It is hard for me to admit sometimes when I need a break.
I would prefer to be invincible. I would prefer to not disrupt the stability of a weekly schedule that I know people count on. Plus, I don’t like to appear or for my words to be taken as if I don’t enjoy what I do, day in and day out, for a job. It isn’t quite a job to me, it is an honor to be able to work with so many people on their health, fitness, and helping people THRIVE and FEEL GOOD.
But, it is hard for me to admit that while I fully LOVE spreading this passion for fitness, it isn’t without energy. It isn’t without A LOT of energy. And, I realize, this energy needed is often amplified when it is from someone like me, who FEELS FEELS FEELS and WANTS WANTS WANTS. I don’t like to do things halfhearted. I don’t want to just give someone a good workout, or a good class, or a good training plan. I want it to be at the level that it leads people to AMAZE themselves.
Well, I burnt up a good amount of that energy from January to August of this year, and felt myself totally fizzling through August. My energy for my appointments/classes was feeling sometimes FORCED, and my energy for even my own hobbies and interests felt nonexistent. I have a list, an actual written list of things that make me happy, help to bring me out of a bit of depression… because I know myself, and I Know I need this list. I got to the point where I just sat there, not even interested in my list. I didn’t even want to go in my garden. I had nothing left to even give to the things that usually fuel me on a personal level, so I Knew I had to take some time for recharging, even at the risk of disappointing some people with my schedule. I knew that in the long run it would make me better able to continue giving.
I took 5 days off of working- no training sessions or classes at least (I did do some business/computer work). During this time, I did take some time to ask myself honestly, “was there something I was doing that maybe wasn’t energy efficient for me, that was pulling too much out of me, something I needed to back off of or add more of.” And reflecting on my schedule, reminded me of the big picture.
****BIG PICTURE: On a weekly basis I work with maybe 70 -80 people total in various forms of classes, one on one, partner, coaching situation. And, I aim to honestly give 100% of myself in each situation because I believe in every single person that I work with, and also that is what I expect of myself as a coach/trainer.
Sometimes that means pushing someone past their limit on intervals- past what they think they can do, past what they sometimes WANT to do…
Sometimes that means I Have a class where one person comes in and has just found out their best friend’s daughter has cancer, someone else just got into the New York City marathon lottery, someone else barely showed up for class because they just feel so spread thin, and another person just ready to work hard. I try to beneath the surface, know all of these things, and adapt and adjust seamlessly so we can somehow collectively still be in the same “place” even coming from very different places.
Sometimes, even if fitness and this one session is maybe priority #1 in my mind for someone, it isn’t really priority #1 for THEM!!! I realize that at the beginning of the day, in the middle of the day, at the END of a day… there has been LIFE HAPPENING. Kids in different places, leaving another task unfinished, being overdone with an exhausting work schedule and looming meetings.
And ALL THE TIME…. Here is the BIG ONE. ALL THE TIME.. EVERY DAY… I KNOW so fully and deeply how valuable it is to move your body- for your physical health, mental health, for your sense of ALIVE-NESS!
When I plan a workout, I try to plan it to start kind of seamlessly…. And smoothly, a little bit “kindly”.
But then, of course, time is limited. I try to sneak a way to get RIGHT IN to training ASAP.
There is always a goal. I always have focus areas and intentions for each session.
I make sure to add directional movement, rotation, twisting- somewhere near the beginning to warm the spine in all directions of mobility.
I make sure we have a chance to stand on one leg- to work balance, standing on one leg activates core, works pelvic floor.. enough said.
I make sure we don’t just do the easy front of the body muscles that everyone more WANTS to work.
I make sure we “catch” ourself with our feet in some agility patterns. I make sure every workout is different.
I am constantly talking about BREATHING and EXHALING. In strength- the power of connecting the exhale to the work, in yoga, the POWER of just sitting with, hearing, being the exhale.
I make sure there are intervals to get metabolism spiked appropriately to make CHANGES. I make sure we run on tired legs, other times we run on fresher legs, we do things we haven’t done before so that we are making CHANGES in our capabilities! I make sure we JUMP! Everyone needs to JUMP to stimulate BONE TURNOVER (among other things).
All this to say… my mind sometimes spins with ideas, energy, and passion. Because I KNOW how important it is, I see the changes in how people MOVE, which is nothing short of amazing that we really do as humans have the capability to be where we want to be in terms of fitness. And, the energy and passion that I love to share, got drained. I don’t know why I was surprised- maybe because it was summer and I think the sunshine can fuel anything in me!
I recently saw a quote from Lauren Fleshman, professional runner and coach: “You can’t excel at the pointy end of any profession without passion and enthusiasm, and burnout threatens to scorch both.” This rings true to me, and I feel lucky that I gave myself a week to look inside, to be okay with saying, I need some time. I needed that week to first of all, not hear my voice all day long. I sometimes finish the day so fatigued of hearing my own voice. But I needed the recharge, to refire myself up and to be ready to light the path to another season of fitness😊
Hope to see you all this fall!