Wow. It has been one year since I decided to get on track with my health and fitness.
One year since I came to the realization that my health was only getting worse, and that I had to face the facts and do something about it. That meant working out and eating better, which were two really foreign things in my life at the time.
What a difference one year can make!
Over thirty pounds lost, countless inches also lost, energy gained, friends gained, and my life and health given back. And the best part? It's not even close to being over. This is a journey, and I'm in it for the long haul.
Getting starting on your journey to health can be a scary thing. It's overwhelming to think of all the changes you have to make, it's intimidating trying to figure out what's going to work for your body. It's scary trying to imagine how you will do a workout when you feel afraid of being out of breath.
But one thing I can tell you from this past year, is that it is absolutely and completely worth it. So I want to share my top five lessons from this past year of getting in to health and fitness, and encourage those of you that may just have started, are on the fence about your health, or even those that have been maintaining their health for a long time.
1. You are not alone. I think one of the big things that I came to realize is that I am not alone in my struggle. It can feel like it sometimes, because it's our tendency to compare our journey to others that are farther along than we are. But you are not alone. Reach out to those around you, and share your story. You might be surprised at what you find out!
2. Get accountability. This ties into my first point. I would never have stuck with this if I didn't have the accountability of my husband for my first program, and then the accountability of my challengers the rest of the year. This has been the absolute KEY to keeping me on track for an entire year (more than I have ever consistently worked out for in my life). Staying accountable to someone helps you stay with it longer, and eventually, it becomes a habit!
3. Create a space in your schedule for your health. Don't just leave it up to chance to figure out when you are going to fit your workouts in for the week, or wing it at the grocery store. Planning is crucial to getting your foundation started in health and fitness, and in helping you stick with it. So many times we find excuses about our schedule and time. But we make time for what is important to us, so write down your workout schedule and your meal planning times in your calendar, and guard that time.
4. It's so much more than the physical journey. This was a big lesson this year. As I began to work on my health and fitness, and I started seeing results, I noticed that because I had more energy in general, I was putting more into every area of my life. My marriage, my friendships, my faith, my creative pursuits, everything. When you get your health in line, that discipline starts to spill over into other areas of your life and in the best way possible!
5. Progress, not perfection. Another huge lesson. My weight was not gained overnight. It was the result of bad eating and exercise habits that I had built over YEARS. So will all of that weight come off overnight? NO! And neither will yours. You have to stay consistent, and you have to take it one day at a time. Look at the progress you make all along the way, and focus on the little victories along with the big. It's those little wins that add up over time and before you know it, you see a whole new healthy version of you in the mirror!
No matter where you are at in your journey, I want to tell you that you can do this. If I can stick with this for a whole year now- the girl who never worked out, was the chronic quitter with anything health related, and the girl who had almost resigned herself to just staying in the bad health that she was- you can do this. Trust me.
Is it easy? No. Are there hard days? Absolutely.
But is it worth it? EVERY TIME.
Take it one day at a time, stay consistent, and make time for your health. I promise you, it is worth it.
I would love to hear what your greatest lesson from health and fitness has been so far in your life! Be sure to leave your comment below!