It’s amazing how one bad workout can take your mood from top of the world to feeling like you’re failing at life and should just give up and eat all those sugar cookies sitting in your fridge. They have cream cheese frosting and they will make you feel better.
This month of getting back to me, of taking back control of my life and being happy has overall been a success. I’ve lost weight and work out every day (I even have arm muscles! I didn’t have those before!), I have been comfortable doing nothing and have found myself very busy at the same time. I’m the happiest I’ve been in a long time. I’m not just happy, I’m content with life and haven’t really felt this way since 2009 when I traveled Europe. Only this is my real life and not some escape to a foreign country that I’m pulling off because I don’t want to deal with real life.
Yet it takes one or two nights of really struggling with Jillian Michaels’ program and I’m frustrated and feeling like I’m not getting anywhere anymore. The first two weeks showed big results and it was exciting to fit into my clothes better and into dresses for the first time in years. But for the past week and a half I have plateaued. I haven’t seen any changes, except for a couple muscles showing up in my arms, but at least I’m not gaining weight, right? I am getting frustrated with myself, though. I could push myself harder, I think, but I’m not. I have been struggling with level 2 and still can’t do some of it. I feel like I should be able to and then I start beating myself up about it.
I should be proud of myself for working out every single day. I used to be happy if I made it to the gym once a month; and now I’m doing a video every day and when I’m not doing that, I’m running almost 4 miles. I’m stronger, I don’t get out of breathe as easily and I feel great. So why am I being so mean to myself?
I have to keep reminding myself that no one is perfect; I’m allowed to have bad days. Even those damn Olympic athletes with their amazing legs and back muscles have bad days. I’m allowed to not be on top of my game every single workout. Sometimes it will hurt and it will suck and I will want to throw my weights at the TV and cry. But at least I’m doing it. At least I am trying. Because you know what is worse than the pain of a bad workout? Not working out at all. Look where that got me? More pounds on my frame than I like, being uncomfortable with my body and general discontent in my life. So I have a bad workout. Or two. Or ten. I’m still getting a workout in.
And sometimes I’ll have nights where I’m not as shiny and happy as I’ve been the past month. It might not have anything to do with working out. I need to be okay with this. I need to allow myself to feel each emotion, marinate in them as long as I need to and then shake them off when I have come to terms with them. I can surpress the missing, the loneliness, the frustration but it won’t get rid of them. They’ll come out sooner or later and I need to be with them in the moment, rather than holding them in until they are forced to explode in a messy display of emotions. Emotions that wouldn’t be that large, that messy, had I gotten them out in the first place.
Hopefully those feelings will grow smaller, those moments less. It’s a process. I have to remember that; this road to self-betterment is just that–a road, and the journey on that road. It’s not the HOV lane. I can’t just skim through the process and arrive at the ending like I’d like to and be all better. I’m going to have to sit in some traffic to get there. There might be detours. I’ll get there, though.
Obviously tonight has been a night of all the emotions. Luckily tomorrow is another day.
Thank you for letting me vent and allowing me give myself a pep talk. A somewhat public pep talk.