Rediscover Your “Why”

A friend of mine posted on her facebook page a “Throwback Thursday” post, asking people to post a picture of when they felt like they looked their ‘best’. As I scrolled back through my old photos, I knew exactly what I was looking for. I actually ended up posting two pictures. One from 2010 when I was at my absolute fittest. I stood on stage in the bikini portion of a NPC bodybuilding contest. Even though I looked the best I have in my entire life, I wasn’t healthy. I extreme dieted and was in the gym 6 days a week for 2 hour sessions. There was no balance in my life.
So I had to choose a second picture. My actual healthiest and happiest was in 2013, after starting No Excuse Mom with Maria, making fitness a priority, balancing my life and making time for both eating healthy and exercising on a consistent basis.
As I looked at these pictures, I saw this girl that looked so familiar… at first I honestly thought, “Well, I have lost her. She’s gone. This person no longer exists.” But after a few minutes, I recognized that this wasn’t the truth. Even though life is completely different than it was in either of those two pictures, much of that girl still remains.
Then, something that a friend said to me made a lot of sense: I have lost my ‘why’.
The biggest thing that both of those old pictures had in common is that at those times in my life, I had a very deep conviction for WHY I wanted to be fit. Seeing the pictures brought those important pieces of the puzzle back to the forefront of my mind.
First and foremost, I began my fitness journey because both my mothers and my fathers side of the family have a lot of health issues. Obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, cancer… Name any of the major health problems and it is probably in my family. I had a great desire to be healthy because if I am not, I don’t have a lot to look forward to as I age.
Once my daughter was born and when No Excuse Mom began, she became a huge motivator for being healthy. I wanted more than anything to be a good role model for her.  I want her to have a chance not to struggle with her weight like I always have.
Those two things are still huge motivators for me. They never went away; I just forgot how important they were in the midst of my own life circumstances. Here is me now. Heavier. Less fit. Less healthy. But now I know my purpose for getting fitter and healthier again.
So, what is your “why”? If you have gotten off track, take some time to reflect and think about the biggest things that motivate you on your journey. It has to be something deeper than “I want to look good” or “I want to fit into my skinny jeans”. Your “why” has got to be something that can push you to do your workout even when you’re tired and have low motivation. It has to be something that will give you that extra push to do food prep every week so you don’t run through the drive-thru when you’re hungry and unprepared.
If you have never thought about what your “why” might be, I highly encourage you to take a few minutes and write out your own mission statement. This is what mine looks like:
“It is my goal to be fit and healthy so that I can be a good role model for my daughter and overcome the unhealthy lifestyle that is prevalent in my family.”
The best way to start figuring out your “why” is just to brainstorm all of the reasons you are even exercising already. Some of them are deep and some of them are a bit more shallow. For example, I would love to be the “hot ex”, but that is far from a deep purpose for me. It is, however a good motivator for those days when you don’t feel like pushing it at the gym!
All of our fitness stories look a bit different and so should our “Why”. So, tell me, what is your “Why”?