Lately I’ve really been taking seriously the art of loving myself. In my most recent health update, I almost didn’t go to bootcamp this morning., I realized the following:
*I am not being as kind to myself as I should be.
*Little choices make a big difference, if you let them all add up.
*My perception of my body (and how I have thought it should look for a long time) is way off-kilter. I am learning to understand the importance of loving the body I have today – not the body I might have in three months or the body I had three years ago – the body I have right now.
Pretty big revelations, if you ask me. As always, there is more churning around in my mind when it comes to the topics of fitness and the mind/body balance, but overall I’m enjoying my current mental state. It’s forgiving, accountable, and loving. Though some days are much easier than others, I am learning on the “easy” days that I’m happier because I’ve consecutively made positive choices for myself (and in turn, am loving myself). Little things like drinking lots of water, going for an afternoon walk, slicing an apple… results in me feeling very present in my life. It’s a very euphoric kind of feeling that I do my best to hold onto.
Also, I weighed myself last Friday and I have lost 6.6 pounds, down to 159.4. I am noticing small changes in the mirror as well as my energy levels – things are clicking and I am very proud of myself. Honestly, that feels better than the number on the scale. My friend, Do, who I’ve mentioned here before, left me an eye-opening comment the other day. She said, “Weight gain is never permanent to me; same goes for weight loss. Neither are permanent!” This statement is so true. There is never a point where I’ll be “done” with being healthy. It’s a life-long commitment.
I will lose weight.
I will gain weight.
I will lose weight again.
I will gain weight again.
I will get older and my body will change.
And what matters most is what I choose to do right now.
Choices made frequently become habit – what kind of habits am I aiming to form? Healthy ones. Healthy chioces that will become habit, so that when I gain weight (hello, motherhood) I will be able to lose it. So that when I get a more strenuous job (hello, stressful 50 hour workweeks) I will still be motivated to exercise. These things are important to me and deserve attention because my body deserves to be tended to, nourished and taken care of. It’s the only one I’ve got, and we have a lot of years ahead of us.
As usual, what set out to be a simple list turned out to be wordier update than I anticipated. But it’s so good to type my thoughts out – therapeutic, even. So, like I was saying when I began this post, I am actively practicing the art of being kind to myself. Lately I’ve been contemplating the physical attributes about my body that I really do love, and have always loved, and thought I’d challenge you to do the same. Even if you try to think one positive thing about yourself and the negativity vultures immediately swoop in, I encourage you to ignore them for a few minutes today and make your own list of what you love about your body. And then hang it on your bathroom mirror. Or your fridge. Or just fold it up and put it in an envelope and mail it to yourself.
I dare you.
Here’s my list: 8 things I love about my body.
1. My calves. They are huge, and as a girl I have never been deterred by this. I still love to wear heels when the mood (or occasion) strikes and every now and then I flex the muscles just to feel how hard they are. It makes me feel strong.
2. The freckles that decorate my shoulders. I am very fair skinned and still have freckles on my cheeks and shoulders. In the summer, they become more prominent and I love them. They make me feel like a kid.
3. My feet in general. They might be the daintiest thing on my body (although I wear a size 9).
4. My hair. Even the grey ones.
5. My lips. Very full.
6. My forearms. Weird, I know.
7. My boobs. This is definitely a personal thing (meaning I don’t expect anyone to understand or appreciate my lady lumps like I do). I have never, ever, wanted them to be any different than they are.
and last, but not least…
8. My schnozz! Frames the face, as they say.
Now you go.
What do you love about your body? What makes you unique? (Newsflash–you are.) Chew on it. See what you reveal to yourself.