Did you do it? Are you right there with us? Valiant and I are happy to report that we've completed Day 8 of our 30 Day Shred Challenge. Buttercup has made up one of the two days she missed, so she's finished Day 7. I can't believe we've only got two more days at this level. I'm still struggling with girl push-ups and those anterior shoulder lifts, but I can definitely feel myself getting stronger. How weird is that? Only 8 days into and I can feel a difference. I can only imagine what I'll be saying after the full 30 days.
I've been chatting offline (via email) with a few of my friends about this challenge and it occured to me that none of us stopped caring about our health or our looks or our fitness. What happened is simply a case of 20 years of benign neglect while other things were more important to us. The ugly truth is this: Women today can have it all. Truly. The myth comes into play when women think they can have it all simultaneously. Choices have to be made, priorities established and I know the choices I made, the areas I prioritized and the areas I put on the back burner. Thin thighs or a paycheck? Hmmm...flat stomach or a kid's activity? Carrot sticks or a cool ethnic meal out with our spouse?
Obviously, other things were more important to us. The urge is always there to second guess yourself, to try to add more to your to-do list, but you can reach a certain point where your to-do list is so long that trying to do everything means you aren't doing anything well and that is the point when things like fitness start to fall off the list as you pursue balance. I think we all do the best we can with the constraints we live under. The great thing is that priorities change and years of benign neglect can become months active rehabilitation. When the time is right and I'm finding myself in that time and place now.
I'm not trying to find my 20-year old thighs (although, if they show up, I'm not turning them away!) and no matter how trim I get, the "baby-came-out-this-way" stretch marks across my stomach won't be going anywhere. Nope, for me, and for those of you I've been talking with, this is more about feeling like you're caring for your body, appreciating what it can do for you and ensuring that it will continue to do it for a long time to come. We're dusting away the cobwebs and reacquainting ourselves with parts of us we tucked away long ago.
Exercise makes you feel energized inside. It sounds so cliche (but cliches happen for a reason, right?), but it feels good to get your blood pumping. That is why it isn't as important what you do as much as it is that you actually do something. The years pass either way. Do you want to be talking about 30 years of benign neglect or do you want to look back and remember when it was time to start taking care of yourself again.
So, I'm done with Day 8 and super proud of myself. What about you? What have you done today to make yourself feel proud?