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Raise ‘Em Up

The remarkable workout community I frequent uniquely offers support. Competitive, corporate, and scrutinizing gym populations miss the mark propping up peers. Exercise environments propagate vulnerability and act as starting gates for fitness and weight loss. Initially physically weak, aiming for strength and health, a harsh, competitive atmosphere triggers newcomers to run for the exit long before reaching goals. Discovering an alternative, special environment, where raising one another up and offering support, rather than negatively judging, surprised me. Helpful advice granted, sacrificed workouts to guide others, and extreme encouragement offered to the new, the weary, and the shy, counter usual gym atmosphere. Raising others up emotionally is a lesson in giving, wishing better and more for the stranger next to you, an effective, overwhelmingly, heartwarming experience.

Giving without expecting anything in return, this gym community bonds within a private, social media page with words of wisdom, inquiries, and cheer. Motivational pep talks parade the pages; postings by veterans and newcomers alike engage and commiserate about emotional healing, fitness, and weight loss. Pictures of food preparation, inspirational quotes, and before/after photos of successful participants, bombard the posts to engage and inspire the masses toward successful choices. Women vulnerably divulging life struggles meet up with empathy, supportive solutions, and listening ears, raising hope, sharing healing processes, and establishing an inclusive, belonging spirit to over four hundred pairs of watching eyes and sponge-like minds

Besides the virtual community, connection, camaraderie, and collaboration occur upon the floors of exercise classes. Teaming up for intense strength interval training, boosting the efforts of a partner, is a full energy sprint in giving with energy, enthusiasm, and support. Wanting more for someone else orchestrates a genre of palpable, euphoric giving. It plays a harmonizing tune in our hearts, pounding from adrenalin, beating with love emotionally, and sounding the alarm of support. Reciprocation feels immensely satisfying, yet unexpected. Joy, healing, and belonging occupy connection among peers while bonding ensues, vulnerability dissipates, and strength flows among the masses.

Competitive environments motivate many, yet within the vulnerable space of healing the broken emotional parts of ourselves, empathy necessitates a kind-hearted community, connection, and consoling place. Typical gym philosophy negates this need. Yo-yo diet and fitness cycling continue without core results, core healing, and core well-being. Community supports accountability, and motivation to be better, do better, and become the best versions of ourselves. Breaking down the boundaries, revealing the depth of our despair, and revolutionizing support through connection, the charge to change fitness communities is possible. Raising each other up enables the successful road to wellness, paved with generosity, sharing, and engagement of humanity’s greatest strength, love.

Recognize other’s success is not your failure, kind people are the best type of people, and a supportive environment is the difference between successful, sustainable lifestyles and failed long-term attempts. Boosting up others’ spirit, power, and reserve to continue when failure feels inevitable, empowers the masses. It raises hope that anything is possible with the power of many. Assembling the pieces of the weight loss, fitness journey alone requires perseverance, focused energy, and consistency. Yet when the shoe drops, others picking you up, dusting you off, and exhibiting compassion, a web weaves connection. Together courage, accountability, sustainable success causes the confetti to fly. Community within the gym requires “raising ‘em up.”

Published inHealthy Avenue

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