On Motivation and Bikram

I read some good stuff about motivation over at shut up and run the other day.

“I’m pretty convinced that if we wait until we really FEEL like doing something, very little would ever get done. Well, maybe lots of potato chips would get eaten, but that’s about it.

People wonder how you are supposed to get motivated to work out, to train for a race, to lose weight. There is a very secret key to motivation, drive and determination, but it might not be what you think.

You see, I think lots of us hang out waiting to FEEL like we want to run or go to the gym. Then when that feeling of really wanting to do it never comes, we bag the workout or ditch the run. My belief is you need to turn off your brain – to not engage it about whether it wants to do something or not. The trick is to just start and your motivation will follow.”

couch

SO true.  Especially the part about the potato chips.  It kind of reminds me of that scene from The Break Up when Jennifer Aniston’s character says, ” I want you to WANT to do the dishes,” and Vince Vaughn’s character replies, “Why would I WANT to do the dishes?  WHY???”  There are a lot of things I don’t feel like doing on a daily basis.  Some days when it’s 6:30, I’ve had a long day and my kids ask what’s for dinner, I just want to say, “What do you people want from me?!  I fixed dinner yesterday!  Why do you need to eat dinner every.single.day??!!”  Mom of the year!  Sometimes we just do things because we have to.  Because not doing them isn’t an option.

And that’s the approach I have to take toward working out these days.  Some days it’s easy to get to the gym.  When I’m looking forward to a particular class or meeting up with my trainer, I look forward getting in there and getting it done.  Other days though, when the thought of the elliptical makes me even more bitter than usual, I just have to suck it up and go.  Because working out makes me happier and healthier.  Because it gets me one step closer to my goals.  Because not going isn’t an option.

I tagged along with two friends to my first Bikram Yoga class last night.  Holy cow.  I’m still not sure how I feel about the experience.  If I had to sum it up in three words, they would be: hot, sweaty, intense.  When I first walked into the room, I had a little moment of panic.  The heat really hits you like a brick wall.  I laid down on my mat to acclimate myself before class and just kept wondering what I was doing there.  I don’t like heat.  I don’t like humidity.  How on earth was I going to make it through 90 minutes?  My friend was very calming and reassuring and happened to be between me and door so I wasn’t able to sprint out of there.

I’m proud to say that I managed to stay in the room and at least attempt all the poses.  I’m still not sure how I feel about it.  I didn’t love it.  I didn’t hate it.  And I definitely want to go back and do it again.  Weird.

Random thoughts from last night:

1. Working out with friends is approximately 4,000,000 times better than working out alone.  Even without talking, it’s just more fun to work out with friends.  I miss running with my running buddies.

marathon

At the 2012 Marine Corps Marathon

2. It’s amazing how fast your self consciousness disappears in a really hot humid room.  Conversation about proper class attire:

Me: Hey Bikram experts, what should I wear to class?

Friend: Booty shorts and a sports bra.

Me: No I can’t, have to cover the tummy!

Friend: Fine.  Drown in your own sweat.

  I told them that there was no way I was going to be seen in public in just a sports bra.  So I walked into the room in some little running shorts and a tank top.  That lasted about .002 seconds and then the tank came off.  Apparently, worry that I might die from heat stroke trumps worry over tummy pudge.

3. Next time, bring a bigger towel.

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