I never have been, really. I was a healthy kid, curvy teen, and now I’m an “ultra plush” mom of four. My pants always wear holes in the thighs, the back of my arms wave as much as my hands do, and I’ve given up trying to mask my muffin top, but that doesn’t mean I’m lazy. As a matter of fact, I love to work out. For me, the gym is and always has been self-care. However, I’m less interested in getting skinny on the outside than being healthy on the inside — that includes my body and mind.
As a matter of fact, a few years ago I was unhappy with the way I felt being overweight, so I went through an amazing process and lost close to 70 pounds.
I still wasn’t skinny, but I was much healthier, and I realized something truly amazing: working out makes me happy. When I got pregnant again and gained back 50 pounds, I realized something even more amazing: working out STILL makes me happy, regardless of my weight.
When I began my big weight loss journey, I had three kids ages three and under, and every day my only goal was to survive.
My mom gifted me a gym membership for Christmas (don’t judge her — I had asked for it!), but the real gift was that my gym provided childcare! Taking my children to Gold’s Gym gave me the mental break I needed to get through the day while I could rest assured they were well cared for. Even now that my kids are older and some of them are in school, I can still take my five-year-old to Gold’s to get out of the house, play with different toys, and interact with some friends while I get 90 minutes to myself.
At Gold’s Gym, I can listen to upbeat workout music that plays throughout the gym or in group fitness classes, but many times I pop in my headphones and listen to 90’s pop, Christian worship music, the Hamilton soundtrack, or laid back indie rock.
The pace of my workout isn’t that important when I’m there for self-care; I just do what I need. Some days I am stressed, and I just need some deep breathing while I walk or do self-guided stretching in the studio. Other days I am angry and need to sweat out my emotions on a bike. Sometimes I get down on myself when nothing seems to go right, so I set a calorie burn goal and keep going until I meet it, so then I know I have accomplished at least one thing I set out to do that day.
The number on my scale changes from time to time, but that’s not the point. Going to Gold’s Gym gives me a break, much-needed endorphins, and a sense of accomplishment. My children get to play with new toys, interact with other kids and caring adults, and sometimes they get to sneak extra screen time in the Kid’s Club when the XBOX or their favorite movie is on. We all walk out the door happier, healthier, and in better moods than when we walked in. That’s what self-care is all about!