It’s crazy to look back and see how my relationship with exercise/movement has evolved over the years. I used to be so rigid with my workouts, and actually gave myself a stress fracture in the process. I had no concept of doing movement in a way that would make me feel good or- heaven forbid- just have fun. Instead, it was punishment for eating certain foods, compensation for eating “too much” food, and a way to feel in control of my body size. Sounds like a party, right?
By God’s grace, I was able to take a long break from formal exercise and come back with a new approach. These days, movement for me is based purely on what will help me feel good. If it’s a nice sunny day out, I may take a walk. If I am exhausted from work, I may do a short and stretchy yoga video or nothing at all. My husband really enjoys working out at the gym, so sometimes movement is a way to connect with him and do something fun together.
I am thankful every day that my movement choices are no longer fueled by a sense of guilt or condemnation. This took a lot of work, because I had to finally let go of the notion that I was going to spend my whole life controlling my body shape and size. Am I going to be the most thin or fit person that I meet? Definitely not, but that is no longer a goal or value of mine. Am I going to be in a good place mentally and emotionally? Am I going to be more in tune with my body and soul? Am I going to be filling my days with things that bring me joy? A thousand times yes!!! And that has made all the difference.
A few questions to ponder:
-What is your motivation for exercising (or not exercising)?
-Is movement something that adds stress to your life, or decreases it?
-What are some ways you can make your movement more joyful and fun if it isn’t already?
-If you knew your body was not going to change, would you still exercise?