You know you need to cut the exercise. You are prepared to give your body the rest it needs. You want to heal. Yet it’s so hard. Let me tell you – from my experience – that the difficulty will always be there until you take the risk to rebel against the disordered mindset and break free. I’m sure I am not alone in having awaited an epiphany where it would dawn on me that I do not need to drive myself to death by exercising every day (intensely or otherwise). It never came. Only when I stopped and rested, then restarted – did I view “working out” from a rather thrillingly strange point. I’d say I’m hovering on low impact right now, but one thing is for sure: I am not detesting doing less and thinking of it as a struggle, and a difficult time. I am not yearning to start high-intensity jazz anytime soon because I am happy where I am. My intention is not to present myself as a Miss know-it-all because c’mon, things are always changing and we are continuously figuring where we are in life, but what’s to say that the steps that assisted me can’t help you!?
REPLACE. This may or may not come as a surprise, but I didn’t take up knitting, painting, lego building to occupy free time in lieu of scheduled workouts. Why? There is no time for that. Maybe if I had a passion for that kind of thing, it would be a different story; but that’s neither here nor there. Correct me if I’m wrong but the majority of us lead full, busy lives..over-exercising or not. Fitting in 45 min. of additional exercise after an hour of sporting activity – without exaggerating – had me running around like a headless chicken every.single.bloomin.day. There was no time to breathe..to appreciate..to feel. I was a robot and my life was based on sufficiently draining myself physically and mentally (in the office). Take away the hours of destroying myself every week and life does not change dramatically. It simply becomes…easier. Instead of rushing through everything, I began experiencing it.
REDEEM your self-worth. With beginning to truly experience every little routine task of my day, I realized I love myself. I do. I love to take care of myself and pamper myself. I am a master at turning a mundane shower into an esteemed ritual of care. Turn off that tap and feel the lather of the shower cream, gently massage the shampoo in. Remember: no workout cramped in before that means sufficient time now. I will not spend the day in work-out clothes to prevent myself from weasling out of exercising. If the morning’s events do not run me into the ground, I will get some movement in and I will enjoy it. However, there’s something about piecing together my outfit for the day in accordance to my mood that makes me happy.
Instead of rising earlier to work out – if I’m up for it – I’ll swish oil before preparing a breakfast that adheres to my cravings, without questioning them. I can’t imagine bustling about to work up my heart rate in the AM (something I stood staunch on previously), when I now enjoy taking my time to ready for the day.
REVALUE what exercise feels like to your body. Once I learnt how good it feels to move when I want to instead of following a concrete plan, I started acknowledging the highs and lows of energy signals running through me on a daily basis. I was stuck in this rut where I believed I loved this “rush” that exercise gave me. But in all honesty, I’m not sure I was privy to any endorphin rush at all. There was no margin for a spur-of-the-moment decision based upon how I felt at that particular time; as a result my response to exercise had became insensitive and mechanical, where my utterly exhausted self seemed to have shut down on the world . Not anymore. There is so much fulfillment derived from directing energy and effort into other things with exercise a tiny portion of the magnificent picture.