By Deborah Riley-Magnus
It’s a great week here in beautiful, Autumn painted Southwestern Pennsylvania, and to get my walking in, I chose the trails that showed off the season at its best. Pittsburgh’s South Park, a drive up to the gorgeous trails at Presque Isle in Erie, even making sure I parked as far as possible from the grocery store entrance! What a wonderful time! The air is crisp and crackling with energy as everywhere I turned there were brilliant golds and reds and oranges accented by the deep richness and pungent scents of pines reaching to tickle the passing clouds.
That’s when it happened. Maybe it was happening since my roommate and I began this diet and exercise journey but I didn’t really notice until last Thursday. I tried to ignore it on Friday while I pushed through the mile and a half walk. I finally threw up my hands on Saturday when it became just impossible to continue.
It was a pain in the heels I never felt before in my whole life! What began as a mild irritation made itself clearly known after doing three days of walking in a row. Brilliant me, I thought “hey, we have a busy weekend, so let’s just get all this walking stuff done in a clump on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday!” Dumb. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
I’m not on a medically supervised program like the Biggest Loser contestants, I don’t have trainers to advise me, wrap sore muscles with warm towels and massage away the aches and pains. I just have me and my body and I forgot to listen to one of us.
Ow, ow, ow ouch!
The culprit? It looks like my Sketcher walking shoes are breaking down over the past few years of use. Not that I did a great deal of power walking before this current effort, I just liked them so much I wore them all the time. Apparently, now that I’m using them to seriously raise my heart rate and burn calories, the shoes are having a laugh over my ambitious expectations for them.
No worries, a new pair of walking shoes are on the near horizon but … I do have this niggling issue of aching heels to deal with in the meantime. I can’t just stop trying to exercise, I can’t just throw up my hands and give up! That was the old me. The new me, the one with the new life and determination to get it together, lose the weight and live healthier, has to find a way to get through this week without injuring myself further … and hopefully without gaining weight.
My planned solution? Belly Dancing (because I can do it in my bare feet), and floor work, (because I can do it on my butt and back). Both have specific body activities I haven’t done yet, arm, leg, strength and balance. Both will hopefully do some toning, even if they don’t burn as many calories … and speaking of calories, I know I’ll need to cut back this week while I work my body differently. At least, that’s what my logic says, so I’ll be cutting a few hundred calories off my daily intake. We’ll see how this works.
As for the last week, I lost 1½ pound – after all that misery! I can pinpoint the issue without even looking back. See on Saturday and Sunday I spent a lot of time on the road. Long drives and stopping to pee every twenty minutes just didn’t seem practical so I cut back on the water, from 7 glasses a day to 2 on Saturday and 2 on Sunday. I kinda expected a low weight loss because of it. Nothing else changed in the calorie counts for those days. My theory is that WATER IS YOUR FRIEND and I need to make peace with stopping at rest stops more often while on a road trip.
So, this week I’ll be staying away from the walking trails, working hard on movements that will help tone my muscles … and drinking my 7-8 glasses of water every single day.
On the bright side … even though the total weight loss over three weeks is 11.5 pounds, I look and feel better, my clothes and my friends have noticed the changes and I am not discouraged! How’s that for lifestyle change and success?