Gym Insecurities & The Olympics

Ding — Time to pedal.
I was sitting on my stationary bike starting to sweat. Not sure if the sweat was more to blame on the workout or on the stress, either way… it was good and exactly what I needed.

Ding — Burpies
As I was jumping up and down (for what seemed like a million years) I noticed a new girl slip in. Perhaps I should say, new to me – who knows? I skip miss class all the time. And based on her lean build she was not skipping missing any classes, ever.

Ding, Ding, Ding — INSECURITIES (this bell was in my head)
New girl, set up right in front of me. There was not a piece of her jiggling. She was strong. Like super strong.

A few dings and other painful exercises later we were all in the center of the room using the TRX (torture ropes that hang from the ceiling used to do pull ups or something like that), a few of the gals were asking about the move and how things were going. I gave them the quick update on the struggle of keeping a house at a level of perfection while living in it with 4 kids and golden retriever. They chimed in with their painful moving stories and encouraged me.

As we washed back and forth, like the tide, in and out of separation and togetherness we maintained an ongoing conversation. Of course we included the new gal because we are not jerks. Well come to find out the new gal, is not actually new (shocker) and to top it all off she is an Olympian.

As in, she was in the O-LYMP-ICS.

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You can even buy a Flavia t-shirt online…

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Flavia Oliveira placed 7th overall in the Women’s Road Race as she represented Brazil.
In the Olympics.
We commended her on such an amazing accomplishment. We asked her about training, racing, and just her life in general.

Back to me, jiggling as I jump and hop and bounce with significantly less finesse than the OLYMPIAN in front of me.
Have I ever mentioned that I have tall-girl issues?
Basically, I felt like a giraffe/ogre most of my formative years and therefore really do not like being the biggest person in the room.

Since this beautiful masterpiece of a human set up her station directly in front of me, not only did I notice how fit and trim she was but then I kinda had to chuckle (at myself, to myself)…

God loves making me face my hang-ups and insecurities.

No matter how perfectly our bodies were lined up in the mirror you could still see me.
I was taller, wider, my arms were longer, and my thighs were thicker. It was like I was the chalk outline they would draw of her at a crime scene.

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Yep. There it was, my body image insecurities, projecting like a pronounced white line on the black asphalt. (Good news… at least I wasn’t stressing about whether or not I had sprayed enough air freshener or remembered to turn on all the lights for the showings.)

As we gathered back at the center of the room again Flavia looked over at me and the 2 other mamas who were part of the ongoing conversation and said something along the lines of “I don’t know how you guys do it.” She mentioned the balance of kids and life and dogs and life and husbands and life.

And there it was.
A beautiful and uplifting conversation was brought to the surface. Insecurities were laid aside and the utmost respect was poured out upon one another.

It was so very refreshing to find myself amongst a room filled with woman who were brave enough to call out strengths in one another instead of keeping to themselves and letting them turn to insecurities.

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Insecurity is something I have really worked and it is not too often that it rears its ugly head, but when it does it is just so gosh darn nasty.

However, this time spent at the gym yesterday was refreshing and enlightening. It reminded me that no matter how much you are admiring the person standing in front of you, they might also me admiring you as well. And the best part is… when we can call out the beauty and strength in others it is empowering. It is like taking a load off our own back and giving it as a gift to others.

So today I want to ask you…
who is standing in the mirror in front of you, making you feel like an ogre?
What if instead of making it a negative for you, you turned it into a positive for them?
What if you praised them for the very things that make you feel inferior? Who knows, she might be admiring your jiggly chalk outline.

Until the next time I can tell you about my childhood issues,

~The World’s Okayest Mom

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