This past Saturday marked my one year weight lifting anniversary. Though I had enjoyed mandatory gym class for four years of high school because I like to move around and be active, once I graduated, I didn't do much exercise. Well, I walked. When I was at college, it was important to me to find apartments that were within walking distance and cheap. So "walking distance" was extended to a mile and a half to two miles away from the college (still not really bad at all, except on the below zero cold days) and I walked a lot, but that was it.
Upon graduation, I moved down to Florida and at one point, Smiley and I did P90X together for a few months, but that couldn't last. Daily exercise DVDs of an hour and a half were too time consuming and there is only so many times you can listen to Tony Horton tell you to act like "a pterodactyl backing out of trouble. Caw!" before you rage quit in the middle of a workout.
Cut to about 19 months ago. I was pregnant with Silas and shambling left and right. My walking pace was a brisk two miles an hour if I was lucky. Some of my friends decided to get together to start working out regularly. Smiley and I had a garage. They decided to work out at our house.
Three times a week I would see my friends as they came over and worked out. First I was pregnant and then I had a tiny newborn - there didn't seem to be enough time or energy in the world to get me to start working out with them.
But, around the time that Silas was five months old, I was tired of hanging around inside. Inspired by the strides everyone else had made, I started lifting weights with my friends.
A year later, I'm still not particularly impressive at it. I can't squat my body weight and I can only bench half my body weight on a good day, but I still enjoy it and I strive to do my best (and have good form).
I could have never done it if my friends didn't make the commitment to come to our house three times a week; that means I can do a set while one of my friends graciously holds Silas and then I can go into our house to let him run around and play. When it's bedtime, I can put him down to sleep in his own crib. There is no way I would have done this for this long otherwise.
The only thing that sucks is the protein requirement. I'm still struggling to find a way to eat more protein. It stems from certain quirks and issues of mine, so I think it will take me awhile longer, but maybe eventually I'll get there. In the meantime, I will continue to enjoy hanging out with friends and lifting heavy things and putting them back down.