Written by: Ryan Robertson

Let’s face it. Adulting isn’t what many of us thought it would be growing up. The constant work grind and fighting traffic to and from can take the wind out of your sails and really make us (or me) lethargic and at times apathetic about a lot of things. The mindset then leaches out and infects our outlook on aspects of life. I of course want to talk about the aspect of health.

Our wellness is something that we are conscious of but will some (or many) times not follow through with or will do so begrudgingly. This gives us a negative thought of a task that can be of great benefit to us. What I want to do is try to give you a different perspective on how to look at fitness tasks by sharing a few personal experiences.

I’ve always been short and for much of my high school and collegiate career I was undersized. I played football and track and field. It was my sophomore year of high school and a couple of kids came in from a different high school that were bigger and faster than me. I ultimately ended up losing my top spot on my track and field relay time and was knocked down to 2nd string defense for football that year. I was angry, discouraged, and just all out frustrated. Once that year ended, I told my dad I wanted to quit sports for my junior year and he of course flipped out.  He reminded me of the promise I made to him before high school to play all the way through high school no matter what. “You’re going to finish playing because you made that promise to me.” He said. Then I thought more about why I made that promise in the first place. A friend of mine was paralyzed freshman year during a wrestling incident. He told me more than anything he wished he could play with his teammates.

The point is that this moment reminded me why I even started playing. It brought me joy to bond with my teammates and form positive relationships. My barrier was that I hated practice; even more so having to work even harder to get back to where I was. I looked at the hard work as more of an obstacle instead of an opportunity.

From then on, I challenged myself to change my attitude.  I transitioned to feeling fortunate to have the abilities and opportunities to do certain things others couldn’t. I tried to look at each practice as an opportunity to get better. I was cracking jokes at practice with my teammates when I felt like absolute crap, poke fun at my coaches when I could barely stand-up, and just have fun and make light of the challenges I had. I started to look at practice as an opportunity to improve and get where I wanted to be. Sure, enough after an offseason of drilling myself and doing whatever I could to get back on top I had my best year ever. I earn my 1st string spot back on the football team and ended up with state honors in track and field.

A lot of you reading this have had friends or family who have gone through hardships. You may know someone right is fighting for good health or going through something terminal. You yourself maybe going through a rough patch that may or may not be health related. Regardless of the situation, our health is never a given. It is not something we are entitled to.  It is a privilege that many of us don’t realize until something dramatic happens. Only then do we look back and see how good things were; that of course goes for many things in life. The steps you take to get where you want to be aren’t fun fairly often. If there is any advice I can give to as you work toward your fitness goals or your personal goals and you aren’t digging the process would be to take necessary steps to change your mindset. Realize you aren’t doing this to yourself you are doing it for yourself. Each opportunity for your health is an opportunity to get better; an opportunity some wish they could pursue. It’s not always the most enjoyable but I can assure you the opportunities you put off now will be the regrets you have later. So, whenever those negative thoughts cross your mind remember why you are doing it. If you are tired of anything be tired about not being where you want to be and afford yourself the opportunities to get there while you have the ability. Driving through those hard times and achieving success is what makes life great. We live for those successes but in order to get there your psychology must change. Your thoughts are yours to control. If you are not where you want to be get charged up about it. Tell yourself the change is going to happen because you are sick and tired of the results you’ve been getting and make steps to change your path. Whenever those tough times and negative thoughts come along, and you really don’t feel like sticking to the plan remind yourself why you started in the first place and feel fortunate to have the opportunities you have to achieve your successes.

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