Don’t Force it, Feel it

by Michelle Pfennighaus
March 01, 2011

Man, I hate the gym. I just do. I’m not a runner, not a weight lifter. But I remember a time when I forced myself to go to the gym every day. People thought I was really dedicated, but I hated every second of it. And I didn’t see results in my body. I was like, why isn’t this working?!

I tried to eat healthy. I bought pre-packaged, fat-free snacks and told myself I wasn’t allowed any pizza. I wasn’t any happier. In fact, I was miserable and constantly battling cravings.

What a sad existence! Why would anyone stick with a healthy lifestyle if it means being miserable all the time?

I guess we don’t. We give up. And then we beat ourselves up over it. It’s an abusive cycle of “I’m not good enough.”

Here’s the secret: Your body wants to move and feel fabulous. But how you make it happen is totally up to you.

For instance, I simply don’t like the gym or group sports. I never have! But I love to dance. So that’s where I started putting my energy. I went to dance class, and it was a fantastic workout. But it was more than that
– it was super fun! Dance reconnected me with my body. Walking by a yoga studio one day, I decided to give it a try. And it was awesome! Yoga put me in the best shape of my life. Plus, yoga does wonders for my mind and stress levels. Here’s the best part: no one has to remind me to go to yoga. I don’t have to bribe myself to go to the studio. I want to do yoga. I enjoy it. And that’s why I stick with it.

The same goes for how I eat these days. All the “healthy” food in the supermarket was gross to me. Uninspiring. But then I remembered – I like to cook! Duh! Why was I buying frozen dinners anyway? Because the box claimed it was healthy? Homemade food had to be better than that, right?

Getting back into cooking felt so good. I got to be really creative in the kitchen and I was proud of the meals I made. Just like yoga and dance, it was actually fun. I’ve experimented with different foods and learned what makes me feel the best. Those boxed TV dinners are a joke. My food is awesome! Again, no guilt required. No bribing myself. I want to eat this way because I enjoy it – from the chopping and roasting to the flavor and energy I get from real, whole, clean food.

Your body wants to move, wants to feel energized. But what works for me may not work for you – after all, no two people are alike. So start experimenting today and find what you love.


Photo uploaded to Flickr by hynkle, some rights reserved.


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