Indecisive with exercise

by Julie on April 4, 2012

in Deep Thoughts,Healthy Living

My mind has been a swirling mess as of lately.

I’m the type of person who does something completely full force until I become bored with it. Once I become bored, I stop while at the same time work on convincing myself to get back to it and do it again.

This is especially true with exercise.

Realistically, this has to stop. I need to exercise in order to enhance my mood and feel better about myself. I think that by writing it all out will help. I’m going to break it up into different categories – maybe it will give me some clarity?

To begin, here are the areas of exercise that I’ve enjoyed in more recent years and how I feel about them now:


Oh, running. I used to love thee, but unfortunately, I’m not obsessed anymore. Frankly I’m terrified to have the same fate as my mother and father with knee problems. Both ran all their lives and my mom actually had knee surgery. This week, I finally realized and came to terms with the fact that my left knee feels “off.” I can’t explain it, but it does not feel right. I’m sure I could run through it as a 27-year old, but I don’t want to be 57 and on the operating table.

At the end of the month, I have the Cleveland 10-miler planned and to be honest, I’m not feeling it. The longest training run to date has been about 4.5 miles and I’m not motivated to do more. I haven’t decided what to do with this yet.


To put it simply, Bikram yoga changed my life. Last year when I lived in Lancaster, I was lucky to live and work really close to a studio. When I moved to Ohio this summer, I found out that there was a studio opening in Cleveland – specifically Shaker Heights. I live in Lakewood, and it’s not exactly convenient and off a highway. To drive there, you go through tons of side streets/lights/traffic and while I love the studio, it’s just not realistic for me anymore. {major sad face}

Also, since Bikram is 90-minutes long, it basically takes about 2 and a half hours out of my already busy days. The realization that Bikram may not a consistent focus of my life anymore has taken awhile to acknowledge and accept. But, in order to move on I may need to let it go (at least until it comes to the Westside!).

Strength Training

When I lived in Pittsburgh, I went to a personal trainer twice a week and focused on strength training. Looking back, I felt amazing. It’s crazy how much better my clothes fit! Strength training does my body good.

Moving forward, here are the the things that I am considering doing consistently


I have heard a lot about CrossFit. I’ve seen pictures of happy people picking up huge weights over their heads. I’ve listened to a co-worker talk about how she craves going every day and loves the surprise workouts.

What appeals to me:

- The community aspect

- Many different class times are available, including early morning classes

- Strength training (as I said above, it does my body good!)

What does not appeal to me:

- The Paleo Diet is a popular trend amongst CrossFitters (or so I’ve read…). I’m not sure I want to do that diet, but I’m not sure how I’d feel about not doing it since I tend to have the all or nothing mentality.

- The cost

Other Yoga Styles

With my love for Bikram, this is pretty much a given that seeking out other styles of yoga may be a good idea for me.

What appeals to me:

- Belonging to a yoga studio again

- Doing different yoga every day instead of the “prescribed” 26 postures that Bikram uses

- Feeling good again (right now, my body feels blah since I’m not constantly stretching it!)

What does not appeal to me:

- Not doing the “prescribed” 26 postures that Bikram uses (that Type A in me enjoys that)

- The cost

- Missing the 105 degree heat from Bikram


Walking is often overlooked and I need to stop brushing it off. Maybe instead of running, this could be something I’d do on a regular basis without the injury.

What appeals to me:

- Walking wherever and whenever I want

What does not appeal to me:

- Not getting a good “sweat” (kinda ridiculous though – of course I would sweat!)

Strength Training at a Gym

In the past, I’ve used books like The New Rules of Lifting for Women for strength training ideas, although I was never consistent. I always left the gym feeling amazing though.

What appeals to me:

- The cost of joining a small gym is not expensive. Very doable.

- Doing it on my own time

What does not appeal to me:

- Not having someone there to tell me what to do

- Possibly doing a workout wrong

More Thoughts…

Trust me, I’m pretty sure I’m over thinking everything but I need to do something and do it consistently. I need to feel the love for working out again! It’s as simple as that.

