Often, I meet girls who join the gym because they have gotten engaged or because they feel they need to slim down to meet someone. While I am all for using your feelings and thoughts as motivation to exercise and achieve goals, the question here is what is your goal and who is it for?
If your reason to exercise is based on the reaction of others and it is done purely to satisfy or to please someone else, then the likelihood of the habit sticking is sadly quite low. How we feel within ourselves and how we look at our bodies should be an opinion formulated by ourselves, not those around us. Your body is your vessel that houses your soul; it is the ship that moves you through the ocean of life. We encounter many other ships, some that flow along the same part of the ocean for a very long time however they are a separate entity to you. If you change your course of direction to continue to follow that ship or to catch up with another, your energy levels drop when things get difficult. Likewise, to be healthy and to focus on achieving optimal fitness has to be a decision made by you for you.
That being said, I am not saying we should ignore what others advise us. For example, if your mum is nagging you to be conscious of your food choices because you BMI is 40, then this is different all together. However, if your friends are making you feel uncomfortable because you wear a size 10 whilst they wear a size 6, maybe the problem is with the attitude of those friends rather than you. The danger of these influences is that they lead to unhealthy mindsets towards exercise and healthy eating.
My point is: if you start trying to change your eating and exercise habits for anyone else than your not likely to stick to it. In the long run, it will kill your confidence and make you look negatively towards your ability to stick to a healthy routine. Your ability is not the problem, it is what was driving you to do it in the first place. Diesel in a car that takes petrol not only fails to get you to your destination, it produces unwanted problems for the engine. Start with what you feel comfortable with, be that hitting the weights room in the gym or doing home exercises. Eat the food you like and enjoy – not what the masses are eating.
My motivation: Allah gave me a gift of health (Alhumdullilah – All praise and gratitude be towards Allah) and, regardless of what those around me do or say, I will try my best to hold onto that health by looking after myself.
What is your motivation and reason to exercise? Tweet me or comment below