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Running a race is hard! (photo-Massimo Sartirana-on Unsplash)

I struggled

I started my exercise challenge at the beginning of the month. Two days later I was struggling to keep up. Not that it’s hard to do what I planned. I posted that I would do 30 minutes of cardio (by walking) and do a set of 100’s from Pilates and 4 sets of high and low planks also from Pilates. Straight off I found the high and low planks unbearable. I have a rotator cuff problem with my right shoulder and I barely squeezed by doing one repetition of the high and low planks. I was tempted to call it quits and write here in my blog that I can’t do it. I have to admit that the high and low planks are too hard for me at this point in my life. Have you ever been in that position where you set a goal that wasn’t realistic for you? That’s me now with these high and low planks.

I needed to change my plans

I decided I won’t give up so easily and I can modify my plans. I’m doing a low plank for one minute and then a high plank for one minute. The planks are still hard but I’m putting less stress on my right shoulder this way. I know it’s not much but it’s a start.

 Low planks

I'm doing low planks for 1 minute. (They're hard!)

The other set back was we had a lot of guests in the past ten days. Whenever we have guests, I find I get off schedule. I did manage to do cardio every day, but I must confess I missed 3 days of the 100’s and the planks.

I know that it’s easy for me to give up on a challenge or a good habit when something comes that prevents me from doing it according to schedule. I think the key to being successful in keeping a habit or a challenge is how you deal with these setbacks when life gets in the way and you can’t do what you planned on a given day. My initial thought when my schedule got disrupted and I didn’t get my 30-minute walk in was to beat myself with words like this, “You were going to fail this challenge sooner or later. Might as well quit since you didn’t walk today.”

Then I remembered how that very morning I shoveled snow for one hour and it was 10-inches of packed sticky snow. I was sweating after that session of shoveling. True it wasn’t the walk with my dog, but it got my heart going and it counts as exercise. It’s too easy to be rigid and just consider the exact things I said I would do with my challenge.

Instead of wallowing in what I didn’t do I focused on what I did that could count as part of my challenge.  I lifted up my chin and squared my shoulders and continued with the challenge. Here I am at day 12. I needed to make modifications to my challenge, but I am keeping it. The biggest thing I’ve noticed regarding the 100’s and planks is that my muscles are tender. My stomach is still flabby. I’ll see the challenge through before I do any other changes.

How about you, how’s it going with your challenge? Tell me about it in the comments below or in the Heart2live Facebook page here. Remember the easy way to pick yourself up from a setback is to be flexible and don’t give up. Always do the next step.

 

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