Fitness – An encompassing and (to some) intimidating word.

Fitness is a very encompassing word…

Some may think of a body builder, a marathon runner, a two mile walk, a toned physique, a flexible yoga instructor, a loss of 30 lbs., a loss of 3 lbs.  The term “fitness” encompasses a wide variety of people.  Don’t let the word “fitness” become intimidating.  I used to and still get nervous when I walk out on a gym floor where the machines and weights are located.  Why?  Good question.  Because I shouldn’t.  We are all on a journey to build a better self.  The person next to you is not you.  Stay focused on your goals and what you need to accomplish for yourself.

This machine at the gym, used to be so intimidating to me.

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I would watch people use it out of the corner of my eye, trying to figure it out and build up the confidence to go try it out myself.  It is a pull-up assist machine.  I finally got the courage to try.  Of course, I get on and panic and have no idea what I’m doing.  I asked a “muscle-y” guy that was near to help.  (Sidenote: I get intimidated by this population for some reason.)  He was more than willing to help and so nice.  I try to remind myself that these “intimidating people” are just people with goals like myself.  But, I couldn’t figure out why this machine was so difficult for me to do a pull up on…IT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE GIVING ME ASSISTANCE.  I finally figured out that on this specific machine, the more weight you use, the more assist you have.  So the higher amount of weight you put on there, the easier it would be.  Well, that made complete sense that I had it at zero which meant I was doing a full on pull up with no assist at all.  Well, more like just hanging there.

Anyways, after figuring out how the machine worked, I set a goal for myself.  My goal was to do fourteen pull-ups unassisted in a year.  I know many are laughing, because when I set that goal, I had NO IDEA how long it would take.  Just to give you an idea, I’ve been working on this machine for 8ish months and I can finally do TWO pull ups unassisted.  TWO!  IN 8 MONTHS!  The funny thing is, it is only two but I am SO proud.  The moral here is progress takes time.  Sometimes more time than we realize, but it is consistency that pays off.  Set goals.  I myself started with a goal and will now have many short term goals in between.  Now, I will double my amount to four pull ups unassisted.  Who knows, maybe one day I WILL hit fourteen.  But, don’t let the reality of things get you down.  Use it as a learning moment, modify, then move on from there and progress.

Will write more on a diagnosis that made me realize that fitness is an essential part of my life.  In all honesty, I’m finally transitioning from dreading my workouts to enjoying them (not all days, but many).  I’m realizing the relationships and support systems I have that are centered around fitness. How much of a stress relief it is for me.  It’s really about setting goals (even if that goal is to make it to 1 workout class), realizing there will be rough days but pushing through to meet goals. Don’t let the fears hold you back.  Be brave and push past the fears. Try to look at fitness as less intimidating and moreso motivating.  Yes, there will be challenges, but that’s how we grow.

Thanks for reading!  More to come on this journey!