Behind breaking a sweat

I wouldn’t have thought remembering to breathe would be difficult, until …

I was in an elbow plank position using resistance bands. The muscle pinched in the back of my thigh. Hard. My knees trembled. Gravity was winning this battle. I tried to focus on my rhythm.

Pass the handle attached to the resistance band to my right hand. Push up off the floor with my left to a full plank. Pump handle backwards and forwards, backwards and forwards. Seven times backwards and forwards. Place my right elbow on the floor. My left on the floor. Pass the handle to my left hand. Repeat.

I pushed up on my hand. I didn’t move. I gritted my teeth and pushed harder. My legs trembled behind me.

‘Lock those knees. Come on, keep going.’

‘I …’ Don’t say it. I straightened and locked my knees in place. A wave of heat tumbled up my legs and across the sides of my thighs. They wobbled. The fire jumped to my shoulders and down my shaking arms, burning deep into the muscle.

‘Keep breathing.’

I took a deep breath, sucking in as much air as I could. My knees bent and I pushed on my arm again. It shuddered violently. My knees buckled and slammed into the mat beneath me. Gravity stuck them fast and a growl curdled in my throat.

‘Twenty burpees.’

I slammed my fist against the mat. ‘Damn it.’

‘You were almost there. Now, come on. Twenty burpees.’

I shot Papa Rev a nasty look as I lay there. My chest heaving. My arms and legs slick with sweat.

He took a step back. ‘Please.’

I know what you’re thinking. Why on earth would anyone make a rational decision to put themselves through that much pain? Okay, maybe it’s not a rational one, maybe it’s an insane one. Thankfully, I’ve established in a previous blogpost I’m not all here.

Believe me. Every time I rock up to my personal training session I think — Yeah, I got this! No sweat. Every time I leave that session I can’t help but wonder why? I knew without a doubt I’d end up me sprawled on the floor, looking somewhat less than stellar and yet I still turned up. Why? WHY, Papa Rev?

A fitness goal always starts with a photo. Some amateur with a camera and an unflattering pose from yourself and you decided it’s time to go back to the gym.

I did gymnastics until I was fourteen and was fairly active in my teens. Thankfully, I was blessed with good genes, so I never really gained much weight until I graduated to my late twenties.

I’ve tried gyms before, but when I decided it was time once again to suck it up and burn some calories, it was a little daunting. One. I honestly didn’t know where to start or what all those new fangled equipment did and two. I didn’t want to be stared at, because more than likely, I was going to look ridiculous.

Bambi, a good friend of mine suggested seeing her personal trainer who worked from home. This seemed like the perfect alternative. I knew joining a gym would just eat my bank account with absolutely no benefits to slimming my hips. At least this way, I’d feel obligated to go.

But why do people put themselves through the physical pain of working out? Is it because they want to get fit or lose weight? Or do they like the pain? The slow, smouldering burn beneath the skin or the pinch between the shoulder blades? Masochists.

Do I want to be fit? Check. Do I want to lose weight? Check. Do I want to feel the burn? …

In life there are things we can control and things we can’t. I like knowing I’m the one to decide whether to continue working out or not and that makes me want to work even harder. I want to be able to punch someone in the face without breaking a sweat — not that I would.

My goal is to be fit, toned and learn how to defend myself, which I believe every women should know how to do. But five minutes into a workout, my brain has vacated. It’s gone and it’s not coming back. So, if I want to reach my goal, I need someone else’s brain. Someone who knows what my goal is and who can help me achieve it, especially when I’m not thinking straight.

Whatever you want to achieve in life, you need someone who can walk that path with you. Someone who's got your back. A partner. An advocate. A hero. That one person or persons who’ll stand by you, pull you up when you fall and inspire you to keep going no matter what.

Papa Rev's my hero for my fitness goals. My beautiful Quirky Quills are heroines to my writing goals. Who are your heroes/heroines? Who keeps you going when life throws that curve ball at your dream?

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