Hi I'm Elyssa and I Exercise Because It Helps Me Feel Well Mentally...


We haven't really gotten "personal" on this page yet- mostly because I had assumed that many people were coming from the TIA page and would already have a fair idea of who I am. Apparently, that is not the case and TIA Active has opened me up to a new group of people who have no idea who I am or what I am all about. SO that is what I am here for today, an introduction if you will.

A few months late is better than never.. right?

Think of this post as a "Hi, I'm Elyssa post" followed by a bit of a FAQ down the bottom taken from my DM's.

Hi, I'm Elyssa... Pleased to meet you!

I have been running The Introvert Archive for a few years now and at the beginning of 2019, I decided it was time to up the ante and create a whole new verticle to my little piece of the web. I've been on my "fitness journey" for around four years now and I have managed to turn myself from a person who only exercised as a form of punishment to someone who moves their body because I know it makes me feel good. 

Since the age of 15 I have been dealing with some pretty shitty mental health issues, that's around six years worth of depression and anxiety going on. At the beginning of my mental health story, I couldn't get out of bed on a good day let alone find the will and motivation to do some form of physical exercise. I was unhappy, I was unfit and I was struggling. 

In year 12 I was doing better than I was at age 15, yet still caving to the pressure and anxiety of being about to leave high school and enter the greater world. This was when I found exercise and movement as a way to feel good rather than just as a punishment for eating "bad foods" or having "bad thoughts." I began using exercise as my break between finishing school hours and studying, I found myself enjoying the movement more and more. Surprising for the kid that refused to participate in any school sports.

Believe me, I am still not a team sports gal. In fact, I don' even like being around other people when I am exercising- because it's a bit of "me time." I can zone out and not give a second thought to anything other than if I can maybe go heavier on that lift. Exercising is the way I set myself up for a good day, it puts me in a productive headspace and gives me the motivation to get shit done.

Don't get me wrong, some days I just cannot even bring myself to lift a weight or run a 100-metre sprint on the treadmill. Some days my chest feels so heavy it feels like exercise just getting out of bed. I have off days all the time, in fact, I just came out of a week of "off" days when I couldn't get through my normal training so I had to make changes, I had to listen to my body and act accordingly.

That is what TIA Active is all about, it's moving your body in the way that will make you feel good, to feel well. It isn't about the feeling of "I have to work out today." or "I need to keep pushing myself to the point of utter exhaustion." It's small, daily movements that will allow you to feel well both mentally and physically.

Alright, let's do some FAQ!!

Do you follow any diet guidelines?

I have a very up and down relationship with food and am currently coming out of a pretty bad phase. Currently, I am just eating foods that make me feel good and trying to eat when my body needs too and food that is going to fuel me effectively. When I try to follow "diet guidelines" I tend to become obsessed and take things too far. 

Do you weight yourself?

The only time I find out my weight is when I go to a doctor that is not my normal doctor. My normal GP doesn't bring out the scales but sometimes I need to go a bit closer to home and they insist on weighing you before you even see the doctor. The last time I found out my weight was November last year when I had a car accident and they put me on the scales to see how much pain killers I was allowed. 
In my personal opinion.. fuck the number on the scales. I was once obsessed with dropping that number, and for what? Now I concentrate on how strong I feel, how good I feel mentally, how I am feeling within myself. 

What is your workout split? 

I have just changed mine up actually which is exciting! Currently, I am doing three heavy lifting days on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday I have free reign to do whatever my body feels like doing. Some days that is cardio, some days it's some boxing, some days I chuck in some HIIT. I am loving having a bit more freedom and room to move and grow right now. 

Do you drink alcohol?

I've just come out of a few months alcohol-free, just personal preference and not loving the way alcohol was reacting with my body and I feel so much better for it! I still am not drinking a lot and save alcohol more as a "special occasion" type thing. My body doesn't do well with any type of alcohol, unfortunately. 

Are you vegan?

As I said above I eat what makes my body feel good and what provides me with the fuel I need to keep on keeping on. I don't eat a "vegan" diet, but I don't eat red meat or dairy either. Red meat leaves a really heavy and gross feeling in my stomach every time I eat it and I am lactose intolerant. Other than that I will pretty much eat anything. Oh except seafood because that will cause an allergic reaction that one. 

How do you stay motivated?

I don't. I don't wake up every day and have the motivation to get a session in, certainly not during the times that I am really struggling with my mental health. But you have to form the habit and have some discipline in order to keep going and to keep pushing yourself. 

That's all for now! Send me a DM @tiaactive with more questions and I'll eventually do another Q&A. 

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