Negative Chatter Getting You Down? Me Too, Friend. Me Too.
Lately it’s been on my mind that my workouts aren’t what they used to be. (Duh. How can they be? I had major surgery and I recently found out I have nerve damage from it which has made it extra hard.)
That’s what it’s like when you’re coming back from injury or surgery, starting at square one can feel sort of defeating. Even when you’re making big strides, they’re still not what they used to be. And that’s hard to swallow. So you can take it that way and defeat yourself before you even go by “knowing” already how it’s going to go or you can dig your heels in and “know” that you might not be where you want to be but you damn well will be if you keep lacing up.
Every time we work out we make a choice in our minds. We can defeat ourselves before we go or we can cheer ourselves on as we walk out the door. BOTH choices have a direct effect on the outcome of the work out.
And I’m seeing it on places like Twitter and Daily Mile.
Because when did “just getting out there” stop being a success? When did riding 18 miles become just sort of ok? I remember there was a time where just getting to the gym was progress. Now I’m beating myself up for what I did (or didn’t) once I got there.
Do you do the same thing?
It’s on my mind even more lately because I’m watching it on social media. People (like me) who aren’t proud of what they’ve done, who aren’t satisfied with how long how fast how far they went and how they felt at the end. Our inner negative chatter is starting to come out online. Raise your hand if you’re guilty for openly beating yourself up! (Me!)
I wrote about the voices in my head last week and how hard I am working to calm them and just be kind to myself and be proud of what I’m doing. The same day I wrote that, I read this post by Barb about celebrating fitness, just being out there, and doing it. (Great minds must think alike, right?!)
She pointed out that not only is the negative chatter damaging (it is!) but who knows who’s going to read about your workout? Here’s what Barb says:
“Can you imagine how I feel reading a post that says something like, “Gah! I’m so slow, how can I even call myself a runner?” then looking at their pace and it’s 2, 3, 4, 5 minutes per mile faster than mine? Those people must look at my run reports and think I’m a total idiot for daring to call myself a runner. No? What else am I supposed to think reading posts like that? Of course they would never say disparaging things about my training, but you know what? They don’t have to. They’re putting me down just fine by treating themselves like that.”
In her post, Barb started a hashtag that reminded me that we have to get excited again, and get back to our workout “roots.” The good old days, the times where all of it was hard and we were proud because we were still doing it. We felt good afterward and we were glad we just showed up.
Barb is challenging us to #CelebrateFitness by taking this pledge:
“I pledge to celebrate every workout I do in September. I won’t put myself down just because my pace or distance was not what I had planned. I will celebrate the victory of that workout, which might be as simple as getting out when I really didn’t want to or as profound as a personal record. It doesn’t matter how big or small the victory seems at the time – I will celebrate it and ditch the negative.”
USE THE #CelebrateFitness HASHTAG on Daily Mile and Twitter. And when you are working out, when you get home, TWEET OR LOG the GOOD. And don’t belittle it. Don’t make it “I’m tired but at least I went.” CHANGE IT. Make it, “Yeah that’s right, 18 miles baby. I DIDN’T QUIT.” Don’t pick out the fact that you don’t think you did it fast enough or that you felt like cut it short or you wish it went better. Don’t talk about shouldawouldacoulda. TALK ABOUT WHAT YOU DID.
And CELEBRATE YOUR FITNESS every time you put on your workout clothes. You deserve it! You DESERVE to be proud of yourself! I deserve to be proud of my 18 miles!
When we log our workouts, remember, OTHER people are reading. Whether or not you know it, what you’re doing is inspiring to other people. That’s why there is a space for a comment below the workout. Because someone can cheer you on or tell you how much you inspired them to keep moving.
Let’s start raising each other up.
Let’s start cheering others on but let’s start first WITH OURSELVES.