For a long time, I worked out daily. I coached (and loved it) and then... I got sick. Ok, really, I flared up. It stopped me in my tracks. Sometimes I couldn't sip water without excruciating pain, but from that pain came learning. I learned to be still, to listen closely to my heart and to my body. I learned that striving is another way to become controlled by perfection. Prior to my flare up of IC, I'd been pretty good about keeping the shame storms at bay, but working out every day in an intense way- I was definitely striving and pushing rather than flowing into my health. Whenever we strive for perfection, the shame storms are there- on the horizon lurking. Shame storms are an attack on our self love. The one person we have to count on most in our world- is our inner voice. It is the only one guaranteed to be with us in every moment.
Instead of expecting ourselves to look a certain way before we love ourselves, it's essential to see the progress, the gains and the beauty in every stage of our lives. Our bodies tell a tale. They show us when we've forgotten to care for them. They slow down or speed up based on how well tuned they are. They remind us that we need to tend to our thoughts and our emotions when we sit still for too long (which is exactly the reason we should sit still longer instead of running). They remind us of the obstacles we've survived and the miracles we've created. They are incredible, really. Looking in the mirror during this picture, I felt amazing. I know my abs are a little rounder than they once were, but they were once displaced to nurture a baby. The regular pain and pressure they've held from my IC and IBS is completely missing. It's important to see with fresh eyes the gifts we have in our bodies.
Have you been afraid create healthier movement goals because you know it will be difficult to maintain? Have you been afraid to try new programs because you will be ashamed if you can't keep up? Are you embarrassed of how you look in certain areas of your body? We don't paint the house before we hire a painter to do it again- out of embarrassment for the condition it is in at the present. Send your body loving messages and your body will respond to you if you listen to what it needs.
These past few weeks, I've learned to adjust my workouts away from crunches, push ups and heavy weight lifting- to heal an injury to my sternum. I pushed too hard. I've learned to increase my mobility and strength with a workout program that can be completely low impact or allow me to leap about- a ballerina in my mind. I've learned to meditate EVERY workout and to stretch more. I've leaned into walk-jog-runs, and hydrated. I've added my digestive enzymes to every meal and peppermint essential oils to my routine topically, aromatically and internally. My nutrition has been more nurturing. I'm making time and I'm making progress.
You. Can. Too.
Choose the best feeling thought you can for your health and plan in the time to move in a way that brings about that feeling daily. Enhance your routine with essential oils, meditation or another beloved self-care moment. Strive to recognize your progress, love your body and when that shaming perfectionistic voice judges. Tell it to be quiet already.
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