It's amazing how motivating guilt can be. For weeks I've been putting off working out. I'll start, then stop, and then start again. But I haven't been consistent with any given workout. I really have enjoyed TurboFire, but at the same time it becomes so repetitive that I started to get annoyed by it. Instead of looking forward to my daily workout, I dreaded the same old routine. Fast forward to this past weekend. Mike and I took our 5 year old mutt, June to the vet for her check-up, blood work and shots. Sadly when the vet told us that June is overweight. I knew this was coming. I could she had gained a bit of weight but I didn't realize it was 12 lbs. To say I felt horrible is a huge understatement.
Before leaving the office we were given a new diet regiment for June and a discussion about eating properly. Instead of her two scoops of food a day, (probably about 2 cups each scoop) she gets 2.5 cups of food. This equals 1.25 cups, twice a day. It doesn't sound like much, because to us, it isn't. From what the vet tells me a dogs stomach is much smaller than ours, and that makes sense. I was instructed to feed her this either in 2 parts as we have planned to, or when she is the most active. June really isn't that active. She runs around the backyard when she goes to the bathroom and chases people in the back alley behind our fence and barks at them. This is probably the smallest back yard we've ever had in a rental. Our last home was perfect for running laps, but the home was too small. You win some, you lose some, and then your dog gains some. Feeding her when she was most active is going to be difficult. She lays around the house all day, and waits for us to come home at lunch and then home from work. She's most active probably when we are home, and even then she's usually just following us around our home. I wish we had steps in our house, it will help us all out a bit.
The entire time the vet was talking to us about June's diet, exercise and care all I could do is reflect it to my own personal health. I too am overweight. I eat too much and don't move enough. When he started to discuss how most dog food is full of additives and not enough fiber I started to think about my own diet and how it too is full of additives and probably not enough fiber. TMI time, I'm regular. There is no issue with my BMs, so fiber isn't an issue but additives, I'm sure I inhale my share of them. Probably enough for 4 people at times.
In leaving the vet I got home and sat down with June. We made a pact to move more, and eat better. Yes, we talk to each other. She totally gets me and I totally get her. We vowed to walk at least three times a week, maybe work our way up to a jog when I thought she could handle it. I also feel myself not wanting to snack as much, or as mindlessly. I keep reminding myself that while a human make-up is completely different than a dog's, it's wrong for me to preach to June that she' can't have a treat, or a sliver of cheese when I'm cooking because she's on a "diet", it's just not right for me to turn around and shove junk food in my mouth. I know it's all in my head but I do feel as if she's judging me when she sees me snacking. Those big brown eyes kill me.
Originally I wasn't going to say anything about my plans. I always fear that I will bring up a brilliant idea, for an action and if I don't follow through I will be embarrassed. Then I thought on the other hand it will hold me accountable. So here goes... While planning walking time for June and I on a regular basis, I have decided to go ahead and start doing the Couch to 5K program. I don't have any set date to complete this, or any set race to join in. I have always been curious about running and on my tight budget it seemed like a great way to workout and try something I always wanted to do.
I am beginning slow. June and I have been walking/jogging twice this week. I jogged for two straight minutes and it didn't kill me, or her for that matter. I did notice her slowing down throughout so I will not push her just because it works for me. I might have to do my own walk/jogs until she feels ready. Wednesday wasn't supposed to be a rest day but we doubled up two days in a row this week to get her used to walking each day. I plan to start my walks in the morning and workout in the evening. So far we've done afternoon walks but the heat here in Alabama is insane already, even as mild as the heat has been you still feel like you're breathing in mayo when you're winded. I know I will be OK, I just don't want to hurt her.
I'm happy that I have a buddy to do this with. My husband has informed me he will only run if something is chasing him. I feel like June will help me, and I will help her. It's odd to say my dog is holding me accountable but the guilt I felt as a fur parent was enough to let me know I needed to make a change, if not for myself, but for her.
It will be a long road to get us both back in shape, but I gave myself a goal on my Summer Bucket List to lose 10 lbs. by summer's end. I'm down 2 lbs. already which makes me really happy. And I'm hoping by the end of the summer I will be jogging, if not running at least 2 miles. And I hope that June will be getting on her way to being fit and trim. It took us both more than a day to gain all this weight, it will take work and dedication to lose the weight as well. We have started with 1 mile, and this weeks plan was 5 mins. walking, 2 minutes jogging, 5 minutes running. She is spent by the time we are back to the house. I look forward to monitoring our progress with this.
Fingers crossed that June's weight is simply her diet and inactivity. She has dropped weight before so I'm hopeful it's simply that and not an underlying problem.
Wish us luck! We'll be walking our butts off, literally this summer.
** Next time maybe I'll recap on what other workout I'm doing for weight training in the mean time... I need to work on my jogging!