Exercise: Before and After

You know how People will come out with their “Weight Loss Issue”and show you jaw-dropping before and after pictures?

Well, I’m not gonna do that.

A) I never lost 30 plus pounds because that would only leave my torso

B) I will never show “before/after” photos of me at my skinniest vs me now. Besides the fact of triggering people, I also find it horribly embarrassing and slightly more attractive than horse poo.

C) This isn’t People magazine

Look, exercise is the “American” way. We are always told to get up and move. Gyms are everywhere, step counters are programmed into our phones, and anybody taking the elevator gets the stink eye for being “lazy”. Its not publicized much, but people die from overdoing marathons If not an acute sudden death, a slow one over time.

I often get emails from people wondering about my exercise these days verses what it was. So here’s my Before/After on my exercise habits:

Before  (when I was way too thin, frail, with full on osteoporosis, resembling something that came out of a famine in Africa)

Never a day “off” or if it was, I considered an hour and a half yoga class with an hour walk “my rest day”

-Exercising for X amount of hours (I dont want to give anybody any ideas, but trust me, a lot).

-Always doing the same exercise. My hips hurt so much from stress fractures that I couldn’t run, so I always power walked on the treadmill on an incline. And every now and then a spin class.

-Minimal weight training.

-Pull my hair out in frustration if I didnt exercise for a certain amount a day. It didn’t help that my hair was already so thin

-I hated exercise, despite the fact I spent so much of my day doing it. I flat out HATED it.

After (X pounds heavier, with somewhat normal hormone levels):

-For sure days off, sometimes a few in a row

-Workouts arre always different, everyday. Some days I’ll just walk. Some days I’ll climb stairs with Deb. Sometimes I’ll do yoga or my latest love, ViPR. And sometimes I’ll run on the treadmill (for under 30 min!) as long as Bradley Cooper is on the treadmill in front of me.

– Still feel like I want to pull my hair out if I dont exercise on days I planned too, but I get over it. At least there is more hair to pull…

-I still dont “love” exercise and I hate the fact that it keeps me somewhat sane.


I dont know about you, but I rather die by chocolate than die running.

Or death by cookies...

Have a “before/after” moment to share? It doesn’t have to do with exercise. Were you once doing things one way, and now do it a little differently?

I for one used think boys had cooties. Now, I’m certain its the girls with the cooties.


18 thoughts on “Exercise: Before and After

  1. I did a whole post on my before diet once. It was scary. I would take protein shakes with just water, whey, and flaxseed oil. and I would ahve that twice a day–with eggs, and veggies, maybe fruit for breakfast. and then same thing for dinner. scary stuff.

  2. I love that you did a before and after b/c it gives a sense of normality. And now you are normal. Or at least your exercise regime is hahah! Glad you have more hair to pull and hormones to boot.

    I was def. overexercising in my ‘before’ (well, after I was obese but before now) and really only recently kibboshed that- much much less cardio, more strength and plyo. Also my old diet was pretty sparse compared. And it’s in change even now as I listen to my body more. As you know before I was very scurred of carbs and now I’m backing off the fright. And I’ve thanked you before for that and I’ll thank you again ❤

    • Actually, I was trying to convey that although better, I’m still very not normal with my exercise attitude I shouldnt feel like the world is going to end if I dont exercise. I wish exercise didn’t feel like a “chore” and I often think it still totally does….sigh..

  3. Um YES. Girls def have cooties. And are also mostly psychopathic. Not all of them. But a fair share.

    I used to NEVER take days off. And now…definitely one, probably two. On which I just sit on my ass and/or bake all day. It’s glorious.

    I used to…only allow myself to eat those gross tofu noodles for lunch if I knew I was going out to dinner that night. And now…I eat a big bowl of pasta for lunch. and probably a cupcake.a

  4. My before and after is bad. And still not good.

    I used to be a hard-core competitive runner (pretty good if I can say that without being arrogant). Hard-core. Every day.

    WHen I went inpatient, I was in a bed or on a chair for 4 months.

    Fast forward to the last two years (oh yes,2 years) and I’ve only been walking.
    And as of 2 weeks ago, I wasn’t even able to walk.
    Just yesterday I had my first 20 minute walk in a long time. One short, lazy 20 minute walk. That is it.
    Do I feel good about this ? No.
    Do I want it to change? Yes. But I can barely walk at this point.
    And what sucks more than having to gain? Having to gain while sitting on your bum for a LONG time (cause I have already been sitting on my bum for a long time and I still have long to go).

    Real winner, aren’t I?

    My body is basically ravaged.
    Fun stuff.

  5. My “I’m free of this exercise guilt” came when I went to Uganda last summer for two weeks–NO gyms, NO weights…just good ol’ walking around in Africa 😉 And I didn’t gain a single ounce. That being said, I DO enjoy exercise!!

  6. I recently wrote about how exercise doesn’t mean much to me, but I wouldn’t say that’s been something that’s changed for me, just strengthened over time.

    But I do see the value in movement, both as a stress-reliever and as an indication of what our bodies are physically capable of. There is much more to our bodies than that though!

    One things that’s changed for me recently (or that I’m still working on changing) is saying NO a lot more! Doing everything at once doesn’t mean you’ll do everything well and it doesn’t mean you are adding more to your life in some way. In many ways, you’re taking away from life.

    Sorry for such a somber comment!

    On a lighter note, I think dying by chocolate is the way I want to go.

  7. Sometimes I look back and wonder how I did so much. Usually 3 spin classes a week, 45 minutes of machine cardio 6 days a week, and too much weight training to be beneficial. At my happy peak I weight trained 3-4 days a week and my cardio was jogging to the gym and walking around campus.

    Now I actually do need to exercise more because I’ve taken way too much time off and have gotten ridiculously stiff and cranky. -sigh- Time is but a loop.

  8. first comment ost bugger! anyway everyday i battle with this still had day off since eaving inpatient butmanage to do do hard and easy days. stil fee scared of what will i fee like if no exercisebut ony today i managed to get the bus up my freakin’ steep hill and said i deserved to what the effwill happen?for dinner i ate more than usaul did not check nutrional valuei coped today god know about sunday but for me it seems to only work if i take each day as it comes sounds cliche but if i gottta do it to stay sane and healthy then so be it. thank u sooooooooo muchfor this post

  9. Before: I thought an hour powerwalking on the treadmill was quite the accomplishment.

    After, Take 1: I thought 90 minutes on the ellliptical machine was “decent”…as long as I skipped dinner.

    After, Take 2 (current): I think I should skip dinner and go for a run, but I pop some melatonin and go to sleep instead. Regular old athlete, that’s me.

  10. awesome! Exercise can be such a positive when we don’t HAVE to do it!

    My before and after would be quite similar.

    Before: Long workouts, no rest days, you get the drill

    After: Normal workouts, plenty of rest, and plenty of recovery food 🙂

    Hope you are having a great weekend!


  11. When I was underweight, AND now, I loved/love running. Adore it. It’s what got me so grossly thin in the first place.

    But the difference between me then, and now, is that then I was running xx hours every day. Now I run only 2-4 days a week, and don’t give a crap about how long it is — I just want it to be a hard, satisfying run whether that is 30 minutes of sprints, or 2 hours of slow hills.

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