If I ask clients, “What do you hope to accomplish with your fitness?” the answer is usually something like:
- “I want to lose X lbs.”
- “I want to get rid of this belly pooch from having my babies.”
- “I want to be more flexible.”
However, when people tell me any of these things, I don’t really believe them – not that I think they’re lying to me, but that we all tend to lie to ourselves about our goals. In my experience, everyone’s really real goal comes down to some version of, “I want to feel better about myself.”
Depending on your experience, the culture you live in, and where you are in your life, it’s likely you think you need to be more attractive, stronger, or more able-bodied to deserve to feel good about yourself. So, instead of focusing your goals on how you want to feel (aka, better about yourself), you focus on how you think you should look or move according to others’ perception.
I am here to tell you that you get to feel good about yourself right now – regardless of your belly pooch or the fact that you can’t do a pull-up anymore or even get up and down off the floor without help. None of those things are where your worth comes from. Not a lot of trainers are going to tell you this, but I truly believe that you can choose to feel happy, accomplished, and beautiful right now, without ever stepping foot in a gym.
So, there’s an upside and a downside. The upside is: You can choose to feel good about yourself without even getting off your couch. You can accept permission to love yourself as-is, click off my site, and never look at a yoga mat again. The downside is: It ain’t usually that easy. Learning to love ourselves, flaws and all, is deep, challenging, complicated work. It usually helps to have a travel buddy when diving into these waters.
Counterintuitively, the other thing that might help you get to that self-love point is exercise. Not “I hate myself for eating that 5th cookie” punishing treadmill runs. Not “I’m so out of shape, I’m the only loser here who can’t do the pose” comparison yoga classes. But rather, joyful movement paired with introspective thought. Workouts that challenge your beliefs about what you can do, because there are few feelings in the world that compare to the high of accomplishing something you didn’t think you could.
With the right mindset, fitness can make you feel incredible instead of inferior. While your fitness is not where your worth as an individual comes from, exercising can hack your system to deliver feel good hormones, improve your sleep, and reduce your day-to-day pain or limited mobility. All of those things will make it a lot easier to do the work of choosing to feel good about yourself every day.
That’s what I’m here for. I want to help you learn to love yourself by showing you how amazing exercise can make you feel. If you’re interested in learning more, let’s set up a complimentary 30-minute wellness consultation.