Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Fit by Forty?

I've been doing a lot of thinking about my upcoming 'big' birthday in October lately. Overall, I feel much more positive about it - life is pretty good (if busy) at the moment and I've stopped worrying that it means I'm getting 'old'. But, as usual, there is one thing stemming the positivity and that is the fact that I'm not the size / shape I want to be.

A couple of years ago I got down to a size 12-14 and my lowest weight since my teenage years. I was running regularly and eating healthily. I lost the weight doing Weightwatchers but was managing to maintain it without too much trouble, mainly due to a very long school run (45 minutes each way, often pushing a toddler in a buggy up a very steep hill) and a relatively healthy diet. I'd pretty much stopped running at that point - the combination of the school run exercise and work meant that I didn't have the time to dedicate to it that I used to have, but it didn't seem to matter. 

But then my son changed schools to the one round the corner - five minutes of flat walking (or maybe 15 minutes when the then pre-school age Little Princess was stopping to examine every leaf on every hedge we passed) did not make an exercise regime. And her love of going for coffee and cake at Costa on our days together didn't help much either - I tried to resist the cake, but she always wanted me to have one, and I never really tried hard enough. We baked a lot together too, and then we ate the results... Sure enough, the weight crept back on, my jeans got tighter and now I'm almost back to where I started four and a half years ago. And this time I can't blame it on the baby weight.

So now I'm on a mission to get fit again. I've dusted off my trainers (ok, bought cool new leopard print ones), joined a Sunday morning outdoor fitness class which is a mix of cardio and conditioning (think hill sprints interpersed with squats, lunges and resistance band work) and started running while the children are at school. I'm also trying to walk more - I managed 17,500 steps yesterday - and stop the mindless snacking. If I can lose weight / tone up without doing a 'proper diet' that would be amazing but we'll see what happens now. I've got 5 months to make a difference - we're not doing a beach holiday this year (the plan is Scotland where I'm fairly confident there will be no need for a bikini!) so it's all about looking good for my 40th now.

This morning I'm off for a run - the sun is shining and this is the view on my usual 5K route.

And for once, I'm actually looking forward to exercise. Maybe all this positive thinking will bring me a new personal best?