There are a handful of reasons that I do things like go to the gym to lift weights at 6AM, run for hours at a time, ride my bike 50+ miles a week and stretch every single night before bed.
I do those things because I like them and they make me feel good.
I do them because they're healthy & will help me live longer.
I do them because they're fun & I like to compete with myself and others.
And I do them because they make my body look the way I want it to.
That's right - call me vain, but I want to look a certain way, so I do grueling workouts that take time and require discipline and dedication.
For a few months last winter, I had the very strategic idea to stop wearing makeup (eyeliner and mascara is all I use). After all, my sweat only made my mascara run into my eyes and, since I was showing multiple times a day, it seemed like a waste of time to constantly be reapplying. This made sense, so I went totally natural.
Then I stopped doing my hair. Why bother spending half an hour making my hair look nice when it's only ever in a bun or a ponytail anyway?
Was it easier? Absolutely. I had fewer things to do to get ready in the morning so I could sleep a little later. I had a much easier time showering in the afternoon without worrying about saving my hair or makeup. Getting ready for bed was easier since I didn't have to take any makeup off or use any dry shampoo.
But about a month in, I started to notice a drop in my performance. I wasn't working as hard, and I was feeling far less confident in myself. I hated to work out in front of the mirror at the gym, and I hated getting dressed and ready for parties that involved more than yoga pants. I didn't feel like working out, taking care of myself or doing anything that had to do with self-improvement, but I couldn't figure out why.
And then, one morning, it hit me. I didn't feel worthwhile.
I don't mean to offend those who don't wear makeup. In no way am I suggesting that hair or makeup increases one's worth. I am just pointing out that my lack of self-esteem was directly correlated to my lack of self-care.
When I started waking up a little earlier to apply some mascara and a little liquid eyeliner, my entire attitude changed. Then, when I took half an hour a few times a week to blow my hair out, I felt presentable again. I wasn't unhappy when I looked in the mirror. I didn't feel like I was always working toward something, but that I that would never be completed.
Us fit girls are not okay with mediocrity, staying the same or being average, which is why wet are always striving to be better, do better and look better, but that constant drive to be "more" can leave us feeling less than. This is why it's so important to feel confident when we face the world, even if "the world" is the gym, the supermarket or even the inside of our house.
The way we feel about ourselves dictates the way we treat ourselves, so make sure you're always feeling good, whether that means doing your hair, wearing makeup, rocking cute clothes or just smiling.
If you don't like the girl you see in the mirror, you're going to have a really hard time working to make her proud.
When I feel confident, I work harder, recover harder and treat myself better. For me, confidence means looking put together, even on days when I'm a sweaty Betty.
How do you stay confident?