12/06/2020 The Sunday Sweat Session That Nearly Broke Me!

Sunday morning. 11am. House to myself.

Time to rela…let me just put on a ‘PE with Joe’ workout!…

I was meant to be on holiday in Italy last week (can you hear the tiny violins playing?).

I decided to take the week off from doing any work regardless especially as my husband was off too.

After a blisteringly hot start to the week which involved some walking (but mostly sunbathing), the sunshine decided it had had enough around Wednesday and hasn’t been seen since. Cue Netflix binges, reading, naps and snacks whilst stuck to the sofa.

I say this all the time but I’m not that used to sitting still. I’d only spent 4 days indoors but I felt like I’d been lazing about for ages. I’d not really done much exercise the previous week as I’d been trying to rest my arm…

I’ve been suffering with what my massage therapist thinks is a trapped nerve these last few weeks which has been causing pain in my shoulder, arm and hand (the diagnosis being made via Facebook messenger following on from a series of photos I sent featuring me pointing at various points of my shoulder, arm and hand that were hurting!)

All in all, I was feeling lethargic, lazy and rubbish. It was time for action.

I love Joe Wickes aka the Body Coach, aka the nation’s PE teacher. I love his energy and enthusiasm. He’s a big advocate of exercise being a mood-enhancer and spirit lifter. I like that he doesn’t pretend to find all his workouts easy and isn’t afraid to show when he is struggling too!

It goes without saying that dance is my absolute favourite form of exercise, no questions asked. But I enjoy trying other forms and challenging myself when I have the time to!

So, I decided to get changed into my workout gear and fire up YouTube up on the TV.

I realised quickly that any exercises which involved me putting any weight on my hand were out of the question.

My instant reaction was frustration and with some of the first few exercises all being weight bearing ones I was ready for giving up straight away. I’m also not too proud to admit that after a 2-week break from any exercise other than walking, I was already getting out of breath and finding it tough. It’s Sunday morning I told myself, a day of rest for crying out loud!

However, I knew that deep down, if I gave up, I would feel lousy all day for quitting on myself.

I also thought of the hypocrisy of having published a blog post 2 days previously entitled, “How to be a Home Workout Queen,” which was filled with tips on how to regain your exercise motivation. If I can’t be bothered to practice what I preach, how can I expect others to?!

So, I decided in true ‘Dance Fit with Helen’ spirit to adapt the exercises I couldn’t do which is exactly what I would tell my own class members to do if they were struggling with any Dance Fit moves.

I swapped mountain climbers for high knee runs, burpees for stretch jumps and press ups for squats. I’m still unsure if I got the raw end of the deal or not! When press ups were followed by squats, instead of doing more squats I changed to doing jump squats.

Red faced, sweating and sometimes swearing, I grunted, panted and whinged my way through the workout.

Joe – “We’re going to feel great after this!”

Me – “Am I?!”

I tried telling myself that I wouldn’t be able to throw myself down on the sofa or roll around on the floor at a normal class during the breaks. I attempted to with stain from this but failed miserably so instead of getting down about it, I decided to be thankful for the opportunity to do this behind closed doors!

I took some small, sadistic comfort in seeing Joe start to struggle too (sorry Joe!) as the workout slowly unveiled itself to be the longest and undoubtedly hardest ‘PE with Joe’ workout yet.

With the alterations I made for myself, I basically spent almost an entire 45 minutes jumping and running. The odd abs interval and then abs finisher was a welcome relief from the cardio onslaught!

Without meaning to sound over dramatic, I went on a roller coaster of emotions that Sunday morning.

I was upset that I couldn’t do the workout in its full glory and that I’d needed to make adaptions. On the other hand, this made me feel really determined and motivated to push myself to ensure I was still getting just as good a workout.

I was disappointed with myself that I didn’t feel half as fit as I’d done the last time I’d done a workout. Nevertheless, I felt proud that I’d soldiered on and not given up.

I guess the reason I’ve decided to share my home workout experience from last Sunday is to let you know there is no shame in finding a workout hard. You shouldn’t give up just because something is hard and you’re not a failure for finding something hard.

Just because I couldn’t do the workout perfectly doesn’t mean I didn’t benefit from it or that it wasn’t worthwhile. Even though it was hard, I did still feel great afterwards. Doing what I could was certainly better than doing nothing.

So, it is true what they say – you never regret a workout!