The other morning my exercise-induced asthma kicked in – not fun, and not expected. One of my Gracie Jiu-Jitsu instructors said “how ironic! Of all the people, the one who is always active has exercise-induced asthma!” Sigh. I know! (Still, how blessed I am to be able to BE active – health is a gift!)
I was fully determined to sprint hard that day, and I was feeling incredibly disheartened…not only about my poor performance and inability, but the fact that I had set my bar so high, and I wasn’t going to get there. Ugh. I got to my fifth sprint (I usually aim for 8 to 10), and I had to call it quits. As I walked to settle myself down, the lady next to me took out her earbuds…
“You’re doing GREAT,” she said with a smile.
My spirit lifted. Immediately. As if rainbows illuminated the room. (And they did!) 😀
“Thank you so much for saying that!” I replied, aware that my displeasure and difficulty was obvious.
She continued to speak to me, sharing kind words of encouragement, and truly generous compliments. At that moment, I really needed it! I love to encourage others, particularly when it comes to exercise – I love to remind them that just being there is a wonderful start and that they should be proud. But at that moment, I was the one really struggling, and this sweetheart of a lady just lit me up!
I gave up on the rest of the sprints, feeling a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction despite that I could only get about a third of a normal workout in – typically, I’d feel down about it but there she was telling me how hard I work all the time…
“Wait…I DO,” I thought. “It’s okay to slow down if I need to…”
Her thoughtfulness was so appreciated, and reminded me that it was okay if I wasn’t 100%. It was OKAY to rest. So often we share kind words with others, and advice about allowing ourselves to rest…and we don’t heed the counsel ourselves! The reminder was needed.
I’m also blessed to have an amazing man in my Life, who supports and encourages me with my sports (and all that I do.) He is the first person to tell me to take it easy, and it is often the one thing I really need! He tells me I work hard enough, and it’s okay to be gentle with myself, especially if I’m not tip-top.
I’m so thankful to him, and to my new gym bunny friend…who is always working her tail off too! What goes around comes around, for sure…and in this case, it was a wonderful thing. ❤