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Paying attention to my body

Sunday, January 06, 2013

It has been a very relaxing and easy holiday this year. DH and I have been working on being more accepting with each other and with events in our lives and the result has been a holiday where we have found ourselves doing very little, but loving every minute of it. We slept a lot. At first this was unnerving, but, seeing as our mantra was acceptance, we just went with it. We found ourselves thinking more carefully about what we actually wanted to do, so when we did go out it was always a pleasure - be it an easy walk, a visit to the cinema, or a trip to a restaurant. It has been an exercise in paying attention.

This got me thinking about exercise.

So often I want to push ahead with exercise because I have goals to meet, but sometimes our body starts getting sore - sore foot, IT band, aching back. I'm learning that rather than look at these things as something stopping me reaching my goals, that they are waking me up to consider something about my training plan. It seems to me that exercise is a constant learning process. I may think I understand my body and I'm doing everything right only to go an injure myself when I move to a new level of intensity. I think injuries are the only way our body can get us to pay attention to it. I'm also beginning to wonder if learning to pay attention is another part of maintaining my goal weight.

I got overweight because I didn't listen to my body telling me it was full. I enjoyed the feeling of eating too much to want to listen to what my body was telling me. Now I find myself sometimes enjoying my run too much to listen to that muscle that's beginning to twinge just a little bit too much and slow down and start walking. There's a similarity there. It's me thinking more about the feelings and the goals as opposed to thinking about what I really need.

So, paying attention. That's going to be my focus this year.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Well said! It is so easy to get focused in our goals, we forget to listen to what our bodies are telling us. Rest is important too. What can be difficult, is getting back into the habit of exercise after resting, but it is better than injuring yourself and compounding the injury by pushing through.

    Great blog.
    2884 days ago
    lol, I slept a lot too and I'm glad I did that ,I was really tired. and you're right, sometimes we forget we do all this for being healthy
    2885 days ago
    I love I love I love this! I am also finally learning that it's about the journey not the destination. The most important tool to my happiness (and to my weight control) is curiosity - by listening to my body and figuring out what it's saying, not by pushing everything away to get to some specific goal no matter the consequences. I just wrote a blog post about this on Jan 4...it's amazing what a revelation it is.

    2885 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/6/2013 12:50:13 PM
    I like this idea of focusing on "paying attention"!!
    I am not just learning to listen to my body telling me I'm getting full, I'm also having to listen when it's telling me it's hungry. I have a habit of not taking the time to eat properly when I am hungry so when I do finally stop to eat i'm starving. I wolf food down too fast, eating way too much before the "I'm full" signal is received. When I let that happen I'm uncomfortable afterwards... leading to being upset that I ate too much...which leads to feelings of failure and depression...which leads to comfort food eating. By learning to listen to my body telling me that it's time to eat and eating properly is helping to break this horrible cycle I have grown accustomed to.
    2885 days ago
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