Things that are relevant to this post, in no particular order: Michael Jackson, unicorns, Meyers-Briggs pegging me as an INFJ (ALL the feelings), social responsibility, community, Maya Angelou, F-bombs, and how you feel after you read this. Maybe now I have your attention - Even if only fleeting curiosity about why all those thing are important to a fitness blog. Read on - I promise they are.
I am a slow processor. I had to wait a week plus some days to let the Mark Fisher Fitness Lab experience marinate before I collected my thoughts on relevant takeaways. If you haven’t heard about MFF yet, you will soon. I had goosebumps and fuzzy feelings all weekend as I listened and absorbed their non fitness and fitness related messages. I kept thinking:
- THESE ARE MY PEOPLE!
- I found them!
- This is what the internet means when I read: “Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe.” This my tribe.
- More! More! They get it!
The MFF team is grabbing the fitness world by it’s unicorn horn, and leaving a trail of inspiration, glitter, F-bombs, and smiles behind. Their enthusiasm is contagious. Their brilliance is real. Fitness can be as FUN as it is smart. It can be cloaked in ridiculous but backed by serious science simultaneously. It can be as simple or as complex as we make it. But our own fitness journey and potential cannot be realized if we don’t ever show up for it. (cue Ah-Ha moment sounds). And we won’t show up for it if it doesn’t make us feel good.
As social creatures - who we do fitness with and how they make us feel matters. For most of us, it matters more than the argument over 20 reps versus 15 reps or whether or not running is superior to riding a bike. It matters that we want to go back the next day and then the next one after that. Have you ever …
- Quit a gym because you didn’t like the energy?
- Quit a program because your coach made you feel bad?
- Stopped taking a class because you felt like you didn’t belong?
- Stopped showing up because you felt stupid?
- Left a gym because for some reason you couldn’t make yourself go?
None of us want to feel controlled, stupid, or alone. We want a community that lifts us up but also autonomy to make decisions and feel important. That includes coaches and trainees alike. It includes all of humanity. We want our tribe to know WHO we are and what OUR story means to us. We want to feel heard, and seen, and be validated. We want people to know we are trying. We want to find a place where fitness feels good to us so that we can succeed and finally hit our goals. We probably want to sing Michael Jackson at the top of our lungs as we get our sweat on making muscles. Maybe reveling in how good it makes us feel. Well some of us do.
You might not have found your fitness place or your people yet but I encourage you not to give up. Somewhere out there, is a community, a sport, a class, a personal trainer, a gym, or an activity that will make you feel inspired and encouraged to show up. Your job is to get in touch with your deep feels and figure out what speaks to you and to ditch the people and the places that bring you down. What do you need to succeed? Only you really know the answer to that question. Look for your tribe. Look for the people you are pulled to and the ones you want to emulate. Ask for help. Tell your story. Let yourself be vulnerable so that you can grow and stay the course.
I left the MFF workshop with all sorts of knowledge about assessments, listening, coaching, behavior change theory, and habits. I took copious notes on strategies for helping my clients stick to their regimens better. I got to meet Tony Gentilcore, one of my all time favorite fitness bloggers. I could bore you with the details. I love learning and I love lecture type seminars. You could talk at me for days about something you know and I would probably sit in a corner and enjoy it way more than you thought possible. I've been to a lot of fitness and health workshops and classes. But this one was special. A week and some days later, I keep thinking about this quote, that I have always loved:
“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou
What are we doing if we aren't aware of how we are affecting those around us? As a coach my job is to set the conditions and make a process fun. My job is to listen, to validate, and to encourage. And as a human, a person who cares very much about the world around me, my job remains the same if I acknowledge that we are all looking for community, connection, and a validating experience. I also need a tribe to feel part of. I want to be around other fitness nerds that get me and are working towards the common good and the betterment and elevation of the industry too. Fitness related or not, what Mark Fisher got right, is bigger than what most of the health and fitness world has caught on to yet. People are people. Go find your people, the ones that will cheer you on, and crush all your fitness and life goals.