I don’t know about you, but I do NOT like to exercise and work out! I know that it is necessary for me if I want to be a fit and healthy person. I also know that exercise will aid my efforts to lose weight. But I just don’t like to do it! In fact, I typically look for any and every excuse I can find to avoid it! I personally prefer to go outside for my workouts! But there is a heat wave happening in my area. I don't want to go outside and exercise, because it's hot!!!! So I have had to devise tips for exercising during a heat wave. It is harder to use the excuse that ‘it’s too hot’ when I have an abundant supply of options at my fingertips. Below I will share these options!
Join a Gym
The quickest solution is to actually join a gym. Research the gyms in your area. Visit those gyms and gauge the surroundings to pick the facility best suited to you and then join! A membership in a gym will give you access to a wide variety of machines that will help you keep up with your workout goals. You will have treadmills, bikes, elliptical trainers, rowers and weight machines. Some gyms will even offer classes and fitness groups. The opportunity for working out during a heat wave is endless if you join a gym!
Buy Exercise Equipment for your House
I had been biking regularly and I knew that I would not have that option readily available to me as the seasons changed. I was afraid that what skills and endurance that I had gained would diminish in the ‘off season’. I began to research options. I thought about getting a gym membership. However, I knew that with my schedule and long commute to work that actually taking the time to go to the gym would be a deterrent. I decided to look at some home options. I researched long and hard and eventually I bought an exercise bike. Now there was no excuse as to why I couldn’t hop on that bike and ride! It didn’t matter if it was bitter cold. It didn’t matter if it was scorching hot. Those excuses were invalid. I could ride inside my nice temperature regulated house whenever I wanted to.
While I bought a new exercise bike, there are plenty of ways to add a piece of fitness equipment to your home gym at a reasonable rate. Yard sales and flea markets frequently have used exercise equipment for sale. I know someone that bought their exercise bike for $25. It didn’t have all the bells and whistles and it didn’t calculate their mileage, but as she said, “the pedals work”. I personally bought a stair stepper/lateral trainer at a yard sale for $5. It might be boring to keep stepping and go no-where, but it certainly gets the job done! Ask your friends and put out the word that you are interested in a piece of exercise equipment! Years ago when I was training for a long distance bike event, I had a friend loan me an exercise bike. A few years later, I was given a treadmill and also a high quality weight set! People buy exercise equipment and then bore with it and/or get tired of having a ‘clothes hanger’ in the corner of their room. They just want to get rid of it and will happily give it away!
I have a treasure chest of goodies. In other words, I have a collection of workout VHS tapes (yes, I still have them even though I don’t have a VHS player) and DVD’s. I can open that treasure chest and within minutes I can be exercising my heart out…in my living room….in my nightgown….in the middle of the night…..in the air conditioned room! I have a world of options available to me. I can “Sweat with the Oldies”, or “Walk away the Pounds’. I can do yoga, step aerobics or toning. Anything that strikes your fancy…it’s right there!
But what if you don’t have a collection of exercise videos? Youtube is a fabulous place to visit. First it’s fabulous because you can visit my channel, but it is also awesome because you have a wealth of exercise classes available to you right on your tv screen. I have seen and heard of people doing Zumba and weight classes and I personally have done Yoga with a youtube yoga video. It is an amazing resource!
Small equipment to get to workout from home
There are a variety of things that you can get to build a small home workout center without having something like a big exercise bike or elliptical trainer. Sometimes space is an issue. No fear, there are other options. You can get resistance bands. These will use the weight of your own body to give resistance during movement that will help build muscles. You can buy a stability ball. I have one (two) and I have used it and I am SORE when I am done. You can get a great workout from that stability ball. You can get one set of weights or a kettle ball. The sky is the limit. Find what you have room for and use it!
Exercise with NO Equipment
What if you have NOTHING. There is no money in the budget. There is no space in the house. Nothing is going to work. I am here to tell you that you don’t need to have ANYTHING other than yourself! There are so many options and ideas for you
Check out my weight loss story!
I have been overweight for most of my entire life. No, that is too kind, let me rephrase that. I have been obese for most of my adult life. As much as it pains me to admit it, I have been morbidly obese. That is such a difficult word to use, but it is absolutely true.
