Once a day, just once

I have had the same workout routine for a while now. Sundays, it’s 10:30 barre. Recently, our Sunday schedule changed and my husband offered to take over Hebrew school so I could go to the new 11:30 yoga class…which I love…the teacher does a lot of advanced modifications. This will only last a month or so (until baseball season…them it’ll be spinning at home on Sundays, barre on Saturdays) and I’m enjoying it.

The change, however, means I could do barre and yoga on Sundays. The teacher, and a few friends from the studio, have asked why I don’t. It would be a great workout, right? Also, the second class is only yoga! I have an unlimited class pass. Why not?

My answer? I don’t need to and I don’t want to!

The thing is, I really try not to get into the habit of 2 classes a day. There are women I see exercising hours a day, I don’t want that to be me. Here is why!

1. My schedule usually cannot accommodate it. Why get my body and head used to it if I cannot keep it up or do it regularly? I am my harshest competitor, and I know if I get in the habit of working out twice a day regularly, I’ll get down on myself the days I only work out once.

2. I don’t need to. I am a 40 year old, married, full time working mom. I want to have a body that looks and feels good. I have no need for a super  smoking hot body…so why work out like I do? I maintain and improve my figure with (usually) healthy eating and working out once a day, most days. That’s reasonable to me.

3. I eat worse when I exercise more. One workout a day encourages me to maintain the benefits with healthy eating. More than that encourages me to eat like a bottomless pit (which MyFitnessPal encourages with the earned calories). I have, on days when I know I am going to want to eat more because I’m going to a party or something, or days when I unexpectedly do eat worse than usual (like last Sunday, when we decided to go out for dinner and ended up somewhere with extensive gluten-free menu, including desserts, but I could not resist) try to fit in an extra little walk, jog or 20 minute hop on my spin bike to give myself a bit more leeway. That’s fine, it’s once or twice a month. But actually getting myself in the habit of working out two hours on a regular basis? I would eat horribly. My grocery bills would skyrocket! I also fear that when I had to workout less, I would have a hard time dialing my diet back down.

4. Just yoga is never “just” yoga to me. I mean sure, if I do a restorative class, I may not put much thought into whether I did other workouts that day. But most of the yoga I do is intense, and I give it my all. The class I do on Sundays is pretty tough. Obviously, there are people that are relatively new to the practice, and find it quite relaxing and stretchy. But not me. I do every vinyasa, every jump, every arm balance, every inversion…and it’s hard! This is the only advanced yoga class that I take, so I really want to feel like I have the energy to get the most I can out of it. I know I won’t feel that way if I’m still hot sweaty and tired from Barre!

I mostly posting this for myself. Every Sunday, as 10:30 comes along, I think to myself that I should be going to barre class…that I should take advantage of the opportunity to do two favorite classes in one day! Then I feel a bit guilty and down on myself, when I skip it and instead spend the time doing laundry, playing with my kids, baking something, reading, Facebook and, or blogging! Clarifying my thoughts about why I don’t go to that 10:30 class by writing them down makes me feel better…reminds me that I work hard enough to deserve an extra hour of reading, laundry, kids, Facebook, blogging! Some people might feel like they need to work out hours a day to feel good about themselves. For me, once a day, almost every day, is just right!

By the way, this is totally not meant to be a judgment on those of you who do workout two or three hours a day sometimes or all the time. If that is what works best for your body, your lifestyle, your emotional health…that’s awesome! It is just an explanation of why it does not work out well for me, and I choose not to do it very often.

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