Lose Weight, Tone Up, Look Great!

With my first trip to Hawaii coming up at the end of March, I'm working towards looking more presentable on the beach. ;) I'm not looking to be completely bikini-body-ready as it isn't a realistic timeline for me, but I want to be where I won't feel so self-conscious.

Friends have told me I'm athletic or active, but I'm honestly a couch potato and love it (unfortunately). So in order for me to go outside and be active, it has to be something I love - which is how I picked up paddling at the beginning of college. I paddle dragon boat, and most recently added: outrigger canoe. Both sports are with competitive teams and with regular racing events. Even though I've been involved with these teams, I haven't ever truly sported the athletic physique. Perhaps my outfit choices sometimes help to conceal that?

I grew up thinking I had always been overweight. Consistently being one of the tallest kids in my class year after year, my mom and I used to shop for size Large or XL leggings and oversized t-shirts (as was the fashion in the 90s!). So that's all I'd ever remembered, but when I looked back at old photos - I was, in fact, a normal-looking kid.

I was never the best runner or athlete during PE, so that also added to my outlook on my personal fitness. If I were to guess, I suppose my weight had started to become an issue in high school when PE became an optional class. I hit the Freshman 15 during college, but lost it all by the end of the year. However, summer vacation happened and I was back on the couch... And during the next 3 years of college, I gained another 10 lbs. That had been a consistent weight for me until I entered the working world and gained another 10 lbs. Sitting at my desk 8 hours a day, and rarely walking as much as I used to on campus obviously affected me. During college, I regularly had dragon boat training/practice three times a week, and sometimes weight lifted at the gym. Some people tried to console me that perhaps some of the weight I gained in college was muscle (which is probably true) but it is not completely so.

Since graduating, I've put in more effort to take a long walk or a jog - not wanting to spend money on a gym membership; occasionally did an Insanity workout, or biking as well. However, I had finally decided to go ahead and splurge on a membership to 24 Hour. Started it in September, and went once or twice a week - or none at all. Last week, I decided to jumpstart a change. I've been inspired by a friend's weight loss journey and am motivated to work out more consistently. I'd gone 5 days last week, and already went 2 days this week - this is my start of a positive fitness habit change.

I'm also aware that losing weight requires a lifestyle change, and not fad diets. I'm very familiar with calorie/meal tracking and even tried Weight Watchers for a bit until it just became an extra "chore"; it was becoming a burden rather than a tool. Making the dietary changes will be slower for me, as I love to eat (and all the best tasting stuff is the bad stuff). 

My fitness action plan is to continue the gym visits and work in some dietary changes:

Monday - (rest)
Tuesday - Gym: Arms/Shoulders
Wednesday - Gym: Legs
Thursday - Gym: Abs/Core
Friday - Gym: Back
Saturday - Gym: all around
Sunday - dragon boat paddling

That's my story for now, and I hope to be able to look back and see progress in my journey.


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