Let’s toast to negativity.
Just this once negativity is not an expression of criticism or pessimism about something. My COVID-19 test came back negative and I’ve lost five pounds – those two are indirectly related.
I’ve been hearing comments about how the pandemic is causing some people to experience depression, anxiety, stress and weight gain. I can relate. To combat some of those symptoms, I started keeping my mind busy with renovation projects. It has been helpful, but I felt like I needed a bit more.
The something more came to me at the end of June – an exercise challenge. I challenged myself to get walk every morning as far as I could. Additionally, I would muscle tone every other day after my walk. I placed a calendar on the refrigerator to log my steps, mark which days I toned and keep count of the days I did not walk.
I walked 27 of the 30 days of July. Those three days were taken off due to rain, injury and muscle cramps.
The injury was a shelf falling approximately three feet and striking my knee – a DIY mishap. I cannot describe the pain. I was curled up on the floor praying for the agony to subside just enough so I could reach my cellphone. After about 20 minutes I could move enough to grab it. Merissa brought me an ice pack. I decided one morning off was warranted.
Muscle cramps struck July 29. At approximately 2:30 a.m., I woke up to my right shin cramped. The pain was so bad that it made me physically sick. After it calmed down, my left calf cramped and then my right calf. When the alarm went off at 5:30 a.m., I could barely walk to the bathroom. Along with a day off, I added one banana a day to the menu.
July 8 was my least amount of steps at 3,815, while July 11 was my max at 10,816. I calculated my steps on day 20: 133,950, an average of 6,697 steps a day. I decided that I should finish strong and up that average to 7,000 steps a day.
I pushed my steps to, at minimum, 8,000 and ended the month on Friday morning with a 7,011 average for the 27 days that I walked.
Side effects to walking every morning and muscle toning every day: I’m stronger and leaner. I have more energy during the day and sleeping better at night. By the scale, I dropped five pounds.
Challenges can be a stepping stone to achieving greater things in life. So, what’s next?
August will be even more challenging than July. I’m adding a food challenge to my walks and toning. No chocolate, candy, cookies, cake, doughnuts, muffins, pastries, pies, chips, ice cream, or sugar.
A challenge must be challenging, right?
Standard reporter Lisa Hobbs can be reached at 473-2191.