Comparison. What is the deal with comparing ourselves with everything and everyone in this life? I personally feel that chronically over measuring myself is at the top of the list of things that contributed to disease for me.
You see one main area that has always troubled me is my body image. I have been a skinny dude my entire life. So much so that I can seriously empathize with those that deal with any body image issue and the internal pain that is involved with thoughts of lacking what is really wanted. Whether you are trying to lose it or put it on, the drive all comes from the same place internally and will leave the same mark on your life if you let it.
During the years that I was absolutely annihilating myself in the gym, I thought I had found something to make me whole finally. This was the first time in my entire life that I actually had people that I didnt know admiring the body that I had created of myself. It was truly special at first and I admired myself for the amount of dedication that I was pouring into this and the results. It was truly making a difference. I was looking stronger, getting stronger and feeling stronger and this fueled my ambition...at least for a while.
Anyone who works out, knows that plateaus are a part of the process. This is why its so easy to relapse into old behavior for some, especially people new to working out. But for me this became an unhealty obsession. It consumed way too much of my time and thoughts. Being a trainer, coach and nutritional therapist I know the value of exercise. I also know what happens to the adrenal glands when you workout beyond your own capacity too.
Essentially, I was using supplements that I knew nothing about really. Piling on loads of food, most of which caused me digestive issue all to grow my appearance. Working out way too hard and never really being able to recover. And the kicker is I never got fully satisfied with the outcome!
Every damn mirror became like a magnet for me. The reflection in the glass would catch my eye. The bathroom mirror I am sure got tired of me. And the scale was not my friend either! I was officially addicted to this whole process.
The funny thing is that I had to get really ill and flare up badly from the Ulcerative Colitis to really understand this whole thing. I weigh significantly less than I did back in those days and the simple truth is for the most part I really am not all that focused on it anymore. I weigh myself maybe once a month now. What I really value is how I feel. How I truly feel! My energy level and vitality are the only measurements I need to go by now. When I feel tired, I rest. When my thoughts are not sharp, I rest my mind. When I start to pick at myself and compare every little facet, I try to rest. Notice I said "try". I say try, because I still deal with this like we all do.
Comparing ourselves is a one way ticket to miserableville. For me the comparisons come and go, but the difference is the duration to which I do it anymore. I think this success comes with mind calming practice. My baseline has also changed and I allow myself so much more freedom to just be me dammit! Thats its...just be yourself!!
This is what I bring to you! I bring humility and empathy and a knowingness of how to bring the mind and body into alignment through the right nutritional, physical and life plan that is right for you. I dont have it all figured out and that is actually a comforting thing knowing that your therapist or trainer is humble to admit that they dont. It doesnt matter where we are at in life, we all can learn from everyone and everything in our lives and I love to surround myself with people and things I can learn from! This is of great value to someone on a quest to find peace!
Ian Sandage is a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner who speaks from the personal experience of someone with autoimmune disease and the highs and lows of a health journey