What I learned in the midst of “Insanity”…

I just walked in, drenched from my very first, unexpected, “Insanity” workout. You see, I walked into the gym this morning, expecting the regular Wednesday circuit class, and the gym decided to change the schedule for the fall, and replace it with an “Insanity” class. “Are you kidding me!!??”

As Eliza began to show us the moves we would be doing, explaining the modifications, I could feel my jaw tighten… doubt and anger were creeping in, and an overwhelming fear came over me. The nonsense going on in my head was already insane….”I can’t do this, why are they changing things, I’m going to hurt myself, I’ve seen this on commercials, and those people are in amazing shape and so strong, and I’m not like them, I’m not going to be able to keep up with everyone, my body can’t do these crazy moves and jumps over and over again, I’m not going to like this at all”….

I’m usually one of the people who smile and laugh and encourage others in a class, and during this one, I couldn’t even speak. I was fighting all the doubts and fears in my head, and then part way through the work out, I found myself praying really hard to just get through it. It took a while, but I found a way to grab onto my favorite verse, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens Me”. So, in sync with the moves, I just repeated these words in my head over and over again…through football sprints, spiderman planks, jump squats, mountain climbers….

At the end of the class, while we were stretching, tears just rolled down my face along with the sweat pouring off of me. Eliza encouraged us all, saying, “you guys did great! This is really hard. It’s really hard-but really good.” Others were commenting that it was really hard but a really good workout, yet, my head was still spinning, and I was still trying to deal with all of the emotions. I hadn’t cried at the end of a workout in a very long time. I think the anger and worry was being released, but so was the realization that I had just gotten through, and accomplished, “The Insanity Workout”… The one I had seen on tv so many times, while sitting on the couch, wondering if I could ever do it, but talking myself out of ever wanting to try. Well, I JUST DID IT.

While still stuck in my very unusual quietness, Eliza finally asked, “Wendy, you’re really quiet, what did you think?” I tried to put into words a huge thing I realized about myself during that workout. Then I answered her… “I realize that I hate what I fear. I hate the unknown. I found myself so angry and worry of change, fear and worry of…what if?…What if I can’t do it, what if I can’t keep up, what if I hate it? What if I hurt myself?” And then I was angry with myself for being angry, and for having doubt.”

I had to find every ounce of courage, along with praying and saying that verse over and over again, to fight my way through this class. At certain times this morning, there were other moments from this weight loss journey that flashed through my memory, …. other times I had to fight through many “firsts”…..the time I cried on turf at “Unleash the Champion” after accomplishing a 2 minute plank at the end of a long workout,the day I got through my first spinning class, ran my first 5 mile Turkey Trot without stopping…..

The emotion that pours out of you when you accomplish things you once dreamed of, or may never have even dreamed of, is such an overwhelming feeling. And the most important thing it does….it gives you a renewed hope to believe that you can do more…. that you can dream even bigger dreams, and take the steps to accomplish them. Hope changes everything.

The hardest part that I have to begin to realize, is that these moments seem to happen when I am brought completely out of my comfort zone. I am brought to the edge of the unknown, which is a place where I get overwhelmed in fear, anger, despair, worry, disappointment…and I now have a choice. I can stay completely frozen in all of this and choose to retreat and head back out the door, go home and never try….or I can join those around me, and try it together, and trust the ones who are leading…encouraging one another along the way, and then celebrate the accomplishments together…dreaming bigger dreams together.

I had recently been praying and asking God to show me what I need to do to break through this plateau I have been stuck at for a while with the weight loss…I am 15 pounds away from my goal. I’ve been eating the same great foods, staying within my points, working out 5 days a week at the gym, moving on the weekend, and the weight just isn’t budging. It’s funny, but one definition of “insanity” is doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result….And although all of the good things I have been doing have worked in losing about 95 pounds, it’s not working anymore. It’s time to change things up a bit. So, maybe this new “insanity” workout this morning was answer to prayer. Although it took me totally off guard this morning, it might just be the answer to my insane plateau.

Nobody wants to stay in a place of insanity, I certainly don’t. So, I looked up the opposite of “insanity” and found the words that I truly wanted to aspire to, to describe my life and myself……balanced, calm, reasonable, rational, intelligent, sensible, well, healthy. Who would have ever thought that an hour of “Insanity” experienced at Power Ten Fitness gym this morning would teach me so much today.

I believe we all have gifts and talents that we were uniquely blessed with, that we are to use to serve and impact the lives of others. One of my greatest joys is passing on the wisdom I have learned in this weight loss journey to others, so that they can come to a place of believing and seeing that they can do this also. I believe we change this world, one heart at a time. I have been praying and asking God to show me where I am suppose to serve and work, as I am looking for my next job/purpose in life. A close friend of mine, who has been praying for me to find my next job sent me this in my email this morning…

YouCan'tBeaWorldChangeUntil

What perfect timing! Praying that I can come to a complete trust in God…in, and especially out of my comfort zones, so that He can use me, and my life to serve and change the world, one person at a time! That would be insanely awesome!!!

Power Ten Fitness… Where everybody knows your name….and they’re very glad you came…..

