As an office dwelling gnome I don't get much exercise when I'm at work. And that's a large part of my day, so I need to compensate by working on my physique outside office hours. In the past that has been proven to be quite difficult, because often I come home feeling exhausted. Even though I get no physical movement at work, working behind a computer screen (actually I have 3) is energy draining the heck out of me.
Often when I come home from a work day I 'reward' myself with a nice drink. There's nothing so relaxing than having a nice drink after a long day at work. Mostly wine, but sometimes a 'special' beer. When this becomes a regular habit you'll start a downwards spiral which only can be broken by doing something uncomfortable. Stopping 'cold turkey'. However, it is possible and the discomfort is not that bad and only last for about a week at most. Combine this bad habit with a snack here and a curry there and before you know it you'll develop an ugly 'belly' and feel tired all of the time.
For years now, I've been doing some regular exercises and that prevented me for the worst. However, my body could use some extra care. A fit body is a healthy body is a happy body. Like an upward spiral.
A little while back I was reading a nice blog article by Thriftygal and she basically told me to 'just do it!'.
I've heard motivational phrases like this many times before (like from my good friend from Thailand), but only partially acted on it and it never really worked for me. Probably because physical exercise doesn't really do much when you're still drinking and eating unhealthy. Bad eating (and drinking) habits make me feel tired and restless. That makes it impossible for me to do my exercises well and regularly.
I thought about intermittent fasting, but after 4 days my body reacted quite badly to it. So, I decided to just eat less and healthier. Maybe it's too early to make any bold statements, but now, after only a couple off weeks, I already feel a lot better and I think I also look a lot better. I feel like I have more energy after work and I have less difficulty getting up early in the morning. Except on the mornings when I had a drink the night before. I gave myself some drinking restrictions and I try to eat more vegetables and fruits. I removed 'snack time' from my list off habits and sometimes I skip a meal when I'm not really hungry. I did loose some weight, but not much, because I'm also building muscle mass and I wasn't really overweight to begin with. My goal is not to get to a certain weight, but to feel healthy and perhaps develop visible abs and pecs.
With my main goal of financial freedom in mind I, of course, did not get an expensive gym membership. Instead, I invested a little bit of money (a long time ago) in dumb bells, ab rollers and other small fitness stuff. Having this stuff in the house actually makes it easier to exercise as opposed to having to go to a gym. It's there and you can use it whenever you want. No need to gear up and go to a gym, where most exercise machines are always occupied and you need to wait your turn. Then, finally you can use the machine which is still warm and sweaty from the previous user.
It is now springtime in The Netherlands which means we get (slightly) higher temperatures and more sunlight. This helps me to produce more vitamin D and it also helps me stay motivated in doing my exercises. I really hope and can keep up this 'lifestyle' when the winter starts. Usually things start to get very difficult for me when it's cold and I don't get enough natural daylight.