A few months ago, a colleague of mine convinced me to try out Spin Class for the first time. Little did I know that this would quickly become one of my new favorite workout activities. Each class I attend, I feel like I become stronger both mentally and physically. The instructors, music, other riders, and even the temporary pain are all so motivating that I leave class always wanting more.
After the holiday (non-diet) I felt it was necessary to start my week off on the right foot, so yesterday I went to The Ride House (my favorite spin boutique in Dallas) to go for a spin. As I got settled on my bike and said hi to my neighbors, I began to clear my head and focus on my goals for the upcoming 45 minute ride. As class began, I definitely could feel the two week break that I took from spin, I was sweating within a minutes of the ride (not the cute sweat either, like the embarrassing, dripping from your nose kind of sweat) but I was determined to push to the end.
Halfway through the ride, as we approached another “hill,” the instructor encouraged us all to add more resistance. I found myself pushing the pedals so hard that I thought at least one of my legs would easily fall off (the longest 20 seconds of my life). During the tedious hill, I began to get the urge to take off the resistance so that it would be easier. Instead, I closed my eyes and focused on only me. I asked myself, “Why are you here, Justin? What do you want?” During that time, I caught a glimpse of my past and all the negative opinions that for so long I allowed to define me, these opinions from people who are now just a distant memory. I heard their words again, and relived the pain…so I took a deep breath and added more resistance to my bike. I forced my legs to keep pushing through the pain, and I endured it. Adding the resistance was a pivotal moment in my morning ride, not only was I burning a heck of a lot more calories, I was teaching myself that I can push myself even when it would be easier to quit. Once the entire class made it to the top of the hill, we let go of all the resistance and let are legs go free. My heart raced with passion, the entire class started cheering for defeating the beast of a hill that we had all just endured, a smile took over my face. We did it! We conquered the hill, that hill that we have all encountered at least once in our lives. The hill that told us, “no.” The hill that screamed, “you will never be good enough.” Regardless, of what the hill stood for to my fellow spinners, we defeated it. FLAWLESSLY!
It’s funny how differently my year has ended. It was unexpected, intimidating, but so beautiful. I have finally took control of who I am. I found my happiness. I found me. I found it myself on top of a hill that I never knew I could climb on my own. My wish for 2017 is that I continue this journey that I have started, find new “hills” and continue to find ways to conquer them. We can only get better by pushing ourselves through the walls we build around our comfort zones.
In closing, I walked into spin class hoping to burn some post-holiday calories, and left class by closing my 2016 story and creating new dreams for chapter 2017.
The best is yet to come…