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30-Day Discipline Experiment – Day 8

Update on Complaining:  I’m finding that not complaining is making me happier!  Not that I’m 100% with my goal, but having the goal stops me in my tracks when I notice I’m complaining or thinking about it!  That’s really great.

What I’ve been Avoiding:  It’s funny that sticking with a weight lifting program was one thing I wanted to be disciplined about … and I’ve not even said those words yet in this thread.  But it’s on my mind.  Sometimes not doing things doesn’t mean that something isn’t happening.  As I’m not doing weight lifting, I’m having an inner dialog with myself about why.  And this engagement has brought me some interesting resources.  I just read about one large exercise study that showed that the group who walked down stairs received more physical benefits than the group who walked up stairs.  Yay!  So I’m going to add walking down stairs to my regimen. Take the elevator to the top floor…and walk down 10 flights–twice.  In this exercise I use my weight as the weight I’m lifting (or letting down).  So at least my legs will be getting stronger.

Looking at resistance is an important part of discipline.  Hey I’m not afraid!  What we resist, persists, so I’m glad to look at my resistance. 

Here’s what I don’t like about weight training:

  • it’s hard.  Muscles build strength from microtears that occur during use/overuse.  So I have to lift to fatigue.  It’s not in my personality!
  • it’s progressive.  I have to keep making it harder over time (yuck–that doesn’t make sense!).
  • it’s boring.  I get bored counting reps. 
  • it’s fake.  It’s not like lifting bails of hay or moving furniture.

But as an exercise physiologist, I believe in strength training–it’s a must for healthy living.  So what’s my plan? 

Here’s what I’ve tried so far:

  • I’ve set up my own Venice Beach on my deck – weights, jump rope, yoga mat, balance disc, etc.  Problem is I don’t use it.
  • I’ve set up a video/DVD center upstairs.  Problem is I don’t use it.
  • I’ve joined a gym and paid for a 1-year membership.  Problem is I don’t use it.  I’ve done this twice now!
  • I purchased several sessions with a personal trainer.  Problem is, I haven’t scheduled the appointments.

Get my drift!  It seems as if I’ve tried everything–but I’m sure I haven’t.  So I’ll try some more things. 

The good news is that I love aerobic exercise and I love being outside doing something purposeful–I could walk an hour a day and love it!  But that doesn’t help my upper body.  Biking is not bad either. 

If you have a recommendation for me about weight training, please share it!  I’m open to your input and I know it’s important–so I don’t need a lecture about how important it is :) 

Thanks for your comments and suggestions!

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  1. Debbie says:

    Two thoughts:

    On weight-training – Could you carry weights and raise and lower them as you walk? It might be a little silly looking outdoors – but I have tried it on the treadmill.

    On your dad’s medicine – I bought 7 day (4 times per day) pill containers for my mom. Would you dad think to look at the day of the week to know that he’d already taken the dose for the day? I like to fill up several weeks at a time.

    I loved the comparison that you made about taking care of our households to “walking the farm.”

  2. Linda says:

    I can relate to the not wanting to lift. I cut a deal with myself that I do it during the cold months. I just quit for the summer in May. Now I get to do cardio on the days I usually lifted.

    I didn’t love it while I was doing it, but it was the most satisfying thing I did all week. I would lift on Mondays and Fridays after work. It didn’t matter if I didn’t feel like it. Sometimes I would call someone and say “I don’t want to” a bunch of time, then I would do it.

    What I loved was that my brain works really well when I do hard things. I would have tons of insights about my life. I got up to 280 push-ups in two sets. I was really proud of doing something most women think they can’t do (yep on my toes). I also figured out to look at photos to count. For example, one of my favorite photos is me with four people I love. I would do 10 push-ups or squats looking at each person. When I finished the cycle twice I was done.

    What I realized was that I do like to do hard things. I also realized I am worth the investment. Lots of hard won lessons about loving myself and going against the female conditioning to be comfortable.

    Be fierce on your own behalf. You are worth it.

    P.S. I also love having a weighted vest for squats, deadlifts, triceps dips, etc.

  3. Lena West says:


    I think it’s great that you’re being so honest and committed to writing re: your 30-day discipline challenge. Excellent!

    I think it’s good to first acknowledge that while you might not be quite so disciplined about weight training – the “discipline gears” are clearly working, because you’ve been posting a lot!

    What about weight training using your own body weight or leveraging muscle against muscle ?There’s a word for this, but I don’t know what it’s called – I’m sure you do though. Isometrics?


    Maybe actually LIFTING a weight isn’t for you…maybe isometrics is more appealing to your workout style?

    Either way, keep it up and I’m sure you’ll have a breakthrough – you always have a way of manifesting EXACTLY what works for you.

    You know what they say…the answers might not come when you want them, but they’re always right on time.

    Love and light!


  4. Hey Debbie – thanks for the suggestions. I set my dad up with a very simple AM/PM pill box. It seems to be working. My mother uses the 4x a day pill box and then doesn’t take even half of them. I think remembering to take pills 4x a day is impossible for most of us – but i’m sure that works for some people. Go for it. I’d love to fill 7 weeks but I haven’t seen such a device. If I fill more than one pill box, my dad might pick a stray one up and get confused so we stuck with just one week at a time. I love it that you “got/liked” the comparison with walking the farm :)

    My-my Linda – you do think outside the box. I LOVE it. Who would have thought to count reps by looking at pictures of people you love. Nice. Being fierce sounds cool too. I’m interested in your brain loving doing hard work. And I love it that you take the summer off – go figure. Outside the box for sure! Thanks for sharing this.

    Lena – you cutie. You’re such a good support coach. I love that you noticed the discipline gears are working! Cuz they are. Yes the term is isometrics – like pushing one hand into the other. I like the idea of calisthenics because i’m using my own body weight. I think i’d be successful if I finally decided on 5 or 6 “must do” exercises and then tracked my progress. Not ready to commit yet but I’ll think on it!

    Thank you all for your comments – very interesting and helpful. Cheryl

  5. Anne says:

    Like you, Cheryl, I know the value of weight training……but don’t like the process. I do, however, love to garden and do my own landscaping. That entails using a shovel, rack, hoe, pick ax, sometimes even chopping out old tree roots with the ax.

    If that isn’t enough weight bearing exercise, I’ve a 25+/- pound cocker who is 15 yrs. old. She isn’t suppose to be jumping on furniture due to a fused vertabrae nor walking up and down stairs. She gets a pick up regularly as needed, and serves as weight bearing exercise.

    My favorite form of exercise is incorporating those places where I most enjoy being; for me, that’s nature.

  6. Anne – I’m in sync with you sister! Totally. Now THAT’S the kind of exercise I can get behind. I used to have to carry my German Shephard upstairs when she got so she couldn’t walk. That was a true pleasure – if not a challenge! I did that for about 2 years. I wish she was still here so I could carry her up again. We had quite a routine! Cheryl


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