Thursday, August 23, 2012

Progress is One Day at a Time.

My pants are tighter. The number on the scale is still higher than I'd like. And it's been nearly 12 weeks since I started weight/cross-training.

Week 12

But I need to look at it this way: My pants are tighter because my butt is firmer, more lifted. My thighs have more muscle. And that scale number? After staying at around 149 for the past 11 weeks (even going UP a pound or two, which can be attributed to muscle gain), it's SLOWLY dropping, telling me my muscle is finally starting to burn away the fat.

You see, it's EASY to get down on yourself, looking into the future at that "perfect body" you'll have "someday." It's easy to pinch that small layer of fat on your stomach (which I have plenty of - I call it my "girly layer"), and vow not to eat today. It's easy to stare in the mirror and pick apart all the imperfections.

It's HARD to look in that mirror and see progress. But you must train yourself to see it, to accept where you are TODAY. Progress is one day at a time. Did you work out today? Did you get enough sleep today? Did you drink an extra eight ounces of water today? Hell, did you only eat half a brownie today? In fact, get rid of these words entirely: Tomorrow; future; someday; later. What's happening today? Now? This moment?
Besides the body image, I have also gotten down on myself for not being at the top of my class in my CrossFit workout. I can barely do a pull-up, and my toe-to-bars are downright pathetic. The hard bodies in class make me look like a 10-year-old trying to play Varsity!

But my burpees are getting quicker. I can handle more weight on the barbells. I'm pushing past that "mental" stopping point and going till my limbs can not physically handle any more.

And today, I did better than yesterday - at least a little bit.

Fitness is not about punishing yourself for not fitting that intangible expectation we have for ourselves. It's about using your body NOW to serve you. To entertain you! To give you pleasure (ow, ow!). So appreciate your body, NOW. Appreciate every miniscule measurement of increased strength, endurance or willpower. Pat yourself on the back for the workout you did TODAY, because guaranteed, if you're putting in even a little effort, it's totally scooting you in the direction of progress. Remember, mountains are not moved in minutes - real change takes just one step at a time.

I promise you'll find joy in fitness when you change your thinking. I know when I cut myself some slack and tell my negative self-talk to shove it, I am more motivated, and naturally make healthier decisions. It starts with love, and like any relationship, love will help the one between you and your body grow stronger.

So, my friend, you're doing awesome. You are beautiful. You are stronger than yesterday. I'm SO proud of you for your efforts. Keep living your fit life. And the awesome thing? You now have YOURSELF rooting for you, too. :)

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