Being Kind and Patient To Ourselves

During this quarantine I’ve had my fair share of crying, freak outs, bursts of happiness and laughter, as well as overindulging. As a trainer, I have high expectations of myself and how I should be a prime example of health and fitness, how I should eat clean, and how I should work out hard and really push myself. I noticed I was beating myself up for making “mistakes” or straying away from what I thought I should be doing.

The reality is – we’re in a pandemic. This is an out of this world, probably belongs in a science fiction novel, situation. Me having all these high expectations and then feeling poorly about it when I don’t meet them don’t help. Our bodies and brains are in a state of stress. Things are up in the air and uncertain. Of course we’re going to have all these moods and maybe not feel our best all the time. We’re anxious, concerned, missing friends and family, or we may feel like we are lacking alone time and our own space. Regardless, we’re all in this together. We’re in a strange uncertain time, and being hard on myself for not eating as clean as I want to or snacking more than I “should,” only makes me feel worse.

I wanted to touch upon it because I don’t think I’m the only one feeling this way. I want you to know it’s okay. We all cope with things differently, and because we’re at home all the time and have 24/7 access to food and the fact that we’re overwhelmed, it’s no wonder our bodies may overeat, crave certain things, or feel tired. Be kind to yourself. Be patient with yourself. We are only human, and we can only do our best. I say this to you because this is what I’m saying to myself. There’s no need to be harsh – that’s the last thing we should be right now. So what if you gained a little weight or maybe can’t work out like you used to? Is it really all that bad? This isn’t going to last forever, and the weight will come off and you’ll go back to your workouts in no time.

It’s about staying healthy and realistic. Being critical towards yourself during this high stress time, does not serve you. I’m reminding myself to be grateful for everything and everyone around me. It’s about shifting my perspective from what is going wrong to what is going right. I know this is only temporary. Realistically, our bodies need food to function and fuel our activities. When it comes to fitness goals right now, it’s more about maintenance. Don’t get me wrong, you can definitely build muscle and lose weight – it’s just a little more challenging, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you can’t accomplish those goals during this time. I’ve talked to fellow trainers and a friend working towards being a registered dietician, and it’s all about being realistic with what we can do and accomplish right now. The reality of the situation is that we’re all going through this. We’re all coping and dealing with it in different ways.

Sure, I’ve definitely had tons of snacks and sweets and blew my caloric intake out of the water. I’m not saying I’m letting myself go, but I am saying that I’m not going to be overly restrictive on myself either. It’s truly about balance. I still work out and get a decent amount of sleep. I meal prep more than I ever have and drink so much water, but I also have eaten tons of candy and dessert and overeat occasionally, and you know what? That’s totally and 100% okay!

I write this as a message to myself and to you. We are in some crazy times, and driving ourselves even crazier with self-criticism or shame is not conducive to getting through this well. I hope you are a little more kind and patient to yourself after reading this. We are only human after all! As always, I am here if you need me!

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