[Original post appeared on IzzyFit.com]
I ***HATED*** PE throughout school. Instead of going to PE, I did my best to find a way to go to the nurse’s office because of a headache/cramps/hangnail/somemadeupreason (and once I actually DID fall down the stairs on my way to the nurse in high school — fell hard… Karma). I managed to miss every single swim class we had in high school because I wasn’t comfortable in a bathing suit and hate being under water; the mile test was the WORST day of the year because I ran about a 12-minute mile while the kids that smoked a pack of cigarettes a day could somehow run it in 6; rugby was the only sport I contributed any points to because, since you pass the ball back vs forwards, no one ever realized I had the ball.
But then, in 11th grade, a new world of PE classes became available to take for credit. I could choose from such classes as Rock Climbing, Adventure Learning, Lifeguard Training, Sea Kayaking, Fitness Training, Yoga and — my two personal favorites — Dance and Stretching & Relaxation. I took those two favorite classes junior year and then somehow I managed to talk my teacher into letting me co-teach those classes senior year. I didn’t know it then but that was my introduction to coaching (so thank you, Ms Simpkin, for that). And the great thing was: It taught me that I didn’t need to hate exercise.
Here the thing: In traditional PE classes, you don’t get much of a choice when it comes to what exercise is. We all kind of learn that the important things to know are how to run a mile and that the more sit-ups and pushups you can do in a minute the better, and that it really sucks being picked last on a team. (And it’s really embarrassing when you fall on top of your PE teacher during the tumbling class in front of everyone…)
Why do I bring this up? Because too often I hear people say, “I don’t like exercising but I know I need to.”
Sound familiar? If so, you might have experienced the dread I felt in PE classes. You might not have been in an environment that made you feel like you were a part of a community of peers made up of different fitness levels that could work together; you were probably not in a place where you believe you could excel and feel competent even if you weren’t “good” at first; or in a place that even gave you a choice to do certain sports over others.
So why on earth would we put ourselves in a position to relive the dread of high school PE in adulthood? When a potential client contacts me, I know that they might have been thinking about contacting someone for a long time. Taking the step to finally make that contact is brave, it takes guts, it puts them in a vulnerable position and I absolutely do not take that for granted because I know that client put herself/himself in that position because they need HELP.
If you’ve read this far, thank you because I’m finally getting to the point. You or someone you know, reading this now, might be in the “I hate working out but know I have to” position. What I want to ask you is:
Here are a few ways to find options that might be right for you:
The MindBody App
Your local park district (if you have one)
Your local YMCA
Me! If you’re looking for something and can’t find it, email me! I’ll do my best to find what you’re looking for.
Here is the bottom line: There really is something for everyone. Disliking pushups or running a mile doesn’t make you suck (Usain Bolt has never run a mile; he doesn’t suck). You’re just on the verge of finding what might lead you to a more full, happy and healthy life! So get after it!