HAPPY LABOR DAY! I hope your Monday was full of everything BUT labor. The weather lately has been *perfect* so hopefully you made some time to get outside, do something fun, get a workout in, and eat some good food – even if you did have to work today. 

Speaking of rest and NOT laboring — I’m always working on making myself rest more. That sounds weird. Who has to make themselves (their self? theirselves? IDK) rest. I have a hard time sitting still, chilling out, and just not overdoing anything really. And this doesn’t necessarily make me productive either. 

BUT…I’ve spent so much time on the couch watching football over the past couple of days – like actual live football on TV – thanks to youtube tv. It’s not cable, but we have all the channels! I haven’t really checked it out yet, but I have watched a lot of football over the weekend, and I’m pretty sure I haven’t sat still for that long since I had surgery last October. 

But this is all good because I’m getting ready for the GRANITE GAMES this week/weekend. I’m so pumped, yet so nervous at the same time. 

Ok, so today I want to talk about this podcast I listened to over the weekend. It got me. It was so simple, yet really impactful. 

I listen to the Barbell Shrugged – Shrugged Collective Podcast from time to time. There is a segment called Real Chalk. I came across an episode on Friday: 

Orthorexia and Fitness Addiction with Erin Monson

If you get 45 minutes… you know, while you’re driving, cooking, or doing the laundry, you should check it out. And if you get a few extra minutes on top of that, take the time to tell me what you think. 

Before we even get started, let’s talk about “Orthorexia.” “Orthorexia” is stated as “an obsession with eating foods that one considers healthy,” and is considered to be an actual eating disorder by the National Eating Disorders Association. 

I can’t say that I’ve personally ever dealt with this, as I try to find balance in all things related to food – mostly because I love eating things like tacos, ice cream, and sweet potato fries in moderation and when I’m with my friends. I limit when I eat these things, and I prefer all the healthy alternatives that you see on my instagram, but I’m definitely not scared of social situations because of food, and I know myself well enough to know when I can splurge a little in social situations, and when I need to chill. 

Now that we’ve taken care of that…the majority of this podcast is about fitness/exercise addiction – which is something I can admit that I have struggled with and still do find myself battling. Maybe it’s just me (or maybe I’m just more aware of it now) but I think it’s been brought to life a lot more over the past couple of years in the fitness community. I think people are beginning to realize that while exercise and fitness is a GREAT thing, it can also be harmful (just like anything else) if it is overdone.

You may be reading this, and looking at the screen like, “ummm…what?” This can’t even be a real thing. And exercise is great for you, so the more you get in, the better…right?

No. Not at all. But hear me out… you can still LOVE to exercise (even multiple times a day) and not have a problem. Only you know that. I’m not trying to make anyone think they have a disorder when they don’t. BUT it’s always good to be aware.

I won’t get into too much of my story because I’ve talked about it a ton on here. 

Here and Here are a couple of posts from 2 years ago (I think). Sorry for the terrible grammar and writing skills. I’ve since then written some other posts about this whole process.  

I was able to hear Erin’s story and relate to it on so many levels. I’ve loved all things exercise since I was in middle school. My parents were the bomb and kept me in sports, especially competitive soccer. I remember having a treadmill at our house, and all throughout middle school, I felt like I needed to burn off everything I ate on the treadmill. I remember going to the doctor when I was in middle school because I passed out, and the doctor told me to limit my exercise (outside of sports) to every other day for 15 minutes. I thought he was crazy. Long story short, these habits continued over into high school, college, and even out of college, after I got married and moved to South Carolina. I started CrossFit back in 2013, and that helped a lot! I slowly quit doing all of the extra running, and I became more ok with how I looked. However, I’ve always wanted more. The class programing was never enough for me. And after I surprised myself and made that cut to get to Regionals, I put a lot of pressure on myself. I never felt like I was “good enough” to be where I was at. I felt like I needed to put in a lot of extra work to be able to keep up with everyone else. I’m a slow learner, and things take awhile to click with me. In a nutshell, I went from wanting to workout all the time to look great, to wanting to workout all the time to try and “catch up” to where I “should be,” or because I just didn’t feel “good enough” if I didn’t.

^^^Sorry, I guess I just started typing and ended up sharing a lot of what you’ve already heard. MY BAD. But fast forward to the past several months, and I’ve realized a few things: that I’ve spent a fair share of time feeling exhausted for no reason, not wanting to do anything with other people (and blaming it on coaching and being too tired because of getting up early, or because of all the conversations I’ve had with roughly 100 people that day). I’ve wondered why some of my friends have no regret, or feel no pressure to take a day off because “life happens” or their body just “isn’t feeling it,” while I’m over here feeling guilty for even taking one full day a week of no exercise. I love that CrossFit and actually doing the programing at CFEC helps me to just walk in the gym and not think about what I’m going to do. BUT a lot of unnecessary time is put into thinking what else I can be doing? Or what else should I be doing right now? Or what else can I do today? And that time can be spent towards so many other things.

As you can see, I’ve been able to see some things in me that I don’t like. And believe it or not, I’ve slowly backed off of the volume of working out and/or training I was putting in. And as far as being a competitive person goes, I would even argue that I’ve gotten better at CrossFit as a sport because I’ve been able to find intensity that I didn’t know I had because I’m resting more, and I’m not so dang tired all the time. 

I still have a long way to go. But I’m happy with the progress I’ve made. I’ve actually loved this whole workout (a little) less/eat more thing I’ve been doing lately. I wrote last week about the results I’ve seen from it. I tried to not let off too much over the past month or so (despite some hip issues) because of trying to prepare and be fit for Granite Games this week/weekend. But I’m excited to back off a little more after it’s over and keep focusing on working out to make my life better and healthier and more fit in the long run, as well as continued focus on what I’m eating, how much I’m eating (eating enough) and the mindset that comes with all of that. 

I’m trying to be a better wife, future mom (not pregnant), friend, coach, daughter, sister, and all around good role model in our little fitness community. I believe in CrossFit- that it has the ability to change peoples’ lives from the inside out. I’ve seen too many examples day to day and in myself. And I still believe that God has used it to help me and help me help others. But if tomorrow morning I woke up, and I couldn’t workout at all, or even coach at all, what could I still offer the people around me?

And with that, I know that there is more to me than working out, abs, muscles and more muscles, and CrossFit as a whole. I’ll still continue to share about those things because I have worked hard for them. But they aren’t my identity. There’s more to me than what I can snatch, clean and jerk, back squat, press, and deadlift —-and that’s a good thing because none of those numbers are very impressive! And there’s more to me than being able to hold my own on all of those long, grueling workouts that most people can’t stand, but we keep showing back up to get them in. 

And if you’re battling this, I want you to know that there is more to you too!

Listen to it. Let me know what you think! Don’t be scared to ask for help, back off, eat more. Our bodies are God given (the only one you get) made to do great things, despite our limitations or perceived weaknesses. It’s amazing how the more and more you actually stop and listen to it, the more it will speak to you. And if you and I don’t love and take care of the one body we’ve been given, other people may be inclined to think less of you too. 

Have a great week and as always, thanks for listening!