Wednesday, February 22, 2012
For as long as I can remember, I've been working out in one way or another. My body is full of muscles under those soft layers of fat from years of riding, dancing ballet/modern/jazz and running in my younger days. For my wellbeing and also for my physical strength, I need a small amount of exercise almost every day. The problem is that I hate going to the gym, running and all of those ideal things to stay in shape. And also, I hate everything that has to do with diets, calorie counting, saying no to fat and carbs just because of some kind of weight watching theory ... etc. To me, it's all rubbish and an unstimulating way of getting obsessed with food and in the end to get an eating disorder. After all, it's so unattractive to meet women who can't appreciate food in the way the world's heavenly created ingredients are meant to be explored and enjoyed; with tender appreciation and passion.
When I was younger, I struggled with bad self-esteem because of my body, like most women in this world unfortunately. But just as I hoped for, it all grew away and during the years I have understood what my body needs to stay strong, in shape and in my way of seeing it - healthy fit.
It's in fact a way of living where you allow yourself more or less everything you want, when you want it - but in reasonable proportions. I never restrain myself from anything and therefore seldom need to eat a whole box of ice cream, because I know that I can eat a normal portion every day if I want. When you allow yourself that kind of mental freedom around things that normally give a lot of pressure to women, you will start to understand that the cravings are lessened simply by the fact that there is no "dangerous" food. Food only changes your body when you abuse it.
If you eat a piece of chocolate here and there, I will hardly be noticeable on your body, but if you eat a whole chocolate bar every day, that will of course eventually translate into extra curves on your body.
It's very important to eat food that makes you satisfied and full. I would never leave out neither breakfast, lunch or dinner with a half full stomach. The risk that I would like to kill someone for a bag of chips or something else of the kind is obviously much higher.
I myself have a rule: I seldom eat something like a desert before eating a proper meal. Most often, I only need something small after dinner so when doing it that way the temptation is only for small things rather then squeezing another full meal in a desert.
All my meals contain some kind of protein like meat most often, potato/pasta or other kind of carbs and some vegetables. I'm also very fond of sauces and it's always a part of my meal. I always put butter on my carbs and in my veggies if they are steamed, for example. Fat is not dangerous in a proper meal. It's everything around, the unnecessary things that are harmful.
I also make sure to have what I call "between snacks". Like a smoothie, a sandwich or whatever I have close at that moment. It makes the metabolism work harder all through the day and the cravings for sweet things is less.
With exercise, I am a big fan of what can be done at home. It's so much easier and I can do it whenever I have 10 minutes free. I usually do some push-ups, sit-ups and some bump exercises. I sometimes use hand weights of 7kg each. And that's it. Apart from that, I try to walk as much as possible, but do have a problem just walking. I need to have a goal when I walk, so I often set a goal before passing the door. It can be something stupid like buying milk in a store further away.
I seldom dress for pure walking, then it would become pure exercise and in my head, that's boring. I just walk in my everyday life. It's my favorite kind of exercise because hardly notice it.
As explained above, I hate all kinds of planned exercise and having this daily routine relives me of pressure and guilty feelings. Some days, I won't do anything at all and some, I have a lot of energy and do more. To me, it isn't something I do here and now, it's a way of life. I strive to be strong, fit in my own way and in my own good shape for as long as possible.
I have a normal weight for my height. I have cellulite and extra fat in a lot of places, but the goal for me is not to get rid of that, more to have a firm body, see small contours in my arms, legs and stomach and especially to feel strong but without loosing the female lines. Fat is something we have, us women. It comes with the beautiful female body and is part of the magical possibility that the biological evolution has given us to be able to carry and nurture a child.
With all this said, I didn't do anything to keep in shape right after birth. It took almost five months to get my energy back and even thinking about anything superficial like this. But the necessity to get a strong body back one day took over and I've been back in my old track for a while, that daily way of living before I got pregnant and all of that.
Find a way that fits you and incorporate it into your life and have it as a lifestyle instead of something you do from time to time. If you find that fragile balance of eating what you want in normal portions, exercising a little everyday rather then massively two times per week and learning how to enjoy yourself in heart and soul - you'll always stay in perfect shape. Your own perfect shape.
And all of that focus on food and weight can be put into something more intelligent and creative.