Y’all, I’ve been petrified to write this post. Quite frankly, there are 8 million other things I’d rather do then open up on my blog about my inability to keep up with a proper workout routine and get out of my workout rut. But as it’s said, the first way to begin tackling a problem is to talk (write) about it… so I suppose this is my time to share.
One side of me wanted to banish these images to the deep dark basement of my computer’s memory and never let them out. Not because of the photos. No, the photography is absolutely beautiful. It’s because of how I look in the photos. I’ve been sitting on them for a few weeks now, even after feeling wildly uncomfortable posing in a crop top workout outfit and pretending it’s a look I wear to the gym on a regular basis. I so wish I could wear this to the gym, as it’s comfy and the material is perfect for intense workouts, but I would never step foot into a public gym or workout class baring my midriff.
Plus, when I look at these photos, I think to myself, “This outfit would look so much cuter on you if you were more toned” or “What would I look like in these photos if I were 10lbs skinnier?”
But why, you might ask? Let me delve into my honest feelings on body image and you’ll get the idea…
Sticking to a workout routine has never come easy to me. I generally eat pretty healthy, except for my major sweet tooth and love for cheese, pasta and wine – you can also throw in Mexican food into the mix, too. Yikes. See this is why I’ve been balking at writing this post and sharing my honest feelings on body image in an open forum…
I guess I should take you back to the beginning for some frame of reference.
I’m 5’3 and of athletic build. I’ve always been active, whether that was playing sports growing up, competitively figure skating or enjoying outdoor activities like bike rides and walks. I would never say that I’ve been happy with how I look in a bathing suit. I’m extremely hard on myself and my appearance and readily admit it. But sometimes it’s just easier to sulk in your misery instead of doing something about it, am I right?
I’ve done my fair share of yo-yo dieting as a college student and post-grad. I exercised in college, but eating and drinking definitely caught up with me until my senior year. Then I got into a pretty rigid workout routine during summer session one in 2012 and began to lose the baby weight I carried on my cheeks my entire life, and got down to some of my lowest weight ever, with healthy eating, consistently working out and avoiding tons of alcohol.
After graduating and moving into corporate America, and I was able to consistently keep myself healthy and stay happy with my looks… then my happiness at my job took a turn, and it became a lot easier to sit on the couch and drink wine after work as opposed to working out.
I’ve never been a gym lover. I always joke with my hubby that I need someone to tell me what to do. I’ve never felt comfortable and always feel like I’m doing things incorrectly. I much prefer a class, but let’s be honest, they’re expensive!! And of course the classes I fell in love with – Define – were some of the most expensive in the city.
The weight slowly crept back on and my tone melted away as I bounced around to different workout classes, when I could swing it in my bills, and inconsistently made it down to my tiny apartment gym.
Then my grandfather got sick, and unfortunately thereafter, my grandmother’s health went downhill. I 100% don’t regret a minute of the time I spent with my Lala over going to the gym or working out consistently. But it took a toll on my appearance and self-confidence. Rick and I got engaged and planned our wedding, but in a time when the normal gal is working out like crazy and eating clean, I personally didn’t do much differently.
The days when I was happy with my appearance, working out consistently and being healthy, seem like forever ago. Honestly, it really wasn’t that long ago, but when I always thought my age would never catch up with me… I’ve noticed in the last few weeks, that it has.
My hips have definitely grown a bit, something I am trying to adjust to, but truly struggling with. One of the first places I gain weight is in my tummy area and face, and can definitely see the change in my blog photos and when I look in the mirror… and I hate it.
I know some of y’all may be reading this and thinking to yourself ‘boo-hoo’ ‘you’re ridiculous and out of touch thinking that you’re not in shape’… and I don’t know, I’m sure there’s plenty more you could be thinking… and I suppose I am vain, but the workout rut is truly real for me. And I haven’t been happy. I’m unhappy with my body image, but I’m not really doing much to change it.
It’s much easier to say you want to lose weight and eat healthier, than to actually implement it into your lifestyle!
I knew last December, after being disappointed in the way some of my previously favorite clothes fit and the way my body looked in our wedding photos, etc., that it was time for a change.
At the beginning of the year, I began slowly getting back into a true workout routine at Orange Theory. I love OT, since it’s like having a personal trainer, but not at the personal trainer price. It pushes me to workout and it keeps me accountable when I can’t cancel classes at the last minute without a charge on my credit card.
But, the full-time entrepreneur life can be difficult. I’m my own boss, I make my own schedule. And sometimes, more often lately then not, that schedule doesn’t include self-care or working out.
I know that working out makes me happier, makes my brain work better and makes me feel better. So why am I in this perpetual workout rut? I have no idea. My inner-cheerleader is working on it, but I’m still struggling, and consequently so are my feelings on my personal body image.
I’ve gotten a lot better at cutting out my usual glass of wine after a long day of meetings or time spent in front of my computer. I’ve gotten into a steady routine of not eating anything after 9pm. But something has got to give!
I’m not looking for an answer to my issues here, I guess more than anything sharing the truth about my personal workout rut and my honest feelings on body image is cathartic, if anything else.
On a note of personal accomplishment, today I scheduled a workout. Every day is a new day, right? I’ve actually made it to two Orange Theory classes a week the last month or so, but know for my personal well-being, I need to do so much more.
If I’ve struck a chord with any of you out there who are feeling the same way, I hope this post inspires you to realize that none of us are perfect and God made us with imperfections and flaws. For me, realizing this is a huge step in the right direction.
I’m working every week towards new fitness goals, and just as similarly fighting the difficulties of not wanting to go workout because I’m tired or don’t have time.
While I wasn’t thrilled with how I looked in these photos, I know they serve as a vehicle for me to work towards getting into better shape and fitness. Not only for the photos I constantly take and share for the blog, but for my own personal happiness and health. For moving my thoughts on my own body image into positive territory, and away from the negative.
I intend on trying to keep myself accountable with my workout routine and self-care schedule via my social media outlets and here on the blog. And I hope you’ll stick around to see my journey. Thanks for reading, xo.