I have been a gym rat most of my adult life. I started running track in high school and decided I liked the way exercise made me feel. I tried in many sports in college (tennis, karate,water skiing, etc) but none of them stuck. I always went back to swimming and running.
When I graduated and got a real job, one of the things that kept me sane in the “adult” world was having my work out routine. No matter how stressful my day was, I knew I could work out and all would be better. My social life was always with friends I met at the gym. I even met my husband at the gym and he still goes every day (we will celebrate 23 years together soon!).
But throughout all of this, I never feel like a true athlete. I am always in awe of people who are stronger, faster, more defined than I am. I respect so much their dedication to get where they are. I can make lots of excuses – I don’t have time, my kids need me at home, blah, blah, blah. But the truth is, I want to be healthy but I don’t want to work that hard at it.
It is truly awe-inspiring to watch someone that has a goal in mind. I have a friend who is aspiring to join the NFL. Watching him work towards his goal is amazing. I have another friend who competes in 50 mile runs, and another who does the Ride Across America on a bicycle. Another competes in body building competitions. The list goes on. And through it all, I sometimes wish I could be like them. And I could be, if I wanted to put in the effort.
Then I have to remind myself that I also can be awe-inspiring too. I have done sprint triathlons, I have ridden my bike hundreds of miles at a time, I have run half-marathons. I need to remind myself to be in awe of myself because I am pretty good compared to a lot of people. Maybe I am an inspiration to others, who knows? Maybe people see me and think that I am such an athlete. We don’t all need to be super-athletes. We can just do what we do and be proud of ourselves. I am going to go to the gym today and wow myself, because I am awe-inspiring too!