I love sports. I always have. I played basketball and volleyball in high school. Due to a back injury, I couldn’t play in college, but I coached volleyball for a few years when my daughter was a baby. I like the competition, the activity, the team effort and camaraderie.
In my grown up years, I’ve always tried to stay in shape somehow. And I’ve ridden the roller coaster of fitness just like everyone else trying everything from biking to Zumba. I like to move. However, I have found that with so many choices out there in terms of physical fitness, you have to find the fitness that fits you or you’ll never stick with it.
For me now, it’s CrossFit. I know, I know. People hear CrossFit and think that’s crazy stuff. And to some extent, it is. It’s a whole culture that you either get or you don’t. But not unlike yoga or outdoor sports, it has it’s own way of doing things and some click with it, some don’t. Again, fitness that fits you.
In the sports I played I was called strong, aggressive, powerful. Sadly, our society doesn’t deem those traits as feminine or girly. But I beg to differ. I joined CrossFit two years ago. And for me, I can honestly say I've found my people. In there strong means beautiful and big is a compliment. Power is a positive and the shape or size you are is unique. I’m grateful to have found a place where I’m accepted as is and encouraged to work towards a strong, fit, healthy lifestyle. I’m a girl. I’m feminine. I am strong. I don't care that it's hard to find jeans that fit my legs because I know how much those legs can power lift. The world can think what it wants. In there, I am the best version of myself.
That is fitness that fits me.
I think there are three things fitness needs to be.
Fitness needs to:
1) Fit your personality – I have tried yoga. And I think it’s great. I do. I truly can see why people love it. But it’s not for me. It moves too slow and I find myself either giggling uncontrollably or thinking too much about what I want to eat when I’m done. I have friends who are yogis. They love the slower pace and concentration on the use of muscle. It’s relaxing for them. It fits their personality, what they need from a workout. Some friends like Zumba. The dance moves and high energy is their kind of thing. Perfect. Me? I love that for the hour I’m at CrossFit I can shut my brain off and just go hard. Not think about anything but pushing my body to its limits.
2) Fit your social comfort level – Not everyone likes fitness in a class format. I love it. I need it. I need to accountability. To have people say, “Hey, you’re gonna be at class tomorrow, right?” If I say yes, I best show up because if I don’t, they’ll ask why. And not just that, it’s a community. After class we stretch and talk and catch up. I’ve made friendships in there I will cherish always. I like these people. They encourage and push me to be the best me I can be. But not everyone works that way. One of my boys absolutely does NOT like to work out with anyone. He loves to mountain bike because he can plug in his headphones, ride for an hour and shut off from the world. Okay. That fitness fits him.
3) Be fun – I’ll be the first to admit that many of the workouts I do in a week I would not label as fun. But the experience as a whole is enjoyable for me otherwise I wouldn’t keep coming back. There are SO many things to choose from that get your heart pumping and your blood flowing. That challenge your muscles and improve your fitness. Hiking, biking, weightlifting, swimming… The list is endless. Find what you love and do it.
Life asks a lot of us as women. And it can tough to find time to workout. But we do ourselves a great disservice by not taking care of ourselves. If we do, we are then in shape to help take care of others who need us.
Find the fitness that fits you. You won’t regret it.