SWEAT WITH JESS IN A WORD IS CONFIDENCE! I NEVER WANTED TO DO "GROUP FITNESS" AND I NOW REALIZE THAT IT IS SO NOT YOUR CLICHÉ FITNESS CLASS. THE SENSE OF COMMUNITY IS REAL AND I HAVE ENJOYED IT! CRAZY HOW BEING AROUND POSITIVE PEOPLE MAKES YOU A MORE POSITIVE PERSON! BEING IN THIS GROUP AND DOING THE WORK I HAVE DONE HAS MADE ME INTO A BETTER VERSION OF MYSELF. I STILL HAVE MY DAYS OF SELF-DOUBT BUT THEN #SHOWUP AND YOU HAVE A HOST OF PEOPLE WHO HAVE YOUR BACK. JUST A HIGH FIVE OR AN ENCOURAGING NOD FROM JESS IS ALL YOU NEED TO MAKE YOUR DAY.
I NEVER WOULD HAVE RAN A 1/2 MARATHON, CLIMB A MOUNTAIN, RAN THE RAGNAR WITH STRANGERS, AND EVEN CONTEMPLATE A TRIATHLON IF IT WEREN'T FOR THE STRENGTH THAT I HAVE BUILT PHYSICALLY AND EMOTIONALLY WITH JESS. EVEN THOUGH I AM NOT ON TRACK ALL THE TIME AND I HAVE BAD DAYS TOO, I STILL KEEP COMING BACK FOR MORE. JESS IS SO GENEROUS WITH HER TIME AND KNOWLEDGE ABOUT ANY ASPECT OF TRAINING AND NUTRITION, WHICH IS JUST THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG. HER EXPLANATIONS OF THE WORKOUTS HAVE GIVEN ME THE KNOWLEDGE TO GO INTO A GYM AND PROGRAM MY OWN WORKOUT FROM ALL THAT I HAVE LEARNED. THAT IS HUGE. SECONDLY, SCHOOL. DON'T GET ME STARTED ON THAT BEAST. I HAVE LITERALLY BEEN TERRIFIED OF THIS FOR A DECADE OR MORE. SO....SOMETHING LIT A FIRE. WE MAY NOT ALWAYS AGREE; I WANT TO DRINK BEERS, SHE SAYS NO. I WANT 3 ROUNDS, SHE SAYS 5, BUT I CONSIDER JESS AS A FRIEND AND I AM GLAD SHE IS IN MY CORNER FOR MY FITNESS JOURNEY AND MY LIFE GOALS! THANKS SWEAT WITH JESS!
I TOOK SOME TIME TO REFLECT ON THE IMPACT SWEAT HAS HAD ON MY LIFE. OVERALL, I FEEL AS THOUGH I AM A BETTER PERSON BECAUSE OF SWEAT, BUT I'M UNSURE IF I CAN ACCURATELY PORTRAY THIS IN WORDS. SUCH IS THE LIMITATIONS OF LANGUAGE, BUT ANYWAY, HERE GOES NOTHING.
STARTING WITH THE OBVIOUS, I AM STRONGER NOW THAN I HAVE EVER BEEN IN MY LIFE IN BOTH STRENGTH AND ENDURANCE. WHILE THIS NOT BE SAYING MUCH (I'VE ONLY BEEN SERIOUSLY WORKING OUT FOR ABOUT 4 YEARS,) I'VE STILL COME A LONG WAY. COULD I BE WHERE I AM IF I NEVER JOINED SWEAT? POSSIBLY. COULD I HAVE MADE THE SAME PROGRESS OVER THE SAME AMOUNT OF TIME? NO. I HAVE MADE GAINS I DIDN'T THINK WERE POSSIBLE THANKS TO SWEAT. I USED TO THINK OF CLIMBING A MOUNTAIN AS A METAPHOR FOR LOSING WEIGHT LOSS. SOME DAYS THE CLIMB IS EASY, BUT OTHERS FEEL LIKE TRYING TO CLIMB UP MUD. NOWADAYS, I FEEL THE SAME METAPHOR APPLIES TO LIFE IN GENERAL. THE ONLY DIFFERENCE IS THE PEAK WILL NEVER BE PASSED. I CAN ALWAYS KEEP GOING FORWARD, AND I WOULDN'T HAVE IT ANY OTHER WAY.
