So many of the reasons that I fail in my own fitness and health journey are because I focus on what I can’t do instead of focussing on what I can. The view we have of our bodies is extremely important, and most of us look in the mirror thinking about what we wish we looked like instead of focusing on the things we like about ourselves. Think of your body as a permeant home, one that you can never leave no matter how far away you go. Yes, someone else might have a bigger home or a smaller home than you. Someone else might have more expensive things, or less expensive things. But comparing your home to some one else’s doesn’t change anything about your home – all it does is make you miserable. What changes your home is your desire to be a happy home owner. When you say, “I love my home, and I want it to be the best that it can be,” then it truly begins to flourish. If you love your body, it doesn’t matter what anyone else’s body looks like.
Now with all that being said, I do want to emphasize that part of a healthy view of your body is taking care of it. Yes, I am a firm believe that you are absolutely perfectly beautiful the way that you are, and don’t let anyone try to tell you you’re not. BUT that doesn’t mean that if you have a great self esteem you can never exercise and eat poorly. On the contrary, if you love your body you should treasure it. Give it only the best, and push yourself to your limits.
Not so that you won’t have any jiggly parts. That’s not enough. Do it because you are worth it. Because you deserve to have a body that functions at 100%, full of energy, and able to do all the things you want. Because God created our bodies to do incredible things, and you are missing out on some great opportunities because don’t have enough energy. Because keeping our bodies healthy is an act of worship to God.
This might seem like all talk and no action to you. So how do you begin to love your body? Some of my first steps are making a contract with my body that is filled with “I will…” statements to remind myself that a healthy lifestyle should be empowering, not discouraging.
1. I will strive to meet my own personal goals that are matched to my body and my abilities.
2. I will say one positive thing about my body every time I look into the mirror.
3. I will continue to work towards improvement, even when I feel discouraged.
4. I will eat when I am hungry, and stop when I am full.
5. I will eat dessert every now and then… because life is too short.
6. I will encourage others in their fitness journey.
7. I will put foods into my body that are real foods, pure and chemical-free as much as I possibly can.
8. I will love the Lord my God with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength! My body is a temple and I will worship him by treating it with love.
My fitness instructor has been taking this challenge, and I thought some of you might be interested as a way to start treating your body with the care it deserves. It is called the 28 Day Love Your Body Challenge.
I do agree with most of the things in this challenge, but for myself I also wanted to keep a spiritual mindset during this challenge. Some of the quotes here seem sort of new-age to me, and I want to remember during this challenge that my ultimate goal should be glorifying God, not myself.