Lately, I have had something on my heart to share. I don’t know exactly where it stems from – some comments I have received, statements I have overheard from others, underlying thoughts from questions in emails from readers, or perhaps thinking on my word of the year. I may not know what to pinpoint as the source, but I can certainly pinpoint the overall message that keeps settling amid my thoughts for at least the past month. WARNING: Please read with caution as this post could be triggering to some.
I’m not my leanest. And that is 100% OKAY. Heck, more than okay. It’s a GOOD thing for me.
I know what it takes to drop my body fat levels down to more extreme 15% levels of leanness. I know how to lose weight so I could walk around with visible abdominal definition daily. I know the strength training methods that could leave me with a lot more definition than I currently have in my upper body and my personal “problem area” – the booty. I’ve done it all before…and quite a few times even.
I could still look like this…
But instead I happily choose to look more like this…
Yep. 100% not my leanest or most defined. And even though I know the things that work for my body to get me to that point – like a lot more focus on heavy weight lifting and less running (and carbs) – I have zero desire to reach that again.
Okay, maybe not zero desire. Sometimes, yes, I think “man to look like that again”. But it’s a fleeting thought because I know my NUMBER ONE GOAL for my body is to be healthy and happy. Healthy. AND happy.
I like not having to overanalyze food and to focus simply on choosing wholesome, natural foods as often as possible with zero guilt over having some brown rice at dinner.
I like having the freedom to choose some treats within moderation at social things (like over the holidays) because I don’t have to stick to a meal plan.
I like having more energy.
I like running (even if I’m currently taking a break). Sure, I still enjoy weight training, but to complement my routines and other goals. It makes me happier and helps me to appreciate my body for what it can do more. For me, weights were always a means to an end to look a certain way. I just don’t have the desire to do 4-5 heavier strength workouts each week with an emphasis on interval training to cut down like that. I still think it’s a great way to train, but not currently for me…so I don’t force it in order to look a certain way.
I like keeping life more about my relationships with God, family, and friends and my passions with sharing a love of fitness with others. Something I never did when aiming for an arbitrary “look lean” goal.
Things certainly still aren’t perfect. My body has taken me for quite the injury ride the past 9-10 months, for example. I still sometimes think “I could make these changes and lean out a bit more”. I still find myself trying to figure out my relationship with food during tough emotional situations.
Then, I remember that my goal isn’t to be my leanest. It’s to be my happiest. My healthiest inside and out by living with balance and self-love. Knowing my body carried two babies, that it can do more than I ever thought possible, and that is a temple…and one that I still think looks pretty dang good. I can carry that with even more confidence than I ever could at my leanest. I’m not my leanest. And that is a GOOD thing for me.
Your Turn: What about your body makes you happy?