Making yourself a priority is one of the biggest challenges I think many of us face when trying to reach our health and fitness goals. We are constantly getting pulled in a thousand different directions from work and family to personal relationships and social demands so it can be incredibly difficult to say no and prioritise the one thing thing that we actually want to do whether that be workout, take some time out for ourselves or participate in any other hobby or interest that we have. There are a few reasons why we find it so difficult to make ourselves a priority but the two major ones are that we are scared of saying ‘no’ and because we feel it is selfish or self indulgent to put ourselves first. Learning to say ‘no’ is a blog post in itself and is coming tomorrow, so for today lets discuss why it is not self indulgent to look after yourself and why, in fact, it can have an incredibly positive impact on those around you!

Life in the 21st century is packed full! Even as I write this I have a to do list that is as long as my arm full of work tasks to be completed before I go on maternity, house chores, trying to stay active, trying to get the house prepped for baby’s arrival and trying to do everything before 10pm so I get a good nights sleep and continue to function the next day! As you can imagine, it is not going great! How the heck am I going to fit in a baby? I’ll be honest and say the only thing that makes me feel better is that I know I am not alone! Every single person I train, as well as so many of my friends are constantly juggling the same amount of tasks, if not more. It does not matter what job people do or whether they have children, we all have days packed full of commitments and unfortunately looking after ourselves can often come at the very bottom of the list. That has to change!

At 7 months pregnant, I am now not doing much exercise except for walking and I decided that I would try to go a walk most days even if just for 20 minutes. For a couple of weeks this was just not happening, except at the weekend, as I kept saying I just didn’t have time. Stress levels were starting to build though and I was beginning to waste a lot of time in the afternoon feeling both lethargic and overwhelmed. Therefore, I said, no matter what I will get in at least 4 walks a week and the difference this has made has been massive. I feel more energised, my productivity has increased and so has my mobility.

Saying to ourselves that we do not have time to make ourselves a priority or feeling selfish for doing it are both understandable reasons for avoiding exercise, but I would challenge you to do 30 minutes exercise every second day and assess the impact it has on your overall day. I really believe it would make you more productive, reduce your stress levels and make you feel more equipped to deal with the pressures of daily life!

Looking after yourself is so important as none of us are any use to those that rely on us, if we are unwell, tired and stressed. If we look after ourselves we will be even more useful to those around us, so next time you think it is selfish to do something for yourself for 30 minutes, just think of all the benefits!

Fit Bird

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