During a divorce money can be tight. If you are fortunate to keep your gym membership, good for you! If, on the other hand, your diminished circumstances require adaptation, might I offer this tried and true workout. It is a perfect combination of cross training and spiritual centering that can propel you through a rough day.
1. Clean your house. Clean your closets. Clean your car.
This is a good warm-up when you are starting out with your separation workout regiment. I found when there was an excess of stressed-up energy, combined with a shortage of money, I spent a lot more time at home. What better time to tidy up! The anaerobic benefit of moving an ugly recliner to the curb can not be overstated. Take a toothbrush to grout. Good karma says that you don't tell your ex that he left his toothbrush behind. Organize cupboards. Do battle with spiderwebs. Someday after you are done hanging your head in tears, you'll look up and wonder when that colony of daddy long legs decided to become part of your ecosystem. Probably best not to encourage their habitat. Also, think about how wielding that broom over your head is firming up your flabby underarms.
I don't mean just a lovely little stroll along some rail trail with a scenic view. I mean arm pumping treks up steep hills. Count the miles. Your burdens may feel like a 50-pound backpack weighing down, why not put them to work? Someday this will be your greatest achievement. Some of the best comeback lines trip over your tongue on a long walk while you are chewing over a contentious conversation. The great thing about this is that no one else needs to hear it, thus no further consequences or painful retorts need to be applied to your already damaged ego.
I am fortunate to have a lifestyle that requires a fair amount of shoveling. Compost, manure, mulch, snow. All provide ample opportunity to build strength in the legs, back and arms. Remember, bend at the knees! While not necessarily much different from an intense walk, shoveling does allow for toning the upper body. There is the added bonus of working your pile down in short intense intervals between a job interviews. Certain circumstances require certain shoveling medium. For example, I do not recommend shoveling chicken manure before a court appearance. Even with proper hygiene the smell can linger.
4. Chop wood.
If you don't have your own wood pile you can always ask a friend. This is a time to learn new skills. Hone the blade, lift the ax over your head (see spider vanquishment for physical benefit). Cleave the logs in two. There is also a psychological release from this type of work out. Two words -- chopping block. It is recommended that you save this chore for times after an interaction with your ex.
5. Dance in your living room to loud music.
We mustn't forget a good aerobic routine as well. Did your ex not appreciate the harmonies and driving beat of ABBA? All the more reason to let your fondness for a certain Swedish band rock your living room walls. Kick aside the scatter rugs, let your hair loose, move the furniture if you have to, and then let 'er rip. Learn what abandonment truly means.
6. Cool down.
Finally after a physically intensive day, take a bath. You may not have a lot of money but, for a less that 10.00, you can treat yourself to some lavender oil and a candle. A nice cup of herbal tea is also suggested; something calming like chamomile. It may not be a day spa, but you'll feel better. I promise.