3 Ways I Improved My Self-Love through Exercise

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3 Ways I Improved My Self-Love through Exercise

By Sherese Nicole

We often think of exercise as a means to get in better physical shape, lose/gain weight or stress management. It never dawned on me how much exercise was pouring into and enriching my life by enhancing my sense of self while also improving my confidence. In the beginning, I was starting to experience the cliche things they say about exercise as far as endorphin release and less stress. However, I really started to notice subtle improvements in my personal life as well. Little did I know, within this new fitness journey, I was starting to develop a healthy pattern of self-care.

Here are the top 3 improvements to my life since working out.

1.     Working out is a confidence booster

It’s a great feeling when you realize that the weights you once started off with and your endurance levels have both increased. Lifting heavier weights, has made me feel strong, boosted my self-esteem and worked wonders for my self-image. The change didn’t come overnight of course. I’m about 5 months into this new fitness journey. With only the consistency of working out 3 to 4 days per week, it has shown great results.

2.     Increased ability to handle challenges and decrease anxiety

They say what you do in the gym will reflects into your everyday life, and it couldn’t be any more true. I never connected the dots between exercise and my work/social life before but how I act in the gym carries over into my day-to-day activities. In the gym, I challenge myself to lift heavier weights even though I may not always complete a rep - I still try. In my work life, I approach new tasks or projects with less hesitation and look forward to what there is to learn. My workouts have changed my thought process because I recognize a whole attitude shift that wasn’t previously there.

 3.     Better body and higher self-esteem

After weeks of training, I noticed I’d receive comments on my appearance. People would ask if something has changed or compliment me on my body shape –little did I know but my body was changing. It’s hard to see the changes when you’re fixated on the results. For the longest time, I was obsessing over my results. I’d flex my muscles in the mirror after each workout and never notice a difference. It was only when I stopped obsessing over the details that I truly noticed a change. Now when I take a look at myself, I can see the fruit of my labor. My aura is different and I have a better energy about myself. Exercise has improved the way I look at myself. Now, I’m more driven than ever to go to my workouts because I love the way I look!

I can say that within such a short time frame of consistent workouts, I started to notice benefits that went far beyond physical aspects. I look at working out as a personal investment into myself. I’m exercising to work on my body, but I’m also working on my mental health, well-being, and sense of self, which contributes to my overall self-love.