Written by Jaclyn Willms
For years my clients would come to me and say I had too much dessert last night, or I need to work out hard today, or I need you to kick my butt, and the best one yet – I need to have a good workout today because I need to look lean for an event tonight.
I started to wonder how many of us work out because we are thankful for the body that we have been gifted with. Who is working out to celebrate what their body can do? Rather than being frustrated about what it can't do? Who takes responsibility for maintaining this amazing gift? Or do we take it for granted?
We need to re-establish our relationship with our bodies and what beauty is. A growing, radiant, happy presence comes from your mental, physical, and emotional health. Going to the gym because you overeat or going for a run because you are going to eat/drink more than you usually do at a party that night is not sustainable for our long-term health. Our health, longevity, and happiness need to become the focus. Our body is a temple, our home, and our foundation. It means so much more than looking perfect on the outside. Instead of setting ourselves up to be let down because our body isn't created to look airbrushed, we need to refocus our mindset.
Let's change the relationship we have with our bodies. Visualize waking up each morning and thank your heart for beating, your lungs for breathing in clean air, your legs for getting you everywhere you need to go, and the five amazing senses that allow us to enjoy life. If we continuously focus on what we don't have, we begin to miss out on what we do have.
The work you need to do is continuously grow and evolve mentally and emotionally to feel fulfilled in your purpose on this earth. This is when we look the sexiest at all ages. People feel your energy and are attracted to the peace, love and light that you bring, not the extra set of abs you did last night. It’s the ultimate feeling of sexy when we are connected and present in our body.
Too often than not, we end up chasing and obsessing over an unrealistic image of how we are supposed to look. A look that we will never achieve without putting ourselves at some sort of risk, from malnutrition, overtraining, burnout, impaired metabolism, even hormone dysfunction and mental health imbalances. These obsessions lower our energy, our happiness, and our ability to love ourselves, and in turn love others.
It becomes a vicious cycle that we are trying to avoid by working out more, but in reality, it is actually creating a vortex we can't get out of and we aren't seeing the results we want. What we are chasing becomes farther away because our energy is lowering, we feel drained and tired. All our body really needs is some love.
I have worked with individuals of all shapes, sizes, physical abilities, and fitness levels, and those who I saw get the most results were not the ones spending hours in the gym each day and restricting their calories. They were the ones truly listening to their bodies' needs by taking the time to understand them; giving it the nutrients, movement, and recovery it needs.
Our bodies mirror our minds. I believe if you want to truly glow, look beautiful, confident, and feel fulfilled, it's not going to happen at the gym.
I am a Personal Trainer first and foremost and I understand the need to keep our bodies strong, just like we need to brush our teeth. But there is a fine line between maintaining physical strength and balance and punishing our body for eating too much, or not being the shape society tells us we need to be.
Let's reframe how you approach your workouts. Let’s celebrate every single rep you are doing, and become excited to go to the gym to take care of your body instead of punishing it.
When you are happy with what you have, you glow differently, you carry yourself differently, you move differently.
I have helped multiple clients lose weight, over 100lbs of weight each. I never look at before/after photos. Why? Because I would wait for the phone call I would get after these clients visited saying their doctors just took them off all of their medications because they were sleeping through the night, their heart rate came down, their blood sugar was regulated. Or the calls I would get saying they just got asked out in the grocery store for the first time because they were walking around with their head high, not looking down at the ground. Or they just played 18 holes of golf and had no knee or back pain. I knew that wasn't all on the weight loss itself; it was the mindset shift, the dedication to make themselves better and the confidence that others felt because of it was infectious. That is sexy!
To lose weight or change our body compositions, we must be ready mentally first. Our body is going to go where our mind takes it. If we change our body without our mind, it will be a short-term fix or a painful fix.
If we want to feel fulfilled, see long-lasting results and enjoy every moment of our life working on our mind and body together is the key to looking beautiful, feeling sexy and living the life for your dreams.
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Photo Credits: Chase Rossman