Climbing Arthur’s Seat

I don’t know if it is bad form to blog about something that I did in one country when I have already moved onto another, but I’m going to do it anyway. I meant to write a post about Climbing Arthur’s Seat, but it happened a couple of days before we flew to Portugal, and I ran out of time.

Not to mention, I have a lot of time on my hands right now, since it has been raining tons and we don’t want to go out until tomorrow for fear of having absolutely no dry clothing left (The Weather Network assures me there is 0% chance of rain tomorrow, as opposed to the 80% we’ve been living with since the night we arrived). I might have to take a hair dryer to my jeans, as this high humidity is making my hair look cute but not helping my jeans dry.

Anyway, on to Arthur’s Seat; for those of you who don’t know, it is a big, extinct volcano in Edinburgh with gorgeous views of the city and surrounding areas. I had only climbed in once before – with a friend named Mick who lived in my hostel and (shortly) worked for the same employer. He showed me the way to the top of the slightly lower peak back in the Summer of 2008. The motivated part of my told myself that I would climb it once a week while I was in Edinburgh. The practical part of me had a job and completely forgot this vow. I did walking tours for a living – I didn’t need to walk any more than that, right?

Wrong. I should have walked more. I should have done more adventures for me. And I should have taken better care of myself. My problem with health and fitness is I feel that if I put too much emphasis on it, people with consider me obsessed, and being a heavy girl obsessed with fitness just seems like it would bring more attention to my obesity. Sure, I’m not horrendously overweight, but according to my height vs. my weight, I am obese. This bothers me. People who eat whatever they want and don’t make an effort to exercise but are in great physical shape bother me. People who only need to put in minimum effort to slim down and succeed bother me, because that is not the case. I even went so far as to try a product that has an approximate success rate of 99.9% of helping people lose weight (A.C.E. – Appetite Control and Energy) and of the 72 clients of the woman I got it from, I was one of two people for whom it didn’t work – and the other woman had serious health concerns and shouldn’t have been taking it in the first place.

When I try to work out, I feel lost. I was on a really good roll a couple of years ago, but when the living situation changed and the only time I had to myself to get up super early before school and do my work out video was taken away, I faltered. I need a schedule. I need to stick to it. But I don’t want to be judged, so sometimes it seems easier to not try.

I’ve managed to get incredibly off-topic – or so it would seem. This actually ties in with climbing Arthur’s Seat. As Chad and I wandered up the peak, I got winded easily. This bothered me because I have been making an effort to get my health in check. It made me feel like I was crazy to have even thought about the once a week goal from four years ago.

But I kept going, and we kept climbing, and we saw amazing sites and made it to the top. And I felt great. I was so happy to have made it up that hill without giving up on myself because it was challenging. I was excited to sit at the top with my boyfriend, take silly pictures and eat a simple picnic of ham sandwiches. It is that moment that I should be thinking of every time I pull on my workout clothing – how good it is going to feel when I have succeeded. I have not seen a lot of results from my efforts, which sets me back, but if I can just think of that feeling every time I want to give up because I’m not seeing the results, maybe I’ll be able to stick to my fitness goals long enough to finally see those efforts.

My brother is getting married in April; I would be immensely proud of myself if I could look amazing in the pink (ugh) bridesmaid dress I purchased for the event. I would be even happier if it was a little loose-fitting when we return to Canada, and in need of being taken in a little…

For those of you who live in Edinburgh, do yourself a favour and pick a day to climb Arthur’s Seat. Then ensure that you actually do the task. It is a beautiful walk with wonderful views and it will help you organize your life. From there, you just need to keep going toward your goals.

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