Hi y'all! This is my first post to this blog, and hopefully it's okay, Trish! I just had a really exciting day in exercise and I thought I'd share my experience. :)
I have struggled with my health for years, and in the last two years it's been particularly bad. I've been lethargic and unable to exercise for any long period of time. Even just walking for longer than, say, 15 minutes makes my lower back and hips hurt. I've tried stretching, all sorts of warm-ups, different shoes, different places to walk, and even monthly chiropractic visits, but for the last two years, I've been unable to keep up with exercise.
Two years ago, I bought a treadmill. I really tried using it. I liked the idea of being able to walk or jog in my house, because 3 months of the year I'm too allergic to mountain cedar to go outside, and another 3+ months of the year, the temperature hovers around 100 most of the day (not fun!). Unfortunately, the treadmill never worked for me. It hurt my knees and feet, in addition to my lower back and hips. Argh!
This is really frustrating to me. I used to be an athlete, a competitive swimmer, for years. It frustrates me to no end that just the tiniest bit of exercise now is near-crippling. In the last few weeks, I've hit an even worse block on this 100-mile fitness challenge: one of my feet was injured, so that the tendons can't have a lot of pressure placed on them. I honestly thought I was going to have to drop out of this challenge. Already I am woefully behind. But I thought I'd give it one more shot - my husband suggested we go out and get an exercise bike.
Today, we went out. But instead of an exercise bike, we wandered over to the elliptical machines. I've never used an elliptical, so I thought I should try some out. I got on several, and was surprised how easy they were to use, and how easy on all my joints and my feet. The really expensive ones didn't feel like I was moving at all! Of course, we couldn't afford one of the really expensive ones (I did not get the model pictured above...), but we did decide to invest in an elliptical. We got it home and Jason put it together for me.
Oh my. It's such a strange feeling. I just spent half an hour on there, and I feel good. I feel like I used to feel when I got out of the water as a swimmer. My whole body feels exercised, not just my legs, but at the same time, other than a bit of muscle soreness, I don't hurt. More than that, I feel energized! I feel like later tonight, I might get back on for another half an hour.
Of course, I'm not going too fast or using any resistance for now. I'm just beginning, so I'm trying to build up my strength. But I'm excited. I think this is going to work for me! After years of trying to find something that works for me, I really think this is going to work. Plus, despite being a lower-end model, my elliptical still lets me plug in my iPod and listen to music or an audiobook while exercising. I love it!
Okay, I'll go now, but I just wanted to say if you have access to one of these machines, at a gym or something, and you haven't tried it, you should. It's amazing. Though I have a lot of catching up to do, I hope to see all of you at the 100-mile finish line!