I’ll start on the 1st.

I’ll start on Monday.

I’ll start after my birthday.

I’ll start once I settle into the new house.

I’ll start when … after … once … if … … …

I don’t think having a specific start date in mind is problematic. What becomes problematic is when you get stuck with the idea that there is such a thing as the perfect time or circumstance to get started (with whatever task you need to get done). For now, I’m specifically talking about a fitness routine.

When I first started my efforts to lose weight, I was very regimented, and it paid off. As life got hectic – finishing up my PhD, traveling a lot, moving from Kuwait to London, and settling into a new house/life – I got used to doing things on the fly. I wasn’t as strict with my training schedule or my eating regime. I just focused on the basics, kept it simple, and kept moving forward. It felt good not to obsess over everything. For the most part I was still eating well and exercising regularly. However, I think along the way I got a bit too lax. In the back of my mind I kept thinking ‘I know what I have to do, so it’s fine. I’ll get back into a proper routine soon.’ Although my intentions were good, there wasn’t enough action. I knew it was time to change.

A trainer once said to me many,  many years ago that the hardest part of working out was putting on your training shoes. I never forgot her words. I know that no matter how much I plan out my routine and schedule my workout time, it really doesn’t matter unless I get my training shoes on and get to the gym.

I’ve slowly been getting into a bit more of a routine now, but I haven’t properly settled into one. I know that all I have to do is just start. It really is about my overall commitment to myself – to the goals I want to reach, to the life I want to live. If I don’t take that seriously, then I know nothing will get done.

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I woke up this morning feeling terrible. I’ve been having migraines for the past 4 days and I was feeling really low. My hope of an early morning workout went out the window as I lay in bed just staring at the clock – the minutes passing by. Have you ever had that feeling where you’re really frustrated with yourself for not getting something done yet somehow you can muster the energy/enthusiasm/drive to just get it done? Well that was me this morning.

Anyway. I gave myself a bit time to rest a bit and finally I decided that was going to head to the gym – even if I just walked on the treadmill it would be better than doing nothing (and feeling guilty about it later). I know that you should ‘listen to your body’ and if you’re really exhausted you should rest. I definitely wasn’t feeling 100%, but I knew I would be able to get some sort of a workout done.

I don’t know why, but I thought the gym would be packed in the afternoon. Luckily, it wasn’t. There were just 3 other people there when I arrived. I did a very simple 1 hour workout – warm-up, a bit of cardio, some weights, cool down/stretching – and of course, as always, I was pleased I got it done. It may have not been my best performance, but it was the best I could do today. The most important thing was that I got up and I went.

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a nearly empty gym – felt like I had the whole place to myself

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it wasn’t the most amazing workout — but it was a workout