BACK TO THE GYM! SELF-LOVE, FRUSTRATIONS AND ALL THAT JAZZ
November 20, 2019
139:14 New International Version (NIV)
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
There was a time I was chilling in the car waiting for someone when I felt the Holy Spirit tell me to stop calling my body weak, and to stop saying all these negative things about my body… I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
This took place after I had just started going back to the gym and I felt a lot ‘weaker’ then I thought I was.
I mean I was struggling to do a modified push up!
Seeing how ‘weak’ I had become, I decided to commit to going to the gym. So for the next couple of weeks I would go to the gym and do exercises to the point I could barely move my muscles. However, It’s funny that even as I started getting stronger I was still seeing myself as ‘weak’ with areas to fix.
The problem with that mindset is when you are focused on your current ‘limitations’ you’ll always be frustrated with the process.
When you are focused on your current ‘limitations’ you’ll always be frustrated with the process.
However, after the Holy Spirit quietly confronted my poor self-image I knew I had to change the way I saw my body.
I won’t lie, I have had to remind myself sometimes to stop focusing on the negatives. Just the other day, one of the gym instructors asked me how my experience at the gym had been since I started and to be honest, I went on to share all the things I needed to improve on like how I needed to better my form on doing deadlifts and stuff. However, he encouraged me and told me that I had improved and told me to not give up.
Lessons I’ve learned so far
There are a couple of things I’ve learned since I started gyming:
Go to the gym because you love your body not because you hate it and you want to ‘fix’ it
Don’t compare yourself to others
Enjoy the process and celebrate the small wins
This is not the first time I have stepped into the gym. The first time I was eighteen and fresh out of high school with new ambitions. Part of it was to lose weight duh. So I hopped onto the treadmill and for weeks I would do cardio. After a while I did lose weight and my pooch disappeared. However, over time I slowly gained it back partly because I was struggling with a binge eating problem.
A year later I joined my university gym and started a new regime. This time I entered the weights section. I was afraid because it was new but luckily I had a friend who was accompanying me. It was a twice a week program because that’s what I was willing to commit to. However, I must say I fell in love with the barbells and the dumbells. I did not lose weight mostly because I was still eating in excess, however, I definitely was getting stronger. I noticed that, when I walked a couple of flights of stairs one day and I did not feel tired at all whereas in the past I would have definitely felt tired.
Anyways, after 6 weeks of doing it I stopped and that’s how it had been up until recently- on and off going to the gym, jumping from one routine to another (thanks Pinterest)… especially when I wasn’t getting the quick weight loss results that I wanted.
However, right now I’ve been able to be consistent for four months now and there are a couple of things God put in my heart that has empowered me to push through:
know that I have an amazing body and it’s important to speak life into it. It’s possible to go to the gym for unhealthy reasons. It’s possible simply because you don’t love yourself. If you don’t think that you are enough or you are beautiful or you are strong, then even if you reach your goals you will always feel inadequate. However, when you genuinely love your body, you genuinely want to take better care of it and invest in it even for long-term results
Focus on what I want to achieve, not on my ‘weaknesses’. Sometimes focusing too much on your weaknesses can make you’re goal seem unattainable. However, when we focus on what we desire to achieve, we remain empowered in the process.
compare yourself to others
There is always going to be someone who is stronger or weaker than you but the best thing to do is to stay in your lane and cheer others on in their journey.
In addition, It’s okay if you don’t get things right the first time. I personally felt insecure with doing lunges cause I would get all wobbly and I was afraid of looking like a fool. However, I’ve learned that people are too focused on their own things to look at my wobbly lunges lol. It’s never that serious.
health as a process
The reason why I feel I’ve been able to go to the gym for 4 months is because I personally love the gym and I like how I feel afterwards. However, I wont lie there was a point I was getting frustrated because I wasn’t hitting my goals as early as I wanted to. I’m learning that some things take time and that’s okay. Plus You will be consistent at the thing you see yourself doing 10 or 20 or even 50 years from now.
In addition, I’ve learned to think bigger. It’s okay to want to lose weight but focusing on the other gains like getting stronger, fitter and developing a healthy relationship with your body are what will keep you empowered in your fitness journey.
Our body has the ability to adapt to physical demands. We have the capacity to become really fit, strong and healthy. It’s in our DNA!
I hope you enjoyed this article. Please doshare your thoughts on the comments section below.