By Laurie Sweig
For years I have been a huge fan of Brené Brown. Her book Daring Greatly was inspired by this part of Theodore Roosevelt’s speech in 1910:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs who comes short again and again because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
For some people fitness and living a healthy lifestyle comes easy. Or does it? We don’t know what another person is experiencing. I have admitted this before and I’m stating it again here – I don’t like to exercise. Having the choice the couch and Netflix would win every single time. Sometimes it does. I can tell you it takes strength to make the better choice. Some days I stumble. Some days I feel like I have failed myself. Sometimes I know that taking a break is a good idea.
Putting ourselves first is important yet often we don’t. Is it linked to self-worth? Sure it could be. I believe establishing self-awareness is the first step. How can we be there for someone else if we don’t take care of ourselves first? We can’t without some cost to our health.
In my opinion our priorities have become ingrained in what I refer to as the Health Tripod. This tripod is made up of movement nourishment and rest. Let’s break that down a bit more:
Movement: Let’s stop thinking about it as “exercise” because it is easier to love the idea of moving. The truth is if you want to be moving the way you are right now or even better you have to do that movement every single day.
Nourishment: Our bodies are machines that function on fuel. The truth is the better the fuel the better the machine works.
Rest: We need to sleep! Good solid hours of sleep. The truth is that we don’t think or move well without it. We crave crappy foods and are more apt to experience trips and falls. Sleep is the priority.
Decide now that you are the “worthy cause.” Start slowly. Go to bed 10 minutes earlier than you usually do tonight. Cut out one poor food choice today. Lie down on the floor and stand up again. Don’t be afraid to fail. The path to healthy living is always a step away.
Something to think about.
Laurie Sweig is a certified personal fitness trainer and spinning instructor. She owns and operates The Point for Fitness. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.