We all have bad days, bad weekends, and bad nights with no sleep but picking yourself up and pushing forward despite these “bad times” is a true indicator of your inner strength and desire to succeed. On top of not staying on track of my diet this weekend and not working out, I believe I may have somehow scratched my eye and this kept me awake most of the night; I knew it would be tough to get going today. Despite this, I have filled up my water bottle, eaten my oatmeal, packed my gym clothes and am now just in major need of some coffee! Working in the fitness industry is both a blessing and a curse; you are constantly reminded of what you could be- faster, stronger, more toned, more committed to exercise and diet regimes, etc. The pressure to be a role model in the industry (even at the campus recreation level) is good motivation, but can also feel like a weight hanging around your neck. Sometimes it feels like all I think about is making more time for workouts, making healthier food choices (no matter how much I want to order pizza for dinner) and how I can be a true and honest resource for others just starting their journey into fitness and wellness.
This blog entry was spurred by my work with the Theologians Losing to Gain program at Emory University. This program is a wellness and physical activity challenge for students in the Candler School of Theology funded and supported in part by the Department of Athletics and Recreation. Students in the program meet with me to weigh-in, take measurements, go over workout plans and talk about any issues or roadblocks they may be experiencing throughout their time in the program. I never tell them it will get easier- weight loss and weight management are both hard work and take immense commitment but I do tell them that they are strong enough to reach their goals. I struggled with weight and body image my whole life and every now and then I still get feelings of self doubt (you are not skinny enough, you are not strong enough, etc.). I spoke with my grandmother about this a few months ago and she said that, although these things never go away really, they do become easier to set aside and ignore and it becomes easier to love yourself for who you are. To hear that even my grandmother, who I view as being the most beautiful woman in my life, still feels the way I do every now and then makes me realize that we will all be too hard on ourselves at times.
Taking life one day at a time, putting my shoes on one foot at a time and learning how to love myself will always be my plan for the future. I know it will not be easy and often times I know I will get discouraged, but I wont ever give up.