Where everybody knows your name….and they’re very glad you came…..
Don’t know if you all remember this theme song from “Cheers”, but it is what comes to mind now every time I think about walking through the doors of the “Power Ten Fitness Club Gym”. Meg and I finally got the courage to walk through the doors with a coupon in our hands that offered a one week trial, to see if you might like the gym. (That was about 5 weeks ago as I write this today, Feb.10th)

That first day, we looked at the schedule of all the different classes, and asked if we could try them all week. Right away, the man at the desk, along with a man who was working behind him (at this point we had no idea it was the owner), gave us great information, told us about the different classes and what to expect, they didn’t even ask for the coupon, they just told us to try it out for however long we needed and enjoy the classes, and let them know if we needed help with anything. There wasn’t one bit of pressure, they didn’t make us start signing our lives away with tons of paperwork…they just smiled, encouraged and welcomed.

We started taking classes that day, (we signed up 2 days later), and I don’t think we have missed going to the gym Monday thru Friday, for the past 5 weeks. Each instructor has helped us through every “first” experience of their classes….from Zumba to circuit training to spinning…first welcoming us with incredible enthusiasm, helping us adjust to our own individual ability for each class or exercise, and encouraging us as they see our progress.

This was a post from the first week of going to the gym….it is amazing to remember how scared and hesitant we were walking to the front desk….and now, we can’t wait to walk in, say good morning to everyone…they always, including the owner, welcome us by name, they are always excited to see us and hear about our progress, conquering all of our “firsts”, see us surviving new tough stuff…and they keep up with my weight loss in the challenge each week after I weigh in at ww. It is now “our gym”, where “everybody knows our name, and they’re really glad we came”..what a great feeling!  In fact, read on and see what the owner did for me my very first week at his gym…it still brings me to tears….

January 13, 2012- An Amazing Week….VERY SORE….

It is Friday the 13th, and on a day filled with superstitions of fear and bad things happening, I am ending a week that has been extraordinary! The last post I put up was written on the past Tuesday of this week. This entire week became a week of many more “firsts” for me. On Tuesday night I launched the blog and sent it out. I actually just finished writing and posting my thank you note to all of you. It was a whirlwind of a week, reading all of the emails, trying new classes at the gym, making better choices with the food and tracking what I am eating. On Wed. We went to take another zumba class, we were really aching and sore from the week, wondering if we could make it through. When we came into the gym, I told the owner,Steve, about my blog, and believe it or not… by the time I came out of the class, he had posted it on the Power Ten Fitness Club gyms facebook page!! Really, me on the facebook page of a gym? He has no idea the impact that that had on me. I still get very overwhelmed when I tell that story to other people.

An overweight woman, who didn’t want to even walk in a gym, because it always seems like gyms are filled with “perfectly fit” people…is not only taking classes she has never taken before…..cardio/sculpt, zumba, spinning….but is now on the gym’s facebook page, because the owner of the gym believed in her, even at the size and shape she is in at this moment, in this gym. Wow!  He will never fully realize what they meant to me.

I went home to my husband and had him bring up the Power Ten Fitness Club facebook page, and showed him that the owner of the gym actually posted my story on his gym facebook page. I just truly still can’t believe it.

I hate to do things by myself, and I had been praying for a friend to come into my life who would be able to exercise with me, because I just know that it takes soo much more motivation for me to go by myself. It’s so much easier to go with someone, and more accountability to stick with it. Little did I know that answered prayer was right next door! My next door neighbor, Meg, was looking to do the same thing, and we have experienced this amazing week of firsts together. Having someone with you also gives you the courage to ask questions at the gym, or try out new “scary” areas or equipment at the gym.

By Thursday, we were soooo sore, we could barely walk up and down stairs. When we were both limping to the car to get to the gym, we knew we couldn’t get through a class, but we decided we had to keep moving, and we would ask someone to show us how to use a treadmill. We walked in the gym, and stopped at the desk, and let them know that we really didn’t know how to use a treadmill, but wanted to try to go 3-5 miles on it, as we were so sore and couldn’t get through a class.

One of the trainers walked us over and encouraged us, and told us to hang in there and said it would be great to do this and just sweat out all the toxins, etc., and assured us that it would still be a great work out. Of course, as usual, I looked at people running on the treadmill, and wished I could someday do that, (and I’ll work towards that), but we learned all the buttons we needed to use and did 5 miles, and we were sweating and burned over 700 calories! (according to my bodybugg). That was really amazing to realize, that walking does burn so many calories.

So…. very proud that we chose to go to the gym, even though we could barely walk. We are pushing through the pain, and we completed another “first”, first time doing 5 miles on a treadmill. While we were on it, we chose a few more machines we want to try out, and will make an appointment to learn how to do those another day.
Really looking forward to weighing in tomorrow morning.

January 14, 2012
Weighed in today after the tough week at the gym….lost 3.6 pounds!!!! Sooo excited. I brought in a copy of my journal entry for the woman, Jennifer, who challenged me with her words, “so what are you going to do about it”. I just wanted her to know how she inspired me that week. As I handed it to her, she told me that many of my emails had been read by the leaders and workers in ww, and that I was inspiring all of them…Wow!
Went into the meeting, Elyse was back, had great new info and recipes for all of us. Even told us how to make a 3 point devil dog with the smoothie powder and non fat cool whip. This opened up the room to add sooo many more ideas for recipes, etc. I took lots of notes. We all get so bored and tired with finding new good things to eat, so this was a great meeting to take the ideas. Looking forward to trying many of them this week.
I’m in a new number that I haven’t been in in years, 36.6 pounds lost total 26.6 counts for the challenge.