Did you swagger into the new year last week? Or was it more of a slidey, shuffley foot drag?
Despite our best intentions and all the shiny collective hubbub about resolutions and New Year’s resolve… many of us tend to begin the year in a bit of a mood!
You might be a tad angry with yourself, slightly disappointed, falling into that dark little “comparing yourself to others” trap, or straight up wallowing in guilt.
I feel you. I’ve been there.
Perhaps some overindulgence and those extra eats and bevvies are now sitting like a stone on your self-consciousness.
You might feel like you’ve negated a lot of the hard work you previously put in.
Let me help you pass this period with some sage advice, a dash of perspective, and a hefty dose of “virtual cheerleading” (you got this, you really do!):
Do NOT fall into punishment mode.
Punishment mode is often well disguised as “goals” but really it sounds like this:
“I will not consume anything except fat-free vegetable whiffs and warm vegan air for 1 week.”
“I will smash all my high-intensity workouts and set PRs for all my lifts.”
Dear Human, you do not have to punish yourself as a response to enjoying your life on a whim, or making choices that were unplanned and feel like “mistakes”!
DO fall into “Respect this Amazing Human Bo-day” mode.
Self-respect and self-love are yours right now. You do not have to earn anything or make up for anything you might have done last week, last year, or ever, to respect and love yourself!
Reframe your “goals” into positive intentions that reflect respect & love for your body, mind, and soul!
You will feel exponentially more motivated and powerful when you are… kind!
What would it feel like if instead of punishing yourself and your body, you approached health and fitness from a place of respect and care for your body?
What if you intentionally chose kind and appreciative words to speak to yourself about your body and your health, and to craft your fitness goals?
“What does that even sound like, Sarah- can you get specific, please?”
Why of course! Try these!
Instead of this Negative Nancy:
“I will strictly follow my low-calorie meal plan and lose weight.”
Try this powerful perspective:
“I will make food choices that nourish my body and feel good about taking care of myself. I will add more nutrient-dense, plant-based foods that my body needs, and up my protein.”
Instead of this bag of cramps:
“I will smash my HIIT workout everyday, burn 3000 calories, and show off my 20,000 steps to my followers. Even if I feel awful I will push through it and be mentally strong.”
“I enjoy the way my body and mind feel when I exercise. I love the way I feel when I take care of myself! I will listen to my body and make flexible choices to help it be strong and recover properly.”
And FFS, please forget this Whining Willy:
“I will be hot-bodied and swimsuit ready, like an Instagram god/dess, by the first rays of spring.”
(“F*%&CK THAT, REALLY!” screams a shrill voice from the speaker”)
(Pipe down, Sarah, you nutter!)
And try this:
“Day by day, I will take steps to feel fitter and stronger and give my body the time it needs.”
Don’t think you are that far emotionally evolved from your teenage self: when someone placed a limit on you, especially a strict limit, you immediately felt a tiny or tremendous rebellion in your soul, and wanted the exact opposite. (And if you were me, you more than likely did it!)
We still go through that, Humans! But in a more subtle, subconscious way. If you place strict rules, you feel restricted, you feel denied, & you feel lack. And in that state, you are less likely to take the actions that align with your best intentions.
So, my friends, less roughness & rules, and more respect & self-love, gets you to the desired place and allows you to take pleasure in the process while enjoying the journey.
You will find yourself going for the nutrient-dense foods that build and nourish. You may naturally create a calorie deficit without forcing it, because you won’t feel the backlash of restriction.
You will look forward to your workouts and you will allow yourself to sleep in and skip the gym if your body needs more time, without accusations of “laziness” or feelings of guilt, or a rush to “make up for it”.
And because you will be in love with the way you feel when you are approaching fitness from a place of growth, respect, and love, instead of punishment, force, or lack, you will get to where you want to be.