Friday, April 3, 2009

New Converted Exercise Zealot

I am so crazy about my new gym!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm 32 years old and have never ever gotten the exercise workout thing. This last year it occured to me that I will actually grow older and that I should take time to care for my health in order to hopefully avoid serious illness in the future. Plus it occured to me that I love my life so much, I love my family, I love my friends, I love my work, but my body was feeling pretty lousy. I've worked really hard (with a lot of help) to get to a place where I can enjoy life. I had a very nice early childhood, but by the time I was 11 or 12 I was really lost and unhappy. My parents divorced, I didn't really get why we're here and what we should do. Then at 19 my father killed himself and I went into a real tailspin fueled by grief, confusion and drugs. I got pregnant, had a baby at 21, spent a little time in the mental hospital where I "hit bottom" so they say. Since then I've figured things out spiritually which led to me very slowly figuring the rest out (I don't want to get overly confident though). So, the reason I so openly share this is to underscore just how valuable it is to me to love my life. I appreciated being alive, but I was really unhappy for a very long time. So at 32 I am happy and wanted my body to feel happy too.

It all started with a dietary change, which made me feel a lot better, and prepared me exercise. Then I joined the gym at Hidden Springs. It's very relaxing, calm lighting, pleasant music, people who are exercising mainly for health reasons, rather than mainly for vanity. There's all this high tech, lastest health science stuff, too. Oxygen when you workout if you like, an infared sauna and cold plunge for detox. Plus they're going to limit membership numbers so it never gets stressful for people. People of all levels of health and age come. (and it's not expensive, costs as much as the YMCA)

Their program for strength training is bearable - once a week, just do it super, super, super slowly. 10 full seconds in and 10 full seconds out (metronomes keep you accurate) Breathing is a big deal, they teach you special breathing techniques. Then for the cardio it was so clearly explained how to do your cardio. I used to hate it because I'd just start running and my heart would pound and I'd breath super heavily and just hate it. They have you do 10 minutes of oxygenation where your start walking and breathing in and out through your nose, very deeply, working gradually faster and more inclined, then you increase speed and run if you want, always breathing correctly, never gasping for breath. They want you to get to the point just barely befor you gasp for breath and stay there until your body does this QUANTUM SHIFT and you have a burst of energy where you feel "you could go forever". You enjoy this fully and when you finish (30 mins or so) then you stretch and maybe do the K-1 - this vibrating thing that works out and massages your body.

I have yet to experience this quantum shift - but I did find myself laughing and crying at 12 minutes in both times I've worked out. As I said before - I've had a lot of tough experiences in life, so I always need emotional release. (I often cry during accupuncture too - and not because it hurts - which it doesn't usually).

anyway I'm so so so so so happy and grateful.

off to the Oscar Documentaries at the Ashland Independent Film Festival - then tonight I'm presenting some artwork at Ashland Community Hospital for the first friday art walk.


Tracy said...

Sarah, so glad you have found such a good exercise program, it's amazing how something like that can soothe the soul.

We should get together and compare our life histories sometime. I got me a story or too as well, including an unplanned pregnancy at 23. Good for you working so hard to get through things.

Anonymous said...

Sarah- I am so encouraged & inspired by your post. Thanks for sharing. It helped me refocus on my goals & show my appreciation for all that I have by taking care of myself. Love you! Julia

sarahfburns said...

Thanks so much for the comments ladies. I normally am not so public with my dirty laundry - but the exercise made me feel such a high. Julia - it's so good to stick together and be built up! And Tracy - it would be great to get together and compare life stories - maybe someday we'll be showing paintings in the same city... anything's possible so they say..