Barbara: More Than Just a Workout
I remember wanting so badly to be an instructor at Rev for this reason and truly, this reason only. I remember taking classes before I started teaching and feeling this sense of community, this purpose that I had never experienced before. I started to connect to this sense of team, to this feeling and idea of working with people for a greater good. It reminded me of why I fell in love with sports to begin with.
Growing up I was not terribly coordinated…I spent my childhood taking piano lessons, dance lessons, swim lessons, skating lessons….really any lesson my mom could put me in she did….gymnastics HAHA that was a fun time.
Once I got to high school, I decided to join the swim team as a way to make friends (and give my dad a break from dance and piano recitals, poor guy). This was the first time I really felt this sense of a team in my life. I felt a part of something, an obligation, a responsibility. I remember the work being so hard but loving it…loving seeing results, loving exploring and learning all these amazing things my body could do.
I ended up swimming competitively through high school and college. It wasn’t easy by any means…especially once I got to college. I remember wanting to quit many times, but staying in it for the same reasons I stayed in tough workouts, finished sets, and showing up day after day: my team. I wouldn’t let myself give up on them when they never gave up on me. So I stayed in it. And I am so much better and prouder and stronger because I did.
That mentality has really stuck with me since then. It has become a way of life for me, a mantra, a belief system. I look at Rev in the same way. When I put on that mic and get on that podium and look out at all of you I see you as my team. I’m not going to let you give up on yourselves or each other-and I will never give up on you.
For a long time, I focused more on the work than the why. On making my classes consistently hard because as an athlete that was what I knew and responded to. It was good. But it wasn’t as great as it could be. It was safe. I felt something missing. I remember wanting to say things in class but holding back for fear of judgement or it not coming out the way I meant it to or “working”…and then regretting it after.
About 3 or so years ago I took a trip to California with Marm and had a life changing experience where I got to participate and witness someone operating in their purpose and giving 0 fucks about it. Saying all the things they wanted to say and in that workout with the lights and the music and the work and the words I had the most amazing breakthrough and after that, I was never the same. I came home and was changed.
I stopped making it about me and started making it about something bigger-what I mean by that is I stopped caring or seeing this as a reflection of me and making it ego based, and I started to say “yes” to the call and the tug I felt on my heart and my life. I stopped caring what I looked like. I started to say the things I felt on my heart in the moment-I never wanted to feel that regret again.
I will never forget being handed a handwritten letter about 2.5 years ago from a girl in my class who I had never really talked to before. She wrote the most beautiful note to me-telling me about all of her struggles and thanking me for giving her hope on her darkest days with the messages and atmosphere of my classes. This letter spoke so beautifully and deeply to me-it stands out so vividly as a turning point in my mindset…and showed me that I wasn’t the only one who felt the room was more than just a workout room-it showed me that the room was changing lives just like it had changed mine. I started to feel this sense of obligation and responsibility to the souls that showed up to work, to my Creator-needing to honor the clear purpose He had put inside of me. How amazing that I could be the instrument to give someone hope and perspective and change like I had experienced in California.
So here’s what I have learned in this process:
-I’ve learned that we are capable of so much more surrounded by like minded people that will push and pull us to greatness-the TEAM! You are the product of your environment and your team.
-I’ve learned that life is about saying YES to the call and the assignment. Life is about allowing yourself to operate in all you were called and created to be-it’s about honoring that-legacy, legacy, legacy. If you keep thinking about doing something, DO IT! I kept thinking about saying things and realized those thoughts weren’t mine. They were given to me-and if you can remove your ego and realize you’re being given your thoughts-you too may start to realize you’re capable and qualified for those thoughts and worthy…worthy to step into them.
-I’ve learned that people in that room are fighting for their lives-there are some people that fight to make it in there and then fight to stay in there. So I can’t show up in any small or average or “less than” capacity. I wouldn’t let you do it, so I can’t do it either.
-I’ve learned that the way you do one thing is the way you do all things. I didn’t give up in college because my identity was not that of a quitter-I was not and am not someone who gives up. In that same way, I don’t give up on life. I don’t give up in a hard run, I don’t give up in a hard workout, I don’t give up in a hard situation, I don’t give up in a hard season, I don’t give up pursuing better…why? Because you can literally be and do anything, you just have to make that your identity.
So if you take away one thing from this article, it’s that REV is more than a workout. It can’t just be about the physical. I heard someone once say “the way you do one thing is the way you do all things” so the way you ride your bike is the way you live your life. The way you take the challenges and obstacles in class is the same way you take them outside of class. And if we can tap into that then the changes and growth transcend the physical—and that is truly everything. Refuse to see the 45 minutes you spend on that bike as just a workout-see it for the beautiful and powerful opportunity that it is for you to change your life! If you can create habits of greatness and boldness and courage on the bike-I guarantee you that you’ll see those same habits follow you into your everyday life. That’s the miracle. That’s the magic. And that’s why we do what we do.