Old Habits Die Hard

Back to back blog posts…what the what.

So today I caught myself in the midst of an old thought pattern. One that I hadn’t had in YEARS. I had a rough night with Casey who was up multiple times, my alarm was set for 6AM and I was up with him at 4:30 and 5:30, so I did what any parent would do…I pressed the snooze button multiple times.

Now, I get to go to the gym twice a week. Tuesday and Thursday mornings are my time to go and sweat out some stress before work and I love it. Today though, that just didn’t happen. I don’t function well when I don’t get a full 8 hours of sleep and I get run down easily when that happens. I decided to take the day off and then that’s when it happened…

Panic. Guilt. Negative self talk. How am I supposed to reach my fitness goals if I only went to the gym once this week? When will I be able to make up the lost time and get back in there? How can I move my schedule around to fit in 45 minutes of weights and cardio today? It was instant stress I was creating for myself and my mood was off to a rough start first thing this morning.

Now, a few years ago (before Casey) I used to work out pretty intensively. I would be in the gym 6-7 times per week for at least an hour each time. I strictly ate vegetables and protein, completely cut out sugar and bread (well, mostly all carbs) and was constantly worrying about what I ate and when my next workout was. It consumed me. I thought I was balancing things well and that I was being HEALTHY, but in reality I had a VERY unhealthy relationship with my body and food. If I did indulge I always made sure to “work it off” the next day. Looking back at pictures I was very lean (and thin), but in my mind during that time I always had something to work on. I always felt like I had to keep up a certain image of being “skinny” and blonde (most likely due to the unhealthy relationship I was in) and I honestly wish I could go back and give my past self a hug and a sandwich.

Since I have been taking things more seriously in the gym lately I can feel those habits slowly starting to creep back in. Today was the first time though that it was very clear that they’re still lurking in my mind. It’s taken quite a few years to find a happy balance within my eating habits and workouts and it honestly kind of shocked me that that obsessive little voice was still in there. When you start to see results and get into a good groove of eating right and exercising it can sometimes become an obsession (at least for me, it WAS). I used to be addicted to seeing the changes in my body and challenging myself at each workout and it caused a lot of mental strain. It was never “enough” and I was skinny (I hate that term now by the way) and miserable…

This was 5 years ago, I may look “in shape” but I was self conscious & had low self esteem. The mind can play funny tricks on a person.

Thankfully, I recognized that red flag today before it spiraled out of control. I have worked SO HARD over the years to become comfortable with my body, size and shape and allowing myself to actually ENJOY food that I wasn’t going to allow that old mindset to set me back. I told myself that it’s okay to take a day off. That I can still feel good and make progress. That I’m HUMAN and sometimes shit happens and that it’s not the end of the world if I miss a workout. I no longer restrict myself when it comes to food and I don’t put myself through a guilt trip when I enjoy a dessert. I know it’s always going to be something for me to work on but the fact that I caught it before it escalated shows me that I have made progress and that I am on the right track. Phew.

And this is now. I’m not near as lean, but I’m strong, I’m happy and my confidence is high. Its been a happy change.

I’m at a place now where I work out when I can, I eat healthily 90% of the time and I actually enjoy having a “treat” every once in a while. My body has become a strong, safe place and despite the changes that have happened to it over the years, I love it a lot more now than when I was 30lbs lighter. Developing a healthy relationship with yourself won’t happen overnight, but it can be done. Make yourself a priority, seek help if you need to and above all else, know that you’re definitely not alone and that change is possible.

So here’s my encouragement to anyone else who might be struggling:

  • You are enough. You always will be.
  • Your weight won’t define you. You’re an amazing person and your weight won’t change that.
  • Life is too short to hate your body and to hide it. Own it & love it, you only get one.
  • Don’t be so hard on yourself. You’re doing your best and that’s all that matters.
  • Life shouldn’t revolve around dieting and exercising. Go out and enjoy it.
  • NOBODY should make you feel ashamed about your body. If they do, ditch them.
  • Food isn’t the enemy. Seek balance. Eat your vegetables, but have the damn cookie if you want.
  • You don’t have flaws, you have unique attributes that make you, you. Embrace them.
  • And for God’s sake, LOVE YOURSELF. Fall in love with every single thing about yourself. It’s so, so worth it.

Enjoy the rest of your week friends xoxox

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