Gym-free Fitness: Part I

January 29, 2014

Let’s talk about fitness, shall we?  Though I believe you can make a fresh start at any time, this year a reboot to my workout routine happens to fall perfectly in line with January, when lots of people are still working on their resolutions.  With the craziness of moving the weekend before Christmas, the entire month of December was a wash for me exercise-wise.  There were boxes to pack at lunch time and after work and even when I was supposed to be sleeping, so exercise got pushed to the back burner.

No bueno.  I have the dubious luck of a family history of heart attack, so exercise is critical to my health.  Not only that, working out gives me some mental space and seriously boosts my mood.  I never regret a workout but I always regret missing one.  I get nice and cranky if I can’t get that energy out, so exercising keeps everyone happy.


In my old apartment building we had a gym with a treadmill, stationary bike, and elliptical machine.  Usually Ian and I would squeeze a workout in during lunch – Ian on the elliptical and me on the bike.  While it got us in the routine of working out 4 or 5 times a week I didn’t feel an improvement in my overall fitness.  Sure calories were burned, but was I stronger?  No.

Shortly before we started our house-hunt, Ian and I made the switch from exercising indoors to running outdoors, and it’s made a world of difference.  Not only did it prepare us for our now gym-free living situation, but getting outside in the middle of winter does wonders to combat the winter blues.  Being outside in general is so good for you, and I think that gets lost in the shuffle of computers and the internet.

fitness-002My shoes need a little update, but they do the trick for now!

Ian and I started running on the Burke-Gilman Trail, a beautiful running/bike path that threads through Seattle.  Our run took us past waterfront houses on Lake Washington, and we loved being able to step outside each day.  The only problem was that in order to get from our apartment to the trail there were some serious hills.  And while they do wonders for working the butt, the hills slowed us down and made getting to the trail seem like an ordeal.  Running on the street wasn’t an option, as we had a dangerous road outside our apartment.

When we started house-hunting, one of the most important things for me was to find a place where I could easily and safely walk out my front door.  Our new house is perfect for this – not only are we on a dead-end street, but there are nice wide sidewalks going everywhere in our town.

Ta-da!  We’ve picked up running again, and while my 12-minute mile isn’t setting any records, I’m feeling stronger and stronger each day.  Running is such a good full-body workout, and I’m loving how good it makes me feel.  I’ll share my favorite workout gear with you soon, so check back in.

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  • Reply Kelley January 29, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    I’m so impressed. It’s tough especially with a child at home. way to go! We try to squeeze in walks at night, but it’s tough, especially in the winter, to fit it all in.

    • Reply Tanya January 29, 2014 at 2:09 pm

      It’s definitely tough! I used to love doing walks with Lily in the stroller, but now that she’s more independent, she doesn’t like sitting still for too long. I’ll get a mile out from the house and she decides she wants to be carried back.

  • Reply Gym-free Fitness: Part II – The Gear | Fitness | The Lovely Little Things January 30, 2014 at 1:35 am

    […] I talked a little about my shift from exercising in the gym to exercising outdoors.  While the mental and physical health benefits are fantastic, exercising outdoors in the Seattle […]

  • Reply Jaana January 30, 2014 at 9:59 am

    hey! a 12 minute mile ain’t nothing to be ashamed of! 🙂

    • Reply Tanya February 12, 2014 at 10:28 am

      Thanks Jaana!

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