23 days ago I committed to a new fitness journey, and it's been a real mind-fuck, let me tell ya.
So for those who don't know, I spent the last almost-4-years "working" as an online health and wellness coach. I say "working" because I can hardly call it that, if I'm honest. I didn't do the job justice and now I know that was because it was never aligned with me and the purpose I'm here to serve. That's another story for another day. Why I bring it up now, though, is because in that time that I was "working" as a health coach, I did get into the best shape of my life. I'm talking, visible abs and everything, yall. I had NEVER had that. But my pursuit of said abs and the driving force behind all of my fitness endeavors during that season was purely ego.
I wanted abs to look good in my bathing suit.
I wanted quads to have sexy legs.
I wanted to get rid of the bat wings hanging from the underside of my upper arms and the back fat hanging over my bra strap.
I think these are all things that we as women strive for in our physical bodies, and I'm sure some women pursue these out of a place of love.
But I wasn't one of those women.
Every step of my fitness journey was colored with self-depreciation, self-doubt, self-criticism, negative self-talk. I was trying to hate myself into a body I thought I'd love, and it took me 4 years to realize that it just doesn't work like that.
So I shifted my perspective on health and fitness. I redefined for myself what it meant to be beautiful and sexy. I shifted from a #gains mentality to a #health mentality, and a month ago I took that new outlook with me into my first postpartum fitness program. I started my journey with the intent to love myself 100%, and honor every thing my body needed and wanted. Solid intention, right? Except here I am, 23 days in and no noticeable changes. While my main goal is to love myself through this transition, I still want to actually see progress and results. Which brings me here, to this mind-fuck of a crossroads where I want to simultaneously love myself AND see physical results from my hard work. So what do I do? How do I balance the self-love with self-discipline? How do I honor both what I want AND what I need in this season? How do I stay true to my #selflovejunkie brand while also striving for change and improvement with so much emphasis on the physical?
This is the conclusion I've come to:
Sometimes self-love = self-discipline. And I do not want to get caught in this trendy new school of thought that preaches "honor yourself and release everything that doesn't serve your soul" to the detriment of certain things that I truly do want to accomplish. I gained 40 lbs during my second pregnancy, and honoring my desire for a fucking cookie every time I want one (which is every day, multiple times a day at this point) will not get me the results I'm seeking. So we have to choose what we honor. Do I honor my short-term desire for cookies? Or do I honor my long-term desire for results?
Tricky question, right? But what I think it really comes down to is honoring our truth. Like, our real truth. For me, my truth right now is losing the extra baby weight so that I feel completely comfortable and confident in my skin again, and with that comfort and confidence will come a greater ability to show up and serve as I'm supposed to. While honoring my truth may look like allowing myself to have a cookie sometimes, I know that's not what I really want all the time. And definitely not as often as I've been allowing here lately.
So while this fitness journey is still a massive pilgrimage to greater self-love for me, it's also been a learning experience. One that's taught me that we can't sacrifice our greater truth for tiny, potentially mistaken truths along the way. And that presents an even greater need for us to consciously and regularly get quiet. It's in those quiet moments that our soul really speaks, and that we can really know the greater truth that we're seeking. Chances are it's not the cookie, girl.
I really thought about starting this entire journey over. Taking my 80 day program back to day 1. But that's not practical, and it's not the lesson I want to teach you. I don't want to teach you how to start over when shit gets hard. I want to teach you how to course-correct and keep going. For me that means committing to more quiet time so I really hear my soul's callings, and reminding myself not to sacrifice the bigger picture for shiny pennies all along the way. So here we go, yall. Day 24/80, and a totally fresh start. Cheers!