Who Do You Think You Are Anyway?

“I’m into fitness… fittin’ this whole donut into my mouth.”

Ever hear that one? How about the oldest joke ever?

“I’m on a see food diet, I see food and I eat it.”

These are funny, sure, but have you ever wondered why they’re so popular?

I think it’s a way of joking about our lack of enthusiasm for fitness. Because our true belief is we think we’re not the type who can exercise, or that we’re incapable of getting back in shape ever again.

Why do I say ever again? Because we were all physically fit at one time. I don’t care who you are, when you were a kid, you were an athlete. You were also an artist, a singer, a student, a dreamer and a dozen other things that you did simply because you enjoyed them.

When you’d go out to play, you would run, jump and climb. You would also draw and color, sing your favorite songs and you enjoyed learning.  Your imagination was infinite, and you dreamed of far away places and adventure. You imagined what you’re life would be like when you grew up and you believed you could be and do anything.

Then one day, something happened. Someone told you that you weren’t very smart, or you weren’t a good student. Maybe they told you this just because their way of teaching didn’t work, or you were not interested in what they were teaching you at all.

You were also told to stop wasting time playing, or that you couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. If you weren’t as fast in gym class or you couldn’t play basketball, you were probably told you weren’t an athlete too and as for dreaming… well who has time for that? Quit screwing around and study for you SATs. You gave up all these things because someone else told you what you ought to be, or even worse what you couldn’t be.

Nothing has ruined more artists than art school and nothing can discourage an athlete like gym class. This is true mostly because an individual is compared with others in their class, and their work and ability is graded by instructors. When we fail to do as well as we are expected, then we are considered below standard, and then we deem ourselves a failure.

That’s right, we are the ones who determine that we have failed,  and we are the ones who quit.  Sure we had a lot of outside influence to make us feel that way, but in the end the choice is ours to give up, and most the time that is what most of us do.

Now here’s the best part.

Cut the shit.

That’s right, I’m telling you to knock it off.  We are all full grown adults, we are a little old be be listening to the bullies from our past, no matter who they were.

Inside every one of us still lives that student, artist and singer. And inside each of us there is still an athlete. Maybe not a basketball player or a marathon runner, but an athlete still the same. You can get up  and do something. The thing that keeps us on our asses, sitting on the couch isn’t that we’re lazy, it’s that we don’t believe in ourselves.

Make the effort to find something you enjoy. Biking, tennis, CrossFit, yoga, anything. If you can’t find it at first then try something else. The choices are infinite. No matter how out of shape you are now, you can do something, even if it’s a simple walk to start, who knows? Today it’s a one mile hike around your neighborhood, tomorrow it’s the Boston Marathon. The athlete in you is wanting to come out, so let it.

And while your at it, draw a picture, color or sing a song. Those guys want to come out too.



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