My highest weight fluctuated wildly between 275 to 230 pounds. Ironically enough, I wasn't unhappy with myself. I was just me and I accepted being overweight. I knew nothing else and therefore didn't feel called to change anything. All of that changed while I was in my mid 30's. All of a sudden there were two factors staring me in the face making me think long and hard about my health and more specifically my weight.
The first thing that made me sit up and take notice was the fact that I was relatively newly married. I had always dreamt of having children and raising a family. I began to think about the issues that are common in overweight people, those important things like actually being capable of conceiving a child and being able to safely carry a child to full term. I was scared senseless. I didn't want to give up my dreams! I knew that I had to do anything and everything to prepare my body for a pregnancy. The other factor that made me sit up and notice was my age. I was in my 30's. Previously, when someone mentioned my weight and the possible health issues that my extreme weight could/may cause I brushed them off. "I'm young," I would staunchly declare. It wasn't until I was in my 30's that I started to realize that the excuse of 'being young' was quickly coming to an end.
I got serious! I started to research. I started to restrict my diet. I started to workout. I was hot on the trail of weight loss and I started to see some success. I lost the first 40-50 pounds easily and then I stalled out. I decided that I needed more, so I joined Weight Watchers. It was just what I needed. It was the right combination of knowledge and direction during the meetings, accountability through the weigh ins and support from my fellow weight watcher attendees. I managed to make my lifetime goal and weighed 180 pounds (I was still above the BMI weight, but my doctor didn't recommend me to lose more.)
I was over the top happy! I was on cloud nine and had more energy then I could possibly even describe! I felt GREAT!
Unfortunately, life wasn't great in other areas of my life. My marriage was crumbling. My finances were shot. Life was in a disarray and I couldn't keep up with my new lifestyle. I started to regain the weight. Oh, it was slow at first, but it came back.
I am lucky that I never regained ALL of my weight back. But getting back to 255 pounds was bad enough. Luckily, I never gave up totally. Even as I was gaining, I was running, religiously going to multiple Zumba classes each week and trying to lose weight. But I lacked the motivation and the willpower to make it happen.
I eventually met a man that quickly became the love of my life. As I settled into my life with Jason, I because extremely cognizant that my health was going to lead me down a dark hole. It very well could lead me to any number of weight related diseases and some of these disease could result in my death. I wanted to live a full and active life with Jason, so I began to get serious.
Through the years of my ups and downs on the scales, I have learned so many valuable lessons. I have learned tips and ideas. I have received and given amazing advice. This is where I plan to share these thoughts.
I chronicle my personal experiences of my weight loss journey on my website Belief in Myself. It is an open and honest look at the real emotions and thoughts and growth that comes through such and effort at losing weight. I have been writing on that site since 2006. I also have a youtube channel that has chronicled my journey since my recommitment to re-lose the weight that I gained.
Please feel free to join me on the journey of a lifetime!
Bottoms up! No, not alcohol! Water… The elixir of life. Was that a little melodramatic? No I don’t really think so. Water is absolutely essential to our bodies. I’m not going to get into the mechanics of why it’s essential… that’s not who I am, at least not today. I will touch on a few things though. They say water aids in weight loss and that a good deal of the time when we think we are hungry, that we are actually thirsty. Water is good for your complexion. Water is good for organ function. Ok, I’m done with the mechanics of why we should drink more water.…I think it’s a given that water is healthy for us. I will however say that it is recommended that we drink a lot of water. I’ve heard that a good general amount to drink is 64 ounces a day. I’ve also heard that we should be drinking half of our weight in ounces. So if someone weighs 200 pounds they should be drinking 100 ounces of water. But really, it doesn’t matter what method you used to come up with your daily goal of water intake, what matters is that you drink water. A lot of water.
There was a time, when I drank absolutely no water. None. Zilch. Nada. I drank a lot of soda though. It was actually a very difficult process to actually get myself into the habit of drinking my water in the quantity that I need. And I don’t understand it, but Pepsi and sodas seem to go down the hatch a lot quicker than water. (I believe I read somewhere about some of the chemicals in diet soda having that effect… But once again, I’m not getting into the technical side of it….it’s too mechanical for me at the moment.) So how do you do it? How do you get yourself to the point of drinking at least 64 ounces of water a day.? For me, it’s a thing of setting the goal and then simply striving for it. The biggest issue is keeping track of how much you drink. Sipping out of a glass here and there is probably not going to get you your 64 ounces of water. It’s better than nothing and you may think you are drinking a lot, but in reality you may only be drinking 8 ounces or 20 ounces. So one of the biggest things is making sure you’re drinking your water and building that habit is to track the water.
