I can honestly say that even though I work AT a gym, I don’t work OUT at the same gym. Or at all for that matter. Yes, I know, I write for a gym’s blog so that should mean I’m a very healthy person who weighs their food, counts their calories, etc etc etc. However, I’m very much on the otherside of … all that.
That is until I realized I was filling out my jeans a little more than I should. So, its …..
Now it’s been a really long time since I’ve done any kind of exercise but I really should have gotten some advice before I just threw myself in. I did a little warm up and then hit the machines!!! 40 minutes later I’m walking out of the gym feeling like my legs have turned into boulders. I’m thinking I have a few people to turn to for advice but for anyone who has come here looking for some pointers and have decided to get back into a routine, check out the following:
Start small: Don’t do what I did… 2 reps of 40 whatevers at every machine, with the weight set to ohGodwhatwasIthinking?! Work below your capacity for the first few weeks. Being sore to the point of being immobile the next day will not be encouragement to return to the gym the day after that.. or that weekend.. or maybe ever again.
Reward yourself: After the end of your first day back into your routine, do something that makes you feel really good. Ignore the smell of cheeseburgers in the air, or the PizzaHut delivery car that just whizzed by. I mean maybe get a massage or maybe even try looking at yourself in the mirror and say an encouraging word or two like “Good job!” “Attaboy champ!” or you know something that is more relevant to today’s vernacular.
Create a Habit: So yeah, this is pretty obvious but create a schedule you know you can stick to. Don’t tell yourself you’re going to go back to the gym tomorrow when, before today, you haven’t seen the inside of the gym since Kylie Jenner was in diapers and not wearing them on her face.
While I know this was a short list, I can barely lift my arms for more than ten minutes at a time. Sometimes those machines look less intimidating than they really are. Anyway, good luck fitness friends!
You know, having poor body image starts when you’re young. Your family is really the only group of people that give you the positive reinforcement that you need to feel good about yourself. I’m not talking about having your ego inflated although I know we ALL knew that one kid who just KNEW they were THAT great…. and we all collectively rolled our eyes. In elementary school it was the girl who thought she looked like Jem (yeah, I’m that old) or the boy who thought he could beat all the teenage mutant ninja turtles if they ran into him on the playground.
COWABUNGA DUDE! We’re gonna TOTALLY have a RAD time!
Yet we never seem to count the “you’re the most beautiful girl in the world” and the “my son is the best kid a dad could ask for” as much because even at a young age we figure this is all obligatory. They’re your parents, they have to say this stuff. It’s the finger pointing, the name calling, and all around bullying about our appearance from our peers that weigh the heaviest when we make up our minds about our looks at the tender age of 7.
In middle school and high school, even when I walked those “hallowed” halls, young women especially felt the pressure to look a certain way in order to be counted pretty and/or popular. Models in magazines, video chicks on MTV (when they actually showed music videos), and celebrities were lifted up in the eye of the media as examples of what the world’s view of HAWT was. If you didn’t match up to that, you were ignored or worse, made the center of attention for all things negative. It’s funny how this trend not only has continued but seems to have become more intense in todays tech savvy world.
With the pressure to make sure your appearance is “on fleek” (on point/looks right), it doesn’t help that social climbing celebrities add to the insane ideals. Impressionable minds, both young and old go to the extremes to find some sort of middle ground with their appearance, and emulate these “perfect bodies”. Yet when their peers speak of their disapproval it drives them to emulate other celebrities, until they can find that everyone is happy with their appearance except them.
So here’s the bottom line. The best way to get the best body image, is to be happy with the body you have. That doesn’t mean that if you’re overweight/underweight that you just throw in the towel and merely accept the way you are. It means to find that healthy happy medium and work on it.
Be happy with who you are, and be the best version of yourself that you can be.