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I hate the gym no longer

“I hate gyms”.

I’ve said this sentence plenty of times in my life.  I know what you’re thinking – aren’t you a personal trainer?  Shouldn’t you love gyms? Well I didn’t really.  I’ve come from an athletics background so I’m used to training in the great outdoors, with the sun, the wind and fresh air to breathe.  On grass, on a bouncy red track or a dirt running track.  No rigid equipment, no wall to wall mirrors and no awkward small stretching areas.

But last week something changed. I saw the gym differently.

I’ve had two weeks overseas at Christmas and when I came back I did a weights session with some of my pole vault squad members.  We usually do two gym sessions a week. The high jumpers where there too, doing strength exercises and then halfway through the session in came the sprint squad and they start doing speed weights – they were smashing it out, working so hard. I looked around the room and thought “how awesome is this – everyone is so fit and working so hard! It’s so inspiring.” Then I walked into the main area of the gym and it was really busy.  The room was full of people.

Ordinarily I’d see that and think – yuck this gym is packed – but this day I didn’t..

This day I thought how cool is this! Here are all these people who are trying to make themselves better.  They are trying to get fitter and stronger.  They care about their health, their physicality, their strength, their bodies.  They don’t have to be here.  They choose to be.  I didn’t see the mirrors or the rigid equipment. I saw the people. I saw their action.

And I get to be part of it.  To be in an environment of self improvement. And a gym is an environment that facilitates this. A gym is a place where we can make ourselves better.

It’s not the only place by any means… but it is one.  Are there some gyms and functional training space that feel better and more inspiring than others – for sure – but it’s more about the people than the space anyway.

I left the gym feeling inspired, by the intensity that I saw in that gym, by the number of people off their butts doing something, by a place that is dedicated to improving our health and fitness and that I have the chance to be better too.

Sometimes a small time away helps you to see things in a different light, to illuminate the areas that you normally over look.

Surround yourself with what you want to be.

Seek out environments that help you be better.

See the good in situations and seek inspiration from all around you.

I’m sorry gym for talking badly about you in the past. I overlooked you. I never really hated you. I didn’t realise how much I liked you.

Although at this point in my life I still couldn’t workout in a gym every day – I love the outdoors too much – a couple sessions a week in the gym isn’t the worst thing in the world now is it 😉

What are you waiting for?

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