I sat in my car, engine off, and gave myself a pep talk before I walked in.
“It’s ok if you don’t look good. You can’t worry about what people think of you. Yes, I’m sure there will be hot guys in there – I can’t worry about what I look like in front of them. This is not the place for that.”
I mentally separated myself from thinking about what I looked like – if I fit in.
I made myself get out of the car and walk in. My eyes were as big as saucers. I was timid, quiet, and tried to make myself as small as possible.
In other words, I was acting nothing like my boisterous, sometimes loud, and confident self.
“Hey! Who are ya looking for?” boomed a voice from behind the desk, disturbing my silent freak-out.
I looked over at a guy with a huge smile.
“Kurt?” I asked, like I wasn’t sure if he worked there (which was ridiculous because I knew he did.)
“Sure! He’s around here somewhere”
I followed his gaze. I looked around the gym and saw my sister across the room.
It was a relief to see someone familiar in this totally foreign scene.
I let out a breath that I hadn’t realized I was holding.
I walked quickly across the room towards her.
My eyes still wide, trying to take in this busy, unfamiliar space. My senses processing the slightly musty smell, the unfamiliar equipment, and the grunts and laughter from all the people that felt at home there.
I was so thankful to have my sister with me. It was that feeling of seeing your friend in the cafeteria at lunchtime. My fake-it-‘till-you-make-it confidence could relax a bit.
I was in friendly territory.
I think about that first day a lot.
It wasn’t the first time I had been in a gym, but it was the first time showing up for a really good reason.
It wasn’t for vanity or that workout high, as it was in the past.
It was for my health.
I had recently cratered; receiving an MS diagnosis and a hospital stay getting pumped full of steroids.
Working out had a brand new purpose for me.
It was now about preserving my body in the wake of this very big, very real threat.
My new reason why I was there was all I needed to motivate me and keep me coming back.
Back then, I didn’t love working out like I do now. But having a really good reason to workout was what got me going. It was the foundation upon which I added more layers of experience. More layers that built me up to where I am today – someone who loves working out.
Who doesn’t question if it will happen.
Who makes it a top priority each day.
Do I have days when I would rather sleep in than work out? Absolutely.
But that excuse is blown out of the water when I think about the reason why I work out.
Then I get up and get moving.
You don’t need a scary diagnosis to have a good reason to work out.
We all have great reasons. We just have to find them.
We just have to dig deep and find that personal, oh my god YES! reason that makes us feel electrified.
Great reasons are there – for each and every one of us.
And when we find that great reason, the door to lasting motivation is opened.
Walking through it is easy.
Want to find your own great reason why?
Check out my new FREE class “Get Moving!”
Learn the 5 key elements that can keep you motivated and enjoying your workouts.
(And 3 of them don’t require you to leave the couch!)
I’d love to hear from you!
Do you have a great reason why you workout?
Does that reason electrify you and make you feel amazing?
Let me know in the comments below.
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