Are you enjoying the Thrive Moms Campaign for a Healthy Body + Strong Spirit as much as I am? I was thrilled when I found out about this focus for the next few weeks because I just happened to be on a personal journey for improved health in my own life. In January of this year I was feeling lethargic, sad more often than usual, and way more squishy than I would prefer. And to top it all off, I had this nagging lower back pain that wouldn't seem to let up.
At 34 years old, this was not ok.
I decided to make some big changes in my wellness & self-care routine this year and I can officially say at the 6-month mark, the effects have been encouraging.
I am no health expert. But I love hearing about the health routines of others, so I thought I would simply tell you what I've been doing in the past 6 months to improve my own life, and you can draw from it what works for YOU.
Have you ever heard of the phrase "fitness personality"? It basically means that every person has a preferred way of working on that helps them stay motivated and that's your specific personality. Some people prefer group exercise classes. Some people prefer team sports. Others prefer running. Well I think the key to finding my motivation for staying in shape was finally finding my specific personality. And to my surprise, that just happens to be running! What's crazy is that as of May 1st, I had never run more than three miles at a time. But after a friend challenged me to run six, I tried it and loved it! I never knew how much I enjoyed it until I gave it a try. I am now training for my very first half-marathon. And although I have a lot of hard work ahead of me before the race, I love how at different phase of life, God gives us new strengths and abilities and passions. Prior to this current season of life and motherhood, I wouldn't have been able to make the time for running or training. But he has made a way for me to enjoy this new journey. How amazing.
And to tackle that lower back pain issue, I have been taking Barre classes twice a week. Barre is a combination of Yoga, Pilates and Ballet. It strengthens your core better than any other workout I've tried. And I can honestly say my back has never felt better! And my booty has never felt better either, wink wink.
What I have found is that exercise begets exercise. And healthy choices beget healthy choices. I went from infrequent, half-hearted workouts to wanting to run a half-marathon. And because I want to run a half-marathon, I knew I needed to give my body the proper fuel, both spiritually and physically. So this self-proclaimed Diet Coke addict has started drinking way more water throughout the day than ever before. Because I know how much easier it is to workout when I'm well hydrated. I've started learning about the science of food and what gives my body energy for my runs. I've also been using my runs to pray and reflect and ask God for spiritual refreshment. It's my new favorite quiet time - and he is so faithful to meet me there. And of course meeting weekly with my bible study small group keeps me neck deep in life-giving community. Surrounding myself with women who keep me pointed toward the Lord is a key part of my self-care routine.
I feel strong knowing that the Holy Spirit lives inside me, strengthening me when my own body and mind are too weak. I feel strong for my children who are watching me take care of myself. I feel strong and sexy for my husband who has reaped the benefits of my improved energy level and confidence. Wink, wink again.
I know your wellness journey will look different than mine. But I do hope you feel encouraged to take some steps this summer toward at least one health goal - big or small. You can do it girl!
ELLE EST FORTE... "She is strong."
"She is clothed in strength and dignity and laughs without fear of the future." - Proverbs 31:25
Tank shown in photo above is from She Is Clothing.
Connect with Bri at her personal blog Woven where she has been documenting her journey of wellness as well as her journey of faith and motherhood. She would love to hear about YOUR fitness personality!