Let’s talk for a couple of quick minutes about confidence.
It’s one of those things that you all know I have struggled with in the past, particularly when it comes to the body sort.
I went through a really strong period in late high school and college only to kiss it goodbye shortly after when I said hello to motherhood.
Body changes, life changes, hormone changes, diaper changes, all of that combined and zapped my energy, my motivation, my ability to say no to chocolate of any type, and every single ounce of my confidence.
Eventually I dug it up out of myself again (thanks to the help of some amazing friends, my wonderful family, and a couple of celebrity stylists), but still, I have my moments.
Particularly when it comes to my weight.
And working on my fitness.
So let’s discuss the gym.
About a year and a half ago I signed up for it, at the strong urging of DudeDad. He was sick of my whining. I was sick of my whining. We both needed to be different, better, and doing it together felt right.
Only, every time I went inside I felt wrong.
Awkward, and chubby, and silly, and dumb.
Because it’s hard.
The gym is this place where you’re surrounded by all of these people who have these wonderful, strong, healthy, attractive bodies and, if you’re just starting on your weight loss journey, or maybe not to the point in your journey where you really want to be, or just not entirely in love with how these workout pants are fitting like a second skin and making you feel a little self conscious about the possibility that camel toe may be a real issue, um, the snugness of the fit, you may not be feeling as confident as you want to be.
But you go anyway. And you tell yourself that you’re not there to worry about how you look, or how anyone else looks, or what anyone who should be minding their own businesses is thinking about your camel toe how you look. But, everyone knows that when you’re a chick with a little body confidence issue, you’re worrying about all of those things anyway. Even when you tell yourself to not to.
But I’m no punk.
And I recall seeing photos and thinking dayum Dimitri is hot how not like myself I looked…
I wanted to look (and feel) like myself again.
So I went anyway.
I started with something relatively nonthreatening: the stationary bike. I could sit on my butt and not worry if the person behind me could see it jiggling. Then, I upgraded to the elliptical, because it was sort of in the corner and, frankly, my butt was feeling a little less jiggly after a few weeks on the bike. Eventually I slithered into the back row of a body combat class; it’s sort of like kickboxing and I killed that in the 90s. Finally, I snuck into the back corner of a Zumba class and that’s where I found my confidence, hanging out with Pitbull.
Thanks to my dedication to be better, and DudeDad’s continuous encouragement, and the very best Zumba instructors and classmates on the planet I’m here now…
Happy to be a part of something that makes me feel good and look better all at the same time.
Naturally, as I’ve begun to see my body changing positively, my confidence has grown as well, and by confidence, of course I mean swag!
I’ve grown to appreciate the power of rocking a little style in the gym!
I put away the faded yoga pants. I ditched the oversized tee with the hole in the armpit. I went to the store and bought all kinds of sweat wicking, breathable goodies so I wouldn’t look and smell like I peed myself halfway through my workout.
I know it’s hard to say adios to the oversized sweat pants and t-shirts, but it’s a must.
What’s that saying? Dress for the body you want, not the one you have?
Never mind. Forget that. It’s wrong. Totally wrong.
Point is, whether you’re in the gym or heading to the grocery store, when you wear something that makes you look better you really can’t help but to feel better. Stronger. Braver. Beautifuler. More confident.
Confident enough to go to the gym and work out in the free weights section. Confident enough to go to a Zumba class and get your sweat on front and center, not even freaking out that you can see yourself in the mirror. Confident enough to book a session with a trainer even though you know he is gonna make you do burpees right there in the middle of the gym while everyone pretends they’re not watching. Confident to not even care because, girl look at that body, I work out…
*Cool shirt provided by Ruffles with Love.