You’ve committed to a regular exercise routine. Well done! The benefits will far outweigh any of the negative side effects several times over, but just in case you’re wondering, here’s 5 things nobody tells you about becoming a regular fitness junkie!
You’ll have a lot more laundry – To be honest, I don’t wash my workout clothes near as often as I should. Partly because over the years, I’ve accumulated a lot, so I can leave a little extra time between washing, and partly because it’s hard to keep up sometimes. When you’re throwing in a run and a workout/hot yoga session/cross training session every day, that leaves you with a lot of sweaty clothes. My best suggestion? Find a place in your house to designate as your sweaty clothes drying area, and then create amdrawer in your closet just for workout clothes. Doing these things keeps them all separate from your other clothes and then once a week you can do a load of workout clothes. In addition to your regular weekly load of normal clothes of course.
There will be chafing - And scrapes and bruises, and maybe even black toenails. Working out, whether running or going to the gym or doing bootcamp, isn’t pain free. Not while it’s happening, or afterwards, or even, in some cases, a few days later. And whether that pain is from your sore muscles and fatigued arms, or from your shirt chafing your underarm starting at mile 6 of your 13 miler, pain just comes with the whole workout thing. So does your need to develop mental toughness and grit to be able to overcome it and continue to workout despite it. Learn when the pain is good and the pain is bad and you’ll see results and feel awesome.
Some days, it’s still hard – After running for 13 years, completing multiple races and running in several different countries and climates, some days it’s still hard. Some days, out on the road, every step still feels like a struggle and some runs finish with relief that they are finally over. And I’d be lying if I said that some days when my alarm goes off at some crazy hour, I don’t wish that I could just have 30 more minutes of sleep. But, there’s merit behind the quote “it doesn’t get easier, you just get better.” You get better at kicking yourself out of bed, no matter what, you get better at the exercise you’re working on, and you get better and gritting your teeth and powering through. Because in the end, no matter what, it’s always worth it.
It doesn’t mean you can eat whatever you want – Sorry, but if you were starting on your exercise regime to be able to just have a food free for all at every meal, unfortunately that’s not how it works. It’s true you are burning more calories, but if you’re trying to lose weight, you’ll want to keep yourself calorie deficient. And if you aren’t trying to lose weight, you still need to replace those calories with healthy foods that are filled with the right nutrients and calorie values to fuel your next workout, not just junk food and take out. They say that garbage in, equals garbage out, so remember to fuel with good food to get good workouts. And always be fuelin’! Today’s food is fuel for tomorrow’s workout so if you want to workout consistently and perform well every time, think of each thing that goes in your mouth as fuel for your next workout.
You might just become addicted – You might just become one of those people who you always used to laugh at who couldn’t bear to miss their workout. One of those people who you always thought were crazy because they got up at 5am seven days a week to hit the gym. One of those people who worked out, even on vacation! And the person who you secretly admired and really wanted to be. You may just become so hooked on exercise and it’s natural high that you can’t really go without it. It’s ok: it happens to the best of us!