Friday, March 22, 2013

That little voice in your head

You know what I'm talking about. That voice that tells you to turn off the alarm and just sleep in. The voice that tells you it's OK to eat a cookie. That voice that tells you that you can just exercise tomorrow.  That voice is so strong and so convincing.

Have you ever had a whole conversation with that little voice? I have them all the time. Here is the internal dialogue from today. It kind of reminds of Gollum talking with Smeagol (the same creature talking - one is good, the other is bad from JRR Tolkien's Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy).

Edited to add: It's a smallllll world. I wrote this post around noon. At 5 pm-ish someone posted this photo on the weight loss forum I frequent. See, exactly.

Rational voice, "You should get ready for the gym to get there on time."
Little voice, "Why not just do Zumba today instead. Your two teammates from Biggest Winner are going to be there and you talked one of them into yesterday."
Rational voice, "Yes, but you also told them you weren't going to Zumba because of taking a strength class instead, remember?"
Little voice, "Yes, but your one teammate has been slacking a bit and could use that extra support. Go to Zumba."
Rational voice, "OK, maybe I'll go to Zumba, but only after I've done strength training. I need to get at least two days of strength training and you've only done one this week Melissa!"
Little voice, "Well, you are still sore from Wednesdays strength training. Take a break."
Rational voice, "You aren't that sore. Get ready to go. You need to go."
Little voice, "You know, you've been working hard this week. You could take today off and do it tomorrow with your husband."
Rational voice, "No, you know that your knee is still bothering you and BodyPump is what caused that injury."
Little voice, "Well, how do you know it won't be OK? You can try it and see."
Rational voice, "And then injure myself some more? And then what?"
Little voice, "You could stop if you start to feel pain."
Rational voice, "And then I would have skipped today and a good chance tomorrow. That's not a good plan. I need to get ready for the gym now."
Little voice, "Then just do Zumba, then you aren't skipping a day, right?"
Rational voice, "I am getting ready right now!"

So, the rational voice won. Or did it?

I started to get ready for the gym. My sports bra (a must), a wicking shirt, a pair of workout shorts/capris, longer pants over top, the zip up fitness shirt, socks, shoes. Huh... I need to go to the bathroom. OK, I still have time.

Now, while on the toilet, which as we all know, we can't control how fast or slow we will be on the toilet.

Little voice, "You aren't going to have time to get there. You might as well not go to the strength training class and just go to Zumba an hour later."
Rational voice, "I still have time."
Little voice, "I don't know. You've never been to that strength class before. You should get there a little early to talk to the instructor to find out what you need to know for class. You don't have time for that now."
Rational voice, "I have time."
Little voice, "Ok, just go to Zumba, and then, like the earlier plan, do BodyPump tomorrow."

Upon getting up and checking the clock, I see I have time.

Rational voice, "See, I have time. Let's go!"

So, I drive there, get there in time and had a great workout. The entire workout (which is from 9:35 to 10:35) I kept thinking, "If I get out of here quick enough, I'll be able to get to Zumba at the other gym too." I kind of wanted to get to that as my Biggest Winner teammate was going to be there and I think I had talked another into going as well. I wanted to be there to support her.

But, I was TIRED when I was done with the class. This is how the class went: We did 5 stations of strength, 3 times. We had pushups on the ball, planks elbows up to hands on the bosu balls, squats with kettle bells, triceps dips on the step and then biceps curls with the bands. Then we had 5 stations, 3 times of cardio: jumping jacks with bouncing the ball, alternating foot taps on the bosu ball, kettle bell swings, next was stepping fast while straddling the step, lastly jump rope. We ended with 5 stations, 2 times of core. Crunches on the ball, planks and stepping out on the bosu ball, on our tummies feet up in the air while holding the kettle bell, lifting up to reach to the feet, on our backs on the step, lifting and lowering our straightened legs, and finally on our backs doing bicycle crunches.

It was a LOT and I was tired. I looked at the clock when we were done: 10:35. Zumba started in 10 minutes at another gym.

Little voice, "OK, you are tired. You worked hard. This class wiped you out. Go home."
Rational voice, "I don't know."
Little voice, "The goal is an hour a day. You did an hour. Go home. You have errands to run today anyway."
Rational voice is silent.

I start to drive home. To get home I have to drive right past the other gym. I hit the lights well. I was passing it at 10:45, just as the class would start.

Rational voice, "You know, you've had time to recuperate a bit. You could total go. You would only miss the warm up and you're already warm."
Little voice, "You don't need to do more today."
Rational voice, "It would be really nice to support your teammates by being there today. Go."

So, I go to park. The lot is full. I will have to park far away, making me later.

Little voice, "See, you are late. Just go home."
Rational voice, "You will only be five minutes late. You are already warmed up. It's OK. Plus, in this class people join late all the time."

I park and go on in. The irony, the one teammate wasn't there. When I got home I see that her daughter needed her car, so she was car-less. My other teammate was there, but she was surprised to see me. She said, "Oh, what happened. You didn't make the other class?" I told her I made it but decided to come to this one too.

And I'm glad I went. It loosened up the tightening muscles. This instructor is so much fun and it was good for my head.

But was the little voice silent during class? Heck no.

Little voice, "You don't have to work so hard. Remember, you've already worked out an hour."
Rational voice, "If I can do it and it doesn't hurt, or feel too hard, I should do it."
Little voice, "You'll be more tired tomorrow because of it."
Rational voice, "Tomorrow is step. Sunday is a rest day. You can totally do this full out. Just do it!"

And I did it with full range of motion as always, not wimping out.

I'm looking at my gizmo and I've already taken 10,000 steps today. I've done 1 hour of vigorous exercise and 30 minutes of moderate exercise. And that's pretty good considering the gizmo doesn't count all strength very well.

Today the little voice didn't win. It didn't win because I had enough sleep, so it stayed a little voice. Sometimes it turns into a loud, bossy voice that totally smothers the rational voice. So, I try to keep it at a little voice as much as possible because even as a little voice, it's mighty convincing and hard to keep in check.

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