I saw Brandy this morning.
That’s right. You probably don’t know who Brandy is.
Brandy is a trainer at my gym.
A few years back I took a class she taught called Ab-Blast. Mostly, it was a grueling hour of contorting your body into all sorts of strange positions twice a week for 5 weeks in an effort to strengthen your core muscles.
I was ready to quit after the first class but I’d paid sixty dollars to be there and a small voice inside of me that sounded an awfully lot like my dad kept shouting You made a commitment!
I was the oldest person in the class. Oldest by a few miles. My partner for our warm ups was a twenty something who had enough energy and enthusiasm to light up a small town.
She told me I reminded her of her grandfather and kept telling me to take it easy.
I toughed it out until the last week. The last week was devoted to forming and holding a plank. If you aren’t aware, a plank is when you put your entire body parallel to the ground, lift up about six inches and hold it for thirty seconds. It’s supposed to strengthen your core muscles. Build character and all that stuff.
It wasn’t working too well for me. I kept falling flat on the mat after about 3 seconds, so I devised a work around, so -to-speak.
I sorta scooted my butt up in the air a bit so I looked like an bridge rather than a plank. It took the pressure off of my core muscles and made me feel a bit more comfy.
Comfy not healthy
Brandy was walking around encouraging us and when she got to me she leaned over really close and whispered
The only person you’re cheating, John, is yourself
With that she firmly put her foot on my lower back and pushed.
What happened early that morning long ago has never left my thoughts for very long.
Taking the short cut, cheating, phoning it in – call it what you will only provides us with a false sense of who we are or what we can do. I’ve come to discover it is one of the more selfish things I can do.
There have been times I’ve been tempted to take the short cut and when I do I remember what she told me. The only person I am cheating is me. I’m robbing myself of an opportunity to grow.
I’ll leave it there
Oh yeah. I don’t see Brandy very often anymore but when I do I make it a point to thank her. She just smiles.
Wisdom comes when we least expect it