I can’t exactly pinpoint the time when my mindset towards health and fitness went from a negative to a positive one. It went from don’t do that, don’t eat that, don’t be that, I don’t like that, and gotta punish my body mindset to more of a beneficial relationship. Think: I love doing that, yes let’s eat more of that, wow my body is capable of some pretty amazing things, and I just want to take care of it and see what it’s capable of kind of mindset.
I think it all started when I threw away our scale (haven’t had one since 2o09 and never plan on getting one again.) Scales suck the life out of me.
Then I read a quote somewhere that clicked. It was something along the lines of, “You’ve only got one body, better take care of it.”
Then boom. The mindset, the view of my body, the work ethic, the balance, it all kind of fell into place. It didn’t happen overnight or with the snap of some fitness genie’s fingers, but it was a gradual shift that I can’t stress or appreciate more. Less deprivation, more appreciation. Less numbers, more feelings, less comparing, more accepting and motivation.
If that makes sense.
A big part of this is the focus. Focusing on the positives and the can do’s vs. the stuff to leave out or the can’t do’s. As annoying and wannabe motivational speaker that might sound, it works.
So, I figured I’d suggest a few things to try (*just suggest – I am no certified health & fitness expert – just someone who made it an integral part of her daily life for as far back as she can remember. Except for those 6 months in France when I kinda just said to hell with it, overindulged and my family thought I was pregnant. It was worth it though. So worth it.)
Ok, I’ll try to keep it short.
1: Throw away the scale. Use this as an excuse to buy some saucy high waisted skinny jeans. Those puppies will tell you more about how your body is doing (and truthfully than anything) Say sayonara to a number on something you step on making you feel good or bad about yourself. Feel free to even close your eyes at the Dr’s office too (Which I do. I have no clue how much I weigh right now.)
2: Set some sort of goal: When people ask me what I’m training for, I usually just say. “Life”, which is the truth. But it feels really good to have a goal – Tha is NOT weight-based. It used to be to do 20 pull-ups, now it’s to do 20 pull-ups with weight. To do some sort of race, to be able to do a big hike, to practice so much yoga you can do a whole 90 minute Bikram class without feeling like you’re going to pass out. To ride 2,00 miles on your stationary bike this year (heard the hot mom peloton gals talking about this at yoga – apparently that’s a thing?). Hey a few days after having a kid my goal was to be able to walk around the block again. It just feels good to be working for something…more than a number. It doesn’t have to be a marathon or Iron Man (which I’d love to do, but I don’t know if my brain or bladder will hold up.). I could go on. Just grab a piece of paper writes some fun fitness goals. I will do it too. Boom.
3: Follow fitness folks who motivate, are strong and have good training ideas, not just people who look good. Instead of saying what bugs me (which could be an essay) I’m going to be positive and link to some of my favorite fitness folks on le gram: @kaisafit @Primal.swoledier @francheskafit and @centrfit are a few that make me want to hop off my bum and sweat. And have great ideas or are just plain ‘ol badasses.
4: Focus on what you can and should eat instead of what not to eat. Or, in other words, fill up on the good stuff then you won’t obsess with the crap you’re trying to not eat as much. There’s so much good, healthy delicious food out there to fuel your body with, regardless of what kind of diet you choose (I just like a good ‘ol fashioned healthy balanced one – nothing crazy), Focus on eating that stuff. Fill up on good fuel, then you tend to not want or think about the other stuff quite as much.
5: Realize it’s not going to be easy or convenient. If someone says they have a quick and easy fix – run the other way…and consider that a workout. It takes daily commitments (I call my workouts my 20-minute no interruptions daily date with my body), getting up when you’re tired, moving when you want to sit, cooking when you want drive-through, realizing your body craves movement and good fuel, and in the end being motivated by you and what you’re capable of.
Ok, this all turned out way longer than I expected. Sorry.
I like writing about this kind of stuff.
Cheers to good health, pushing our bodies, and just having a more positive perspective on it all. I swear it helps more than I can explain. Hence the long-winded post trying to explain it.
And at the very least, throw away, or at least donate the darn scale.
*Rocking Beyond Yoga (crop top and biker shorts in the top pic – sorry to post a pic of me in matching workout gear ( when I usually rock an oversized old permastank grey tee or sweatshirt and some tights), but …I just liked that pic a lot.