The 11th gift of fitness has to do with how it affects our imagination, and really, how it affects our sense of boundaries. Here’s the gift: when you start to test yourself through new physical challenges, your sense of what’s possible in your life might just get bigger. A lot bigger.
A lot has changed in my life since that initial Every48 blog post in late 2013. I’m a mom now, dealing with a postpartum body that doesn’t quite want to bounce back into shape as quickly as that old monkey mind of mine wants it to. Hard. Oh, and there’s that sleeping thing. As in, babies don’t really do it the way that the adults around them really, really wish they would.
So there’s that.
That’s why I trudge off to my workout as often as I can, but no less than once every 48 hours. I try to sweat. Most days, it works. Some days, it’s hard. Once in a great while, it’s too hard for my tired bones and so I say, okay, I tried today. Tomorrow, after a better night of sleep, I’ll feel better. (Note: you will always feel better after a good night of sleep. Sleep is sort of magical that way.)
But what happens when we push ourselves on a regular basis? Our bodies respond. I’ve seen this happen with every single body type I’ve ever brought to a workout: when I was overweight, when I was normal weight, when I was pregnant, and now, with a few leftover postpartum pounds still to lose. Every body type, every stage of my life, has benefited from exercise. Every. Single. Time.
And what else benefits? A sense of optimism about what’s coming up next. A sense of possibility. A sense of confidence that things will probably be okay. A taste of “hmmm, I wonder what else I could do if I committed to it the way I’ve committed to fitness?”
A vision of the future begins to come into focus. Every workout completed makes the workouts to come a little easier. And every step forward makes it easier to take the next step, no matter what you dream of accomplishing.
This post, by the way, was written by a new mom who started her premedical coursework when she was six months pregnant. Just wrapped my third course. Step by step. Horizons change. Possibilities open up. All from getting out there and getting after it, at least once every 48 hours. Join me out there.