Of Course I Was Last
This week marks the 5th week of TRIBE Training at BodyBusiness. As much as I want to feel good about this it also means it’s time for the end of session assessment test. If you are not currently in a TRIBE, on the first day of this inaugural session everyone was given an assessment test based on the exact same block of exercises and our scores were recorded. We were asked to go around the room and shout out our number to our trainer. I was dead last. I could not have been more last. At the time it didn’t seem so bad hearing it aloud in a room of strangers and it certainly wasn’t unexpected. At the time, that number seemed meaningless since I was so grateful that I survived day one. Over time I started thinking, I wonder if I will ever let go of the expectation that I will always be the last or the self-perceived worst. I wish I could figure out why this seems to matter so much to me.
Preparing For A Repeat
So next week, my TRIBE will repeat the same block of exercises, and we will have to once again record our “scores”, aloud I am sure so that I can bring up the rear once again. Being last is a given as I have a long way to go but my biggest fear is that I won’t improve over my score from the first assessment. I have been dreading next week’s test day all week. I have been plotting out a strategy for success. Should I get up earlier? Should I eat more, less? Do I need Gatorade, coffee? I am thinking maybe there is a silver bullet to making my performance suck less than it did six weeks ago. I mean, to date I must have solicited advice from a dozen people who all think I’m nuts but eagerly offered up their own very different strategies for my performance. These recommendations have included everything from smoothies, supplements, B-12, pre-workout cold showers, faking and injury and not attending to good luck charms. Who am I to judge, maybe I need everything. Ignorance was bliss at the start of this #FEARLESS adventure but now can I potentially engineer a better outcome?
The Real World Keeps Score
I don’t consider myself a particularly competitive person. At work yes, but not really outside of my job. But I think we all have an underlying sense of competitiveness. If you think about it, we are scored or assigned a rank in a multitude of ways each and every day. We are pre-conditioned to value our own success based on the performance of others. Spelling bees, sports, driver’s license points, standardized tests, lining up by height, number at the deli counter, annual reviews, IQ tests, Presidential Physical Fitness Training, SAT’s – the list goes on and on. We live in a world that benchmarks us against each other in so many ways and it has been that way since we were kids.
Am I Standing Still?
In the mode of competitive spirit, I really hope my score improves. If it doesn’t, I will likely equate it to failure and unravel a little bit. I mean, a test at the beginning and the end of well, anything, is usually done to show improvement over a period of time. I don’t want to fail and I am really anxious to be rewarded with some indication of improvement. So my real fear is, what if I’ve put in the work and my results show that I am standing still, not progressing and potentially not stacking up with the rest of the TRIBE. If by following the best practices of eating healthy and exercising regularly (like really hard work) still doesn’t help me to make progress towards my overall health improvement, then I am not sure what else to do. That is the scariest part. If this doesn’t help, what’s else is there?
Maybe I am Lying In-Wait
My mom always tells me that I hang on to everything. I don’t let things go. She is right. Keeping this in mind, what if I looked at this test and my overall fitness goals and performance in a different way. Thinking about what my mom says and seeking advice from our incredible BodyBusiness staff as I struggle with this next step, they confirmed that it is a competition, but not the kind you think. I am only competing with one person and that is me. It’s not about how my rep’s stack up against others but benchmarking against myself, building a better me each and every day. This is the challenge – unlearn, throw out and let go of the traditional competitive nature of measurement against others as it relates to your fitness goals. It’s time to make the change to go after each and every workout with the goal of improving upon my own progress and push myself in new ways every day. This is actually a healthy perspective for life in general. Working every day to be the best you can be in whatever it is that you do regardless of how others behave or what they are doing. At the end of the day, were you the best you can be?
Smartest Humans Alive
The loving and patient BodyBusiness staff has taught me that this progress comes in the form of ups, downs and plateaus and that I should use all of these for self-motivation to keep working hard. Physical and nutritional improvement happens for everyone at their own pace and it’s not rewarded by where you end up on the podium – or in our case on the dry erase board. It’s about being honest with ourselves and our personal efforts, looking inward and not out as a score for effort. The benefits of being part of a TRIBE can’t be ranked on a scorecard to other programs because well, BodyBusiness has made this program its own. It starts with the incredible space set up with all the tools for success. Next comes the trainers teaching, pushing and encouraging us to keep going even when we think it’s not possible. Finally, it’s the comradery and motivation in the room. But the biggest benefit of all, in my opinion, is the opportunity to be working out alongside my TRIBE-mates, working to achieve the same overall goals of improved health and being the best that we can be. In this unified goal, we are all seeking the same score.
I Am Lying In Wait
I am obsessed with Hamilton The Musical for so many reasons. The soundtrack and story really resonate with me. It shines a spotlight on self-motivation and the ability to achieve things that most don’t seem possible. One of my favorite lines from the song “Wait For It” is on my workout playlist and a line from it runs through my head at the start of every workout. “I’m not falling behind or running late, I’m not standing still, I am lying in wait…”, this is what Aaron Burr sings as he spends a lifetime having his achievements scored against those of Alexander Hamilton. Maybe there is a lesson to be learned from Burr. Maybe I am not standing still when it comes to my goals and working to achieve a better score. Maybe it’s not my time and I just a work in progress lying in wait until my mind and body are ready for the next step.
The song also says, “…we rise and we fall and we break…”, so no matter what my score result is on Monday, at least I rose to the occasion and took the challenge. I may fall behind my TRIBE-mates and maybe even end up below my first score, but I won’t break. I’ll be there for the assessment. And I’ll be there to FEARLESSLY face the next session. If you want to find out how I did, you’ll just have to “Wait For It”.
You see what I did there?
p.s. – Have you visited the BodyBusinessAustin profile on Spotify? We are adding new staff playlists to help you with your workout every day. You can listen to my #FearlessFriday playlist along with other great new playlists from the BodyBusiness team.
This week’s #FearlessFriday jam is “Wait For It” from the Hamilton The Musical Soundtrack. I’m obsessed with this soundtrack and this song speaks to me on many levels. I hope you enjoy it. Have a great weekend and be FEARLESS!
See y’all back here next week and keep rising!