I'm really not a fan of the word exercise! It literally feels me with absolute dread! It always has. That word to me means pain, being un-comfortable, sweating, struggling for breath, feeling absolutely flipping awful and exhaustion! For me there are no positive thoughts associated with the word exercise.
When I was younger I never wanted to do PE at school, cross country was the absolute worse and then as I got older and thought I had to workout to achieve this 'perfect' body image I had in my head, I really began to loathe it!
I remember being in my teens and going to this gym that was stuffy, had no real atmosphere, it had this weird smell and I would be there on a Saturday morning, forcing myself to run on a machine, becoming a disgusting sweaty, exhausted mess after 2 minutes and thinking what the hell am I doing here! Yet I would put myself through about an hour of this each time and usually a couple of times a week. I went there for years as well!
Over the years I have tried every workout fad going. I must have purchased every possible home workout DVD there ever was! You know the ones I mean where they had the before and after pictures on the front and your like wow they look so good, I need to look that, not realising they were photo shopped and the exercises in the video would do nothing but torture you!! I’ve tried it all and every second has been pure hell!
I‘m sorry if you love exercise, I know there are plenty of you that do love it. And I know it has got major health benefits, I‘m not denying that but I just simply hate it! So when I started intuitive eating and I realised that hang on I don't need to do these workouts that I loath so much, it was a massive relief. Part of me did panic. What would it mean if I didn't do Plyo-jam (the newest fad I had discovered) 3 times a week? But when I heard exercise being described as movement for the first time and I heard the words "move only to what your body feels comfortable with" I had a realisation. My body does not want to be pushed to those limits! It doesn't like it! I don't like it, in fact I absolutely despise it! My body is not and never has been comfortable with being pushed so far, it has a limit so why keep pushing myself.
It also dawned on me that all this time I have been moving everyday anyway. I don't drive so I have to walk everywhere (under normal circumstances) and most days I also walk my dog. That can be for an hour, maybe more, maybe less. I never decide how long we are going to walk for, I just listen to my body, when I know I have walked enough we head back. And when I am walking it doesn't feel like a chore, its not something I hate. I am actually happy! I'll listen to some music, an audio book or a good podcast and I'm enjoying myself, I'm comfortable, that ultimately is what's important!
Before Christmas I did start Pilates, suffering from a bad back I was told Pilates would really help. I was enjoying but I started to notice thoughts creeping in like, maybe doing Pilates will help me to firm up, I don't want to be doing it for that reason so I have stepped away from it for now. I'm not going to allow those thoughts to creep back in. I will go back to it when I'm further along in my journey and I'm more accepting of my body.
I love that I have come to peace with how much movement my body really wants me to do. I am now the one in control of how much I move, nobody else. It is harder to have the motivation to get moving under the current circumstances but I'm not over thinking it and for once I'm definitely not forcing myself to move when I don't want to and I will not be letting anyone else make me either!
Thank you for reading, stay safe and happy eating