Today I want to talk about body acceptance and being in it for the long haul, with your health that is. At some points in my life I feel I have been afraid to just accept my body as is, healthy or not ( I have had my share of health struggles) in all its imperfections. I feared I would somehow sabotage my results. It was like if I felt ok about my current place, even while striving towards improvement, I wouldn’t put in the work, want to be healthy, have motivation etc.
This also related to my style and thought process was to be more strict with food and do more and more exercise. With January approaching I want to give you an alternative to body shame, quick fixes, super strict diets, and programs that just don’t offer anything sustainable. If you do decide to embark on any of these things ask yourself this.
If I put in the work, am I ok with gaining the weight back as soon as I go back to my old ways.
I get the quick fixes and quick results feel kind of good because going all out and putting in all your effort it gives a false sense of long term success because in your head because you are doing more and more you think you will get better and better results.
But more is not better. Smarter is better.
And if you have tried quick fixes before and gained weight back or they didn’t last for any particular reason be sure to check that off the list as something that does NOT work for you.
This is not a bad thing. It is actually a good thing because you know you no longer need to try it because you have experienced for yourself, it does’t work.
There is no short cut that is going to get you to where you want to go but there are tools and strategies that will help. Today I share with 6 mindset makeovers to help you be more peaceful with your body, food and fitness, no matter where you are in your journey.
Thinking that things should or should not be a certain way is one of the quickest ways to misery. Thinking that you should be losing weight, be making more progress, be leaner, or be different than where you are only sets you up on a path to feeling bad about where you are. You are where you are, and where you are is perfect. Just because you have not done something in the past does not mean you cannot start right now.
Taste your food for what it is, not what you want it to be.
My man actually said this to me one day when eating vegetables. “I just try to taste food for what it is, now what I want it to be.” Not his favorite thing in the world but he knows there are health benefits to them and therefore adds a side of veggies to his pasta, pizza and chicken fingers.
I love this and will do an entire blog on his food pairing soon (shh he doesn’t know) but my point being his comment. To taste food for what it tastes like not what he wants it to taste like or what he thinks it should taste like. Vegetables are vegetables. They are not pizza and they do not taste like pizza. Accept veggies for who they are and what they do. This not to say you should eat foods you do not enjoy but is to say that you can appreciate food for what it is and what i does for your body.
Accept and train your body for what it is, not what it use to be.
I played in a summer volleyball league a couple years ago and we affectionally named our team the Use-to-be’s. We were no longer 19 year old volleyball players in training season and our expectations should no longer be that. Don’t get me wrong you can still get leaner, stronger, lose weight, but keep in mind that your body is not the same as it was 10 years ago, before you had a baby, had surgery, whatever if might be.
Ask yourself, what is your body prepared to do today. Just because you once were able to eat whatever you wanted, lift heavier, work out every day doesn’t always mean you can do it now. Things like being decades older, having a full time job, or having a baby will forever change your body. Not in a bad way, in a realistic way.
Take responsibly for your choices.
It is so easy to put blame on anything and anyone other than yourself. I know from personal experience, it feels better. It feels better to tell myself that I didn’t have the time, the resources or that someone else messed up my schedule. It feels better to blame it on the holiday, being social or the person next to you who ordered dessert.
But ultimately, your choices are within you control. You can not always control the outcome, but you can control what you do everyday.
Being starving and eating everything at dinner, means you didn’t prepare during the day.
Not getting a single workout in means you did not prioritize it.
Not being motivated means you are telling yourself you are not and therefore it plays out.
Being too tired means you did not sleep enough.
Being too stressed means you are letting the stress get the best of you.
Start cultivating your own results and don’t let anything or anyone (including your own brain) take away your power. Nothing is happening to you. You ultimately make the decisions.
Quit thinking things are not fair.
I use to think it wasn’t fair that some girls didn’t work out as hard as I perceived myself to, or at all, and were able to eat whatever the wanted, while keeping their cute, petite shape. I on the other hand was in the middle of my stressful eating, workout out every damn day routine, and pouting along the way.
It doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing. If it works for them great but it doesn’t mean it will work for you and it is not a matter of fairness. Every body is uniquely different and the quicker you focus on your own journey and quit comparing yourself to someone else the more energy you will have to apply to your own process.
Find your difference makers.
Don’t focus on everything when trying to change your body. There are some things that will make more of a difference than others. Eating a healthy breakfast, snacking less after dinner, having more protein and veggies throughout the day, getting in a couple workouts a week. These are the things that matter.
Creamer in your coffee, ketchup on your eggs, one cookie during the week. These things do not matter as much if you have other things under control. So please don’t ignore bread or bananas all day, only to go on and eat straight from dinner until bedtime. Pick one thing to change and focus on that until you don’t even have to think about it any more.
Find what makes a difference and go do it. Practice makes progress. And then practice again to make more progress. You don’t have to go to extremes or hate yourself towards body change. You can find peace and acceptance, it just starts with a little practice.