There’s something about starting up a new fitness program that fills us with HOPE, enthusiasm and determination.
I’ve been there many times, and it’s an exciting (and often scary!) place to be! However, what happens when it’s day 7 and you feel WORSE than you did the day before you began? Or what if you’ve been giving it your all for a full week and are left feeling nothing but bloated, heavy, and FURTHER from your goals?
I believe this is a big reason many people quit their health pursuits early, and let me tell you: I’ve been there!! In this past year, I’ve learned so much about what it means to take care of my body and trust it in the process. When I first began the 21 day fix (an incredible program that I’m eager to share more about!), I was following the nutrition plan and honestly felt like I was stuffing myself every day. It was HARD to eat as much food as I was supposed to every single day! After the first week, I felt so discouraged. My tummy was larger than ever with bloating, and I felt more squishy than before. BUT I knew the truth that I was fueling my body with highly nutritious foods and was exercising each day!
You see, the problem was that prior to beginning that program, I was in a perpetual cycle of trying to eat less. Seems logical to lose those last 10-15lbs of baby weight, right? Eat less, lose weight! Well, I’m here to share that there is SO much more to it than that! Because I was constantly UNDEReating, my appetite disappeared, my metabolism slowed down, and though I didn’t know it, my body was holding onto extra fat because it was in starvation mode. The body is so smart! If it doesn’t know it will be given enough fuel, it will hold on to fat in order to have a reserve for the future!!
Also, there is so much research proving that muscles will often retain water at the beginning of a new workout program. If they are being stretched and used in ways they haven’t before, they will be inflamed for a short time and hold onto extra water as those muscle fibers repair and get stronger. This may result in increased body weight due to the water retention, but take heart!! It is temporary!
I pressed on, and sure enough, my body soon caught up and after that first week, I began feeling so much better. My energy was higher and I felt way less bloated. I began feeling like eating that much food was a breeze, and sometimes even went over those portions – which felt like a huge success after feeling so stuffed to the brim!
I share this with you now because a mama in my current challenge group just went through something similar. Today marks day 12 for this group, and the first week or so she felt crummy, for similar reasons as I did. But today, she woke up feeling like she had a major breakthrough. Her pants suddenly feel more loose and her bloating is quickly diminishing.
Friends, when we FUEL our bodies with the nutrition it needs, remarkable things happen! But it’s a matter of trusting our bodies to do what it needs to do!!
Once I started eating MORE food, I began shedding fat and seeing muscle in places I never had before!
>>> Have you gone through a similar experience? If so, what gave you the resiliency to stick it out? I’d love to hear from you!