I'm sure this surprises none of you.
I just had to bring it up due to two incidents in the past 24 hours. As you may or may not be aware, the 9th season of The Biggest Loser started last night and you can bet all billion pounds that America itself needs to lose that I was there, cuddled up in bed, computer on lap, ready to live blog.
Instead, I basically cried my eyes out. I always forget that the first episode of each season is one of the hardest to watch. My heart breaks for these people in a way that perhaps only someone in the fitness industry can experience.
I think that many people cry watching the show because you're watching someone who really feels like they're at death's door, have hit rock bottom, are lonely, are scared, etc. It's easy to identify with someone who openly puts everything about themselves on national TV. I know there are some criticisms of dealing with issues like that, but I can't knock it. They made that decision. No one forced them. And in some way, I think almost everyone can identify with someone's story. It becomes a network of support. And I support that decision that each contestant makes.
But as an aerobics instructor and hopefully soon to be trainer (anyone want to sponsor my NASM certification fee?), my heart breaks because I see the short fall in this country. I don't know if there is really a place to put the blame, because at my core, I'm a believer of self responsibility. You have brought yourself to where you are, at least for the most part. I see the gap in knowledge with the contestants every season. The information is out there and it's available, but there is so much of it, that I see how confusing it can be. I know I've talked abut how weight loss is a very very sensitive issue for people, so I can also see how crash and fad diets are so seductive and how we do chase after the next all in one machine, exercise, diet, etc. In reality, I believe that the Biggest Loser is the epitome of the truth of weight loss. Calories in must be less than calories out. Bingo weight loss. That's the only formula you need.
I sat there last night crying because I wasn't helping. When two teams were sent home before things even got started, I cried and cried and cried. I wanted desperately to get on a plane and go to where they were and to help, to teach, to support. It's that feeling that wells up in your chest when you have found one of your life purposes (this is the second time I have felt this way, the first time is not at all career related).
I know Chadd has sat through many BL episodes of me going "I have to find a way to do this. This is where I belong, my heart is there." And every time, he says "then make it happen." Last night, he didn't even have to say it, while I was typing out that message via gchat, I went "I know what he's going to say." And then it struck me.
How many times do you see Jillian and Bob get in someone's face and say "if you really wanted this, then you'd be doing something about it?" ALL THE TIME. EVERY EPISODE! Bob and Jillian would say the same thing to me about my goals, about my desires. So why did it finally click? I have no idea. But I went to bed hopeful last night, brimming with possibility.
That was the first incident, the second was all too much of a coincident to not be a little nudge from God.
I was never meant to have the job that I have right now. I don't want to knock it because my company treats me well and, bless their hearts, encourages fitness. But I am at a desk all day, 5 days a week, talking about well...nothing fitness related.
Today I was leading my first meeting with my new client. After we took care of business, we started talking about something--I think Wii Fit, which lead into talking about the new Biggest Loser Wii game, which lead to me showing off my BodyBugg (see link to the left), which lead to a 20 minute conversation about fitness. I could feel myself light up. One of my clients said something that made me feel like I was about to take flight, that happiness welling up in my chest again. She said, quite simply
"Well it seems like you're in the wrong industry. You're clearly supposed to be in fitness. Looks like you found your calling!"
She was genuinely excited for me, which caught me off guard. The next thing I said was a bold faced lie about how I love my job now and that fitness is a hobby, which I had to say considering my clients pay me an exorbitant fee to have me create useless documents about processes that will never really happen. But I think everyone there knew the truth.
While normally that would have depressed me, this time it invigorated me. I have ideas, I have great business ideas. I'm learning and training to become a good trainer and to be that person who people who need help can come to and will come to when they feel the same way so many of the contestants on Biggest Loser feel. I can't wait for the day that it all changes...and to get there, it's just one foot in front of the other.
Have you ever had that moment of clarity? What was it about? How did you act on it?