I am a writer. I’m also a reader, podcaster, tv critic. And I have a day job where I work on a computer. None of these activities encourage much physical activity. All of these activities mean that the busier I am, the less likely I am to get any exercise at all. Honestly, at one point I just stopped wearing my fit bit because it was depressing to see I’d walked less than 1,000 steps in a day.
I didn’t have a lot of motivation to do anything about that for a long time. Things would happen that worried me, regarding my health. My doctor told me I have some cholesterol concerns. I couldn’t walk upstairs without breathing hard. It was difficult to even get to the end of the block on a puppy walk. And the less I did, the less I was able to do.
Then the scale told me a weight I never wanted to see. And it kept climbing from there.
Now, I’m not a vain person, but certain things I just cannot abide. So I decided I needed some help. I signed up for Noom because their ads were all over the damned place.
This isn’t sponsored by Noom. It’s just really helping me so I wanted to tell you about it.
And it turns out, all the dumb shit people tell you about getting in shape is true. Gross, right? Do you mean doing a little bit of working out and eating a little better has benefits besides my weight? As a lifelong workout avoider, I was pretty sure that was just something skinny people said to make up for the lack of Oreos in their lives.
But it’s true. I’ve been sticking with Noom for two months now. And I think I’ll keep doing it. First off, I paid for it and it was kind of expensive. But also because my whole life has improved in ways I was not expecting.
I’m getting fewer headaches
I’m having less joint pain overall. I think the headache thing is because I’m taking hourly breaks from the computer to get up and dance around a little. But the less joint pain thing surprised me. I was expecting quite the opposite. But I’m not overworking myself. I’m doing just a little, then a little more the next day. So, I hurt less.
I’m sleeping better
I never used to have trouble sleeping, until about three years ago. It’s been a struggle. Most of the time, it’s that waking up in the middle of the night thing. I just cannot go back to sleep once that happens. Now that I’ve been eating better and moving my body more, I don’t do that as often. It still happens sometimes, but not nearly as often.
I do have more energy
And I did right away. Again, I wasn’t working out too much at the start. I was just walking around a little more often.
I think when we start exercising, we make two big mistakes. We don’t start with our diet and we go too big on the workouts. If you’re still eating like a teenager and you decide to start running 30 minutes a day, you’re not going to feel good. You’re going to feel like hell. But by starting with my diet and then slowly upping my exercise, I felt alright. I felt like I could do this thing.
My depression and anxiety haven’t been as bad
Look, I’m going to say this right off. If you have depression, anxiety, or any other mental issue, exercise isn’t going to cure you. I have anxiety, and I’m still on medication for it. I have not lessened my medication. I have not suddenly found that the world is a beautiful place. Anyone who tells you that your mental health can be cured by exercise and you don’t need the medication your doctor prescribed for you is an idiot. Unless that person is your doctor.
That being said, my symptoms have become more manageable since I started taking care of myself. I think it has something to do with being tired, feeling unwell, and then adding anxiety to that. It’s just one less thing for me to be anxious about when I’m not panting walking up the stairs.
I am losing some weight
This almost seems secondary at this point. But yes, I have lost nine pounds at the time of writing this.
Nine pounds in two months might not sound like a lot. But it’s better than the steady increase I was seeing before that. And, here’s the big thing, I’m still going. I’m not sick to death of this whole thing and ready to go back to my old ways. So this isn’t going to be a short-term thing.
I feel like I can accomplish things
Yeah, okay this one is a little heavy-handed. But I never have had a lot of confidence in my physical ability to, you know, do things. Physical things, at least. I knew I could do some things. Writing related, mostly. I’ve written novels, started podcasts. But I was never sure that I could do things like a charity walk. Now, it’s something I’m maybe considering.
Look, I still don’t love working out. My greatest loves in life involve sitting at a desk or in a comfortable chair. But I want to be in better health while I’m doing it. And it turns out, I’m a lot better off by doing just a little bit to take care of me.
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