endorphins like never before, I had no idea I'd keep up that workout — twice a week — for over a year. 

The endorphins were never quite as buzzy as that first time, but as the months passed I felt and saw my body get stronger. Finally, I'd found a workout routine I actually liked, that actually worked. The six a.m. start time was surprisingly incredible. What else are you doing at six in the morning? Nothing. No excuses. Sweat for an hour, then you're done, and home by 7:15 a.m. 

About six months in to the class, my friend and I even had bit parts as the "backup dancers" in some of our instructor's videos. I say backup dancers because I don't know what you call those helper people demonstrating in the background of fitness videos. Do they have a name?? All I know is if you told past Talia that she was going to be featured in a fitness video she would have told you GTFO.

Yep, that's me on the left. I can't believe it either. My instructor was the bomb and still teaches private classes, you can  learn more here .

Yep, that's me on the left. I can't believe it either. My instructor was the bomb and still teaches private classes, you can learn more here.

Unfortunately, in the spring of last year our instructor couldn't keep doing the classes, and ever since then I've been listlessly and half-heartedly trying to find something new. I haven't had much success so far.

  • I tried a spin class and wanted to DIE! (Sorry CP!) The dark room, the flashing lights, the scoreboard and pounding music — not my jam. 
  • Running. Ugh. Say no more.
  • My husband's two 6+ year old P90x videos. Unfortunately no.

When Michelle mentioned she was doing the Barre3 online classes, I was intrigued. They sounded a lot like my old class. I tried out the sample 30 minute routine this morning and wasn't disappointed. It's not the same, but it's similar ideas, and I feel I could supplement with some of the old moves I know. Some more of her thoughts here. I think I might take the plunge and subscribe.

I've also been trying to fit workout moves into my daily routine. Moving a step stool into the closet to put away some suitcases, I found myself doing some reps of lifting and lowering the step stool. It was a pretty good weight. So anytime you find yourself lifting things, you can try and find a way to stretch it out into a mini-mini-workout. 

The fact is, I feel better and I feel like a better person when I have a fitness routine. After a few weeks of waking up at 5:30 in the morning, as unbelievable as it is, it became a habit. So I know I can do it again, I just need the right routine. Having an accountability buddy was really really important, as was having a physical class I went to — if you aren't there people notice. But I think I can muster some self control and show up, even if it's just to the living room in my own home. Doing it in the morning is surprisingly helpful, because then it's out of the way and you have no excuse later in the day.

Do you have a fitness routine? Are you like me, very picky about what you like to do? It's a struggle but every little bit builds on the other little bits!