Sometimes, when you’re trying to change your body, any perception of a lack of progress can really sap your motivation.
Let’s face it, exercise is hard. At least, it is if you’re doing it right. But sometimes, it’s hard to see any progress. Take, for example, the situation where you want to lose pounds and/or inches in your abdomen. You’re working hard and you’re eating better but you just aren’t seeing it come off.
Of course, it might not seem like you’re getting anywhere with the tummy because the shrinkage your body is experiencing isn’t as localized as that. You’re shrinking all over, not just in one spot, so if you only look in one spot for signs of progress, you are likely to be disappointed.
That’s why any “before” and “after” activity you do can be critically important.
I’m not into selfies — particularly since I hate all pictures of myself — so I am very glad that Gina took those initial pictures when I first started working out. I didn’t want her to and, when she first took them, I wouldn’t even look at them.
Two months later, she took progress pictures. They helped quite a lot because, just when I was beginning to feel like I wasn’t getting anywhere, they showed me that I was definitely making progress. Now I’m kind of eagerly awaiting the next set of progress pictures, currently scheduled for mid-February. I’m anxious to see how much more progress I’ve made. (And I faithfully promise that I’ll show them to you.)
But the other way your body has of telling you that you are getting somewhere is by the way it behaves.
The slacks are moving beyond loose and graduating into “falling off her.”
The cardio workout that used to make her pant and wheeze for 20 minutes after it was over, doesn’t anymore.
The jacket she’s never been able to button before now buttons comfortably — with room to spare.
Body parts are getting easier to reach in the shower.
The dress that used to be so tight it made her look like a hooker now fits and looks really good.
I could go on but I think you get the gist.
I’ve had enough of these little tiny victories that nobody has any way of knowing about unless I tell them, that I’m really looking forward to the next set of progress pictures. Of course, me being me, I’m also nervous about them. What if I haven’t gotten as far as I thought? What if I’m grasping at straws because I know deep down inside that I haven’t gotten anywhere at all? What if this is going to take such a long time that I’ll be dead and decomposing before I lose the weight?
(Death: Nature’s ultimate weight-loss plan.)
Rather than getting into a game of crazy-making with myself, I’m going to focus on tonight’s workout. I didn’t do my HIIT cardio last night, so I’ll do it tonight in place of the moderate workout that’s on the schedule. Besides that, it’s machine day at the gym! Tonight will be a good one to push myself hard, leaving me exhausted but with a nice feeling of accomplishment to take with me into the long weekend.
Maybe, if I can focus on the ways my improved diet and exercise regimen are making me feel, I don’t have to be such a nut job over how I look.