After a month off feeling absolutely deflated and unmotivated for life and my gym workouts (which i sometimes rely on for mental health),
I trained today. I woke up early and did my usual morning routine which made me feel like I was in control again.
As I persevere through the reps and trying to build up the momentum and the mental callous to keep me going I reminded myself I have been doing this since age 19 years old.
I know this game too well.
That little thought fuelled me and also took me back to my young self.
One thought lead to another. To be honest feeling the feelings of a 19 year old me didn't sit well with me earlier this morning.
I was trying to find that same excitement I had when I first joined a gym. When I had first learnt about fitness, only my memory gave me an unpleasant feedback.
Aged 19 I recall stepping into the gym with NO idea what to do but doing an hour run on a treadmill had me feel so empowered, so in control. So fearless so... Just a wow feeling.
I had spectators in the gym watching me and some till this day tell me how my enthusiasm kept them motivated while they trained.
Physical training has always taught me to resilient, to overcome obstacles and to stay focused. Yet I had this side of me that had no confidence, and my bitch rest face could have easily been mistaken for being stuck up and arrogant.
But when I was 19 years old, fresh outa uni I didn't have much to hold onto and I realised my gym workouts came from a place of
self rejection. Self doubt and Self loathe.
I hated my body, I hated how my hair looked. I didn't like anything that starred back at me in the mirror. I was in a weird space trying to figure it all out.
So with every mile I ran. Every heavy set I lifted I was fighting.
It was me vs me.
I had an eating disorder and if you looked closely into my eyes you would have seen me lost at battle with myself.
I had a smile that used to hide every emotion.
I needed help and anger was a close friend for many years.
Anger a silent close friend if I'm honest.
The enemy wasn't anyone else but myself.
I fueled every workout with anger. I was angry against the world at that age I had no emotional intelligence and would pop at any given moment. Recklessly I would punish my body and push my mental ability to stay that extra min on a long run.
I incurred a lot of injuries and recovery wasn't a thing then. I would grit down harder and still push through it. I was obsessed with how I looked (yet at my best I still thought I was fat and when you feel fat your thinking makes you feel ugly too) I was also obsessed with that voice that kept telling me I wasn't good enough so every day I tried to prove that voice wrong. For that few hours my workouts was the only source I attached a meaning for my self worth, that I mattered and I was strong.
This morning as I tried to bring back that fire, it didn't sit well.
I didnt want to be that nazia ever again.
Everything came from a place of destruction and frustration and I wasn't her anymore.
Yes I was deflated but I had to remind myself to be gentle with everything I do now.
Although I learnt to forgive and move on it was a wave of sadness when I looked back at that younger self but was so grateful that I was able to change and when I workout now I do it out of kindness. I respect this body that gives me life everyday.
I honour this body but mostly its my mind I honour more.
I was able to take myself out of that self rejection, self hate and instead pour love and care.
Overcoming the old self into the new one took years of work and patience. I had spent years working on the cause of my pitfalls at the time which has now built a better and strong foundation for me to show up as I am.
At some point we all need to figure out why we do the things we do.
Maybe I needed a month out to feel like crap because I can now enjoy the small steps back to joy and happiness.
21 year old vs 36 year old me
Like most people i have a touch screen smart phone.
I am very clumsy and sometimes have very little care for my belongings so every now and then again the screens crack.
The moment my phone drops and ends up with a crack its the end of that new honey moon period.
I have no interest in protecting it.
So you see it starts with a small crack and i don't bother getting it fixed thinking what is the point? it MAY get worse or even the other thought is i will let it GET more cracked and get it fixed when i REALLY need to.
Anyway this morning the phone dropped again, the glass didn't smash thankfully but within a few hours I noticed how a purple/pinky blob was taking over the screen.
It progressively got worse and worse within a few hours.
When I tried to use it, it simply did not respond.
That silent panic arose within me.
You know our phones are our best friends now a days.
Everything i had planned had to be moved and right now I am in coffee shop waiting for the phone to be fixed which is also costing me a bit of money.
But the money aspect isn't what is bothering me at all.
What is bothering me is why do i always let it get to the brink of my phone getting it to this stage before I take any action?
And as always every little thing teaches me a lesson or it is an analogy for our every day life.
The damage of my phone reminded me of my breakdown back in 2013.
Just like that small initial crack, i felt a little low and before I knew it this had an impact on my self esteem and confidence levels.
Like a sheep headed to the slaughterhouse ...I had no control.
I knew very little about emotional intelligence or social behaviour as i do now so it was hard to even understand myself.
I didn't even talk about it because i couldn't pin point what was actually bothering me.
Like many people, we suffer in silence.
Just like the phone, once it cracks the lines get worse and worse over time right ? even the slightest drop creates a huge impact such as the software, keypads and so fourth.
Over time, by ignoring the initial trigger of that very emotion or pain, it trickled into other areas of my life without even noticing. and so came a day i went into a meltdown, it got too hard to handle.
you know the one where we tend to go quite?
Paralysed by fear
Mental breakdown even
I was too embarrassed to talk about my mental health because I was in denial and the other was I didn't want to be a burden on others.
I could be with family and friends and still felt lonely and empty.
Nothing was wrong in my upbringing, I couldn't blame anyone yet the feeling of lost overtook me for a while.
This was also a transition period of my career so that had a lot to do with it.
A part of me died during this year but I also found another part of me that was positive.
I was one of the lucky ones who survived depression by learning to love myself, sadly a lot of people don't.
I lost one of my closest ever friends to suicide so this topic is very raw for me and many of you who read this I am sure.
Today marks mental health day.
Our mental health is actually in my humble opinion and experience the number one thing we should all take care of and be fragile with.
I trained all my life getting the perfect body but it never made me happy and no one ever talks about creating the perfect mental attitude and we need to talk about mental health more than what magazines and commercials promoting the slim figure and six pack abs.
We need to talk to each other more.
Find out more about one another.
Everyone who has defeated things like depression and survived it share your stories. you have no idea how powerful it is esp in an era where we all think that other people are better than us!!!!!!!!!!!
I pray for anyone who is that dark tunnel, but hold on, that little flicker of light exists at the end.
I created my fitness programme with everything I felt was missing at a time I needed help, I NEEDED A LOT OF HELP both mentally and physically. Fitness Reborn UK was created in my darkest hours, it was just me and my laptop and as I healed I created something that I didn't know would come to help so many other females. I did the process and the process works not just for me but so many of my clients who had transformed.
Our physical health matters and so does our mental health.
Sidenote: Mental health should never be a taboo topic in any culture or faith.
If you need any help I am here
Sending you all lots of love and light from the sunny side of East London