The Holistic Chick Online

Heathy and Holistic Inside and Out…Don't Drink Coffee While Riding an Elliptical.

Going to the Gym When You’re Heavy.*

Elliptical vs Treadmill

Elliptical vs Treadmill (Photo credit: eskayisis)

This is my story about finally getting the guts to go to a gym.

It was something I struggled with for a while.  I was afraid I was too fat for the gym.  Which is stupid, because why do people go to the gym?  I had reached a point where I had to do something with myself, and even though I was out of shape, something had to get me back into shape, right?

So I got a membership (that’s a whole other story) and got myself going.  At first I was freaked out, self-conscious, and hypersensitive to my surroundings.  After two days, I decided I didn’t care what other people thought, I felt better than I had in years after only two days!

These are the things I figured out when it comes to going to the gym when you’re fat:

1. Get over yourself.  If you are all freaked out about what other people are going to think, then you aren’t ready to put in the money, time and effort.  Paying for a membership isn’t going to immediately change your outlook, or your behavior.  If you aren’t ready to walk into a gym squeezed into a compression sports bra with your head held high, then you aren’t ready for it.

2.  No one cares what you look like.  I found this to be a hard truth.  I figured I was making an absolute fool out of myself huffing and puffing and sweating , but not a single person noticed because they were all too busy concentrating on themselves.  This is the truth.  If you are in the weight area of your gym, struggling with a five pound weight, the person next to you is too busy staring at their form in the mirror to pay you any matter.

3.  Get workout gear.  I found working out in ratty shorts and a t-shirt didn’t do anything to boost my self esteem, so I went shopping.  I hit the plus-sized workout clothing places and got bras, capris, t-shirts, workout jackets, sneakers, a new iPod, a sports watch, a gym bag…oh yes, I went shopping.  It felt good to wear clothes I would only wear at the gym.  Workout clothes are much more comfortable to work out in, to be honest.  Also, it gives me a reason to wear a screaming lime green workout shirt, as well as neon pink socks.  When I put my gear on, I was ready to sweat!

4.  People watching in a gym is hilarious.  Hauling myself around on an elliptical while watching the Zumba folks come in the front door in all of their Zumba brand gear is fabulous.  I had no idea there were shoes especially for Zumba class.  Also, the guys who can’t stop feeling their own muscles, the ladies who come in with a face full of make-up…these folks are awesome.  There’s this one lady who puts make up on in the locker room right before she goes out onto the equipment floor, and takes a quick flat-iron to her hair.  There are the folks who grunt loudly when they lift weights, there are the show-offs, the folks who really don’t know how to use the equipment correctly, and we cannot forget the techno folks.  These are the ones who sit on equipment and text.  More than once I had to ask someone if they could sit somewhere else because I wanted to get a set in.

5.  Get a trainer.  I can’t say it enough.  Not only will they get you working correctly, they are also supportive and in my experience, protective.  My trainer told me if anyone gave me a bad time, to tell her and she would handle it.  She’s not someone you mess around with.  Really, though.  A trainer will get you on a scheduled workout, will guide you through the workouts that will help you, show you how to use the equipment, and will be your cheerleader.  There’s nothing worse than using cable-weights the wrong way.  If you’re going to sweat a lot, why not make it for a reason?  The money I have spent on my trainer has been some of the best money I have spent in my life.  Yeah, a trainer can be spendy, but if you find the right one, the money is worth it.  I found it helps to be accountable to someone who won’t take excuses.

These are some of the things I discovered on my own.  Mind you, when I walked into my gym I had no idea what I was doing and I felt like a fool.  I got over all that in a hurry.  I am there to get healthy, not to impress anyone.  No one has laughed at me yet…in fact, one person came up to me, as I was dripping all over an elliptical, and told me that he was happy to see me in there every day, and that I was an inspiration.


*When I say “fat”, I am saying I walked into the gym over  300 lbs.  No joke.

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Random Thanksgiving Randomness

Earl Gray Tea Leaf

Image by Daniel Y. Go via Flicker: Bergamot Tea Leaf

I woke up this morning to the smell of Bergamot. I have no idea what that has to do with turkey, or if I am imagining things, but darn it, it smells like Earl Grey Tea in here. Not that I am complaining, it just smells like Earl Grey Tea. I mentioned it and I got an odd look, having already been told it was the burnt rubber smell from the vacuum cleaner, which decided to throw a belt or something this m morning.

Huh. Still smells like tea.

This is Thanksgiving at the house. There’s a turkey in the oven, yams ready to go on the stove, the turkey neck is, um, turkeying in its pan, there’s fresh bread being made. I personally am drinking coffee, trying to wake up so I can shower to go to work. My iPod is also charging. This is my first Thanksgiving having to work, and before I start whining as to how depressing that is (I won’t be seeing my parents, I won’t be gorging on turkey and potatoes and gravy and peas (don’t know what that’s all about, but I gotta have peas with turkey dinner) I have to remind myself that it’s all right. So I won’t be sitting down to a big meal with family and friends. I have family and friends, a roof over my head, heat, food, a car that works, a job to go to. Life doesn’t end because I can’t sit down to a meal.

There’s hot coffee, did I mention?

One of my co-workers actually has today off, and she informed me this was the first time she’s ever had Thanksgiving off during her years of working where we work. Now that I couldn’t imagine. Never having Thanksgiving off? Wow, just thinking about it makes my brain go blank. This is my first job where I don’t have the standard holidays off. We are, in fact, open 24/7, every single day of the year. We don’t stop because there’s a holiday, being National or otherwise. It’s pretty cool, but like any job, there are the moments…

The bread machine is making its unholy grinding noise as it kneads bread. Stop. Start. Stop. Start. This is the first year we’re making bread, instead of buying those soft, fluffy rolls with absolutely no nutritional benefit to them. The sourdough starter has been doing its thing for the last couple of days, we’ve had a trial run, making rolls, and boy, they were tasty. So much better than those fluffy white pillows from the store, but can they soak up gravy?

The weather is pretty miserable: cold, windy, wet. The perfect day to stay home with tea, the internet, and this odd smell of Bergamot that just isn’t going away (I refuse to believe its burnt rubber). Eventually I will have to get into my car and drive the 40 miles to work. I was smart, and filled up my gas tank on the way home last night, as well as the rest of the world. I circled the gas pumps several times, trying to remember which side was my tank on? Oh yeah, that little arrow that’s on my gas gauge. This way to the fuel door. Apparently the rest of the world had the exact same idea as I did, to fill up before hitting the road to wherever dinner is being held for today. Me, I just need to get to work.

So really, I have nothing to complain about, even though I have to work. Hey, at least I have a job to go to, right. I have an iPod to charge (it’s just a Shuffle, I love the clippy thing on it) and coffee to drink and there’s a piece of pumpkin streusel cheesecake for me to take to work. I know when my friend gets through cooking there will be plenty of leftovers, and she’s a good egg and cooks the carcass down so there’s plenty of stock when it’s all said and done.

The greatest joy this morning? The 8-year-old being absolutely entranced with the mixer, the dough hook going round and round with the dough for the rolls.

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