Welcome back crew! I am so excited that you are here again, acquiring the tools you need to learn to love that amazing body of yours. You know you are worth it, right?
Recently I wrote about creating your own healthy lifestyle. Not mine. Not your neighbor’s. Not Jillian’s or Kayla’s or Sean T’s or even Tony Horton’s (although I LOVE him!) YOURS. But I really, really hope that your healthy lifestyle plan includes some kind of exercise.
Why? Why exercise? I recently heard someone answer the question of why they exercise with, “Because I like to eat.” And I think that, sadly, a lot of people see exercise as just that—a way to try to not get fat. To offset what we eat. Or even more extreme, as a punishment for what we ate.
But I exercise for a whole different set of reasons that can all be summed up in one: My body loves it.
Exercise strengthens my bones and muscles and improves joint function. Exercise lowers my risk of diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. It strengthens my heart and increases my lung capacity. It improves my posture, increases my energy and even helps prevent colds, which run rampant this time of year. And while I do it for all those reasons NOW, it will even help me age more gracefully, as it helps prevent osteoporosis, improves my balance, prevents muscle loss, and even fights dementia. I could list dozens more physical benefits of exercise, but let me just say this—investing in my body by way of exercise pays back BIG TIME!!
And my body isn’t the only part of me that loves exercise. My spirit loves it too. Remember how we can create feelings by the thoughts we choose? I totally love knowing that, and I try to think thoughts that will bring me all sorts of good feelings. But sometimes it just feels so hard, right? Thinking about my thinking all the time, and constantly trying out new thoughts. Trying to make new thoughts become habit while my brain desperately wants to go back to my default thoughts. Well, here’s a little science for you. Those good feelings are caused by hormones, or chemicals being released when triggered by our thoughts. And exercising releases those same chemicals—AUTOMATICALLY!! It’s like having happiness in my life without even having to think about it! Oh, how my spirit loves that!!
Now some of you may be thinking, MY body doesn’t love exercise. My muscles scream, I can’t breathe, and I am punished for it for days afterward. I hear ya!! I have had plenty of days where it is HARD. But I know that quitting and starting again is much harder than continuing on. Remind yourself of all the benefits you will experience. I like to actually think about my heart becoming more efficient, my lungs taking in more air, and my muscles growing stronger. I think about my future self—the 75-year-old me who just completed another half marathon. SHE is so grateful that I stuck with it all these years.
Move your body. Celebrate your body. Love your body, and your body will love you. ♥