DID THAT HAPPEN TO YOU?
Once Upon A Time, I had a New Year Resolution: Lose weight and improve my number on the scale so I look good and sexy.
Do you see the difference between two pictures?
YES, I know these two pictures look pretty much the same to you. From the cultural standpoint of the New Year Resolutions, I did not lose weight. More than that, I gained weight. WHAT????
Yes, you heard me right. My number on the scale looks bigger than before thanks to heavy lifting. Did I say that out loud? Please do not punish me. We get judged on how well we are by how thin we are. There is another addition for women - “sexy”.
Have you seen the titles “Strong is New Sexy?” Really? That is the only benefit that women can attain from strength training? You may think so if you follow some women fitness coaches who share their half naked bodies in the name of fitness. Nothing is wrong with that. There are so many of them.
Where am I going with that? I had no idea when I started my journey. Yes, by looking at the 2019 picture, you cannot see my increased weight number. What else can you not see?
I was 10 years younger. I never had much issue with my weight. Would you say lucky? Good genes? Sure. I was ingrained healthy habits from my childhood, probably because I was raised in a different culture. The food “attitude” was pretty simple - cook at home, eat at home and watch what you eat. Living in the big city, I did not have to exercise but I had to be active without driving a car. I never played any sports.
What you cannot see is that I was in pain. I was experiencing pains and aches of the modern life style - nagging shoulder and neck tension, lower back sore after yoga classes, and I could not bare weight on my wrists. I actually stopped intense physical yoga practice because I could not bare the weight of the complex poses. One of my elbows had golf and tennis elbow all in one. This is the time for me to use the most popular excuse that I hear from women: “I am getting older!” Yes, aging is a stage of life but life does not have to suck because of that.
What was a pivotal point for me? I was practicing my headstand (another story) and twisted my neck. My life got literally and figuratively upside down. After numerous visits to a chiropractor, physical therapist, and massage, I was not getting long lasting results. Driving with a neck that could not turn was sometimes an amusing experience. What do you do? You adapt!
Suddenly, I was put on a mission to help my body heal through intentional movement and strength training. No, I did not go to half-naked fitness coaches. I went to the coaches who are on a mission to educate exercise science, biomechanics of movement and importance of strength for bone and overall health.
For me pursuing fitness is about being Strong, Able and Well. Of course, other benefits are feeling confident and fully engaged in life. At 46 years old (2019), I am not using an excuse: “I am getting older so I deserve to feel this way!” It is empowering to be in the group of coordinated and conditioned but again I work at it.
The social media is powerful! You cannot avoid those “sexy” images that constantly tell you that looking good is important so go do fitness. By the way, I am not against that at all if that is your goal. Now I am going to speak like a mature woman of 46 - in my chapter of life, I want to feel good. I want to be functional in my body. To me, fitness is about living a better all around life. Not how others perceive you.
Sure, most fit, healthy people look good, but not everyone that looks good is fit or healthy. They are not the same thing.
Did you really finish reading the entire story? Good for you! My writing is pretty good, right?
In conclusion, having a body you can count on to do all the stuff you want to do every day makes your whole life better.
TRAIN FOR THAT!
What is your story?
Where do you want to be one year from now?
What do you do now to be an active participant in life over 40, over 50 and beyond?
Would love your comments!
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