Most people would probably guess that I work out just because I love it and, while I do love it, that’s not always the case. Let’s get real, it’s not that fun sucking wind, sweating profusely and pushing your body. It’s uncomfortable, it hurts at times and it’s definitely not glamorous. At the same time, it’s so worth it and I absolutely love it. I might not think that while I’m in the middle of it, but I most certainly think that when I’m done. The satisfaction of completing a tough workout is invigorating, but the real reason I work out has little to do with that.
Years ago, I was attending a group exercise training and the Master Trainer noted that we don’t work out to kill it in the gym, but instead to enjoy things outside of the club. This was a new concept for me, but clearly made an impact, since it’s stuck with me for over 20 years. For her, she wanted to challenge herself in classes so that she could hop puddles with her kids, take them on hikes or just enjoy the playground together. With or without kids, this is the best reason I can come up with to work out.
We all know the benefits of working out so it’s no surprise that it’s good for the body and soul. The list of benefits is long, but at the top of my list is to work out so I can enjoy the stuff I want to do when I’m not working out. My kids like to single track when we’re in Sunriver and I definitely couldn’t keep up with them without staying disciplined at the gym. Boogie boarding, paddle boarding and hiking wouldn’t be on the agenda if I didn’t work on conditioning. I love that I can pick up and do stuff with people I love and care about without having to wait months to get in proper shape. I might be a sucker when friends suggest events for me, but I can accept that I’m an easy mark.
I bang out the push-ups, keep running the miles and break a sweat every single day so that I can do the fun stuff in life and I really think that’s what it’s all about. People are my priority, most definitely. I think I get to enjoy people more by taking time for myself and staying active so I can accept invitations that might come my way. I love that I can jump in and do a run with friends or try out a new fitness class together. I might have to decline an invitation for other reasons, but I don’t ever want it to be because I can’t physically attempt it. The memories are too valuable.
In September, I’ve accepted an invitation to Tough Mudder- Seattle, pretty much a half marathon full of obstacles. While the thought scares me, I can’t wait for the adventure, both on the course itself and meeting up for group workouts. Memories in the making! Our bootcamp crew suggested a 5k adventure course in West Linn and you can bet I jumped at the opportunity. THAT is why I work out. I want to take advantage of opportunities that come up and spend time with people I care about. It’s not that I love the workout itself, it’s that I love the result. It’s totally worth it to break a sweat every day to train for living a full life. I work out to do the things in life I want to do with people I love and care about. It might not be the most popular reason to work out, but I would argue it’s the best one.