Don't be afraid to start over

Hello friends,

It's been 2 whole months since I was diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis. Looking back, I feel really blessed to have healed so quickly and fully. Special thanks to my family, friends and my church family who have continued to pray for me and have given me so much support. I love you all.

When I got the clearance to start working out again, I wasn't sure if I could get back to my previous fitness level.  Then a thought occurred to me... what if I got even stronger?  Then another thought encroached on that... what if I don't?

Well, what if I don't? What if where I land is even better than where I was before? Hold that thought.

Just so you know my back story, I've always been very active. I figure skated as a kid, danced, and was a cheerleader in high school.  Always moving.  Then in college, I ran and did the dreaded Stairmaster. A lot. For you young ones out there, this isn't the stairmill you see at the gyms today.  There were no revolving stairs.  Just two steps that went up and down.  Up and down. Oh, so boring but I loved the sweat it produced!

After college, I got my black belt in Hapkido and then went back to figure skating to see if I could get my jumps back.  I did.  Then when I got a job, a real job that required me to wear grown up clothes, I joined the company gym.  I still have fond memories of that gym because I met some of my closest friends there (hi Bonnie & Alan!). I became a "cardio queen" at lunch, running anywhere from 5-7 miles every day and coming back in the evening to lift.  I wasn't lifting seriously back then.  Just going around and doing the machines and being social. 

My serious lifting began after my second baby.  A year after she was born, my husband enrolled both of us in a gym and got us a trainer.  At first, I didn't want a trainer.  I just wanted to do my cardio.  But after a few sessions with her, I was hooked.  I mean, obsessed.  I trained 4-5 days a week for almost 7 years!  My trainer was really great.  She gave me the basics with great form and then some.  But as life happened, I had to leave her and moved into my basement gym. 

 My sweet family

My sweet family

I asked you to hold that thought, "What if where I land is even better than where I was before?" So while I was training really, really hard for those 7 years, it wasn't without some sacrifice.  I prioritized my fitness really high on my list of things to do every day. Not very helpful for family life.  Not only that, working out at such a high intensity took its toll on my back.  Some days, I'd get out of bed hunched over almost 90-degrees.  Not cool.

As I reflect back on my fitness journey, I am really proud of what I've accomplished but now as an older and recently injured woman of 45 years, I see the value of preserving my health and joints.  Don't get me wrong... I love me some high intensity workouts! I love to challenge my body and sweat... but now I know when to say enough and when to take some time off and enjoy life.  "Balance, Daniel-san." One of my all time favorite movies... can you name it? Fine, it's Karate Kid.  I loved Mr. Miyagi.

So wherever I land in my fitness journey, I'm actually okay not being as strong as I was before and I am totally at peace with the fact that my body can't handle consecutive intense workouts like I used to be able to do. This acceptance thing came with me kicking and screaming but you know, once you get through that stage, it's freeing.  I see every workout I get to do in my gym as a gift.  I really do.  If you follow me on Instagram, I'm always encouraging you to move, sweat and enjoy... because until you can't, you don't realize how much you take movement for granted.

Anyhoo, it's getting late. Good night and see you soon.

Xx,
Essie