by Laura MacDonald
Hi friends, we made it. We got through January. All eleven months of it.
One month ago I confessed on this blog how I felt when I fell flat on day two of the New Year. Ditching a workout and driving home from the gym in tears sure wasn’t how I planned on starting the New Year. But now that we are on the other side of January, I can tell you that the month also didn’t end as I had planned either. But stay tuned true believers; it is a happier tale today.
On Friday January 31st I logged my 40th and 41st workouts of 2020. This included a lifting session with good friends where I tested my overhead press 5 rep max and also played with some deadlifts at 3×5 reps. We also joined an xpressFit class which included tabata planks with shoulder touches, riding the assault bike, hanging knee raises and kettlebell deadlifts. Phew. It felt good.
Open gym on Friday night followed by xpressFit is nothing unusual for me. What was unusual is that this marked the end of a full month of daily intentional movement.
Every single day in January I recorded at least one workout.
Some of these were CrossFit or xpressFit or powerlifting, others were hot yoga or Yoga With Adriene at home, some includes walks with a friend in the neighbourhood and some included a quick 100 air-squats in the kitchen while I made dinner. One workout included two and a half hours walking on a picket line. Some workouts were long some were short, some were hard others were easy. Most were fun, and some challenged my patience and my perseverance.
Although I started January with the goal of 220 workouts in this calendar year, it wasn’t a conscious goal to move every day. But as January wore on, I found myself looking for ways to move that would feel good. When #MyFitnessLevelInFiveWords was trending last week (regular feminist bloggers chimed in on this here) I knew what my five words were, “I just keep showing up.” This mantra has been so useful to me for this whole month. Just showing up for movement every day has made a stressful and anxious month a lot more manageable and dare I say joyful.
This is a sample of my self talk this month:
Don’t like how hot the yoga studio is? “Just keep showing up.”
Don’t like the lack of progress on in my powerlifts? “Just keep showing up.”
Don’t feel like doing a CrossFit WOD today? “Just keep showing up.”
Don’t feel like there is time to workout tonight? You do have time for 100 air squats. “Just keep showing up.”
Don’t like the new yoga instructor who teaches a slow flow class like it is an advanced flow class? “Just keep showing up.”
Don’t enjoy how much my lungs burn after a cardio xpressFit class? “Just keep showing up.”
Don’t enjoy the grey and gloom on January? You can walk with a friend. “Just keep showing up.”
And after a whole month of just showing up – here I am. I look at this spreadsheet and I feel pleased and proud. I see days where I delighted in movement and wanted to sweat and work hard and I see days where I was tired and the most I could do was twenty minutes of home yoga. I see days where the best workouts were with friends and days where solitude and sweat was the only answer. I see a whole lot of just showing up and you know what? I feel better for it.
Cheers to picking your self back up and to just showing up. I wonder what the rest of the year will bring?
See you out there pals.
2020 will be good to us yet.
Laura is a secondary school teacher in Hamilton Ontario. She’s CrossFit athlete, regular walker, new yogi and occasional cyclist. In 2019 she learned that she loved to count (steps and kilometres and workouts completed) and is currently counting her way to 300 workouts in 2020.