I’m going to give a few little tips about making water consumption easier in the beginning because it has to be palatable in order to make us drink it and I know I actually struggled with that in the beginning. After that, I will move into ways to track the water consumption to make sure that you really are drinking what you need to be drinking.
If you are new to actually drinking water…plain old water and especially switching over from straight soda it could be difficult because you’re used to the flavor. Do not despair, there are some wonderful products out there on the market to help. The flavor really does make a difference. I still use them to flavor one or two bottles a day just for something different to break up the monotony.
Temperature! For me, Cold water seems to go down faster and easier than warm water. For this reason I try to keep my water as cold as possible.
The bathroom!!! I do find that when I am dehydrated or just starting out with upping my water consumption I do run to the bathroom quite a bit. After a day or two of consistent drinking the water it levels out some back to a more normal amount. Apparently this is because when you’re dehydrated and not drinking enough your body will store every little bit of water that it can. (My weight goes up when I stop drinking and become a little dehydrated for this same reason, my body goes into panic mode and holds onto every drop it can.) Once your body starts getting the water it needs it will stop conserving and holding onto that water. At that point it begins to eliminate some of those excess stores of water…..extra trips to the bathroom…like I said, it will even out! Another bathroom issue that I’ve been able to navigate is going to the bathroom six times in the middle of the night. I tend to start to taper my water off toward the evening. I still do drink at night but I don’t pound the water quite so quickly. It works for me… experiment to find out what works for you. One last bathroom tip? Actually pay attention to the color of your urine ! Seriously keep an eye on the color of your pee, if it’s really dark drink more! If it’s light/almost clear, then kudos and keep drinking!
Water first! I typically try to drink my water goal amount first before I start drinking a diet soda, juice, whatever other drink I’m around. I found early on that if I drank my soda first then I would never want the water the rest of the day. It started me on a slippery slope of only soda for the rest of the day. So I set a little rule for myself that I had to drink at least 64 ounces before I switched to anything else. Over the years I’ve been able to relax that rule a little bit simply because soda is so sweet… Even the diet so I will actually begin to crave the water after drinking the soda for a little bit. I actually only only drink soda now when I’m having a day where I am really struggling with exhaustion or a headache or something that makes me feel like I need the caffeine boost. I’ve come a long long way!
How do you track Water? I have some ideas and tricks that I have used or seen used.
Number one. A giant mug. This is probably the first thing that I did in my quest to drink my daily goal of water.
I purchased that 64 ounce mug and the first thing I did every morning was to fill it up with water and ice. Then I would start drinking. That first mug had water facts on it but it also had a line that showed how many ounces of water was left in the mug at certain points. In this way I could quickly glance at my mug see the water inside it and look at that line and see where I was in my water consumption for the day. I always knew how much water I had drunk and how much more I had to go! This mug was so well insulated that my water would still be cold at the end of the day, I prefer cold water so that was a huge plus. I loved that mug! I carried it with me everywhere! Family dinner? My mug sat beside my plate! Out to dinner? Unless it was a really nice restaurant… I carried my mug inside with me. Many days, I would have to refill that mug. Sadly, the mug met with an unfortunate end when I set it on top of the car to grab something and I drove away without retrieving the mug… The mug did not withstand the fall from the car . I bought a replacement… It was the same size but it wasn’t the same. I bought another replacement… The Bubba mug and used that one for many years (I actually bought three agreement red, green and brown).Nothing ever really truly replaced the first much loved mug, but this method worked for me for many many years.
