in january i started working out…let me just emphasize i had never worked out before…i had always been a smaller size and able to eat whatever i wanted and then my late thirties hit and now 45……things don’t bounce back like they used to…i can also now just walk past a bag of Doritos and gain 3 pounds…also i love champagne…but in my defense…champagne is a fruit…;)
anywho…a teacher friend of mine kept posting about this boot camp she attended and how like family it felt while there…i just could not imagine that concept…my ideas of gyms are perfect looking people who could bench press me and do 8 million sit-ups and burpees and still have their perfectly quaffed hair blowing in the breeze…at 45 i have turkey jiggling under my arms and rolls in my stomach that i could literally hid stuff in and still pass through metal detectors 🙂 ….but since i trust this friend of mine so much i decided to, for once, set aside my fears of intimidating places like gyms and just try it ….just three days…i mean for heavens sake…it is free the first three days….and it would be rude of me to pass up something free, right !!??!!
i showed up one morning and right away listened to the instructor tell all of us there…” do not look at your neighbor to your right or to your left” …” you are here for you…not them….even if they can do more than you…you only focus on you”….and i literally took her words to heart…something in me just clicked and i realized …i am the only one who can change me…i am the only one who knows how much i can do and the only one who can push me….
three days turned into 6 months…i was starting to see results…not pounds per say on the scale but i felt better…my clothes fit better…i could do more of the exercises correctly and usually maybe on a good day like 5 in a row ! and maybe this wasn’t huge to others who are way far ahead of me in the gym but that didn’t matter..it was huge for me and the coaches and friends i had made there celebrated “my progress”…i even figured out what a burpree was…i still can’t do one but i know what it is 😉
then summer came and scheduling went out the window and meal planning and camps and vacations and eating by a pool and not at a table all came into play and viola…solid months at a time would go by without me being in the gym…..then i became very frustrated with myself and realized how much i had sabotaged all my progress ….and i started down that slippery slope of self judgement and being so upset with what i had lost that i just didn’t want to start-up again…..
but little by little i would start showing up again…and as always…i had my cheering section of friends and trainers who would encourage me and tell relatable stories on how summer is hard…everyone gets derailed …but it is about getting back up and keeping at it… and then just like the coach when i joined who said ” only look at me and not my neighbors..”…i went just last week and one coach was there who has had her only person journey with weight and being healthy and really blowing it out of the water with where she is now…and now she uses all that journey to be a coach and she is phenomenal at it ….because when someone else has had to fight to overcome…you tend to listen more and believe more in what they say……and just last week i was there and still not mentally where i should be concerning myself and the fact that i’m basically starting over now after the summer…and we were doing a squat hold and she is yelling through the mic to just hold on…don’t give up…don’t quit on yourself…breathe through the pain ( and believe you me i was in pain) and she just kept saying ” don’t give up on yourself” and once again, something in her belief in us and her words of encouragement and determination just resonated with me and i thought…Yes!! i will not give up….and i held the squat for 10 more seconds..
i say all that to say this….today was my 100 days at this place…i got weighted today and indeed i have gained weight over the summer….but ive also gained muscle…ive gained endurance…but more than any number on a scale or measurement…ive gained confidence back because of the coaches and friends i have there who just keep showing up with me and keep encouraging me…and keep laughing with me and dancing with me…and smarting off with me…..
you see it takes community in life to do anything…to improve in your spiritual walk , to improve in your marriage, your parenting, your job, and without a doubt as i have learned it takes community to improve your health ….find your community …find those who will hold you accountable when you don’t show up…who will encourage you when the numbers are heading in the wrong direction…who will help you figure out which direction the exercise is supposed to be going and what it should actually look like…and just like both coaches said …
DON’T LOOK at your neighbor , you aren’t here for them..you are here for you…do you…and
DON’T QUIT ON YOURSELF!!
Health, friendship, community, accountablity…..then results…just keep showing up…doing you…and don’t quit on you!