Recovering from “Fitness Perfectionism”

Back before I made fitness my career, I was an exercise junkie as a response to wanting to lose the weight I had gained after having two babies.

I can say now, I had no idea what I was doing. But at the time I thought it was pretty simple. Join a gym, go to said gym, be fit.

This is what I used to do. I would decide I was starting a new fitness routine. The routine that was FINALLY going to work for me. I would look at the schedule of classes from my gym and decide what I was going to do for my workout each day of the week. I would write them on the calendar. Then the week wouldn’t go as planned. Something would come up, someone would get sick, my hubby would be late home from work and I couldn’t make it to my 6pm class because of the kids, etc etc etc forever.

So I would start over. I would look at the schedule again and make a new plan (or really, just make the same plan again) with a new Day One.

Guess how that worked out? Same situation. Rinse and repeat.

Starting over isn’t a bad thing. Regrouping is necessary when Plan A doesn’t work out for whatever reason.  Starting over repeatedly and not getting anywhere is the definition of insanity. I kept repeating the same pattern that I didn’t realize wasn’t working.

For me, saying “every Monday I am going to do A, every Tuesday I am going to do B, every Wednesday I am going to do C…” NEVER worked.

It was unrealistic because EVERY Monday did not look the same in my world.

It was overwhelming because I thought that if I couldn’t stick with this (which I never did) it was a failure and I needed to start over.

If I had taken a step back and thought about what I was doing, I would have realized that simplicity is my friend and stressing out over exercise totally defeats the purpose. If I had removed the perfectionism, I would have been able to see lots of opportunity to take care of myself and build strength.

Are you guilty of fitness perfectionism? Do you find yourself restarting the same (or similar) plan over and over again? Do you find yourself becoming frustrated or discouraged and not seeing results that you want?

Sometimes looking at what you want to accomplish with your fitness can be overwhelming. When that desire to reach that goal is strong and your motivation is high but everyday life seems to get in the way, something disconnects.

Have big goals, but focus on one day at a time.

What does the next 24 hours look like? What can you do to make yourself stronger today?

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