I posted a picture on Instagram last night of me doing some Pilates/core work while wearing my Black Widow top from We Love Fine (you can get the top here). I had already worked out that morning, but was brainstorming outfit ideas for Fandom Fitness videos and threw on that top. Wearing that top though, I realized that I had the energy to add a little more exercise into my day, and ended up doing an additional 40 minutes of exercise comprised of barre, Pilates, and yoga.
This morning I reposted that photo along with a more detailed description on the Fandom Fitness Facebook and Instagram accounts. It was meant to be more of what I’d written on the post from my personal Instagram (“When doing a Pilates/barre workout, I like to channel my inner Black Widow – she’s got the dance background and a killer core”), but ended up getting a little deeper.
We put so much energy into our fandoms, but let’s remember to put that energy into ourselves too. Core strength and flexibility isn’t just for an Avenger (or the actor who plays her). We’re just as capable of developing our planks, balance, and flexibility.
I know for myself, and from talking to other creative, detail-oriented, perfectionists, that motivation is difficult when the ideal is Scarlet Johansson, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, or their comic counterparts. They are so on the extreme of fitness achievements, which makes sense because it’s part of their jobs and they work hard for it (or because they’re artistic renderings). But for most of us, including fitness professionals, we don’t get paid to workout and we don’t have the same genetic makeup as those actors. We’re all built differently, we have different body compositions, we’re all at different fitness levels, and we’re all better at different aspects of fitness (the weight lifter versus the yogini for example).
This is all to say that our bodies are capable of so much physically, but achieving the full potential of our fitness goals hinges on what goes on mentally. There’s a fitness term called “thought traps.” Basically, if you see yourself achieving your goals, have specific and realistic ways to implement changes in your life to work towards those goals, then you’ll be successful. On the other hand, if you think negatively about yourself or your body, or don’t think you’ll achieve your goals, then you won’t.
I started my fitness journey in 2013, and so much of what has held me back or slowed down my progress has to do with negative thoughts. No, I don’t currently look like ScarJo in the above gif and, no, I can’t perform that move (even with wires). But I can get 30 minutes of exercise in a day, I can add a serving of fruit or vegetables to every meal, and I can limit my portions. And when I do those things, I lose weight, I get stronger, my running pace increases, that same HIIT workout that killed me isn’t so hard anymore, etc.
We are all so much more capable and awesome than we think we are. And when we remind ourselves of this, we’re successful.