Ahhh the ever so comfy comfort zone…how hard it is to leave thee!
It is no secret that we as Crazy Sock Divas are definitely advocates of pushing past those comfort zones—be it trying new things or pushing yourself harder than you did yesterday—but even we still find ourselves drawn back to our comfort zones.
By definition, a comfort zone is a place or situation where one feels safe or at ease and without stress (thank you, dictionary.com). In the fast-paced world we live in, it sounds counter-productive to encourage people to view this as an unacceptable place to want to achieve. The message is always that you must push past this zone for the “real magic to happen”—and it’s definitely true, but in simpler terms we think it’s better articulated this way:
Nothing changes if nothing changes.
For someone who is entering into the fitness world for the first time, getting out of the comfort zone is everything from doing new things your body isn’t used to doing to modifying your diet to include things you may not have eaten before or exclude some naughty favorites. The entire process is leaving a comfort zone for the better! Definitely explore the gym and different fitness activities to see what you like (or don’t like, or could like in due time).
For those who have been in the game for a while and have a workout routine that’s consistent and effective, and adheres to healthy eating habits most of the time, maybe it’s ok that this is now comfortable enough to be labeled as a comfort zone. The goal is to maintain good health, and if you’re doing that, there’s no problem whatsoever on the health front alone (we’ll get to growth in a minute).
It all boils down to achieving balance.
• Honor your comfort zones. If running or Zumba are your happy comfort zones, do them. Feeling at ease and stress-free are extremely important for mental wellbeing. It’s one of the biggest reasons many of us workout! There is still room to challenge yourself in familiar activities both in and out of the fitness world without compromising the overall enjoyment it brings you. For the comfort zones that involve a Netflix binge and couch time, schedule that somewhere in your plan and give it a set time frame that won’t consume your entire day. Overall, set some structure around the time you spend in your comfort zone as you would any other activity.
• Challenge yourself. Don’t let fear ever be a reason you don’t try something new (unless it’s something you could be seriously injured or die from—like venomous snake yoga or running blind-folded down the interstate). It’s true that life-changing, “magical” things happen outside of your comfort zone. It’s called growth, and sometimes you achieve it in ways you could’ve never imagine without stepping outside of it.
And most importantly, remember that you don’t have to go outside of your comfort zone alone! Ask a fellow Crazy Sock Diva to try that new class with you–things are always less scary with a friend.