Tune into how you feel
Be honest with yourself.
Tune into how you feel when you take a break from working out.
Energetically, mood-wise and in regards to your internal chatter.
Are you using exercise purely for a tool to control your weight and shape?
If so, how does not exercising (because of holidays, injury, being sick -you name it-) make you feel?
Most likely a bit anxious? Upset? Worried?
I haven't always had a healthy relationship with food.
As a young adult and up to becoming a mom, I would really think about calories and how much to eat etc.
And this is how I know and feel that I have a healthier relationship with food, fitness and ultimately MYSELF.
When I break from working out, I don't feel guilty.
I don't feel bad about not countering my food intake with exercise and (oppositely) I don't reward myself with food after working out. If I enjoy a beer after a workout it's because it tastes so darn great then, not because I "deserve" a treat now.
I now use food as fuel and nutrition, but also as enjoyment and pleasure.
I tune into how it makes me feel.
I eat the sweets, chocolates, not so nutritious foods and enjoy alcoholic beverages without guilt.
But, I try to not OVERindulge because I know it’s going to raise my anxiety, mess with my sleep or mood.
Now when I don’t workout for an extended period of time,
I start to notice how sluggish I feel after a couple of days.
How my mood might suffer.
How I might feel more anxious and irritable.
How I feel less strong.
THAT always makes me happy and excited to return to it.
THAT provides me with a motivation that comes from self-love vs. self-hate. I don't write all of this to say "look at how great I am". Or, that I judge you if you don't view and use exercise and nutrition this way.
I've been there. It would be easy for me to fall back into some of those unhealthy habits and beliefs.
A big reason for wanting to start working in this industry is because exactly that: I've been there and I know that a lot of women have a dynamic, complicated, and energy depleting relationship with food and exercise.
I want to be a big advocate and voice for enhancing your mental health through exercise.
For "focusing on how you want to feel"
For "goals beyond aesthetics".
For self-love and self-care and self-awareness.
For focusing on your "why".
It makes the whole process feel so different and ultimately will shine through in your energy and appearance.
Natural side-effect. Beautiful thing.