Have you been in a similar situation? Do you have any thoughts on the above activities and combining everything? PLEASE help me clear my mind! I need exercise direction. :-)


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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Holly April 4, 2012 at 9:26 pm

Workout ruts and losing interest are definitely real! On the 10-Miler I would say you come to terms with it being a “fun run” and don’t put too much pressure on yourself. There needs to be a west side Bikram studio! Have you heard they are opening a Barre studio? I think it’s going to be east side though as well. That probably doesn’t help either of us!

If you need some west side yoga deals I have found a few. Email me if you want more details. I can be long winded. :)

You will figure it all out! And on the knees… I was told it’s better to have your knees fail than to have your heart fail from lack of exercise. Food for thought.
Holly´s last [type] ..CLE Half Training Update: Unexpected Running Hiatus


Julie April 4, 2012 at 10:33 pm

We should definitely email about yoga. I’m interested to hear which studios you have tried.


Bridgett April 4, 2012 at 9:36 pm

If you join a gym look for one that offers Les Mills body pump classes. Its a total body strength training class. I HATE lifting but have seen a big difference in my body. My gym offers them pretty much every day, I go 2x a week.
As far as running: I feel your pain. I’ve given up races & aim for 3 miles 2x a week. Something is better than nothing & my knees thank me.


Julie April 4, 2012 at 10:33 pm

Thanks for the comment!!!! I will look for those classes as an option.


Jamie April 4, 2012 at 9:58 pm

I totally know what you mean with all the different exercises out there and the pros and cons….as a runner and a roller derby player, crossfit has changed my life. I’m happier and am stronger than ever before. I never really did strength training though I was a pro at cardio. The difference in your body is phenomenal. I don’t follow Paleo either, I tried it for a little while and to be honest, I have weaknesses with foods and as long as I workout harder after eating those…I’m doing pretty well.


Julie April 4, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Thanks for your comment! Where do you practice CrossFit? I’m happy to hear that you’re not into Paleo either – that is a huge concern of mine going into it. CrossFit seems like it will kick my ass – which is what I need!


Danielle April 4, 2012 at 10:37 pm

I’ve always wanted to try CrossFit…want to do it together?! I’ve missed you at BY Cleveland but definitely understand the distance/time issue. Either way, let’s get together sometime soon, I miss your happy smiling face! Sushi? Thanks for your sweet comment on my blog, by the way :)
Danielle´s last [type] ..NYC National Yoga Competition: I’m so glad I did it. It was a fantastic experience. I’m excited for next year!


Julie April 4, 2012 at 11:26 pm

I would LOVE to! After lots of thought tonight, I think I’m going to try it in Lakewood on Saturday. You are SO welcome to join!!!! If not, a definite sushi date is needed. I miss your smile too :-)


