This comparison picture from 2005 and 2019 makes me wonder why I waited so long. It actually hurts my heart looking at the 2005 photo. That was my regular “everyday” face – perhaps at one point of time I probably didn’t even care how I looked. So sad, right? I can’t remember truly exercising back then – I was busy being “mom”. My exercise was housework, errands and chauffering kids from school to activities to home. I was busy for other things but not to take care of me. An online friend commented about how “brave” I was posting old photos of me. It’s not actually being brave but making a promise to myself (publicly) that I will not go back to my old ways of loving myself less.
True confession – before being successful in losing the extra weight I was carrying around, I wanted to give up multiple times. You see – I used to get so impatient. I would exercise hoping to get great results in a couple of weeks. Or, I’d try a workout for a couple weeks and if I don’t get impressive results, I would be so upset. But … that was before. I have since then realized that it takes time, effort, consistency and hard work to achieve the fitness goals I have set for myself. It’s not just the results that matter but also the process involved in reaching the end result.
Here are some facts. Exercise works. It makes you healthier. It builds muscles that burn fat and calories 24/7, even while you sleep. Exercise makes your heart stronger, and turns your immune system into a supercharged security force that effectively repels infection, disease and injury.
Physical activity, which is at the basis of all exercise, also sharpens your mind. Studies show that when you stay active, as opposed to being sedentary, you boost your natural ability to resist neurological disease development.
Simply put, there are a lot of good reasons to exercise.
Too often, someone who lives a very inactive lifestyle decides they want to lose 25 pounds of fat, or build a muscular physique, or achieve some other very specific fitness-oriented goal. There is nothing wrong with that. Goals are important to give you a finish line to aim for.
However, you should initially stick to the process when you exercise, and not worry about the results. This is especially true when you are returning to exercise after being sedentary for a substantial length of time.
You may not see the results happen quickly enough to make you happy in the beginning. This can be very frustrating, and could possibly cause you to reclaim your couch potato lifestyle and give up exercise. Don’t let this happen.
Focus on the process. Take one day at a time. Record your results. Work hard enough to push yourself, but not too hard. Let the process work. Regular exercise used to achieve specific health goals has continually proven successful.
It took a while for you to create the unhealthy body you are living in. It will also take time for exercise to deliver the fitness goals you are looking for, so do the daily work and the process will give you what you want. Again, if you need a cheerleader – I’m here for yah!