In exactly a month, I’ll be turning 24.
23 has been a hit-and-miss year for me, with most of the misses in the first six months and hits in the last six months. And as I turn towards my 24th year and start to think of what’s in store for me and what I want ~to do with my life~, I realize that overall, I’m pretty happy with how 23 turned out. I’ll get more into the highs and lows of my 23rd year on my actual birthday, but as I started to reflect and analyze on the events in the last 12 months, I realized that there was one thing I was glaringly unhappy with.
So, in my last month of being 23, I’m going to do something about it. End my 23rd year with a bang and start my 24th right and all that, you know?
I’m going to take control of my fitness.
Doesn’t that sound like such an empowering sentence? To think that that’s what I’ve been wary of for a myriad of reasons (some legitimate, most not) and have been putting off oh, since I was 15 years old, with brief lapses in attempting to become fit and healthier at age 20 and 22. I danced ballet till I was 15, climbed mountains and hiked rural jungles for a year, committed to a yoga studio for six months, and still I managed to convince myself that I “can’t [fill in the blank with whatever fitness activity].”
Well, yeah. Of course I can’t do something if I don’t commit to it.
Is it going to be painful in the beginning? Yes. Is it going to suck and am I going to long for the couch and Netflix instead of being outside/on the treadmill, pounding the pavement? Yes. Am I going to ache the next day after practicing yoga or Pilates (or hell, even barre), feeling stiff in areas I didn’t even know had muscles? Yes.
If I accept all of this and keep my eyes on the prize of becoming healthier, shedding the extra weight I’ve gained in the last year and generally being happier with both my body and my fitness, then I will make it through the rough beginning. I’m already anticipating the nastiness in the beginning, so I’m able to figure out how to tackle the initial hurdles, pain and self-doubt and push them aside to get to where I want to be.
As most people know, I’m kind of obsessed with all things beauty-related. With skincare, there’s talk of the skin “purging” as it adjusts to new products or tools used to cleanse the face. The general idea with this is that “things get worse before they get better.” Even if the skin starts breaking out more after using a product that claims to clear up acne-prone skin, the “purge” might just be the product working to speed up skin function. By quickening the cell renewal process, breakouts aren’t being newly created but rather are brought to the surface faster. Skin purging SUCKS (and truthfully, I’m not totally sure it is Actually A Thing but let’s just go with it here) but it’s all about short term vs long term gains. Once those breakouts are brought to the surface and eventually clear out, the skin is left blemish-free and clear for longer than it would be without using new the product/tool.
That’s the frame of mind I’m going to have when it comes to my quest to get movin': things get worse before they get better. So much of exercise is a mental game, and I know my mental game is HORRIBLE when it comes to my fitness capability. I’ll be the first person to talk myself out of doing anything fitness-related because “I’m not as flexible as I used to be” or “I have trouble breathing when I run for longer than 20 seconds” or “But I don’t have the right workout clothes” or “The machines in gyms are really intimidating!!” etc etc. Years of self-doubt have fueled this fire, but it’s never too late to change some bad habits. Now, it’s time to remind myself that I CLIMBED MOUNTAINS and DID BALLET FOR 15 YEARS and ACTUALLY REALLY LOVE YOGA AND CAN’T REMEMBER WHY I STOPPED PRACTICING.
It’s time to crush my fitness demons, encourage my inner cheerleader and put my best foot forward. (Literally.)
Wish me luck!!