As the world begins to open, and your friends and loved ones start to emerge from COVID -19 quarantine, “snack and chill time,” they are going to look...let’s say ‘different.’ You know different; hairy, grayer, paler, and rounder, heavier. Stop right there! Do not open your mouth yet! Nope, not a word! There are going to be plenty of conversations about weight loss, diet, exercise, and losing “COVID-19 pounds.” When those friends and loved ones start posting selfies of their workouts or their new workout attire, and you know it’s coming, eye roll if you must, but hit the like button. What I do not want you do is ask “Why are you working out?” “How much weight are you trying to lose?” “Who are you trying to look good for?” It could just be me, in my corner of the internet here, but I truly dread answering the ‘reason’ questions for my lifestyle changes. “You must have a new boyfriend?” “Are you planning a big trip?” “Something demeaning disguised as a playful comment” followed by uncomfortable laughter. Maybe it is female culture? Maybe guys don’t have these conversations. Whatever the reason, I just need them to come to an immediate halt! Maybe my previous lifestyle choices weren’t the best and I needed a change to save my life. I used to boldly proclaim “I’ve always been fat, now I’m giving skinny a try!” That would really stop people in their tracks. I no longer say this for a number of reasons. I don’t use the ‘f’ word (fat) and well, I am not striving for skinny, just healthy. It took a number of tries, tears, and conversations to understand that this is a way of life (hence the wording “lifestyle”) and not just a quick fix to look better to impress those around me. COVID-19 quarantine provided a great amount of stress, uncertainty, and plenty of free time to raid the fridge and pantry. Did you not know you were hurting and not helping? You are forgiven this time. There are some ways to show your support. Ask if your friend would enjoy a workout partner for a day? Offer to exchange recipes. Instead of a “you look great” try “I see your hard work;” or “keep that shit up!” Even ask could join or start an accountability text group. What are some things you have found helpful along your journey? Whatever your journey, be a good human! If you need some additional support with your journey, we are here to help.
Lydia Bowie Executive Administrator Intensity Fitness, LLC