We all know that having a healthy lifestyle is good for us. But I haven’t really talked about the ways fitness changed my life besides looking at some numbers on a scale.
I decided to start exercising because I knew I needed a change.
It was the start of the year and my husband and I were driving back from spending NYE with some friends and were talking about what a shitty end-of-year we had had.
In a nutshell, my grandpa passed away back in Colombia, my immigrant status didn’t allow me to go visit, I lost my job on Christmas Eve, my husband was having problems with his manager, and our financial situation wasn’t the best…
During those hours driving back home, we had plenty of time to make plans and map out some new year’s resolutions. And we decided that this year was going to be different – we were determined to pull our lives together, and wanted to start by exercising regularly and being healthier.
After a few months, a healthier lifestyle was a good change of pace, and it did help us get fit, but the ways fitness changed my life besides that, I was not expecting.
The first way fitness changed my life was by making me stronger inside and out. All my life I had been ‘fragile Vivian,’ because I’m always skinnier and shorter than everyone. It always secretly bothered me, but I never said anything because it was the truth.
You wouldn’t believe the satisfaction I get when I go to the gym and I’m able to lift 3 or 4 times the weight I lifted a year ago. My friends, family, and even my husband get surprised by the strength I’ve built, and it feels good to not be ‘fragile Vivian’ anymore because now I know that my size doesn’t define my strength.
2. Fitness increased my confidence
I’m not only good at lifting things now, but I can speak up for myself and stand taller even in a room when I am a minority (opinions, gender, race, or whatever). There were many times at work or in daily life that I just stood there and didn’t say a word, even knowing that my ideas were good, I didn’t think they were good enough.
This fit and healthy lifestyle has given me that little something that was missing in my life, so I would believe and trust in myself.
I won’t say that it’s always easy to speak up, but in this way, fitness changed my life and allowed me to gain the confidence I needed to realize I am enough – personally and professionally.
3. Fitness motivated me to eat healthier
I firmly believe that to be able to keep up with a healthy lifestyle you need to have balance. I do eat healthy as much as I can – but I as well like to treat myself from time to time.
So, I’m not here to tell you that I never drink or eat junk food. If you’re having a night out, go have that hot dog or that burger, and get yourself a glass of wine, THAT’S FINE!
However, when you get used to eating healthier foods and workout regularly, your body itself asks you for healthier choices, so it makes it easier for you to decide.
That has been my case for the last few years. Fitness changed my life choices when I was obsessed with soda and eating junk food most of the time. It organically pushed me to eat healthier, and help me see how good my body can feel if I am more mindful about what I eat.
4. Fitness made me much more organized
I’ve always been a messy person and my parents, and husband can confirm that. But I have come a loooong way from the way I used to be a year ago.
Having a healthy lifestyle kind of forces you to see that living a messy life is not good for you; and you start to feel the urge to organize things around you, so your life can make more sense.
Fitness changed my life is that it helped me realize that, when your life is in place, excuses like “I don’t have time to exercise” are not really valid, and you actually always had the time, you just didn’t want to MAKE THE TIME.
5. Fitness helped me kick bad habits to the curb
I used to be a complainer, and mostly saw the negative in every situation, which are both terrible habits!
I was one of those people that got into senseless arguments on social media because others didn’t agree with my point of view, and worst of all, I was really jealous of other people’s success.
It is not easy to explain, but when I changed my lifestyle, I really stopped being so bitter about my life and others. It’s like, a happier and more positive Vivian came included in the 2017 health and fitness package, and my life was improved 180 degrees.
Of course, I can’t say fitness changed my life from one day to another – it took a while for me to see the positive physical and mental changes I was having – and this is proof that if you stick to your resolutions, they will pay off in the long run.
BONUS – Fitness made me feel better, and look better
At last, being healthier and working out regularly has given me the best shape I have been in my life.
I’m just going to say it, I feel sexier than I ever felt! Not just because I feel I have a nicer body, but because I am happy with who I am, and I don’t think there is anything more appealing than that in a person, no matter the gender.
So yes, working out has made me look better, but fitness changed my life in the way I look at myself – proud of my height, my weight, my sometimes weirdness…Something I was never good at before.
I am curious, do you have any other ways fitness changed your life? I would love to hear them.