Working out and the Comparison Trap
As many of you know, I am a huge believer in finding an exercise that works for you. No one form of fitness works for everyone. If you can find something that you like, you will probably be more inclined to do it on a regular basis. Exercise is not only important when trying to shed the pounds and tone up, but it’s been proven to have huge mental benefits as well.
I’ve recently become obsessed with a class at my gym (Equinox) called Barre Burn. According to their website, Barre Burn consists of, “a total body workout that slims your hips, tightens your thighs, lifts your seat, & mobilizes your metabolism. Utilizing ballet movements, intelligent isometrics, changes in rhythm, range of motion & progressive core training, your body heals, tightens, strengthens so you look, feel and move better.” Basically it’s an hour of intense movements that are a hybrid of yoga and pilates with light weights. At first glance I thought this class would be super easy, and a bit of a joke; 3lb weights seemed like no big deal. Boy was I wrong! Basically the class exhausts each muscle to the point of fatigue. The thing I think I love most about the class is that each time I take it; I see differences in my body almost immediately. After taking the class for the last month, I have begun to notice that I am walking a bit taller, my arms are a little bit more toned, and my stomach is getting stronger.
In being 100 percent forthright, although I love this class, and continue to return each week, I do find my brain wandering off to thoughts of insecurity throughout the hour. I find that so many of the women in the class are more flexible and stronger than me, and at times that perpetuates into feelings of self doubt and insecurity. In situations like this one, I try to remind myself that I am not there to compare myself to others. These women have probably been taking the class way longer than I have, and come from a different fitness background then myself. Maybe some of the newer girls are even looking at me and feeling the same way!
Regardless of why my brain tends to navigate towards these feelings of self doubt, its important for me to praise myself for getting to the class, and giving it my all.. every single time. Positive reinforcement is a skill that I use with my clients all the time, and it is something that definitely works for me. Being hard on myself never leads to success.
The comparison trap is really difficult and something I think about often. Most of the time when comparing ourselves to others, we are subconsciously trying to figure out a way to deal with our own stuff. It’s much easier to push our insecurities off onto others rather than dealing with the true issue at hand. Next time you are feeling unsure of yourself or feel like the other person has a better “life, body, financial situation, etc” try to remember your worth by praising yourself for all that you do, each and every single day. Take a minute to step outside of yourself and realize that you are exactly where you need to be.