Why am I so hard on myself?

It’s Saturday morning, the 28th of December. I’m in bed reading a book and enjoying my second cup of coffee. I’m planning on doing a workout this morning before my husband and I go out to lunch. I didn’t do a Sworkit yesterday, in stead we went to the local mall and walked 2.46 km, burning 495 calories, just by popping into the stores to look for work shirts, perfume and sunglasses. Such is the nature of post Christmas sale shopping.

Last night I decided to do a dumbbell workout this morning to work off the take-away dinner we had when we got back from the mall, but now I don’t really feel like doing anything. I’d much rather just stay in bed and read my book. I say this to my husband and he, very reasonably, reminds me that I always feel better when I’ve exercised. He’s right, so I decide to do a yoga workout in stead of the dumbbells. On a whim I go to Youtube to find a yoga workout, and discover the Boho Beautiful channel. Wow! The locations and the quality of the videos, not to mention the really great yoga!

There are so many videos to choose from, but I go for Intermediate Power Yoga to tone, strengthen and challenge yourself.

 

At the end of this 18 minutes yoga I had burned 30 calories. And that’s when the thoughts come: I hadn’t done enough. I wasn’t sweating enough. It was only 18 minutes. I should have tried a harder, more intense workout. Why hadn’t I done the dumbbells?

WTF?! Where do these thoughts even come from?!

My body felt that it had done enough, but my mind didn’t. As I was walking out of the living room, I saw the printout I had made of how to ease into Crow Pose with the help of yoga blocks. (I had received a yoga block and travelling yoga mat from Lululemon as a Christmas gift from one of my bosses. So lovely!)  I got the printout, got the yoga block and tried to do crow pose. It sort of worked, but I wasn’t in the mood to  push myself or, more importantly, to be playful about it and explore what my body can and cannot do.

I packed up and got in the shower, still feeling disappointed in myself. But as the warm water was washing over me and I felt the comforting lather of my shower gel I started to feel better.  I realised that I had a choice and I decided to get up and exercise despite not really being in the mood.  I could have stayed in bed. I could have stopped the video half way through. I could have chosen an easier video. I could have not tried to do crow pose.  But I still did it!

I’m proud of myself for showing up to the mat. I shouldn’t be so hard on myself.

(I wonder whether seeing “only” 30 calories burned on my Fitbit HR was what triggered, or at least exaggerated the self-deprecating thoughts… Maybe I’m too fixated on calories burned and not on enjoying the practice and noticing how good any exercises makes my body feel?)

Writing this blog post has made me feel better. Better about having done yoga this morning, better about being hard on myself, and better about spotting the early signs.

I’m going to be kind to myself today, starting with red lipstick, my favourite perfume, and going to lunch with my husband.

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