I have talked before about motivation and why people are motivated or what motivates people, but why are you doing it? There is a good chance you are doing it to lose some weight. I know that is why I started out working out, but it became so much more than being skinny or looking good in a bikini. After having three kids I knew I needed to be able to keep up with them and losing the weight was what needed to happen, but it became so much more than that. I needed to be healthy for them. I needed to take care of myself so I could care for them. My focus quickly shifted from wanting to be skinny and look good to wanting to be healthy. I did not want to have health problems and be on different medications each day to be able to function. It is not only about physical health either, it is about mental health as well. Both physical health and mental health problems run in my family, but I have a choice whether I want to deal with them through medicine or deal with them through physical activity. I consider myself lucky because I get the choice on how I want to tackle my health. Some people are not able to do that and need to be on medication. I have started early enough where I do not have to worry about diabetes and heart disease and depression. I rarely get sick. The only pills I take is a prenatal vitamin once a day because it is my multivitamin. I have trained many people who were able to cut back and sometimes completely cut out many pills they were taking for health reasons (after visiting their doctor of course). There is no better feeling than being on medications everyday you never thought you would be able to quit taking only to have them cut back or cut out completely all because of the hard work you are putting in each day. You have control over your body. I think people a lot of times forget that or maybe never knew piece of information. You are in control of your body! You get to chose how you look and how you feel, physically and mentally. You get to chose if you want to fit into a pair of jeans, you get to chose if you want to put on your running shoes and go for a quick walk or run to clear your head and mentally and physically feel better that day. Your health and your body depends on you. Nobody is against you in your fight for better health and a better life. You are your enemy. You need to make time for yourself. It is not being selfish or self-centered. If you do not feel good about yourself physically and mentally then how can you take care of others? You need to come first. I know I do not have time for myself in the evenings so I get up at 3:30am during the week to run. I know it sounds crazy, but it is my time for myself to prepare for the day and make sure my body is ready to carry me through the entire day. It is a quiet time before the world wakes up and chaos ensues. I am taking care of my body and my mind. When I am finished then my time goes to taking care of my family, friends, and people who need me. Being and staying healthy is now my goal. Being skinny is just a fun side effect of working hard to be healthy. I want to encourage everyone to exercise for yourself and your health, physically and mentally. Make getting healthy the goal and let the “losing weight” part be the added bonus.