TUES: Healing in the Gym

I’ve had this conversation about emotional drive in the gym with a lot of members over the years. In my most recent continuing education outing at the StrongFit seminar last month, it was something that quite simply was the underlying focus.

Anxiety is something that a LOT of us deal with on a day to day basis. Whether you wake up with it, or it gradually builds through the day’s events, it can be a feeling that sets up major mental roadblocks in productivity, or straight up physically sits you on your butt for an entire day or longer.

There are entire Instagram accounts devoted to reminding us that anxiety is common, and more likely the norm for our general existence, with wonderfully timed and hysterical memes to break up that anxiousness (because if it’s how we all  feel, then it’s ok to feel that way). There’s medication, homeopathic remedies, essential oils, CBD, support animals, thunder shirts; the list of possible helpful tools is ever growing.

I’ve tried a ton of them, and still use some of them (don’t ask about my security blanket, or Stella’s never ending duties of handling my stress through forced affection). For me, and I believe for the majority of people I know, none of it is quite as effective as going to the gym, getting in a solid workout, and walking away with my emotions and thoughts a bit more clear, and easier to navigate.

Of course, the level of clarity is connected to the level of effort and output I choose to participate with. If I go in and use my anxiety or emotions/bad mood as an excuse to sandbag a workout and act like I don’t care, chances are I’m not going to feel all that successful, and will continue to be stressed and anxious.

However, if I show up with purpose and let myself push through those mental roadblocks through movement and interaction with my physical surroundings, it will be a clearer road to navigate almost immediately stepping back into the “Real” world. There’s a grounding that occurs in that state, and allows us to move forward feeling more connected to ourselves and those around us in the experience.

There is an amazing amount of healing that can be done within the space of being active. Physical healing is the obvious stuff, where we pull back from unhealthy habits that may be taking us down the path to long term health problems. It’s easy to see where we add muscle mass and increase our blood flow, joint mobility and speed, through data and physical results. For me, the most important healing takes a little bit of a deeper look, without shying away from it.

The ability to handle day to day stress that comes from the confidence of a successful workout, finding wins. The exhausted but beaming upgraded smile your kid sees on your face when you walk in the door. The positive self image or self talk that comes out of physical results and permanently changes your mindset. The ability to recognize that we feel a certain way, and use the tools of our community, coaches, and training to shift and adjust the trajectory of your hour, day, week.

All of the ways that we make “gym” a part of our lifestyle to enrich our lives, is where we can really access the gold that lies within, and share that state of being with everyone around us.

Thanks, gym.


Tuesday, 10.9.18

First. For Structure.
1 Rope Pull AFAP
80m Farmer’s Carry
Complete 4 Sets in 20 Min.

Then. For Conditioning.
Move for 18′ w/a partner
a) Max Push Ups + Max SB Squats
b) 400m Run

a) 2/s Heavy-ish TGU
b) 400m Row

a) 30 Mod Heavy Renegade Row
b) 20 BB Floor Wipers