I got a facebook message from Traci - "Hey don't know if you are still interested in CrossFit but Fitness Experience has become a CrossFit affiliate and adding on a Crossfit Box to the gym. Classes can be a little spendy but I live and swear by it. Let me know if you want more info...or just want to come try a class with me!"
Now, she doesn't know this, but she just may have saved me from my self-hatred, sending this one simple message. I am sure she thought I wouldn't do it, have some excuse like all the other times, but she took the effort to send it anyway. Thankful? Why yes I am - more than is imaginable.
I went to a class Tuesday morning, April 30th, 5:15am - Fit Camp with Deana.
"Somebody shoot me!" was all that went through my mind during that hour of class, but alas, no one did pull the trigger, I lived. It was hard. And I mean the kind of hard that death is right around the corner. All my parts hurt, along with all my body issues acquired over the last two years of this fight - fat, neuropathy, lymphedema, arthritis, lack of chest muscles, hip laberal pain, I wanted to quit. The class ended, I laid there in all my bodily sweat, panting like a dog, agonizing the move to stand, my brain asking me over and over, "What have you done to yourself?!"
I signed up to come back for more......
I made this choice on my own. No persuasion, no sales pitch like, "Hey, sign up today and you get a free personal torture session and water bottle!" Nothing like this at all, but rather, it goes to the power of one small act.
You see, I sucked! I mean really sucked! My belly was hanging out and you could see the roundness through my shirt; the weights lifted were light, if any; my squats were not squats but bending; my breathing was more like gasping, reaching for oxygen. I had no business being there. I was not in shape to do all of these brutal things, "You want me to do what?!"
But, someone believed in me and my ability to do the task at hand. I was paid attention to and given modifications to be successful. I wasn't just a paying body in the class, I was meaningful and important, my triumph mattered. Who knew? Certainly, not me, so why would somebody else? Made no sense, but made me want to do more and be more.
Can I say that again, "Someone believed in me!" How powerful is this? Why is it so meaningful?
My excuses didn't work anymore, "I can't do a push-up...I can't pull myself up.....I just can't!"Someone believed in my ability enough and gave me a success plan to get there. Not many do this for someone the first time meeting them (being genuine and not fake), especially when they give every excuse in the book. I have been given a new term, "I can't do it........YET!"
I went to the Prep Course for Crossfit R3 on the following Saturday to learn some of the functional moves used. I wished for bullets, again, but nothing happened; I lived.
I met Joey that day, the Crossfit guy, and he believed in me too. He wanted me to succeed. He didn't judge my broad jump in all its glory but said,"Great Job!" and other positive phrases that could possibly come out of your mouth while watching an overweight, out of shape, middle-aged, cancer survivor struggle to accomplish three sit-ups, three push-ups and 7 broad jumps for 10,000 minutes (wait, I made that number up, but it was a lot, maybe 21 minutes....). But I finished, didn't give up, wanted to, but didn't.
And I have continued to show up for more. Yes, the first two weeks I was absolutely miserable in all senses of the word. Every body part ached, I shook when I stood, I could barely lift my arms, my body practically un-functioning, but always ready and eager to come back for more.
In week three, I went to Fit Camp at 5:15 in the morning, soaked shirt, aching body, and came home and cried. More like sobbed standing in the shower. I couldn't stop. I don't really even know why. Ridiculous....BUT I felt progress, I saw changes in my body, I was believing in me, I was committing to love me, not hate this disfigured body that cancer has left. I believed in Deana and Joey and Traci and everyone in my classes to help me get through this low point in my life. I truly needed THIS!
Just three short weeks ago I was negative, hated everything, yucky, wanted to be done with everything and crawl in bed and never get up; exhausted.
I played softball. Totally unexpected right? This time it was different. Of course I will never be that young college athlete playing the hot corner again, but for me, at that moment,I was moving better, not perfect, but better. Stopped balls that I would have never gotten to before. Diving and sliding just happened, my body didn't stop me or struggle to stand after hitting the dirt. I hit the ball over an outfielders head...That hasn't happened since cancer took over my life! Best part? Not being miserable after the ground pounding my body received. Jeremy noticed and acknowledged a difference. My heart skipped. I want him to notice me....
I was at work. Had to get under my desk to get to the computer, put my arm on my desk and just lifted myself up to standing. Froze. Tears. Lots. This great feat has never happened since my double mastectomy and reconstruction. I have always had to position myself just right to let my legs lift me.....eventually. Not anymore.
I buttoned my jeans. I know, a big one, you are all shocked...Tears. Lots.
Jeremy touched my leg. "You are getting firmer." He noticed. I want to be noticed by him, always. We hugged, my heart smiled.
Deana and Joey, I thank you for pushing me, modifying for me, challenging me, listening to me, believing in me. Traci, thank you for asking me to just try. Mary, thank you for your kind words from one survivor to another.
This is week five. I am committed. I am accountable. I have no excuse. I am sore always. I am taking back control. I think......no, I do, believe in me. More please!