And for once I was SuperMom

Sunday, April 30, 2017


So there I was in the locker room of my local YMCA, and I hear a voice behind me say,
"I was just on the treadmill and the girl next to me was flying."
And I thought, 'oh geez, was that me?'  I tried to remember who was next to me on the other treadmill.  I couldn't remember.  The disappointed voice kept talking,
"She was doing like a 7, and she wasn't even sweating."
I thought, 'Well, that couldn't have been me, I sweat like a...a something that sweats a lot...' As I passed her on my way back to my locker I smiled, just in case it was me.  I didn't want to be the source of her discontent.  I didn't want to be the person that made her feel bad.  Everyone should be able to exercise to their ability and feel good about themselves.

Now I've been on both sides of this fence.  I've been the girl eying everyone else as they pass her on the track, and I've been the girl 'flying'  on the treadmill.

Here's something I want you to all know, never once have I ever thought, 'I'm going to run fast on this treadmill to make the person next to me feel bad.'
Never once have I ever thought, 'I'm going to throw myself down and do one more burpee to make the woman behind me feel out of shape.'
Never once have I ever thought, 'I'm going to lift heavier weight to make other people in the gym feel weak.'
Not even once.
I couldn't remember if she was the person next to me on the treadmill because I was focused on my own run.  Hear that?  'Because I was focused on my own run.'

This kind of comparing hurts everyone.

If we constantly compare ourselves to each other in ways that make ourselves feel bad we all lose.  If I know that my success makes you feel bad, I can't be openly proud of what I've done.
If you're looking around you comparing yourself to the other people who are 'doing better than you,' well then, you've already lost.

We've all done it, the sideways glance into the mirror.  The frustrated pat on some part of our body that we hate.  The 'go away' pat.  The 'I hate you' pat.  The 'I wish you were different' pat.  After a Spin class I did that sideways look, and I remember patting my belly.  That part of my body that has been stretched and pulled to produce babies, that part of my body that has never been the same after the birth of those babies.  I remember that angry pat, but what was different about that pat was that immediately after I corrected myself.  I thought, 'Lara, you just put yourself through a workout that would make some people throw up.  Be thankful for what your body is capable of.'  The revelation rang deep in me.  Don't focus on what I look like, but be thankful for what my body can do.

Exercise is one of the best things you can do for yourself.  Hours on the treadmill, weights lifted, time on the mat, it's all money in the bank.  All of it will help you feel good about yourself.  All of it will keep disease away.  If your only motivation is to look a certain way you will never win.  If your motivation is to feel good and chose health over illness you will always win.

Do you feel good after you exercised?
Than you've won.

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