Monday, January 26, 2015

It's all my responsibility now: What no one tells you about growing up

I've mentioned before I wasn't an athletic kid. Or even really a healthy one. In case I wasn't clear, I was literally that kid that no one wanted to pick for sports teams. Coupled with the fact that I was short, chubby, and slow, I also am not the most coordinated turtle in the pond. Oh and eating healthy? Yeah right. I was once offered $500 to eat a salad- I refused.

this literally didn't happen EVER until I was 19

Instead of continuing my sob story by telling you about how hard it was for me to run a mile, or the countless excuses I managed to come up with to get out of PE, or the times I pretended to be allergic to broccoli, I'll fast forward to now.

I may or may not have turned into one of 'those people.' You know, the ones that plan social events around gym time, and prefer sports bras to regular bras. I've stopped making excuses to get out of exercise, because I know that every time I finish a workout I feel better. My meals are based around how many servings of fruits and vegetables I have had in a day, and salads no longer need to be forced on me.

this is my "I just ran 10 hill sprints" face

The greatest and the most terrible thing about being an adult is that when you grow up, there is no one standing over you to play soccer or eat your vegetables. Work doesn't have mandatory exercise time, and at dinner time no one cares if you get up from the table before your brussels sprouts are gone. You have to schedule your own doctors appointments, and eating ice cream for dinner every night is an actual viable option.

Theoretically this could be lunch every day.

The catch is, just because no one is forcing you take care of yourself doesn't mean it isn't important. So how do you keep your health a priority when its not mandatory? Or maybe, how do you change your mentality to make your health a priority? 

  • Get some skin in the game. Studies show that if there is a risk/reward association with a goal, you are more likely to put in the effort- i.e. if you bet someone you will do something, you're way more likely to do it than if you didn't have the potential to lose something in the process. Keep making excuses to bail on the gym? Put some money on the line or sign up for a challenge that holds you accountable and lets see how often you bail on your workouts. For me, I know how much I am paying for my Crossfit membership.. and its not cheap, so I better get my money's worth!
  • Start with what you can actually handle. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday after work I would head to the gym, hop on the treadmill and complete 20 minutes. I started out with 2 minutes of running, 2 minutes of fast walking, and slowly increased my running time while decreasing my walking time. This is a great way to build endurance, and as you get stronger and faster, you can start to integrate more high-intensity intervals into your training! 
  • Enlist a friend. I know that I tend to just randomly stick my face into whatever I can find in the cupboards at my house- especially in the afternoons, so a friend and I started texting each other everything we eat, and it makes me that much more accountable for my food choices. I know that if I start picking at something, I have to tell someone else about it, and it makes me think about whether I am just eating out of boredom or from real hunger.
Love yourself... treat yourself well! 

Whats your motivation? I started exercising literally because I realized I was the skinniest girl that one of my college boyfriends (terrible person, btw) had dated.. and the other girls were noticeably overweight. Realizing that I fit into his 'type' was enough motivation to ditch the guy and get in the gym! 

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