For many, many years, I forced myself to exercise. It was often punishment for eating this or that. Or I thought if I didn’t exercise, I would gain a million pounds. There was a whole lot of “shoulding” regarding working out, and then judgment when I missed a workout.
I was ignoring my own body’s wisdom with this unhealthy relationship and pattern with exercise. After years of this, I found myself in adrenal fatigue with major hormonal imbalances…which by the way, only tipped the scale in the wrong direction! Seriously, forcing myself to work out was actually making me gain weight.
The thing is, when the body is under stress (which mine was), over-exercising causes even more stress. This impacts our hormones and metabolism in a way that makes the body hold onto, and even gain, weight.
Fast forward to now….
I am now able to listen to my body. I now honor what it needs. I also have intention and purpose when I exercise. I choose forms of exercise that feel good. I choose exercise that I enjoy. I ask my body what it wants, and it responds. Sometimes it is an intense interval workout. Sometimes it is a walk outside. Sometimes it is a yoga class. The key is listening.
So my intention and purpose is making choices that feel good and honoring what my body is asking for (not my mind). It is never force or punishment. It is never a “should” or fueled by guilt.
Exercise can also be a healthy form of release. You can intentionally let go of fears, anxiety, and/or anger through movement.
The intention and motivation behind exercise impacts how our bodies respond.
I see so many women struggling with this. I used to be one of them.
What would it be like to truly honor and respect your body? To listen to it? To give it what it really needs? Do you think it would start responding differently?