hey guys - long time no see!
i feel like i am slowly being restored these last few days (all credit to god!). it's been a long week of blood, sweat, and tears, but it's amazing how much he's healed me since my disasterous late teens - i'm (mostly) stable now. even in the middle of heart break, i know there is peace and a PURPOSE for this.
anyways, i gotta get boogie-ing on down to school here soon, but i wanted to bang out this thought real quick before my runner's high wears off.
this morning, i realized how different my perspective is on a "good workout." i used to get so frustrated by not being fast enough, not logging enough miles, being out of shape, my shorts pinching my stomach, my shoes not fitting... you get the picture. i had this standard of how you SHOULD exercise, and i was certainly not living up to it.
i thought frustration was just a necessary part of being "healthy" (at the time, that meant skinny), but my body wasn't the problem - it was my expectations.
my tip, if you want to call it that, on how to love moving your body?
tackle one challenge at a time.
get new shoes? ok, your goal is to just get comfortable.
just start walking after a few years break? sweet. make it your goal to just DO IT.
coming back from an injury/illness? just move pain-free.
going through a major life change? enjoy some free exercise therapy!
see what i'm saying? i used to give up on working out because i thought i had to be fast AND efficient AND skinny AND committed AND loving every step AND a morning person... yada yada.
taking one step at a time allows you to focus and be encouraged about what you actually can accomplish! it also helps you track your progress, because you can easily tell how you're feeling in that area. take your time - you are worth it! it's not a race, right?
the best things i've ever done for my workouts?
- leave my watch/garmin/heart rate monitor at home. i am not a performance athlete, why do i care about time? my body certainly doesn't.
- stop counting my miles. don't get me wrong, accomplishing a goal is a good thing, but please don't tell yourself you have to do that everyday.
- stop comparing myself to other exercisers and their habits. it's my LIFEstyle, not a test of committment or a popularity contest.
- do what you LOVE. if you hate running, don't do it! do cycling, tennis, aerobics classes, volleyball, etc. instead. life is way too short to be stuck doing something you hate just to check working out off the to-do list. i highly doubt you'll get to the end of your life and regret not getting on the elliptical more when you despised it.
- just be YOU. i promise you will be so much happier with yourself if you just do what YOU feel comfortable with, and nothing more. there's no exercise judge. this isn't american idol - just feel good that you did an amazing thing for your body today!
i'm sure you guys have many helpful thoughts on the matter: what would you like to change about your exercise mentality, what expectations do you have of yourself, and what have you learned that's helped you accept your own exercise habits?