Doing what makes you happy…

…seems simple enough, right?

Well, I thought so too until I read this post from my friend Melissa over at Tales of a (Recovering) Disordered Eater. Her post, ironically, was inspired by Bethanny Frankel of “The Real Housewives of New York” fame.  In it, she talks about workout motivation. Essentially – that working out shouldn’t be your best friend OR your enemy. There should truly be a happy medium – even when it comes to exercise because you can most certainly overdo it, and not in a healthful way.

Basically – its not altogether healthy to look at things as very black-and-white all the time, especially related to fitness:

I worked out today – which is “good.”

I didn’t work out today – which is “bad.”

Working out, and the motivation to do so, should like everything else, be done healthfully and with balance in mind, above all else.

And yes – working out should (hopefully) make you happy and not become a source of stress.

Why am I saying all of this? Because this particular idea is sometimes hard for me to fully embrace, admittedly.

I LOVE to workout…and probably a little bit too much. I DO get down on myself if i either take a rest day (which duh, is obviously needed in order for your body to recover) or even if I switch up when and how I workout. For instance – today, I slept in because I was tired. No biggie. I will workout after work and it’ll be just fine. But yet – somehow, I find that I am a little bit “off” today because my routine was altered because I haven’t yet worked out for the day.

Is that wrong? Is that bad? Maybe? A little bit?  But on the other hand, part of the reason I feel “off” is because I’ve literally missed (so far today) working out which I honestly and truly just love because of the burst of energy and the positive mood it always puts me in. Much more so than things like the number on the scale or the size of my pants, honestly and truly.

So, going back to the root of my post – doing what makes you happy. If you’re truly happy working out 6 days a week, for example, and are able to weave it into your lifestyle in a healthful way, I am all for it. If you find that you are adding stress to your life because you CAN’T fit in as many workouts as you think/want/need to in a given week, that doesn’t mean you are “bad” by any means. Or — if you “just” go for a walk versus a run or to the gym to take a group fitness class, that’s OK, too – in fact, a walk is a great way to burn off some steam, get the blood circulating and to set your mind “straight” for the rest of the day.

It’s advice I openly admit I need to take more often. If I go on vacation and don’t break a sweat everyday, the world will not end. If I sleep in and do NOT makeup for it at the end of the day, I will be just fine. I need to remember that and, I have a feeling a few of my bloggy friends will feel the same way about their own (over)commitment to working out.  😉 Sometimes all it takes is a new/different perspective to see the forest from the trees, huh?

In other quasi-related news…I have done a terrible job of banishing the negative talk from my life. I know, I know, it was a new years’ resolution – I started off with the best of intentions, I really did! I think, quite honestly, now that summer has hit, my negativity has crept back in because we’re all baring so much more skin than normal. Case in point – I changed three times for that 30th birthday party over the weekend. Granted – three times is better than in the past (it often topped out at 6 or 8), but still – I changed because I felt “fat.” Totally ridiculous, I realize.  I’ve GOT to get used to living in my own skin and embracing my flaws for what they are – unique pieces of me, that make me, ME. So this is my promise to me, but also to all of you (my sister, included!), that I am recommitting to positive thinking, even if I have to compliment myself everyday. 😉

With that – I think it’s time for me to preorder the Operation Beautiful book, have any of you caught wind of it and decided to pre-order? I’m thinking it’s a must-read this summer…