I’ve been trying, desperately to do two things this year. One, develop a regular habit of going to the gym. Yeah, yeah I know. Typical New Year’s Resolution thing but the difference for me is that I’m actually training for something. I have an end goal and I’m serious about reaching it. And two, stop casually buying so much food. Bagel here, cinnamon bun there, dinner because I didn’t feel like packing it, breakfast sandwich because I felt like it, that kind of thing. So far, I have to say, I’ve been doing pretty well. I’ve only bought dinner once because I didn’t pack it and lunch once because I literally dropped the one I’d packed on the floor. I’ve only had one week where I didn’t make my goal of three times per week (2/3 isn’t the end of the world, right?). This may not sound impressive but to have kept up these habits for two whole months while working two jobs and rehearsing a show (and trying to keep my relationship afloat) is honestly a huge accomplishment for me. I am the QUEEN of giving up. One bad day, one bad week and I am the first person to throw in the towel and decide it’s all for naught. This is an impulse I have been battling my whole life and, so far, I’m losing the war. Sticking to it is hard. I don’t understand those people who work a lot but also eat healthy and have crazy muscles and also pursue dreams and volunteer and have hobbies and maintain successful relationships and… Sorry, I’m getting off-track. But, for real, it blows my mind. I admire those people and their self-discipline and self-control. Maybe they work just as hard at it as I do but they make it seem so effortless and sometimes it just doesn’t seem fair.

All of this is a long winded way to admit that the other day, I had a bad day. I felt really sick all day, I was exhausted from a long week (like almost-falling-asleep-at-my-desk exhausted) and I was absolutely dreading my post-work workout and then post-workout rehearsal. I wanted so badly to skip the workout to go home and take a nap and then to call in sick to rehearsal and go to bed. Like so bad. But. I didn’t do it. I dragged my feet into my car and used all my willpower for my arms to guide my car to my gym and not to my house. I dragged my feet and forced myself through my planned workout. Yes, I went a little easier than I might normally but I didn’t skimp on my cardio time and I only allowed myself to go five pounds lighter on the weights. Did I feel energized and chipper afterwards? Honestly? No. I still felt like total shit. I was still nauseous, I still had a headache and now I was even more tired than before and also sore. And, I still kind of wished I’d gone home for the nap but still, I’d done it. I’ve probably never walked so slowly and pathetically in my life but I dragged my butt into the car and away from home, towards rehearsal. Which led to my second predicament. All I wanted was a bagel. A double toasted bagel with herb and garlic cream cheese and a peppermint tea instead of the shepherd’s pie and slightly limp peppers waiting in my trunk; just some comfort food for a long and terrible day. Also, I was early and I have a bad habit of going to get food to kill time when I’m exorbitantly early, as I often am. I allowed myself the tea but skipped the bagel. I ate the shepherd’s pie. (I skipped the peppers.)

So what did I do yesterday? I went to the gym and I ate the dinner I’d packed for myself (sort of). It doesn’t seem like much but the point is that it’s important to acknowledge the little victories, whatever they may be. For someone else, this may be nothing. But for me, queen of giving up when I just don’t feel like trying anymore, this is a small victory of a day that will help me when I come up against bigger, more difficult challenges in my journey to be a better version of myself.  I’m going to win this war, one little victory at a time.

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