Date #5 Continued
One of the worst aspects of the fitness industry is the idea that getting fit must be a struggle.
Airbrushed perfectionism tells us if we don’t have the body of a supermodel (or for men, Daniel Craig) then we are hideous.
This physical perfectionism is enough to make most of us run (or should I say limp) a mile from any exercise routine (after the obligatory few weeks pushing ourselves as yet another exercise in body guilt).
But hidden underneath this mountain of toxic nonsense is a grain of truth. Something really powerful that has the power to ramp up your body confidence faster than just about anything else.
Here is that truth:
Your Cavebrain and indeed Cave body hate struggle, but it loves effort.
What Do You Mean By 'Effort'?
Effort is what most people call exercise. I have deliberately used effort, because it is what Cavebrain wants. Exercise can be a 10 minute stroll. There is no harm in that, and it can be great for lowering stress levels, but it is not enough to achieve the body confidence, of resilience and strength that is at the heart of this Rumspringa.
Specifically, effort can be divided into two categories:
#1 Increasing your heart rate doing aerobic work like running, swimming, dancing, cycling etc. You are out of breath/sweating.
#2 Increasing the strain on your muscles doing anaerobic work like ab crunches, lifting handweights, using resistance machines in the gym. You do Katie Face.
A Definition of Katie Face:The Harriet English Dictionary 😉
Last year when I joined my gym, I started attending some of the strength classes (using weights etc - it was anaerobic work) led by one of the personal trainers, Katie. I cannot remember ever pushing myself so hard. I would regularly have this grimace of effort like I was doing an impression of a bodybuilder. I named this ‘Katie Face’.
After a couple of months my mobility problems increased and one day I ended up in bed for a couple of days in agony. End of the classes. I was simply too weak and too menopausal for the level of effort required by her classes.
However, as part of this Rumspringa, I have started to incorporate a kind of moderate Katie Face into my gym routines. I make sure I get a few grimaces in each session, and my Cavebrain is rewarding me with a nice endorphin hit at the gym, then a lovely feeling of relaxation and strength later while resting. It also makes me like my body more than on my non gym days.
What To Do For Today's Date
Decide and then do the next step for you personally in order to increase your physical effort.
If you have not exercised for years and feel terrified, your next step might be: Choose 15 minutes tomorrow to go for a walk and set a reminder on your phone.
If you already exercise, it might be to research something more effortful.
Remember to continue with the She looks great and Instagram exercises too.
The Body Confidence Project So Far
Where are you now? Questionnaire