Every now and then I get the urge to become a chiseled goddess. Ok, let’s be real. I always want to be a chiseled goddess; it’s just that sometimes I get a little extra mojo from somewhere to attempt to make it happen. Unfortunately my mojo usually fizzles a few days in. Thus, my fluffy muffin top stomach and cottage cheese derriere.
This morning the thought entered my brain. “Get on the elliptical.”
What!? Who said that?
I brushed it off as Satan playing games with my mind. But there it was again. “Only one child is awake right now. You’re doing nothing. Get on the elliptical.”
The inner goddess has spoken and apparently it is time to begin her unveiling. Fine!
So after battling it out in my mind for a few minutes and ultimately landing on, “Get up off your @$$ and onto that elliptical,” I made my way over and started the journey.
Operation chiseled goddess, attempt number 274, in effect.
The elliptical we have is the Jillian Michaels edition where she talks to you and motivates you, and there’s all kinds of bells and whistles. I chose the weight loss track. It asks for my age and weight so it can calculate the appropriate program. Jillian is judging me, I can feel it.
After the judging and snickering ends inside the machine, it selects the age and weight appropriate track for me, and I’m set to pop.
29 minutes of hell. Ready, Go!
I start out feeling pretty good. 10 seconds in, still doing ok but already feeling the burn. Uh oh!
At 15 seconds the self talk has begun. “You can do this. You’re a beast. Warrior up and make this elliptical your biotch.”
25 seconds, still only at resistance level 1. Maybe I have reversed who is who in this relationship. How long have I been on here? It’s got to be at least 5 minutes by now.
32 seconds. I might die before this is over.
40 seconds. Soldier up and get it together. You’ve got this!
53 seconds. How in the world is this so hard!? This thing has to be lying that this is level 1. Level 1 of what? The strong woman competition!?
1 minute. Broke the minute barrier…you my friend are a champion. Eye on the prize!
1 minute, 6 seconds. I can do this. If I do this every morning I can look like a chiseled goddess in no time. I can do that, no problem. Bring it on Jillian.
1 minute 30 seconds. Up to level 10. Ok. This is ridiculous. Every day I have to do this!?
2 minutes. Broke another minute milestone. Here we go. Now we’re on our way! Daily workouts will be perfect. I can already feel my butt getting perkier. I feel great! This is awesome. I’m awesome!
3 minutes. Death is imminent.
No way can I make it the full 29 minutes. I feel like a fire has been set inside my chest. Clearly I’m doing something wrong here. Also, why did the workout set me to go 29 minutes instead of 30? Does Jillian not think I could make it to a whole 30 minutes so they’re stopping me just short of death?
I’ll show her! I lived in New York alone at 16. I’ve been sky diving. I’ve given birth twice…once to twins! I can DO this!
5 minutes. Take that Jillian! I’m at 5 minutes!
I’m ONLY at 5 MINUTES!!!!??? O….M….G!!!
As the seconds of each minute ticked by as slowly as molasses going uphill in winter, my mind became a battlefield of thoughts. I fluctuated between total beast mode and total defeat. Between “I’m going to do this AND take the boys on a walk, and maybe even add in some extra squats for good measure, ensuring I become a goddess within the week. I could probably even do a tough mudder at this rate! I wonder when the next one is?” and “Oh screw it. Who am I kidding? I’m a mom of 3. No one cares if I’m a chiseled goddess and this is totally not worth it. Just be a mom and let go of the tight butt dream.”
Now this elliptical is really starting to chip away at my pride and self worth. I was a professional dancer for crying out loud. This should not be that difficult.
Never mind the fact that I stopped dancing 10 years ago and have been sporadically fit over those years at best. I feel like the dancing hippo in the movie Fantasia.
My perfectionism does not allow me to realize you can’t just jump on an elliptical after the only exercising you’ve done in the last several years is long walks with the boys and occasional 30 minute workout videos on YouTube, and expect to conquer it right away; just as one time on the stupid machine won’t suddenly provide me with a brand new, HIIT model body. I’m not so good at the “one day at a time” stuff. I want results and I want them yesterday.
I pushed through. Counting the seconds I made it to 10 minutes and then had to take a water break. My throat called 911 and demanded water to extinguish the fire that was set in there. (I’m not so good with the correct breathing during workouts either.)
I mustered up some courage, remembered what my butt looks like and hopped back up there for the next segment. Stay focused Rachael. Nothing worth having is ever easy. It’s through the hard things that we gain strength. Endure the race. Power on!
16 minutes. Need another break. The baby is fussing down there watching me. He needs me. I’m being selfish. He doesn’t need me to have a chiseled butt, he needs his Mama!!!
Ok, get some water, get back up there and finish this workout.
Jillian starts in. “Don’t stop. You can do it. Keep a steady pace.”
Oh shut up Jillian!!!!
I resolved to make it through the 29 minutes even if I was going a much slower pace than I was supposed to go, and even if I died in the process.
2 breaks, lots of self doubt, a few cuss words, and a miserable 40 minutes later (because of the breaks), I made it.
I really am a beast. Maybe I can do this every day. Well…maybe not every day. Is that really necessary? Don’t I need to trick my body and not get it used to daily workouts? Yeah, I think every other day is good enough. Every other day it is.
So maybe I won’t be a chiseled goddess by the weekend. Maybe I can just aim for mediocre goddess. I’m learning how to love myself as I am anyway, so this is just a part of the process, right? An annoying step in the arduous process of learning to live life one day at a time, no matter what I’m trying to accomplish.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither will my toned body, my screwed up thought processes, false beliefs, painful divorce, becoming the world’s best mom, or any other feat that lies before me, realistic or not, happen in one day.
But slowly and surely, one day at a time, if I push through, I will get there. Even if it’s against my will… maybe especially if it’s against my will, and only when I submit it all to His will. One thing, one day, one submission of will at a time, I will get where I want to be.
I’m not a fan of the waiting process, but the goddess body is just like everything else. It takes dedication, commitment, time, effort, energy, submission, perseverance, internal change, and resolve to endure the task, one stinkin day at a time. And maybe the external chiseled goddess is a pipe dream, but applying these principles to my internal self will surely yield some kind of internal goddess type results. I hope!
I guess I’ll see you in the morning Jillian!