As you may have heard, I've been diligently working on losing a not-smallish amount of weight.
Slowly, very slowly, but diligently. (I am up to 9.2 pounds gone. The .2 is very important.)
A key part of my weight loss plan is exercise. I have never been the kind of girl who can cut out the soda and the bread and lose ten pounds. I am the kind of girl whose body recognizes that she is starting to cut out some foods, and in response says:
Danger! Danger! Food supplies are dwindling, it must be the advent of a New Ice Age! I command every cell to absorb as much fat as possible for warmth and possible repopulation of the planet!
It's a drag, but I've learned that if I am exercising while cutting back on the junk, then my body transmits a different kind of message:
Heads up! I've noticed some rationing, and it may be the advent of a New Ice Age, so you are going to have to run your food to the ground instead of opening a box. You better get a move on, Fatty.
And, as an added bonus, now that I'm over thirty, intense exercise three times a week doesn't cut it for me anymore. My metabolism has decreed that I must break a substantial sweat at least six days a week. And if I'm going for six days a week, I might as well tack on one more. In for a penny, in for a pound. Or many pounds, as the case may be.
I'd like to try some different types of exercise so that I don't get bored or burnt out, but I am a realist. I know that my life right now - the kids, Rob's schedule - is a use-your-treadmill kind of life.
So now, as a little treat to you, my friends, I am going to share my key to upping the ante on the treadmill. This is guaranteed to make you sweat, and you may want to consult a physician before performing these exercises, just to ensure there will be no injuries. I'll even put it all in a handy list form:
Step 1: Feed the baby and lay him down in his crib, since he has determined that his crib is now the only place on the face of the earth that is suitable for sleeping. (Great at night, bad when you need to be down in the basement for an extended period of time.)
Step 2: Grab the monitor, the portable phone, a cup of water, two cheese sticks, and two spill proof cups of juice. Then lure the two middle children down to the basement with promises of snacks.
Step 3: Hear baby fussing, run up to give him his pacifier, run back down to the basement. By now you will start to feel slightly sweaty.
Step 4: Get the kids settled with snacks and drinks, then run to the laundry room to throw in a load of towels. You might as well since you're already down there.
Step 5: Check your watch and decide against a warm-up since you know you are already racing the baby's nap clock. Get on the treadmill and start.
Step 6: While adjusting to the speed and incline, try to find something on the TV that is appropriate for the kids and not mind-numbing for you. After realizing that nothing is on except crime shows, talk shows, and PBS, settle for PBS. (Dragon Tales makes you want to vomit. Or maybe that feeling is because you have hit your first jogging interval.)
Step 7: Hear the baby on the monitor. Curse under your breath. Make it to the 10 minute mark, pause the treadmill, run upstairs and give him his pacifier, run back downstairs and re-start treadmill. By now, you will be sweating quite a bit.
Step 8: While you are jogging, reach over the top of the treadmill to receive a sippy cup that needs a straw adjustment. Fix the cup and hand it back over the treadmill.
Step 9: Break up a fight over an old fast food toy. Be sure to gesture wildly and yell. It really gets your heart rate up.
Step 10: Stop to answer the phone since you don't have caller ID and it might be school calling about your other child. When you realize that it is a campaign call, think of choice invectives in your head while you pant at them and sweat on the phone.
Step 11: Hear the baby on the monitor AGAIN, run up and give him the pacifier AGAIN, run down and get on the treadmill AGAIN. By now you may feel like your heart will explode, but just push through the pain.
Step 12: Check your watch and realize that you need to shorten your workout due to all of the interruptions. Decide to jog all the final intervals to make up for the lost time.
Step 13: See that your 22 month old has been drawing on the floor with a marker the whole time. Your heart rate will jump considerably.
Step 14: Hear the baby on the monitor AGAIN. Turn off the monitor. Finish out whatever minute you are in. Get off the treadmill, break up another fight, confiscate the markers, throw the towels in the dryer, and run up to get the baby.
Step 15: Get to the baby's door and see that he has put himself back to sleep. Curse. Drag yourself to the shower and think about how good a cinnamon bun would taste right now.
Step 16: Do this repeatedly until you achieve your desired weight.
As you can see, this requires some dedication, but it is worth it. Of course, you might break down from the stress of exercising in the presence of your children, but at least you won't be fat and crazy.
No pain, no gain, right?