Reverb 10: Appreciate.

by Dian Reid-Jancic· Follow Dian on

Take care of your body.  It’s the only place you have to live.

~ Jim Rohn

When I was younger I could do anything—run a 5K, play 6 games of softball in a day, play tag football in the park, work out for a couple of hours—and I never needed to stretch. As I sit here at thirty-five, I realize that it wasn’t that I didn’t need to stretch, just that I didn’t. I could say that I’m paying for that naivety now; instead I’ll say that I’m learning from it now.

Man is the sole animal whose nudity offends his own companions, and the only one who, in his natural actions, withdraws and hides himself from his own kind.

~ Michel de Montaigne

People have commented about me that I’m fit, based on what they see of me with my clothes on. The Wildcat can attest to the notion that appearances can be deceiving (although I’ll kindly ask her not to). The face we show is often the appearance we want people to see. We eat a salad on a first date so we look like we eat well. We squeeze ourselves into a size [painted on] so we can say we wear a size [2-sizes-smaller-than-is-comfy]. We wear baggy jeans so people can’t tell what definition (or lack thereof) is underneath. But we all know what our body looks like when the clothes come off and the mirror gets brutally honest (if we choose to acknowledge it).

This year I chose to not only acknowledge the honesty in the image reflecting back at me, but to address it. Not just do something about it, but really sit down with myself and have a conversation about what I want for and from my body.

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”

~ George Bernard Shaw

From these conversations with myself I learned that I wanted my body to thank me every day for taking care of it. I learned that I wanted to be more conscious of what I put into my body. I learned that I want to exercise regularly, and not be bored. I learned that I want to be more active outdoors. I learned that I want to work towards cutting out processed foods. I learned that I want to live a healthy lifestyle that fits within the means of being me.

So when Victoria Klein asks, “What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year?” for Reverb 10’s day 14 prompt, I know without a doubt the answer: My body. When she asks, “How do you express gratitude for it?” I also know without a doubt, that part is evolving.

I’m exercising vigorously for 90 days in a row (today is day 41), working the P90X (Classic) Program. Six days a week of intense exercise and one day a week of stretching and/or resting my body. When the 90 days have come and gone, I’ll take a look at what’s next in appreciating my body, based on where I’ve landed.

At the beginning of this process I started tracking my daily food consumption on Livestrong.com to establish a baseline from which to improve. It’s amazing what I put in my body under the pretense of “eating fairly healthy”. The process has been eye-opening. Seeing the facts right in front of me is helpful in making informed decisions. Thinking about what I eat before I eat it makes a difference in whether or not I eat it. And whether or not I eat it, well that’s about appreciating my body.

My appreciation for my body runs deeper than just exercise, and deeper than the food I choose to eat, though. I also choose to express appreciation for my body through meditation and saying and thinking and living the words, “I love you just as you are.

This post is written as Day 14 of Reverb 10, inspired and created by Gwen Bell (Best of ’09) and her rockingly awesome cohorts. Are you reverbing too? I’d love for you to share yourself in the comments below.

  • Love, love, love this! You’re saying YES to your body on a million levels – yes to acceptance and yes to change (at the same time), yes to being aware and yes to love. So wonderful. And Dian, the quotes – ohmyword!

    • Oh, I REALLY enjoyed finding just the right quotes for this post, Karen! It doesn’t always happen that way … I think my favorite of these is the George Bernard Shaw quote … so much truth in everyday life in that quote.

  • Anonymous

    Yay! What an incredible thing to appreciate – your own body. I’m working on that over here 😉

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