WHILE THE WORKOUTS ARE CHALLENGING, THE BIGGEST STRENGTH FOR SWEAT I FEEL IS THE COMMUNITY. I HAVE HAD THE PLEASURE OF MEETING PEOPLE I WOULD NOT HAVE MET OTHERWISE. SERIOUSLY, THE CHANCES OF ME SO MUCH AS CROSSING PATHS WITH ANY MEMBER OF THE SWEAT COMMUNITY IS SO SMALL IT'S PRACTICALLY ZERO. LIFE CAN BE ENRICHED BY THE PEOPLE IN IT, AND THIS CRAZY CREW KEEPS ME COMING BACK FOR MORE. EVERY DAY AT SWEAT, I SEE HOW HARD EVERYONE PUSHES THEMSELVES. THIS, IN TURN, MAKES ME PUSH MYSELF HARD AS WELL. THE FACT THAT I USE HEAVIER WEIGHTS MAKES NO DIFFERENCE TO ME. IF THEY USE CHALLENGING WEIGHTS, I'LL FOLLOW SUIT. ONE MORE THING, SPEAKING AS AN ONLINE GAMER, IT IS IMMENSELY REFRESHING TO BE A PART OF TEAMS THAT DON'T MAKE ME QUESTION THEIR ABILITY TO OPERATE PANTS.
I HAVE BEEN INCREDIBLY FORTUNATE TO HAVE SWEAT IN MY LIFE. WHEN THINGS WERE AT THEIR DARKEST SWEAT WAS ONE THING (SOMETIMES THE ONLY THING) I COULD LOOK FORWARD TO. NO MATTER HOW I FELT GOING IN, I ALWAYS FELT BETTER WHEN IT WAS OVER. OF COURSE THINGS WOULD CHANGE WHEN THE DOMS SET IN, BUT IT WAS THE GOOD KIND OF PAIN. AT LEAST THAT'S WHAT I TELL MYSELF. NOW I HAVE A JOB THAT I ENJOY AND, JUST AS IMPORTANTLY, ALLOWS ME TO CONTINUE TO COME TO SWEAT. THINGS ARE BRIGHTER FOR ME NOW THAN THEY HAVE BEEN IN A LONG WHILE. THE SET OF CIRCUMSTANCES THAT BROUGHT ME AMAZE ME. IF ANY ONE OF COUNTLESS EVENTS HAD PLAYED OUT DIFFERENTLY, I WOULD NOT BE WHERE I AM TODAY. I WOULD MOST LIKELY BE ON THE VERGE OF A MENTAL BREAKDOWN AND POSSIBLY STILL OVERWEIGHT. IT'S FUNNY HOW FATE WORKS SOMETIMES.
Sweat with Jess. Sometimes I really hate Jess. Like hate, hate her. But that's probably during 100 burpees. All the other times, I really like her. When I first started Sweat with Jess, I was a runner and nothing much else. I ran when I needed to train for a race. Other than that, I ate unhealthy but continued to be frustrated that I wasn't losing weight. My first workout with Jess was only due to the fact that she was having a fundraiser for animal supplies. I thought I would go once and never again. After my body regained consciousness, about a week later, I decided I was going to challenge myself to rock the workout. (Little did I know you get better, but it's still really hard.)
Since then I have been challenged through Sweat with Jess in many ways. This includes, lifting more weight, becoming better at cardio, running a marathon, running many more halves, losing inches, not caring about the scale, finding my confidence, and even starting a small business!
Sweat with Jess is more than a workout class. It's a community. A community that has become some of my best friends. A community that lifts people up and supports them when they are down. A community you can try and fail in front of. A community you can succeed in front of without the wrath of jealousy.
Because of Sweat with Jess I am more than a runner. I'm an athlete. I'm in the "fitness world" and loving it! I found the courage to try really hard and see the results. I have learned things that have changed my eating habits. My mindset has changed. It's not "can't" anymore it's "not yet". These healthy changes permeate into all parts of my life. My professional and personal life have improved immensely. At the risk of sounding cheesy, Sweat with Jess has changed my life. I'm excited for what's next.