Last weekend’s blizzard was a time of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and self-reflection. Social media provides us with beautiful pictures, exercise demonstrations, inspirational sayings to motivate us to get our sweat on in our baddest, beast mode each and every day.
Last weekend I enjoyed posting away while the snow was falling, blocking me from the outside world. Then, self-reflection hit me. I stopped to question if I was silencing instead of reaching. What if all of these motivational pictures and posts are glanced at and swept away into the cyber sea of a Motivational Wasteland? Posting does not necessarily mean Connecting. I decided to ask the Fabulous and Fit Mamas their thoughts on motivation. Here are some of their beautiful and honest responses:
My Post 1: (Evening)
Hi Ladies. I have a question for you. What motivates you to exercise?
I got 1 like and 1 comment. More than half of the group saw it.
My Post 2: (The following morning)
Good Morning! Most of the kids are back in school today, delayed but back. I know it’s tough this time of year. I am drinking coffee with a side of puffy eyes . . .Last night I asked what motivates you. It is OK to type NOTHING. It is OK to type Exercise SUCKS! It is OK to type I workout for WINE. How about this: I Don’t Know. We have to start talking so we can meet our goals. I am tired of reading lose 10 pounds in 2 minutes. How about you? Let’s get real. Please do not “like” this. Give me an answer. I dare you.
(Followed by emoticons of smiley faces, flexing arm, coffee, and wine).
Response 1: I workout because it’s a good excuse to have time to myself. Do I like working out? Sometimes. It’s better with friends, that’s for sure! I workout for wine too!
Response 2: That’s why I say it’s a lifestyle. I do my fitness with blinders on. It won’t happen on its own. You have to want it and you have to be willing to put in the work. To make the time, not Excuses. It’s not easy but those 10 come off when you put in the work.
Response 3: I love being a mom more than anything in the world but sometimes I just want to take care of myself. I hope that doesn’t come off as selfish. As a mom and a teacher, I’m always taking care of little ones. It’s rewarding, but exhausting. A run outside or an hour kickboxing session helps me focus on me.
Response 4: Um, don’t shoot me, but I work out because I like it. It relieves stress, I sleep better, I feel healthy and it’s my “me time”. Of course, it’s even better with friends
Response 5: Ok honesty time: sometimes I see all these posts and I feel like a lazy, fat, do nothing. I get discouraged. I don’t work out. I don’t have time to get to a gym and I’m sorry but I hate running. So I’ve really done some introspection. (I try to make myself feel better.) I am very active on a regular basis: I teach 4 year olds. I never sit, I’m always moving, bending, dancing, etc with them. I’m always running around, up and down stairs – it’s crazy exhausting.
All day, 5 days a week. I come home, already worn out, to 3 kids with no husband at home during the week. Between hw, dinner, and getting in and out of the car to drive them to and from, I can’t imagine doing an actual workout every day. By the time I do schoolwork and housework, I’m in bed no earlier than 12:30 am. With all of this, I tend to think I don’t need to do more. And I certainly think I can’t do more.
So why do I stay in this group? Well, where do I begin? Sometimes, the posts can discourage me because I feel defeated, yes that’s true. But every time – every single time – I think, “Wow, these women are amazing. And inspiring. And I hope they let me stay in this group.” And I will add that I had an awesome time at the diva dash (which I almost bailed out of), and loved meeting everyone, especially those that walked with and waited for me.
So I have some work to do: I have to get my act together and put something more structured into my everyday routine, and not make excuses. Everyone is busy, everyone has personal obstacles, yet here you all are doing all of these amazing things. I may not have much to contribute to this group, but I am so grateful for this group and for all of you. Keep going, you’re all awesome, and thank you for all that you do for me. You don’t know it, but you do!
Response 6: This is way harder to answer than I would have imagined. A lot of times my motivation comes from just getting into Nature because it is very spiritual and therapeutic for me. I also was born with a weird quality that makes me love pushing myself beyond my comfort zone. Not sure why but I think it has served me well in many aspects of my life. Going to the gym or even being a part of this group also serves a social purpose for me since I only moved here a few months ago and don’t know many people and I’m also at a stage in life with young children where I don’t get out much. Physically, my body doesn’t work very well without exercise so I use it to help with my bloating, low energy levels etc. I’m not going to lie, having a post baby perpetually 5 months pregnant looking body motivates me to try to loose some of the fat. There is so much more that I could say but I guess the short answer is Everything about it motivates me….and I enjoy every post that I read on here and the Moms running group from all the amazingly inspiring women in this area!!
Response 7: I hate exercise. I can think of a million and 1 things I would rather do. I go in fits and spurts, but I’ve just never been a consistent exerciser. As I get older I feel I need it more and more. SO even though I haven’t been to an exercise class since November, I keep reading all your posts and think OK I can do this. Tomorrow. sigh. I did do some jumping jacks today….baby steps???
Response 8: Right now I’m motivated to lose this baby weight that I have been holding onto for 8 months. I want to feel good when I look in the mirror.
These are the women I role with. These women are speaking not only for themselves, but for so many of us. Motivation comes from our past, present, future, and the unknown. Nothing is superficial about exercise.
A stressed, busy mama is not going to exercise because a motivational saying told her to. My fear is that the wealth of visual information is silencing many because they do not see themselves in that “ideal” picture of health, or beast mode. But, keep on talking, fabulous and fit mamas. It’s time to listen, connect, and then post. I promise to do to a better job of that. Thank you for your honesty. Please keep posting your thoughts on our page.