Some would have you believe that getting fit or having a sexy body is a portal to happiness. An instant worm hole that teleports you to a place where you are finally, FINALLY, the perfect shape. You finally have that tiny waist. You finally don’t have an ounce of fat on your legs. Now you can enjoy all the new Instagram posts you get to share, showing off your hot new bod. All is well, and life can actually start now. “So get squatting, and you too can have all this happiness!”
Let’s get one thing straight. I am not one of those people. I don’t teach health & fitness so that you can “get that six pack” or whatever other empty infomercial quote. I’m here to encourage you to wake up to your higher self, and fitness is one of the most powerful ways to do that.
Here’s the truth. Fitness isn’t some elite, exclusive place. Fitness isn’t a way of measuring your “hotness score” to other women. It’s not even having a great body, although that usually happens along the way. But really, getting a “hot body” is such a boring part of fitness.
In fact, getting a “hot body” is more boring than watching water boil. Reaching an aesthetic goal is interesting for a day or two, then it’s like, “Ooookay..Well that was anticlimactic. ” Think about it. It’s not like you can stare at yourself in the mirror all day and admire your “improved” assets. Yes, yes. It’s always nice to know your butt looks good in jeans, but creating a great butt as a focus in life? Pretty boring.
Don’t get me wrong though. I like that squats help my legs stay defined. But if I had to quantify, the appearance of my butt takes up about 10% of the real estate of benefits that excite me, and what fitness really means to me.
So if fitness isn’t all about having a great body, and it’s not a destination, what is fitness? Good news, it’s a whole lot more than a sexy six pack.
Fitness is a state of presence, and paying attention, and noticing how you’re feeling today, and getting in touch with your body and mind. Fitness is also a tool to enhance your mood, health, and cognition.
Fitness is grabbing life by it’s outreached hand and saying “yes! I’ll use these beautiful tools you’ve given me called legs and move through the world. I’ll do that instead of yielding to my couch.” And saying yes to the beautiful food that comes from life. And loving yourself without any embarrassment. Loving yourself even when others make fun of you for it, prodding you to “just have a drink. Just one bite of this doughnut. Just stay out with us another couple hours. Just skip the gym tomorrow. Just give up like you do every time. Just, just, just.”
Fitness is choosing to put on a really crisp pair of glasses to see the world through. Unencumbered by the fatigue brought on by junk food and inertia.
Fitness helps you see challenges as possibilities, not as obstacles. You’re emboldened because, damnit, you did those pushups or ran that mile or whatever else you achieved.
Fitness helps you evaporate the clouds of depression and shake off the cobwebs of life with the power of movement and breath and sweat and focus.
So this is an invitation to you, friend. An invitation to let go of comparing yourself to other women, critiquing every “imperfection”, and fighting to get to the top of a I’ll-be-perfect-when mountain that doesn’t exist. An invitation to stop tussling with the process of weight loss, and start enjoying the more vibrant life your healthy choices create.
Hot instagram pictures are fine. An electric state of presence and self care is just way better. Sure you can have both, but don’t zap all the fun out of fitness by completely ignoring the best parts!