That made me chuckle. After fighting for years to get healthier, quit smoking, quit drinking so much, feel better about myself and get consistent with exercise, I am viewed as a person who works out 24 hours a day, perhaps too much.
Kind of ironic. Let's talk.
The truth is, I average 45 minutes a day, 5-6 days a week. That's what's recommended. Sometimes I double up, and do my strength workout on the same day I do cardio. Sometimes I do a sweet, long hike at one of our metro parks.
Here's what changed for me:
- I got sick. Getting diagnosed with kidney disease was one of the best things that ever happened to me. It helped me see the importance of taking care of myself, if I wanted to live, and live well.
- I stopped exercising solo, and got involved in the fitness community. Knowing I didn't have to stay motivated alone, and would run into 20, 30, 40 people I know, motivates me a lot.
- My social life is tied to fitness now. That means I get texts that say, "Hey, want to run 3 miles tomorrow?" or,"Let's go to Highbanks and chat!", instead of,"Hey, want to go eat?". I like going out to eat now and then, but I was spending way too much time in restaurants, and I wasn't feeling any better about myself. Nothing compares to the conversation and connection that is made shoulder to shoulder, side by side out on the trail.
- I saw the world from the top of some mountains. Those first trips out west changed me. I want to see more! I want to climb higher! That passion makes exercise a joy, since I know what the reward looks like. I don't ever want to miss seeing the amazing gifts of nature, because I wasn't fit enough. It's just not the same from the car.
- I became more present and committed to daily practice. I am not exaggerating when I say every single workout contributes to feeling better. It's a carpe diem thing. If I want to feel good today, I need to move. If I want to feel freedom, peace and joy, I need to move. It's the anti-virus code that overwrites the bad code, the self-critical inner voice. It's knowing all day long that I did it and chose from my highest self.
Our bodies are made to move. Body, mind and spirit are connected. My goal is to find the light within myself, and do whatever it takes to allow/encourage it to shine as brightly as possible. Not just on some days, every day. The brighter my light, the more I am able to show up and be there for others. The less hold the internal critic has on me. And the more I am able to make choices that are aligned with my spirit/authentic self.
Who doesn't want more of that!