Navigating the Unknown in Health + Fitness

October 27, 2017

It is so easy to get intimidated by the unknown.

This applies to almost every avenue of our lives, but these unknown spaces in life — the spots where we aren’t sure what to do, how to do it, or where to even start — these help to shape who we are by pushing our self-motivation to the limit.

When I first got my driver’s license as a teenager and had to go to a doctor’s appointment by myself for the very first time I was so intimidated! It sounds so simple now, but I’m sure we have all been through that part of life where you’re wondering, “What do I say when I walk in?” or “My mom always told the doctor what was wrong with me and now I’m too shy to do it on my own!” I recall telling myself before I walked into that doctor’s office, “If you act like you know what you are doing with confidence, no one will know otherwise!”

Eventually we learn how to navigate through the unknown until it becomes familiar, natural, and easy.

Of course it’s always good to get direction before we do something we know nothing about, but the point is that health and fitness are one of the main subjects that people get intimidated by. We feel vulnerable when we walk into a gym with zero knowledge — and we feel every second of that vulnerability! In this case, the worst thing to do is to allow those “unknown” moments stall us into not moving forward at all.

So here is where we educate ourselves: we “ask our mom what to do”, so to speak. We ask questions that pertain to what we want to know!

1. How do I even get started?

Try EVERYTHING! And when you’ve found something you feel as if you can maintain for the rest of your life then you go after it!

2. The gym is intimidating… how or where do I start when I don’t know what or where everything is?

Usually intimidation is a result of a lack of knowledge and the over-assessment of other people surrounding us. We assume everyone else has it together, when in actuality most people don’t. Find a gym or a surrounding you are comfortable with spiritually and naturally (it could be your own home!) and then research what you are trying to do. If you don’t know how to use that machine you saw in your gym, ask someone for help or research it!

3. Do I have to eat “clean” to be healthy?

So many people have this pre-conceived notion that foods can be “clean” or “dirty.” I am personally not a fan of adding negative conations when it comes to food because it can create such a bad relationship with food. YES, there are foods that are so much better for us to eat, and we should be eating them, but there are also foods that we love that aren’t so good for us that we don’t necessarily HAVE to give up.

So many of us use the words “cheat meal” when we ate something that we deem as bad; but what if we worked on repairing our view of food so that when we want to eat something we can? Don’t completely deprive yourself of food you enjoy that leads you to the point of insanity or binging in an unhealthy way.

4. How do I start eating healthier?

If you don’t typically enjoy veggies, fruits, healthy protein, I promise that there are options out there that you will love! Did you know potatoes have pretty much all the vitamins and minerals that our bodies would need to survive in a famine? Try preparing foods different ways, look up recipes, and as always: research!

Let us not allow intimidation to stagnate our process. Strive to move forward through the proverbial awkward “doctor’s office” stages in pursuing health + fitness!