Perseverance. That is the first word that comes to mind when I think about my friend Melisa. She came to me in August and said “I want to get fit”. And so it began, her journey to fitness. Changing your life and deciding to get fit is not easy, but it’s worth it. Her effort has helped her lose 45 pounds!
For many women, working out may be about looking good. But what about being healthy? Is that more important? I believe so. Regardless of how I look, I want to live a healthy lifestyle.
There are a couple things I have noticed about Melisa since she first started working out. Deciding to change your working out habits and eating habits is not something that occurs overnight. It’s a process and you have to work hard at it. It requires commitment and a good group of friends that will encourage you on the journey.
Changing your attitude.
When Melisa first started, her opinion about herself tended to be negative. When I announced the workout, I could sense defeat. “Are you sure I can do this? I’m not sure if I can?” It took a change in mindset. Over time, her attitude began to change. Just the other day when, we did some resistance training, she said, “This is fun! I’m going to do the harder level today.” That’s so exciting. It’s all about attitude. Tell yourself you can do this. Sometimes we are our own worst enemies. People can cheer you on during a workout, but at the end of the day it’s up to you to decide whether you can do it or not.
Small things matter.
When Mel first started to lose weight she was really excited. She tried to weigh herself once a week. On the weeks where she didn’t lose as much as she wanted she seemed a little sad about it. But recently she has decided that she has come so far that she needs to celebrate the small things. Maybe your goal is to lose ten pounds or maybe your goal is to lose 80 pounds. How are you ever going to get there if you don’t celebrate the small things? Enjoy the journey. Enjoy the process. Every pound you lose, you’re chipping away at that final goal.
Don’t worry about others.
When Mel first started with me she was really concerned about what others at the gym would say. As women, this is a struggle that almost everyone deals with. What will other people think of me? Are they looking at me? What are they looking at? It’s hard. I know, because this is something I used to struggle with too. But when you decide to just focus on what you are doing and how this workout is for you, it will go a long way. Melisa gets into a zone. She starts the workout and zones everything else out. She is focused and motivated to finish each workout.
Encouragement from friends.
It’s important to have friends to keep you accountable during the week. But it’s really important to have friends at the gym that will encourage you. Melisa is such an awesome encourager when it comes to encouraging others to push themselves. She also lets me yell at her during the workouts. I can tell that my encouragement helps her a lot. When she thinks she can’t go anymore and I tell her she’s got this, she gives that extra push. Find a friend to go to the gym with you and encourage one another. Push each other to keep going. You can do this.
I am so proud of Melisa. She has come such a long way. It was a series of tough decisions, but she did it. If you want to change your lifestyle, take the steps necessary to make it happen and believe in yourself. You can do it if you’re willing to put in the effort.