My Fitness Lifestyle Challenge: “Making Fitness Permanent”

This blog was written back in November 2012 but I wasn’t sure I was ready to make my commitments public and be held accountable by a larger community.  I AM READY NOW!  Please watch in the next couple of weeks for another post that addresses some of the questions, that at the time, had been left unanswered.  Progress pictures will also be made available *gulp*

I’ve always been active.  I’m that kid who played on every sports team at school and played on rep or club teams in my spare time.  Somehow, with all that focus on sports I managed to graduate University.  As an adult I found that sports teams are increasingly difficult to join as life, work, relationships, and other ambitions (like volunteerism) consume many of the minutes in my day and week.  What this has meant is a momentous shift in how I stay fit and where fitness fits in my life.

When on a sports team it’s really easy to attend because you have a team who is holding you accountable for your performance, your fitness, and your commitment to just showing up.  Now that team sports are not a significant part of my life I have struggled with my dedication to being fit.  It has been one of the hardest things to fit back into my life.  Without a team around me I would easily skip workouts, ignore the pang to go for a run, or have bouts of successful integration followed by massive long term fallouts.

The result: I went from a steady 185lbs to a recent high of 212lbs in a matter of 8 years.  Now weight isn’t the only measure that matters to me so let’s look at overall fitness.  When I was 22, I ran a half marathon and with little training finished 4th in my category.  Fast forward to Easter 2012 and I went for a 13km run that I felt like quitting at 5km and I couldn’t walk, let alone workout, for two weeks.  Now being able to just go for a 13km jaunt may seem like a major feat for some but I used to run 10km without any worry (I could say without breaking a sweat but all my friends know that I’d be lying because I sweat after 10 burpees).

Today: I weigh in at 205lbs (after 8 months of re-committing myself) but can lift more weight, last longer during an exercise and can go for 5-8km runs with little effort or exertion.  I’ve also found a group of people who say to me “I’ve missed you” when I haven’t been to the gym or “I love it when you’re around” when I pop in to just say hello or participate in a class I hadn’t come to before.

So what’s next for me?  I know that I want to continue to make fitness a major part of my life (even if it’s at 7am 3-4 times a week).  I know that I value the friendships that are developing and the challenges we give each other.  In that regard, a friend challenged me to find a goal beyond just being fit.  I am frustrated that I don’t have something tangible like a race or competition but rather something very real to my current circumstance.  I’m suffering from some nagging injuries.  I have tennis elbow and I have had a pretty serious knee injury (from playing team sports nonetheless) that is hindering my ability to commit to a traditional milestone.

The Goal: I plan to continue regular workouts (with the approval of our holistic health practicing team which includes an acupuncturist, chiropractor, sports therapists and a tradition GP) as I rehab.  This is a frustrating goal because I just want run, jump, swim, lift weight and fly.  Okay maybe fly is unreasonable.  I’m committing to taking the appropriate steps to rehab well rather than rush the process and keep the injuries from healing properly.  But I also know that there is a burning inside me to compete in something again, I just haven’t figured out what that goal is or what that target will be.

The Second Goal: Decide what I’ll compete in amidst the rehab process.

So what does Blitz Conditioning mean to me, my goals and fitness?  The Blitz community is full of like minded people who have become that team I crave.  No we’re not striving for a National Championship or attempting to have a perfect record or score sheet but its people who care to have an active lifestyle.  It’s been said to me that the five closest friends you have are the people who are going to dictate the person you will become.  Spend time with people who go out drinking regularly and pretty soon you’ll be enjoying that lifestyle and all the after affects that come with it.  Spend time with people of a particular political view and your views may start to bend in that similar direction.  Spend time with people who make eating well, exercising regularly, and building that community and soon you too will eat better, exercise more often and build a community around you that has a positive focus.

So I invite you to bring more people to Blitz.  Those friends who are struggling to get over that regular fitness hump, they may just need a community of people around them who are already immersed in this lifestyle to encourage them to give fitness permanence and not just a 90 day challenge or an annual resolution lasting 20 days.

Look forward to seeing you soon and I apologize in advance for the pools of sweat I leave behind as I continue to give fitness and community permanence in my life.


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