Monday, May 27, 2013

Making Time for Exercise

Time is precious. In my life, I have to fit in writing, blogging, promotion, reading, networking, and all other things writing related around a full-time job (like so many of us). Taking time to exercise is a major extravagance.

I was really fit when I returned to MO from Cali. It was easy out there. I drove to the best hiking in less than 10 minutes. My dogs went off leash, prancing with me up and over serious hills that lead to breathtaking views. This was normal! We had the choice between two very different 4 mile hikes, either to be done in an hour or less. My dogs and I were exuberant and happy. Exercise was a side benefit.

It's taken me losing one of my dogs, watching the other become an older dog with arthritis, and feeling the difference in my own 39 year old body when I pull a muscle or just sit too much, to reinvigorate the need for movement. My new plan isn't about preventing disease so much as enjoying today.

I'm finally, FINALLY into a regular program that's enjoyable. I don't do more than 30 minutes most days and it's a variety of strength training and cardio. The affects are in place (I can do all my push ups! My squats are decent and I'm back to a comfortable flexibility level).

And the best part? I'm feeling the writing come easier. Is it the endorphines? Maybe it's the lack of guilt over my body hurting because I'm naturally lazy? Or it's the motivation to be less lazy and productive! 

Here's the bonus: This is a healthier balance than before because those hour or longer walks, and the social time that went with them, took the place of writing.

In MO, I have to make time to exercise, but I've also found my writing pace. I'm more consistent than I've ever been at logging time into manuscripts or blog posts. I have a genuine writing space and many, many projects.

It's hard to quantify. Last night, I didn't write 5,000 words or anything. Maybe it was just a good night because the words flowed and I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. It's been a struggle to get this far and I'm not going to hit my initial goal for the month, but I haven't let that stop me. The manuscript is coming together for a first draft, so I am pleased.

For the first time, my body and my writing are on similar journeys. A minimal amount of daily attention and they're both in good shape.