Raise your hand if you’ve ever said any of these: “My motivation for working out is my kids. I want to have more energy to chase them around. I want to set a good example for them. My motivation for working out is my partner. I want them to see how confident I am as I take control of my health.”
There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with any of those reasons for being healthy, nothing at all. I love that my kids watch me work out and then pretend to “be mommy” whilst lifting weights or doing yoga. I love that I have more stamina when we’re playing to run around with them, and more stamina to run up and down the stairs when my kids need things from me (or are killing each other on another floor and I need to get there real quick.)
But if I said that these were my number one reasons for working out, I’d be lying. As much as setting a good example for my kids is necessary, being healthy because I want to be is even more necessary. Being healthy because I am worth it is even more necessary. Being healthy because I am my own person who deserves to live a full life is even more necessary. If I weren’t in a relationship and didn’t have children, would I feel that taking care of my body was less important? I hope not.
In a culture where mothers are constantly expected to put our own needs last, and women are often looked at as selfish if we demand time for ourselves, it’s no better time to stop giving all of our loved ones credit for our healthy behavior, and put the credit where it belongs. You are the one physically taking those steps, lifting those weights, pushing your body beyond what it’s comfortable doing, so why not show the world how much you value yourself by crediting no one else but you?