Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The "Baby Steps" Workout

I just did 6 wall push-ups and 6 sit-ups.  This is week 6 of my "Baby Steps" workout regimen.  Each week, I add one more incremental wall push-up and sit-up to my daily quota.  This way, I don't overdo it, my body can handle the very gradual change, and I get to enjoy the (eventual) benefits of doing mild, muscle-building exercise on a daily basis.

Back in "the before time" (before I had Fibromyalgia) I started this workout regimen for myself to build up my strength and stamina, little by little.  I did regular, floor push-ups instead of wall push-ups back then, too.  I got as far as 22 per day in 22 weeks and was so proud of myself for being able to do 22 push-ups at once!  Then I got an awful flu bug that made me violently ill and made me lose 10 pounds of water in one week.  It was not fun, to say the least.  Needless to say, I was unable to continue my workout routine during my week of constant fluid expulsions from various orifices.  My gradual return to health after that week also was not inspiring me to get back on the wagon so I had essentially quit and forgot about it all while recovering... until now.
I've been especially ill for the past 5 months now with what today appears to be gastritis and biliary dyskinesia, along with daily headaches on top of the bellyaches, bloating, cramps, and general discomfort.  I have spent many days home from work, vegetating in bed or on my easy chair ("the nest" as Don likes to call it), trying to gain some comfort or distract myself from my symptoms with journaling, reading books, watching television, or playing computer games or blog reading.  I have also been very unhappy with my recent thirty-pound weight gain and all the problems associated with that.  While lamenting that I was stuck between a rock and a hard place about being unable to lose weight or exercise for my own good, it finally came to me that I had already invented a great way for a Fibromite like myself to sneak in something good without upsetting my body too much and causing a flare-up.  I'm a genius!

So, with some minor adjustments from my original version, I am back on the slow, rickety, but reliable (little red) wagon (being pulled by a baby goat) of gaining back lost muscle mass, losing some weight by burning calories and increasing my metabolism, feeling a daily sense of accomplishment and progress, and looking forward to less frequent flares, better tolerance for activity, and reducing stress.  Although it will be a slow journey to reach these goals, I am determined to remember the lesson I learned the first time around and make sure I stick to the program no matter how I'm feeling.  It's a relatively small amount of time and effort, especially in the first week, so I know I'd feel much worse if I were to skip.  (How lame would I be to determine I can't do one single wall push-up and one single sit-up today, right?)  

So, I'm very proud to report that I've accomplished 5 full weeks of daily baby steps workouts, in addition to any other exercises I might happen to squeeze into my day while I'm feeling up to it, like walks and climbing stairs and doing chores.  I'm not going to fall off THIS wagon, damn it!  That would be so, so lame of me.  I will continue and just enjoy the slow, scenic route to feeling better.