8 Reasons to be Thankful for Fitness on Black Friday

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Heather’s dream is to share with the world her success at becoming healthy after age 40. Heather lost over 88 pounds through changing her diet and incorporating exercise into her busy life. She would like to take what she has learned about becoming fit after 40, and using her Metabolic Training Certification to help others struggling with weight issues mid-life. Heather’s post day is Monday.
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Being fit is a lifestyle.

It does NOT mean you need matching workout outfits or running shoes that will break the bank.

It does mean a commitment to movement, making healthy decisions, and most of all being thankful for fitness results and what they can offer back to your everyday life.

What’s there to be thankful for about spending an hour sweating? As your health and fitness dreamer, I thought back to how my life was just 2 years ago at Thanksgiving. I was preparing for hosting the 20+ person feast and getting ready just as I am now. Baking pies, pulling out every serving dish I own, and double checking the list to make sure I have all the goodies ready for our large family Thanksgiving. So what has really changed after I lost 80+ pounds?

Why I am thankful for fitness

1. Better attitude

Workouts give you a good vibe which is the gift that keeps on giving! The mood lift that even occasional workouts will give you helps with anxiety and depression. I can vouch for this in my own life. Being able to handle stress much easier is a bonus I can’t live without. My colleagues can vouch for how cranky I get if my noon workout is skipped.

2. Overall healthier (and longer!) life

My Grandmother lived to over 100, but she didn’t have a high quality of life. The odds of my living a very long life are high, and I know that I want to enjoy every moment possible. Fitness research has shown that regular exercise can increase both heart and brain health – keeping you moving and lucid further in life.

3. Sleep comes easy

I admit that I rarely have issues with falling asleep. Staying asleep used to be a common issue before I lost 80 pounds as I had issues breathing (and as my husband will tell you, snoring) that constantly interrupted my sleep. Another thank you to fitness is the average 7 hours of sleep I get most every night. Sweating it out during the day can definitely help you sleep better at night.

4. Raising healthy children

Granted my son is turning 18 in a few short weeks, but that doesn’t mean that my recent thanksgiving for fitness hasn’t had an impact. He has always been very active, moving and playing since he was little, and finally finding a sport he loves made a huge difference in his high school experience. It is still quite satisfying when he sees me on the treadmill and says “Whoa mom, you’re booking”. Keeping up with your kids at any age is a wonderful experience!

5. Reducing fatigue when you sit for a living

I spend at least 10 hours a day on my butt. This seems to contradict my edict to “move more” in my fitness goals, but it actually supports the need. My career is computer based and like most of my fellow cubicle dwellers will confess, the time we spend at our desks adds up to a lot of nothing in the health department. My daily thanks to fitness routine is a lunch time walk or run. I won’t get a lot of mileage in, but simply stepping away from the environment can refresh your energy and mood and keep you going.

6. Run up stairs without gasping

I have stairs in my house, and at work, so I am typically up and down flights of stairs a dozen times a day. The caution that I used to approach those steps is gone. I attack them with confidence and speed when heading up or down the flight. The feeling of being able to run up all those step – never mind being able to actually see my feet on those steps – and not gasp for breath at the top is wonderful.

7. Stand for long periods of time

Baking for the Thanksgiving holiday is a marathon. I am on my feet, standing in the same place, for hours. In the past, my husband would being in a super thick and cushy floor mat from the garage, just so I could stand in one place with less back and knee pain. These days my back pain is an occasional issue, and is more likely to be based on an intense workout rather than fatigue from standing.

8. You are in control of your best body

There is nothing that can give you confidence faster than feeling strong and healthy in your own body. Everyday things like carrying in more groceries than you though you could, or moving a box you were convinced would be too heavy to manage. Another huge perk is the ability to easily pick up and swing around my 80 pound niece!

Just the tip of the iceberg for being thankful for fitness

These reasons to be thankful for fitness are just the beginning. Being thankful for our health is so important. Health gives us the opportunity to dream, to think beyond our daily lives, and improves our life experience overall.

What makes you thankful for fitness this year?

No matter where you are in the world, I thank you for being here as a part of the 8 Women Dream experience!

~ Heather

Photography by R. Mabry Photography

  • ImanWoods

    I can’t believe how FAST you did it, and the HARD way. You’re an inspiration.

  • Helena

    Hi Heather 

    It was great to meet you at the Photo walk.  You talked about your weight loss but seeing the picture makes it even more amazing!  I can imagine how much better you feel and how much more energy you have now.  Inspiring!  Thanks so much for sharing – especially at this (tempting!) time of the year.   

    • Thanks Helena! So good to chat with you on the Photo Walk and thank you for your kind comment!

  • Cath

    You look fabulous.  

    • In case I didn’t mention it today – I’m thankful for you girl :) Thanks Cath!