What impulsiveness looks like in an introvert

There is a fine line between suddenly “finding a muse” and being impulsive. Personally, I defer to the latter to describe myself. It’s quite a personality quirk for a person that’s introverted, takes time to process, and has a notorious inability to change habits, and I’m not impulsive all the time.

It generally manifests itself regarding things; spending a day rummaging around my room to purge clutter, swirling through the kitchen because I’ve decided that I’m going to make everything I eat, or loudly proclaiming that I’m going to to do some large, time consuming and not well thought out project.

The momentum never really lasts. Extra stuff piles up again, I get lazy and buy junk food, and I get bored and/or frustrated with a project and never mention it again, hoping no one else notices.

Last week, I said I would be going to three group fitness classes at my university gym. What I didn’t mention was that they’re on three consecutive days. *sigh* Me and my impulsiveness. Or maybe just impatience, I’m not really sure.

Tuesday was spin class. When I got off my bike I realized that my legs were like jelly and one of them gave out as I was walking down some stairs. Hey! Look at me, getting a good workout.

I was sore on Wednesday, but went to Zumba anyway. My legs got tired near the end but overall weren’t too bothered. As we were cooling down I wasn’t thinking about my sore leg muscles and dropped down into the stretch the instructor was doing, to the vigorous complaints of my hamstrings. (EDIT: Basic anatomy fail. Quads, not hamstrings.)

I tried to rationalize the whole thing, thinking that it was just the result of a healthy workout and I’d be fine to go to pilates the next day.

But as I spent the remainder of the day hobbling around like an eighty year old woman, unable to sit down or lift my right leg more than an inch off the ground without picking it up with my hands, it slowly dawned on me that this whole thing may not have been a great idea. Even as I went to bed that night, I was still trying to bargain with myself to be able to go to the class the next day.

It’s hard to find the words to express how strange that is for me.

I can’t remember any instance where I have looked forward to a physical activity, particularly to the point where I would turn down an excuse to do it.

I ran track and cross country as extra-curriculars, but those were just a thing I did. I never particularly enjoyed them, though I hoped that one day I might.

So I’m trying to work out if this sudden enthusiasm for exercise is just another instance of me diving headfirst into something, or if there’s actually the possibility of a long-term change here. I still don’t feel like going for a jog anytime soon (though my still-tight hamstrings probably don’t help that). The classes were upbeat, fun and challenging, but I wouldn’t call them something to reverse two decades of preferring sitting in front of a screen over anything that takes an ounce of physical effort.

I still have 14 more weeks in the semester, and I’m betting that’s plenty of time to find out if this new – and kind of alarming – penchant for exercise will stick.