Why are you here?

Why are you here?

For my running/fitness bloggers – Why are you running? Why are you doing yoga? Why are you trying to eat healthy? Why are you _______?

I don’t know about you, but I don’t always think about that.  And even if I think about it, I definitely don’t know how to answer it.  And even if I answer it, its probably not honest.

Saturday’s nutrition panel for OneLife’s FIT360 program was very different this week.  My trainer, Danny and several other wonderful trainers lead the program.  Danny is getting frustrated (and rightfully so) when they put together material for the class and other PT clients, and they don’t listen, they don’t absorb.  And I’m included among those people.  My nutrition is not where it should be and I know it.  And I don’t change.

So he had something different for us on Saturday.  He wanted to know why we were there.  And it was not in an accusatory way, but a thought provoking way.  Every one’s “why” is different.

While these are good reasons, they are very superficial:

– I want to lose weight

– I want to be healthier

– I don’t want to get diabetes

– I want to get stronger

C’mon.  Those are reasons, but those aren’t the core of the issue.  I commit to personal training and exercise in general for a variety of reasons…some good, some bad, some stupid. We are so afraid to show our true selves and our true “why.” I think some people feel that if they show their true selves and true motivations than they will be perceived as weak.  I think its actually the opposite. It takes a much stronger person to be honest.

If we are truly honest with ourselves, our why looks more like this:

– My parent/grandparent/etc died of diabetes and I’m terrified that I’ll get it and be sick like them

-I don’t like the way I look, I feel fat

-People don’t judge me as much when I’m heavy because they know I work out

-I want to be a good example for my kids and I don’t want them to be embarrassed of me

When people are truly honest with themselves and others about their “why,” something really incredible happens.  People share that they feel the same way.  They find camaraderie.  Your story may touch someone else so deeply and affect them so much, but they’ll never know if you don’t share it.

Danny spent some time asking around the room why people where there.  I suspect that he knew most of our answers before we even did.  He’s pretty perceptive. Some people were refreshingly honest.

One person chimed in and asked why Danny was there.  His answer could have been simple, like, “Because I like helping people.” Or, “because this job pays well.”

His answer? “Because I’m not supposed to be here.”  Danny is a survivor of suicide.  He has found a renewed purpose in helping others in their journey to health and that is what drives him.  He’s been given a second chance at life, and he pours everything he can into being a great trainer and support system for his clients. I can say personally that he’s challenged me in ways I wouldn’t have challenged myself.

I hope that sharing his deepest “why” was a liberating experience for him.  And you know what? No one judged him.  He received nothing back but support. And I’m quite sure that he touched and affected at least one life in that room.

Ladies and gentlemen, that is what I love so much about this community of bloggers. Everyone is so supportive and encouraging.  Feel comfortable in sharing your struggles.  Feel comfortable in being honest.

So why am I here?

– I do yoga because I want to become more flexible….and because it keeps my (sometimes horrible) anxiety at bay.

-I run because I like the challenge….. And because people in my life think I can’t. And sometimes I don’t like it.

-I (sometimes) eat healthy because I know it will fuel my physical activity…and because I feel guilty and feel like I should.

– I workout with a trainer because I like the structured workouts….and because I’m afraid I’ll lose motivation without that accountability.

Why are you here? What’s your “why”?

3 thoughts on “Why are you here?

  1. What a great post :). Danny sounds like a really good guy to challenge you guys physically but also challenge you to think about things like this. Plus, it sounds like he has been through a lot and has an inspirational story as well, and that he’s a good trainer. I bet everyone who was there really searched inside themselves and found a few reasons, too… reasons we may forget when a workout becomes a routine.

    BTW, I too really like the accountability and structure that comes with a trainer. I don’t have a personal trainer but I’m in a speedwork program here and I like that 2 nights a week, I can show up and just run/work out. I don’t have to think about what to do, I can just do it.

    • Danny is a great trainer – and he reads my posts, so hopefully he had the opportunity to read your kind words. It is so easy to forget what motivates us when we get into the depths of a workout routine/plan.

      Its nice to have accountability, isn’t it? I think personal trainers, classes, group runs, etc, are all wonderful ways to have some accountability and challenge you.

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