Friday, December 16, 2011

Mental Fitness

I got up bright and early Thursday morning to go lead a fitness class at the school's fitness center. Sloshing through a rainy but warm pre-dawn, I arrived to find a line of the regulars waiting to get in. This is unusual, because usually the fitness center is open 15 minutes or more before its official opening time, 6:00. It was right around 6, and it wasn't open. No one spoke much and it seemed like everyone would have been content to wait there until, well, until they weren't, but I said "Well, for those of you who want to do it, we can have our fitness class up in the gym."

I thought I might get some extras into my class, but no, it was just my regulars. The class grew out of the plyometrics workout in P90X, but while P90X is designed to be done at home with minimal equipment, I can take advantage of the fact that our fitness center has stackable boxes made for plyo and add different exercises accordingly. Well, normally I can, but today I had to strip it back to a more minimalist workout and I had to do it on the fly. No problem.

Though not joining my class, most of the others who'd showed up did find something to do, mostly hopping on the ERG machines and rowing, or else walking the track. One older woman, though, felt the need to complain loudly about it all. When we thought we saw the fitness center monitor coming, she said "Only an hour late!" and said it again when she walked in (except that it wasn't her--whoops!). I let the woman know that I had e-mailed the Fitness Center's director and she said "Well, she's always late."

I don't actually think that's true. It hasn't been my experience, and although I've cut back my gym time, I had 3 or 4 months where I was there at 6 am four days a week, and I can remember one time that this monitor was late. But this woman was determined to be unhappy, and that was that.

I know in the past that I've reacted negatively to setbacks, and I'm only human, so I'll certainly do so again, but when you see it in someone else, it's easy to see how unproductive it is and the kind of negative energy it brings. I was glad, yesterday, to be part of the solution, getting people to go ahead and work out instead of just standing around or giving up and going home.

The key, if I may, seems to be flexibility. In my case, I just had to make some minor modifications to a workout whose ancestor, anyway, was done with almost no equipment, so that was pretty easy. But if, for instance, I had come in planning to do a chest and back workout, even if I really wanted to use weights and machines, I could get a pretty decent workout from push-ups and the chin-up bar that I know where to find. And if the workout I wanted to do was impossible, I could always go for a run or find something to do and not get too hung up on not being able to do what I planned. As long as you get something done, call it a win and get on with your life--it's too short to get so negative about it.

And you're all free to remind me of this if you catch me jumping to negativity!

Have a great weekend, everyone--maybe the reason positivity is easy for me is because we sent the kids home and started break. Three weeks! Which would be better if we didn't have to spend about a week of it moving, but c'est la vie. Best to you all.

No comments:

Post a Comment