Love yourself by feeding your body with foods that nourish
Do you ever notice how when you eat a lot of crappy foods – cookies, cakes, fast food, or similar items – that your body just feels crappy? It’s like that old adage – you are what you eat – or in reality, you feel like what you eat.
Most of those options are high in refined carbohydrates, leading to blood sugar spikes followed by rapid drops. They’re also typically high in sodium, which can lead to bloating and affect your blood pressure. And they’re lacking all the good stuff we need, like vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals, that keep your heart, muscles, skin, hair, and much more in tip-top shape.
This Valentine’s Day, how are you feeling about the foods you’re putting into your body? Are you showing your body love by fueling it with lots of fruits, veggies, and other nutritious options? Or are you neglecting it a bit with not-so-healthy choices? If you admit to falling into that later category, set aside some time this weekend to sit down, plan your meals, buy some groceries, and set yourself up for better nourishment.
Love yourself by participating in exercises that energize
I really believe that everyone can find some type of exercise or physical activity that they enjoy. Maybe you won’t be head-over-heels in love with the activity, and it might take a little willpower and motivation to get you moving, but there is some activity out there for everyone that leaves you feeling exhilarated and energized when you’ve finished it.
For me, there’s nothing better than crossing the finish line of a road race or triathlon. Do I always wake up excited to go train? (Heck) No! It takes some whining and self talk sometimes to finally get me out on the road (“Chrissy, just get out of bed, you could have been done by now!”). But once I’m out there, I enjoy it and always feel good afterward.
What activities make you feel great? What leaves you smiling after you complete it? Are you prioritizing those in your life? Are you showing yourself some love by regularly including them?
If you’re new to fitness or are struggling to think of some ideas that you may enjoy, here are a few suggestions (from the basics to the more creative):
- Running (try signing up for a road race or group running program)
- Weight lifting (consider a personal trainer if you need help)
- Cross fit
- Trampoline classes
- Rock climbing
- Belly dancing
- Pole dancing
- Hula hooping (there are even classes for this now!)
- Trapeze lessons
Love yourself with thoughts and words that strengthen you, not ones that harm you
We all are guilty of saying negative things about ourselves at some point. And sometimes, this can be a good indicator that you’re tired of the status quo and you’re ready to change something. But continuously talking negative about your body doesn’t serve in your best interest. Confidence is a beautiful thing, and exuding it at any body size or shape can be the difference between frumpy versus fabulous. And if you’re not happy with something on your body, take positive action steps to change it – but appreciate yourself and the hard work you’re putting in along the way, not just when you reach your end result.
So, this Valentine’s Day, I hope you’ll focus on taking care of yourself – whether it’s through eating healthy foods, exercising, or treating yourself to a break from negative self-talk. And cheers to loving yourself enough to make those positive choices and stay healthy!