The other day I was catching up with a long term client and friend, and we were talking about when to know whether you should push through a workout or take a rest. Over and over again I hear this from fellow mamas…especially those in the 35-50 age range.
This is a particularly overwhelming time where we are sandwiched between the chaos of raising young children, the ache of aging parents, the intense pace of growing careers all while holding tightly to the memo of our generation which beats like a drum in our mind: “You can HAVE it all. You can DO IT all.”
This memo has become a dangerous mantra. It has spun a tale in the minds of mothers everywhere that we should be able to do more than we are doing. It spins in our minds in the middle of the night when we have been woken up by our children and can’t get back to sleep. It fills us with FOMO when we see picture perfect images of fit moms and matching outfits and Pinterest worthy birthday parties on social media. We think, we should PUSH through, otherwise we are being lazy…and if we are LAZY, we will never be able to lose the weight, feel energetic, achieve the greatness we want, be the person we want to be.
But here is the thing about lazy moms. They have everything in common with unicorns…in that they simply DO NOT exist.
When I speak with women about this specific issue with feeling guilty about this perception of being lazy, I always ask them one thing:
Tell me everything you did yesterday…
All of it.
It’s a similar story of chores and hustle, of bills and packing lunches and making meals and packing back packs, of showing up for friends and family and work and partners and soccer practices and homework and bed time routines and night time cuddles.
It’s Olympic levels of output.
It is the opposite of lazy.
…and the TRUTH is, that the memo we need as women is that less is more…that we can TRUST what our body’s are saying to us.
Olympic levels of output creates significant stress in the body. Stress in the body equals low metabolism, amped up fat storage, brain fog, exhaustion and imbalanced hormones…and pushing through to do a hard workout or follow a calorie restricted nutrition plan only adds stress to the situation.
Here is what I want every mama to know.
Exercise if it makes you feel good yes. But if you are living in a stressed out body, REST is what your body needs in order to elevate energy and release weight. Fitness will do the opposite. So rest dear one. Give your body the space to do what it can do ALL on its own. Release, repair, recover.