My Fitness Journey: Rima A.
When I finished college, I moved back home to care for my sick grandmother. She suffered from Parkinson’s, making it very difficult for her to move, and practically impossible for her to move (safely) on her own. There were also other family members around, all suffering from sickness, and all so weak and down.
This seems a bit dramatic but I was terrified by what I was seeing around me so I began thinking- why aren’t I appreciating my body for all the things it can do? All the ways it can move, while I still can? I didn’t want to be in that position, and regret not trying my best to become my strongest self.
why aren’t I appreciating my body for all the things it can do?
Not knowing exactly where to start, I talked to a friend I had been on the track team with in high school. She suggested we start Kayla Itsines BBG workouts together, as she was also falling out of shape, and we decided to motivate each other. We spent the summer doing these workouts which were really challenging at first, but after a while (especially when she went back to school) they became redundant and boring. I knew I wanted more, but was intimidated by the thought of going to a gym so I just slowly stopped working out altogether.
A few months later, I went to CrossFit Motown for a memorial WOD. I had been scared to go, knowing how out of shape I was, but went for the sentiment of the event- not so much the workout itself. When I got there I was pleased to hear there were two workouts – one for the actual crossfit-ers, and one for the others. But even the “easy” workout was incredibly difficult. That night I met Thomas, and learned about how IDP (individual designed programs at Heroes Journey Fitness) takes all the things that scared me about a gym (not knowing what to do, doing exercises incorrectly, etc) and does them for you.
I initially joined because I had always felt insecure about going to the gym – never knowing if I was doing the right exercises for what I wanted to achieve, and never knowing if I was doing the exercises right. When the concept of IDP was first introduced to me I thought, “this is exactly what I’ve been looking for”, a way to learn all the things I wanted to. While I imagined Thomas would be a helpful coach, I never realized how involved he would be and it’s really great because he genuinely cares about your success. He always makes my workouts based on my specific goals and he’ll, very patiently, teach me each exercise (over and over and over) until I really understand it. Which was my ultimate goal – understanding how to do things correctly.
Apart from IDP being amazing, the atmosphere of the gym is totally not what I expected. I’ve always been “afraid” of the gym, I never liked to go alone and I always joined on a friend’s workout if I did go. At first, HJ was just as intimidating to me as all the other gyms I’d been to. But after some time, I was pleasantly surprised to find myself very comfortable there. There are two things that I really love about the gym – first, if there’s something in my workout that I don’t understand, I can ask anyone in the gym and they’ll either take the time to explain it to me, or if they’re unsure, point me in the direction of someone who can. And second, if I’m performing an exercise and someone notices I’m doing it wrong, they’ll come up to me and offer some advice, and then watch me again to make sure I’ve figured out how to do it right. It’s really like a camaraderie I’ve never seen in a gym before.
It’s really like a camaraderie I’ve never seen in a gym before.
If someone is thinking of trying CrossFit and joining HJ, I would just tell them to do it. My biggest concern about joining HJ was that I would commit and then not have the time to come in. But once I started getting into a rhythm, and really started to appreciate the kind of training Thomas had me on, the gym time became less of a luxury and more of a priority. It just fit itself into my schedule and I found that I made time for it because I could tell it was making a difference for me, both physically and mentally.
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