>I’ve had so much going on that it has been hard to find the time and inclination to sit down and write. Wolfie is currently back home, temporarily. He’s looking at finally going to school! Praise God!!
On the other hand, my husband and I had just gotten used to having the house to ourselves, and were very much enjoying it, and now we’ve got a kid back home. It is both wonderful and annoying at the same time. But overall, we’re very happy with the way things are headed with our son. I can’t believe that it was just a mere one year ago that we had shipped him off to treatment and I felt like my world was crashing in. It is amazing what one year, intensive gut-wrenching therapy, and a spontaneous trip to Rome can do for your life. I can’t really recommend anyone try this at home, but at this point I have no regrets.
Today, I’m going to move this groove thing in a different direction. Enough belly button gazing for now. I had my reasons for letting my groove go and you have yours. I do think taking some time to look at the reasons it has happened or is happening, and delving into some good soul-searching self-honesty, is beneficial and maybe even necessary. While knowing where you are, and why, is the all-essential first step of any change, that alone won’t get you to some place new.
Also, I’ve decided to just forgive myself and stop apologizing for not writing something spiritual. This blog series is about what I did to get my groove back, pure and simple. This is what it is and it is the road I’m on right now. If you want something more spiritual check out Beth Moore http://www.lproof.org/. She’s great. But for those of you who might be interested in getting your groove back and have suffered through my own self-analysis waiting for some real help you can take a big sigh of relief. Today, we’re going to look at the logistics of groove-getting. This is the first of the “How Tos” that I’m calling “How to Get Your Groove Back 101”
And the first place we’re going is the first place I went on my journey to get my groove back: Exercise. Stop here if you don’t want to read about the importance of exercise and your groove. Grab a box of Ho-Hos and go sit on the couch and reminisce about your days gone by, but don’t expect to get your groove back that way. You absolutely must get your blood flowing and your energy moving again if you want your groove back. There isn’t another way.
For the record, I’ve spent quite a bit of time looking for the herbal and/or pharmaceutical easier, softer way. And basically, it’s a no go. Viagra shows some potential for women, but Viagra isn’t an aphrodisiac. The best you can hope from Viagra is increased blood flow to your genitals (and the worst you can expect is a very bad headache…Don’t ask me how I know.). Viagra, by itself, doesn’t increase female desire and it actually can hinder orgasm in some women. The herbal supplements aren’t any better. A woman’s sexual response is complex and tied up in complex hormonal cycles and psychology. What works one day won’t work the next day. If only it were so simple. But it isn’t. At least not today. I’m guessing that some of my readers are using various herbal and vitamin supplements and/or hormones or neutraceuticals. We’ll explore those issues later, but, frankly, other than some success some women are having with testosterone, I’m just not seeing any scientifically-proven major groove-enhancing benefits from anything on the market today. Of course, many of these things make you feel better and feeling better does help you feel more in the mood, but at this time I don’t see any “Magic Groove Pill”. No, I’m afraid you are going to have to work for it.
One disclaimer I really feel that I need to put here right now is that when I talk about exercise I’m not talking about weightloss. I’m not telling you that you need to lose weight. In fact, focusing on your weight is a sure fire way to feeling completely unsexy. If you are waiting until you lose whatever number you think is the number you have to lose before you are going to invest in your groove you can just keep waiting because the day is not going to come. I’ve been very skinny and I’ve been chunkier and I personally find zero correlation to how sexy I feel. The truth is that when I’m focusing on my own physique I’m focusing on the wrong thing. Getting into my body means getting into the body I have. Part of that is accepting my body the way it is and loving myself the way I am. I’m not there, 100%. But lately, I’m making some major breakthroughs that I can’t wait to share because I think they might help you. All women have body image issues. All of us must find a way to overcome these issues and grab hold of our groove for what it is, not what the media tells us it should be. It is a challenge, but it can be done. But again, you are going to have to work for it.
And work for it is what I did.
On my drive home from the red underwear scene at Macy’s, I faced the fact that one of my problems was that I wasn’t getting any consistent exercise. I wasn’t fat, (remember, this isn’t about size), but I was very out of shape. I didn’t feel good much of the time. I didn’t feel bad necessarily, but I didn’t feel exhilarated to be in my skin. I wanted to feel my heart beating hard and my breath coming short, and exercise is a surefire way to get that. Unfortunately, it also hurts to have your heart beat hard and to be short of breath, so right away you have to face your built-in resistance to exercise. I certainly did.
Honestly, face it, there is a part of us that doesn’t want pleasure. I don’t know why, but I believe it is true. We think we want it, but then we sabotage ourselves from getting it. Or, almost worse, we choose some short-term pleasure thereby robbing ourselves of real and long-lasting pleasures.
I can’t overemphasize how important I think exercise is for getting your groove back. Essential. Like air. Pleasure comes from the brain but it is channeled through sensations from the body. If you’ve been living in your head like I was almost 24/7 you must find a way to reconnect with your physical body if you want to start partaking from its pleasurable sensations. For me, exercise was my avenue back to myself. It was time I took for myself. It was how I made myself a priority to me. It was the way I put myself back on my daily calendar. Taking time for working out is the way I announced to those around me that I was important and that I needed care too. I don’t think it is accidental that I found my groove by first turning the corner and walking down the avenue of exercise. It is a terrific and essential place to start.
There are many ways to bring exercise into your life. A well-rounded exercise program must consist of regular aerobic exercise coupled with strength training. If you don’t know what will work for you then you’ll have to try out different things. If one thing doesn’t work for you, don’t give up. You wouldn’t go into a store and try on only one pair of pants and if they didn’t fit you it isn’t like you wouldn’t ever wear pants again! Exercise is not a one-size-fits-all proposition.
There are some great websites for getting help starting an exercise program. My favorite is SparkPeople: http://www.sparkpeople.com/. This website is packed full of good information about healthy eating and exercise. I’m on their mailing list and daily receive encouragement and even free exercise videos that are easy to perform at home with limited or no equipment.
For myself, my situation was complicated by living in an extreme environment with frequent bad weather. I looked into gyms and even gave the best one in our small town a one week free trial. I don’t like going to co-ed gyms and so I could see right-off that it wouldn’t work for me. I looked at Curves, but honestly I’ve never met one person who belongs to Curvers who really seems to be that in shape. Sorry. I find the climate at Curves more chat friendly than sweat friendly and I believe that a healthy long-lasting groove is going to require some real sweat equity. In the end, I decided that things that I could do at home without having to trust being able to go out in the bad weather was my best option and so I bought an elliptical from Sears and T-Tapp Total Workout, http://www.t-tapp.com/.
And then I faced my own resistance to improving my life. I said there wouldn’t be belly button gazing, but I guess it was a lie. All change must start from within and the first thing I encountered and you will encounter is resistance. No matter how miserable you or I might be there is a part of us that will not give over easily to change. Change sucks. But it is also inevitable and as the saying goes, “If you don’t create change, change will create you”.
So knowing upfront that you’ll meet terrible resistance, make some plan. Having an accountability partner can help. Joining a forum where others can encourage you can help. For me, I made the mental decision to improve my health and my life and then the painful resistance came. As I was trying to motivate myself, my help came but from an unexpected place. My daughter got engaged, my mother got Stage 4 cancer, and my son leaped off the deep-end, all within a span of about 2 months. This hardly seems like a recipe for getting one’s groove back, but it was just the right mix. I just didn’t see it that way at the time.
Next Time: Getting Your Groove Back Through Adversity, or, Don’t Wait for the Perfect Time Because Then It Ain’t Gonna Happen