Our Instagram feeds, favourite magazines and society are always telling us how important it is to exercise regularly and work your butt off to achieve 'the perfect figure' and boost your self esteem. I'm not going to lie, of course I buy into it. I know that working out will help me achieve my goals. I know that choosing a rice cake over a cupcake will benefit me in the long run. I know that my confidence levels and self esteem issues are going nowhere without me at least trying to reach my goals.
What I also know is this: taking a week off has done wonders for me.
My everyday life consists of the following: work, run. lift, shower, eat, sleep.
I'm not going to lie, I like it that way.
Working out has been a way of life for me now for most of the past 6 years (holy sh*t, did I really graduate 6 years ago?! *has minor meltdown that my life is moving way too fast* moving on....) and taking a week off and being 'lazy' causes me to go into a guilt ridden panic. I schedule my workouts weekly and decline invitations to social gatherings worried that I won't be able to fit a workout in that day.
This week, however, I literally said 'f**k it' and decided to focus on other aspects of my life: friends, loved ones, rediscovering past loves that I had forgotten due to my lack of time on a day to day basis.
You know what surprised me? How much I loved it and how much confidence I gained by taking a break.
Here's my theory: while working out makes me feel healthy and awesome knowing that I'm working towards my goals, looking in the mirror everyday and focusing on my flaws (and the fact that losing weight is a seriously slow process) makes me hate what I see. I focus too much on my problems instead of my progress.
What I've realised this week, is that people I love will love me with or without an extra 10 pounds to lose. As soon as I stopped paying attention to my love handles, I found a way to actually enjoy life again. I've found out that I don't need to lose weight to enjoy a glass of wine and a concert with a friend. I've learned that strolling the streets of Dublin eating some ice cream is way more exciting and memorable than skipping home early to avoid the extra calories.
Memories are what happen when you allow yourself to live life, not when you hide yourself away because you're ashamed of your so-called 'flaws'.
I'm starting this week with a new attitude. The Nikes are going back on, but the scale has been binned; and if a friend calls to meet for tea when I have a workout scheduled? I'm going to work it out. I will achieve my goals without losing out on the memories that could so quickly pass me by. And, guess what? Now, when I look in the mirror, I see a sexy, curvy, awesome person who shouldn't define herself by a number on a stupid scale.
I hope everyone has an amazing week. x