I have to get something off my chest. I used to judge people by their workouts. A lot. I actually used to frown upon long distance runners and think they simply wasted their time by logging all those miles. I would see someone lifting only light weights in the gym and scoff. I would talk down about classes like Zumba for not being “real” workouts.
Since becoming a trainer and trying those various approaches to fitness, let’s just say I have learned my lesson.
I agree whole-heartedly with the need for a well-balanced fitness routine. I know a lot of ”information” out there can strongly mislead people in what constitutes healthy practices. I also know that a world of variety exists to help people reach their health and fitness goals…and, if you seek balanced training, one approach isn’t necessarily better than the other. Amanda’s recent post about the way different athletes judge others of differing training methods really got me riled up.
I used to be one of those Judgy McJudgerson people. Now, I see that it doesn’t really matter as long as we are each doing our best to achieve health in a (safe!) way in which we can thrive.
For some, the runner’s high crossing a finishing line beats all else.
For another, walking across the stage at a fitness competition gives the most exhilarating rush. It’s no more special than the runner’s experience.
Another person may find nothing more fulfilling that hitting up a group class at the gym.
Yet someone else only gets their heart rate pumping with joy for a workout when walking into a Crossfit box. It’s no more worthy than the group class.
Then, there’s the person who finds pure satisfaction on a yoga mat.
Or the individual that longs for a “pump” during a challenging strength workout and reaching a new record for a particular lift. Once again, it holds no more importance than the yoga.
Sure, seek a balanced plan for optimal fitness. Sure, seek to challenge yourself and even encourage others to pursue the best for each of our bodies’ health. But please stop the judging and worrying whether what YOU enjoy is the “best” or “right” way to health.
When I became a runner, I recognized that nothing fulfilled me quite the same in the realm of feeling strong and having a chance to be a peace with myself and my body. So, I ate my past words and judgmental thoughts. There isn’t ONE WAY to health. So, DO WHAT EMPOWERS YOU and brings you closer to health. And know that it is just fine. Don’t listen to anyone who tries to tell you it isn’t “worth it”, otherwise.
Your Turn – What empowers you? Have you ever judged someone for a workout?
I will email both of you shortly!