Plan for Vitality in 2018

This is a weird time of year. Most of us have eaten a Mary-Kate Olsen’s sized portion of cheese and treats over the holidays and we are staring down the new year and trying to figure out where we want to end up.

We resolve to eat less, do more, try harder, and worry less in 2017. But by February we are caught up in eating more, doing less, and anxiously giving up and wondering why we ever tried in the first place.

So how do we find the balance of committing to being better versions of ourselves and setting goals that don’t overburden us? I suggest we do it by focusing less on what we want to do in 2017 and plan more for how we want to feel in 2018. Stay with me, I’ll explain a bit further.

I came to Blended Athletics in May of last year knowing that I needed to do something to improve my life. I wasn’t focused on weight loss, I certainly didn’t think I was going to become muscular, and I thought a muscle-up was a type of Beef Jerky, so I know I wasn’t focused on a particular movement as a goal.

I joined BA with 20 plus years of ab rollers, gym memberships, and diets to my name. I had grown up chubby, blossomed into fat, had a brief flirtation with unhappy weight loss in my 20s, and then found my way back to depressed and fat by the time I hit 30. I joined BA committing myself to one-month because I knew I needed to do something but I wasn’t ready to do much more than that.

During on-ramp I joked about cheeseburgers and looked at people in class and thought “I don’t think I can do that.” The movements were new and I had never held a bar that wasn’t chocolate in my life. But after 3 session I left on-ramp feeling pretty proud of myself and cautiously optimistic about my chances at my first class.

In my first class later that week, I struggled. I was nervous to work-out with the “pros” and was intimidated by the movements. The strength portion flew by and we hit the WOD which included 150 lunges. I took my time, focused on getting it right, and fell behind the rest of the class. Most of the class had finished and with just a few minutes left and 20 lunges to go, I felt defeated and I wanted to give up. This was a feeling I was used to, a feeling I have previously been comfortable with.

But, someone started yelling, “You can do this Tyler!”

Then someone else yelled, “You got this buddy!”

At first it all seemed sort of ridiculous. I couldn’t do this and I certainly didn’t have ‘it.’

But for some reason, my perspective changed. I felt more optimistic about finishing the WOD. Then, I finished with people cheering my name while giving me high fives and fist bumps. I felt energized, active, and strong.

The rest of the week my legs felt rock hard and red hot. I was sore and the pain gave me a reason to think that Cross Fit and Blended Athletics wasn’t for me. But I came back to class. I didn’t think about my commitment of doing one month or about the exercises in the WOD. I just thought about how I felt after my first class. Revitalized.

I kept coming back. One month became two, and three, then eight. Being the athlete that I am there have been some awkward and embarrassing moments. I have fallen during WODs, whipped myself in the face with a band, and I honestly think my shorts are getting smaller. But I am progressing.

I’m not yet a beast, but I am also not the same overgrown timbit I was when I started. Im less round, not as soft to the touch, and at least 3 or 4 days of the week I’m not covered in sugar.

I have experienced post WOD pain and just hearing the name Annie gives me uncomfortable chills. Still, I keep coming back. I keep coming back because I am addicted to feeling active, stronger, and energized. The feeling of vitality.

When I look towards the future I see and feel a better version of myself. I don’t see myself with abs or having competed in any CrossFit games. But I do see myself living with more freedom, harmony, and vitality. Blended Athletics has become a part of that vision.

So, as we enter the New Year I encourage you to do more than just set goals to eat better, try harder, and do more in 2017. Plan for 2018 by setting an intention for how you want to feel. Hopefully you will see me in 2018 with more vitality… and maybe new shorts.

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Originally appeared on Blended Athletic’s Blog —