I purchased that 64 ounce mug and the first thing I did every morning was to fill it up with water and ice. Then I would start drinking. That first mug had water facts on it but it also had a line that showed how many ounces of water was left in the mug at certain points. In this way I could quickly glance at my mug see the water inside it and look at that line and see where I was in my water consumption for the day. I always knew how much water I had drunk and how much more I had to go! This mug was so well insulated that my water would still be cold at the end of the day, I prefer cold water so that was a huge plus. I loved that mug! I carried it with me everywhere! Family dinner? My mug sat beside my plate! Out to dinner? Unless it was a really nice restaurant… I carried my mug inside with me. Many days, I would have to refill that mug. Sadly, the mug met with an unfortunate end when I set it on top of the car to grab something and I drove away without retrieving the mug… The mug did not withstand the fall from the car . I bought a replacement… It was the same size but it wasn’t the same. I bought another replacement… The Bubba mug (amazon affiliate link) and used that one for many years (I actually bought three agreement red, green and brown).Nothing ever really truly replaced the first much loved mug, but this method worked for me for many many years.I purchased that 64 ounce mug and the first thing I did every morning was to fill it up with water and ice. Then I would start drinking. That first mug had water facts on it but it also had a line that showed how many ounces of water was left in the mug at certain points. In this way I could quickly glance at my mug see the water inside it and look at that line and see where I was in my water consumption for the day. I always knew how much water I had drunk and how much more I had to go! This mug was so well insulated that my water would still be cold at the end of the day, I prefer cold water so that was a huge plus. I loved that mug! I carried it with me everywhere! Family dinner? My mug sat beside my plate! Out to dinner? Unless it was a really nice restaurant… I carried my mug inside with me. Many days, I would have to refill that mug. Sadly, the mug met with an unfortunate end when I set it on top of the car to grab something and I drove away without retrieving the mug… The mug did not withstand the fall from the car . I bought a replacement… It was the same size but it wasn’t the same. I bought another replacement… The Bubba mug (amazon affiliate link) and used that one for many years (I actually bought three agreement red, green and brown).Nothing ever really truly replaced the first much loved mug, but this method worked for me for many many years.
Number two. This is a method I have not tried myself, but I have seen it many times. Simply carry a gallon jug of water.
This is obviously aiming for more than 64 ounces a day, but is the same concept as the mug. Carry the what are you going to drink that day with you at all times. I have actually seen people draw horizontal lines in permanent marker periodically on the gallon jug and they label each line with the timeline. The top line might say 8 AM the next line might say 10 in the third line might say 12. That way they have an idea of where they are in their water consumption and where they should be by a certain time of day. It sounds good to me because that’s exactly what my favorite mug did it showed me how much water I was at and where I needed to be.
Number three. Water bottles. This is been my primary method over the last year or so. But I also did it a few years ago when I worked at the deli. I carry water bottles to work. Every day in my insulated lunchbox I pack one frozen water bottle and threecold water bottles. Yes it takes up half of my lunch box but the frozen bottle is also my ice pack. I then walk out the door with my lunchbox in one hand and my one water bottle in the other hand. The water bottle in my hand is usually flavored water. Which as I said earlier is a great way to help get into the drinking of water and break up some of the monotony. I drink the flavored water during my commute to work. And then I work on the water bottles in my lunchbox at work. I can easily keep track of where I am by how many water bottles are left in my lunchbox. I typically try to drink one water bottle before my first break, one water bottle before my lunch and then at least one water bottle before I go home. Sometimes I make it to my ice water sometimes I don’t. But that’s OK because even without the ice water bottle I am already over 64 ounces. And that does not include any water and I drink at home. (Notice that I’m still carrying all of my water with me! This seems to be a trend for me!)
Number four. I have also tried filtered water bottles. (amazon affiliate link). Typically they are smaller, and require me to refill out of a water cooler,sink or some other tap water means while out and about. I have one of these bottles at my desk at work because it does come in handy in a pinch. I typically do not use this method very often, mainly because of the fact that the bottles that I have purchased tend to not be insulated as well as I would like the larger bottle gets warm and I prefer my water cold.
Number 5. There are some water containers that sync up with your phone with an app that helps remind you....I have not tried them...but they look cool!
Number 6. Myfitnesspal and other trackers allow you to track the water
So there you have it! My collection of tips and ideas to help boost your water consumption. Water is honestly the most overlooked aspect of weight loss. It is also one of the most overlook aspects of health in general. It really does make a difference in everything! I’ve said it many many times this is an individual journey and what works for me may not work forsomeone else. Find what works for you! Just like I have tried many of these ways and have to continually strive to find what works for me in each stage of my life and each stage of my weight loss journey. The benefits are out of this world! So come on and tilt the bottle, the mug, the jug, a glass and have a drink with me….WATER of course!
If you are looking for inspiration, check out my book review from a man who lost weight and shares his experience.