“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”
Such simple words which have been uttered a ridiculous amount of times since parents have tried to help young children realize the simple reality that what other people think doesn’t mean more than how they feel about themselves.
However, sometimes how we feel about ourselves is often the worst opinion of them all.
Whenever any of us start on a fitness quest, we are our harshest critics, hands down. We will meticulously realize whether we have lost, gained or maintained our weight, and will come down with a swift gavel as we judge just how we look in the mirror.
Come to think of it, the aforementioned quote about beauty being in the eye of the beholder is certainly true, and more accurate than you may know. The biggest difference? We are the beholder, and often see every minor issue with our bodies, rather than the bigger picture and how far we’ve come.
Let me deliver an analogy which I feel will help drive home my point…
I am a golfer. I love golf, and have been golfing since my father taught me to play when I was about seven years old. Golf didn’t always come easy, but I have worked at it and am now a single-digit handicap. In other words, I’m above average, but far from elite. However, every time I go out on the golf course, I mentally want to shoot the best round of my life. Not a bad goal, but rarely do I achieve this goal. Whenever I am frustrated, I realize how the average golfer shoots in the 100s, and it makes me realize my consistent scores in the high 70s are pretty darn good, but it doesn’t stop me from the frustration and anger which accompany my golf game.
The same can be said about anyone who is striving for something from a fitness standpoint.
From a personal standpoint, I realize I am in pretty good shape. Above average, but certainly not elite. I realize there are a lot of people who would kill to have the body I have, but that doesn’t stop me from looking in the mirror wondering what I need to do to have my abs pop more, what exercises I can do to help carve out my shoulders more or what dietary changes I can make to improve my overall appearance.
Before the readers of this article think I have some type of body image disorder, I would suggest almost everyone has some type of body image disorder, it is just how you deal with it which truly tells the tale. Some force themselves to stop eating, or to make themselves be sick, while I am someone who gets a sort of hyper focus with how I treat my body.
It is all about the quest for perfection. How you define perfection can determine how you handle the success, or lack thereof, of your fitness goals. Some people just want to drop some weight and feel better about themselves. Others will want to be perfect. Maybe that is dropping some weight, or maybe that is really focusing on your physique. It changes for everyone.
The one thing people need to realize is sometimes what we see in the mirror is anything but satisfactory. Reminds me of a poem I once read:
I look in the mirror and what do I see ?
I see my reflection look back at me,
Sad expression on the face,
WHO IS THIS ?
Who looks at me ?
It’s not the face it used to be,
I don’t know this person.
If you feel this way, and you have yet to do anything about it, realize it is never too late. You can always change your lifestyle to help change your life. If you are someone who has tried, and failed, and tried, and failed at getting fit, don’t quit. Don’t give up! There is so much more you can do to attain those goals you have set for yourself.
You may look in the mirror, or at pictures of you, in absolute disgust, but realize you are still in control of your life. There are steps in place to help you get there in a safe, and quick fashion.
My wife and I are currently on a ‘Whole 30’ nutrition plan which is all about eliminating negative foods from your diet as you get back to basics. There are no cutting carbs, or eliminating entire food groups in your diet, but instead just eating whole foods again. You do this for 30 days, and then you can start to re-introduce other foods as you please.
Is it easy? Heck no it isn’t easy! But I’ve always felt anything worth having will take hard work. Your physique, or fitness goals, are no different.
So, the next time you look at a picture, or in the mirror, instead of noticing all of the flaws, look at some of the positives. Maybe that pair of jeans which hadn’t fit for months finally fit again. Maybe you start to see the outline of your abs. Either way, success is success. I realize I need to do this in my own life as well, and if we all just take a more positive outlook on out fitness goals, we will start to see more positive results on a daily, weekly and monthly basis!
Join the revolution today!