As a girl who a few months ago knew nothing much about the Cubs except that I know where Wrigley Field is, I’ve been incredibly inspired by their modern story. The more I learn about the most “cursed” team in baseball, the more I realize that you can make direct parallels about how they went from the Lovable Losers to World Series contenders to how individuals can reach their fitness and weight loss goals. In both cases, they’re stories about seeking out advice, guidance and coaching; gradually collecting more and more wins between losses; and about believing in consistency and staying the course to ultimately reach the end goal and sustain it.
The Ricketts family bought the Cubs from the Tribune company in 2009. As soon as the Rickettses took over, the Cubs started losing more and more games over the years. But the family had crafted a solid, multi-year plan. They met with some of the smartest individuals in the baseball world to learn what steps they needed to take to build their dream team: Who were the best people to fill in their management and leadership positions? Who should they draft onto the team? Who should they trade and who needs to go? Eventually, the Ricketts family decided to create a super young team recruited from the farm system. They brought on Theo Epstein to be president of baseball operations and then, when he was available, Joe Maddon as manager. Eventually, to cap it all off, the Cubs brought on star pitcher Jon Lester. And from the Losable Losers they bought in 2009, the Cubs are currently in the World Series in 2016. These steps were not accidental. They were rigorously plotted out, a plan was set and all the players in the game knew what to do.
So what do the Cubs have to do with reaching our goals?
EVERYTHING. Here’s what I mean:
It may be a very long time until I talk about major league sports again. But I couldn’t let this go. The Cubs’ modern story seems so other-worldly but when you break it down, it could be any one of our own.
And with that, I will leave you with two words: GO CUBS!
I ***HATED*** PE throughout school. Instead of going to PE, I did my best to find a way to go to the nurse’s office because of a headache/cramps/hangnail/somemadeupreason (and once I actually DID fall down the stairs on my way to the nurse in high school — fell hard… Karma). I managed to miss every single swim class we had in high school because I wasn’t comfortable in a bathing suit and hate being under water; the mile test was the WORST day of the year because I ran about a 12-minute mile while the kids that smoked a pack of cigarettes a day could somehow run it in 6; rugby was the only sport I contributed any points to because, since you pass the ball back vs forwards, no one ever realized I had the ball.
But then, in 11th grade, a new world of PE classes became available to take for credit. I could choose from such classes as Rock Climbing, Adventure Learning, Lifeguard Training, Sea Kayaking, Fitness Training, Yoga and — my two personal favorites — Dance and Stretching & Relaxation. I took those two favorite classes junior year and then somehow I managed to talk my teacher into letting me co-teach those classes senior year. I didn’t know it then but that was my introduction to coaching (so thank you, Ms Simpkin, for that). And the great thing was: It taught me that I didn’t need to hate exercise.
Here the thing: In traditional PE classes, you don’t get much of a choice when it comes to what exercise is. We all kind of learn that the important things to know are how to run a mile and that the more sit-ups and pushups you can do in a minute the better, and that it really sucks being picked last on a team. (And it’s really embarrassing when you fall on top of your PE teacher during the tumbling class in front of everyone…)
Why do I bring this up? Because too often I hear people say, “I don’t like exercising but I know I need to.”
Sound familiar? If so, you might have experienced the dread I felt in PE classes. You might not have been in an environment that made you feel like you were a part of a community of peers made up of different fitness levels that could work together; you were probably not in a place where you believe you could excel and feel competent even if you weren’t “good” at first; or in a place that even gave you a choice to do certain sports over others.
So why on earth would we put ourselves in a position to relive the dread of high school PE in adulthood? When a potential client contacts me, I know that they might have been thinking about contacting someone for a long time. Taking the step to finally make that contact is brave, it takes guts, it puts them in a vulnerable position and I absolutely do not take that for granted because I know that client put herself/himself in that position because they need HELP.
If you’ve read this far, thank you because I’m finally getting to the point. You or someone you know, reading this now, might be in the “I hate working out but know I have to” position. What I want to ask you is:
Listen: It’s 2016 and almost anything is an exercise class now so I feel confident there’s something out there for you. It might be Zumba or Bollywood dancing; it might be martial arts, tap dancing or training for strong(wo)man competitions; it might be aerial arts or pole dancing (not at all kidding); it could be hoola-hooping (also not kidding) or tennis. It might even be strength training with me or any of my colleagues at TruFit, wink wink!
Here are a few ways to find options that might be right for you:
The MindBody App
Your local park district (if you have one)
Your local YMCA
Me! If you’re looking for something and can’t find it, email me! I’ll do my best to find what you’re looking for.
Here is the bottom line: There really is something for everyone. Disliking pushups or running a mile doesn’t make you suck (Usain Bolt has never run a mile; he doesn’t suck). You’re just on the verge of finding what might lead you to a more full, happy and healthy life! So get after it!