Right reasons

Without fail, the first few weeks of the spring semester always bring a flood of students to the rec center.

Reenergized by the idea of a fresh start, students, myself included, are determined to hit the gym, eat right and make this year their healthiest yet. Three cheers for enthusiasm!

Unfortunately, the rationale behind these resolutions is not always positive. Too often do I hear my peers, especially females, saying the reason they are working out is because they hate their bodies. Sadly, this attitude is a part of our culture. I’ve been guilty of it as well.

If we don’t like something (or in this case, hate it), we’re told to change it. Now, that may get some people results, but imagine if your workouts were fueled by positivity instead of this socially acceptable self-loathing. What if you worked out and ate healthy food not because you hate your body but rather because you love it.

For 2014, I have resolved to be kinder to myself. This year, I plan to prioritize my health—both physical and emotional—in order to thank my body for all the things it does for me. It will be a nice change from berating it for all the things it does not.

We’re two weeks into the new year, and so far, this approach has been working. I’ve been listening what my body is telling me about what and how much it needs. When I make decisions for myself out of a place of love and self-respect, it becomes much easier to choose between a Snicker’s and an apple or hitting the snooze button and getting up for a run.

Just a little food for thought to exercise your mind as you think about food and exercise in 2014.