Warning! This post may sound cheesy or sappy but every word is true! I want to share some of these life lessons that fitness has taught me in hopes that it will empower you and help you see what a profound impact fitness can have on your life. If you’re struggling to find your fitness motivation or if you’re struggling to fall in love with fitness, I hope this post brings you a different perspective that will change your life.
When I began working many MANY years ago in my teens, my pursuit was only weight loss. I wanted to look beautiful and slim.
The pursuit of thinness became my unhealthy obsession. I was over-training, my friends and family were worried and, while I was skinny, I didn’t look healthy or fit. Truthfully it wouldn’t have mattered how thin I was, the problem was internal. I had a low self esteem and needed to work on myself.
It took me years to of personal growth and understanding to change the way I viewed health but through it I learned that fitness was so much more than achieving a perfect body. It was also a symbol of important life lessons that strengthen the mind and enrich our lives.
This empowering revelation is one of the biggest reasons I’ve since become a fitness coach and from it I’ve learned even more valuable lessons from the act of teaching others.
OK get ready for the real cheese! (at least it’s a zero calorie cheese….right?) Here we go! Here are the “5 life lessons fitness has taught me”, both through my own personal journey and through the revelations that teaching fitness has also shown me:
Strength Comes from Failure:
In fitness pushing past failure is a training tactic that enhances muscle growth and increases strength. Failure induces a positive outcome.
It’s not just in lifting. It’s in all aspects of life. Our deepest strengths and our biggest successes come from our biggest failures.
It’s About the Journey, but it’s Also About the Destination:
There’s one important commonality I’ve noticed over my years of creating clear and concise goals for both my clients and myself. It didn’t matter what the goals were, I realized the only individuals that continued to make progress, achieve success and create a passion for fitness were those that lived by a clear goal: “the destination” . They visualized it, they wanted it, and they achieved it. Fitness taught me the destination is just as important as the journey.
While the journey is a metaphor to live in the moment and experience life to its fullest, the destination is our clear vision, a goal that gives us purpose. It’s an integral part of our journey. It gives us direction, personal growth and a sense of achievement. Without it we’d simply wander aimlessly without any life direction. The journey is important, but so is the destination.
It Always Seems Impossible Until it’s Done:
I remember when I achieved my first ever pull up. The total destruction of impossibility was so powerful I had to share this revelation with the world. Pull ups became the new “must” exercise for all of my seasoned clients. Each and every time I introduced the pull up to a client I was greeted with a wave of resistance. “I can’t do it, it’s impossible” they’d say. Yet every time the day came when they were strong enough to lift themselves up. With it came that indestructible pride that they could do anything no matter how hard it initially seemed.
Pull ups have become my ultimate symbol for the late Nelson Mandela’s inspirational quote “it always seems impossible until it’s done”. The total annihilation of impossibility this exercise has brought both to me and clients fortifies my belief that we can do anything we set our mind to, no matter how impossible it initially seems. In fact, the more impossible it seems, the more powerful we become the day we dissolve that belief.
The Quick Fix Never Lasts:
Innately we understand that the process of growth t takes time and effort to achieve. Yet we’re constantly searching for the quick fix. We want the final result now.
This becomes so apparent during the countless times we’ve pursued a new diet or a new exercise program that promises results now but it never works. Even if we lose weight initially, we end up gaining it all back because the quick fix doesn’t work.
Any sort of transformation in life requires internal introspection and the process of shedding old habits and beliefs that lead us to unhealthy habits in the first place. This process takes conscious effort and a true desire for change. Without it there is no solid foundation for lasting change and eventually we’ll end up with the same problem we began with.
Taking our time during our weight loss journey is just a symbol for any transformation change we make in life. The process of tackling old habits and beliefs successfully takes time but with it comes lasting results.
The day my client reaches a new weight loss goal or has walked an extra .25 miles a wave of excitement takes over me. I am so proud and so elated for their success. Yet all too often I’m greeted with disappointment instead of celebration. Instead of celebrating their wins, they’re judging themselves because it wasn’t good enough.
I’ve realized not only in fitness but in life too, we’re often quick to judge ourselves, we don’t see how far we’ve come and we push ourselves to the next level of greatness without celebrating just how far we’ve come.
Whether it’s a raise at work, personal growth or a win in weight loss or fitness, understanding how far we’ve come and giving ourselves permission to celebrate is an undeniable must.
So after your next big win, jump with joy, wave your hands and scream “I’m Awesome!!!” because YAAAAAAAAAY YOU DESERVE IT!