Deb April 4, 2012 at 11:18 pm

Your first sentence struck me–I know exactly what you mean!! I am definitely an all or nothing person, especially when it comes to working out. I am currently on the “upswing,” if you will, of that all. However, three solid and very dedicated months in, I am starting to feel myself get into a rut/getting too comfortable with things. I’m glad I’m able to recognize it happening, and I’m doing my best to avoid it! I’ve been working way too hard to throw in the towel now!! Anyway, in February I started going to a new class at my gym called Sparta. I don’t think Sparta is necessarily a universal class/term, but HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is. I am HOOKED. I have done a lot of different things over the year with “eh” success, but this has been the ticket for me. I DIED when I first started–never so sore in my life, seriously. But now I can do things I never imagined I’d be able to do. And running? Has impacted my stamina like I would never believe. (And I also understand the running thing. Having dislocated my knee 2 years ago and going through dr. appts and PT for weeks, I am still leery and very careful. Running is such a love/hate thing!!) I’m not sure if there are any HIIT classes like Sparta in your area, but I HIGHLY recommend it. Basically, ours is a 40 minute workout in which you rotate through 30 or so stations, 60 seconds at each station. The stations vary–lots of core exercises, cardio, and strength training. At each station you pound out as much as you can and then have 5-10 seconds to switch stations and start on another exercise. It goes SO fast and it kicks your butt which is exactly what I needed!!! You literally crawl to your last couple of stations. You KNOW you worked out when you are finished. It took about 2 weeks (as most stuff like that does) to get used to it and to be able to really take it to the next level with intensity. Ever since then I have noticed results in many different areas and I am just loving how strong and fit I am feeling!! (Again, just gotta keep myself in this working out upswing!!) Here’s a link for our “head spartan” in our area. I know he does have a DVD that just launched, but I honestly don’t know a whole lot about it. Our gym is, fortunately, only 1 of 3 in the area that are currently offering the Sparta class. LOVE IT!!! And, the comment about Les Mills BodyPump?? YES!! YES!! Another great one!! Started BodyPump a couple of years ago and, although I’ve had a few hiatuses from it here and there, it’s a workout staple!! Good luck and keep us posted!! I really want to hear about CrossFit if you give it a try!!


Julie April 4, 2012 at 11:28 pm

Deb – thanks so much for commenting! That sounds like so much fun – I’m definitely going to check it out. I plan to blog about CrossFit if I try it (planning on it now for Saturday – eeeek!).


Deb April 4, 2012 at 11:32 pm

Awesome!!! Get it girl!!! :) Can’t wait to hear all about it!!!


Genevieve April 5, 2012 at 6:54 am

I tried out crossfit a couple months ago and I loved the intro class. I didn’t end up joining because you had to join a beginner class first but they only had one a day, at a time that was not convenient to my work schedule. My schedule has since changed so I may check it out again. The cost to start was around $120, and that wwas for 12 intro classes where you learn all the workout of the days and whatnot. Also, it isn’t going to kick your ass, but I have been doing Zumba with a friend because there are $3 classes almost every night of the week in and around Lancaster….I fell like an idiot a lot of the time, but it is so low pressure there you leave with a smile. And everyone is drenched in sweat so you feel like you have done something. Grab a friend and find a cheap class, promise it is fun!


Jen @ Why CLE? April 5, 2012 at 8:34 am

I’ve definitely been there! I tried running, did 2 1/2 5Ks and decided it wasn’t for me. So far, cardio on the elliptical, yoga, and spinning have stuck as the things I really enjoy. I think it’s all about knowing what you want, which you laid out well here. Do you want solitary exercise or something with more of a group feel? What parts of your body do you want to work? I don’t know what will end up being right for you, but I do know if you’re forcing yourself to do something you don’t really enjoy, you’ll ultimately end up frustrated and just giving up (a la me and running).
Jen @ Why CLE?´s last [type] ..Why? Hodge’s Cleveland!


Blog The New Black April 5, 2012 at 3:37 pm

I can really relate to this post! I am the type to try it all and only really half commit because I tend to get bored with the routine. I also want instant results and that screws me up. I know all us westsiders are DYING for a bikram studio so I hope someone opens one up!
Blog The New Black´s last [type] ..You know what it’s like to have just a dog gone shitty…


Dina (Dina's Days) April 9, 2012 at 6:34 pm

I tend to take a few weeks off from working out and immediately regret it. However, once I get back from my break, I’m reminded how much I love to work out. It does WONDERS for my mental health. I’ve been doing CrossFit for almost two years and have a hard time seeing myself doing anything else. It changed my outlook completely on fitness. I NEVER did Paleo, and probably never will. I did however, made generally eating healthy a lifestyle change. I don’t believe in eliminating an entire food group. Never have and never will. But I will opt for fruit over bread for example. My theory, exercise regularly, try to give your body the fuel it needs to keep working out, and treat yourself to things you in love in moderation, and live a happy life.


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