Find Your Own Strength
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Health and Wellness

Find Your Own Strength

Hold yourself accountable.

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Find Your Own Strength
Marissa Knox

Growing up, I always considered myself athletic. I was involved in many sports like gymnastics, soccer, basketball, softball, and volleyball. I was in great shape year-round due to how active I was. Once going to college, sports were no longer active in my life. Sure, I did go to the gym with friends and took some yoga and Zumba classes, but I never formed a habit of it all.

"On average, it takes more than 2 months before a new behavior becomes automatic — 66 days to be exact. And how long it takes a new habit to form can vary widely depending on the behavior, the person, and the circumstances." - James Clear

66 days is a hefty commitment to make to my physical health, but I wanted to do it, so I made it a personal goal. My boyfriend, a physique competitor, was the one who gave and still gives me an immense amount of support. He encouraged my personal goal from the start and supported me by being my gym buddy.

My growth started slowly as a snail. At first, I found myself only comfortable doing ab and cardio workouts as I did in college. I tended to shy away from the machines because I was afraid I would do them wrong and potentially hurt myself. Also, I have zero upper body strength...

I have always had noodle arms and could never do a pull-up, not even to save my life.

Eventually, it was time to up the ante and move out of my comfort zone. My boyfriend challenged me to try new machines to strengthen my arms and legs. We even added pull-ups into my personal goals. Of course, I was terrified at first, but my nerves were calmed when he showed me how to do the machines correctly, step-by-step. Soon enough, I was feeling the burn in places I didn't even know I could feel.

My body felt like an old punching bag of soreness.

Sometimes, I would even wake up in the middle of the night because my body ached so badly. This would make my motivation for going to the gym the next day difficult for me. Some days, I didn't make it to the gym, and that's okay. I just made note of it and made up for it.

Life gets in the way of our health, it happens.

What's important is to realize that things may come up and plans may change, but you have to adjust accordingly. It's that simple.

I continued going to the gym at a steady rate and with low weights and high reps on the machines, I was beginning to see results. It didn't happen overnight, but soon enough, I was noticing that my legs and arms were looking toner and defined. I was even sprouting tiny biceps. To top it off, I found out that I could do pull-ups.

One year later, I am in the gym at least three times a week and I take hot yoga classes regularly. I'm feeling stronger than ever and my habit of going to the gym has even affected my eating habits and mental health. Going to the gym regularly has me eating cleaner and has improved my mental health tremendously.

The secret to forming and maintaining the habit is having someone support you, but also holding yourself accountable.

I am extremely fortunate and grateful that my boyfriend has been so supportive of me and challenges me in my own fitness goals. I am also proud of holding myself accountable throughout it all.

It all starts with you and your willingness to make a change. I was lacking in physical strength until I found it through forming my habit of going to the gym.

Once forming a habit, it becomes a lifestyle.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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