It Ain't About The Ass :: Lessons From The Gym

IT AIN’T ABOUT THE ASS, IT’S ABOUT THE BRAIN.
— LENA DUNHAM


Every other time in my life I’ve tried to be more active, I failed miserably. I’d join the gym or buy a bunch of pilates DVD's (you know, back when DVD's were a thing), go hard for a couple of months, then eventually fall off the wagon.

I’ve never been the active or sporty one… All through school I always hated PE class and I’d try every trick in the book to get out of it. I sucked at it and I always got teased, so by the time I left school I didn’t want a bar of it. I just wanted to go be creative and do my thing. 

Then last year when I got back from Canada, I decided to stop telling myself the same old stories and make a lifestyle change for the better — because I wanted it for myself. I was so over feeling lazy and bleh all of the time, and I was ready to challenge myself in a totally new way.

In the last 11 months or so, I've gone from zero activity, to now working out almost every day of the week — purely because I genuinely fucking love it. 

But you know how it goes... I went into it expecting to just be more active + learn more about health + fitness, but turns out was in to get schooled about a lot more than just that.

Here's a couple of the biggest things I've learned ::


Lesson #1 :: It ain’t always love at first sight. You have to commit to the grind.

Sometimes you commit to something and you’re not 100% in the game at the beginning. It can take days, weeks, or months to really get into the vibe and love it, for real.

When I first joined the gym back in November, I got a personal trainer and we started with 2 sessions a week, and those were the only times I’d workout. I still felt super awkward and I had zero confidence, so I didn’t really feel like gym-ing it solo.

But I stuck with it because I knew I’d be better for it. (And ya know, cause I was paying someone to kick my ass).

It's like awkward first drafts.

They're fucking hard and they suck and they make you want to quit, but they're part of the process. You can't skip 'em. You have to do the damn work. 

I don't think I've ever really truly devoted myself to something like this before, so it's taught me a hell of a lot about what it means to commit to the grind. 


You gotta want it,
and you gotta stay in it. 


Lesson #2 :: You gotta want it for yourself — no-one else.

Every other time I’d tried to be more active, I was doing it because I felt pressure from other people or just society in general... I never stuck with it, because I never really wanted it for myself. 

So when I was able to make that switch in my mind and decide I wanted it, everything changed.


And because manifestos are awesome,
here's one I prepared earlier...

AIN'T ABOUT THE ASS :: THE MANIFESTO

It’s not about proving anything to anyone other than yourself. 

It’s not about trying to be someone you’re not, or trying to meet expectations of what other people say you should look like, or who you should be.

It’s about telling the same stories you’ve told yourself for years to fuck off. You’re playin’ a new game.

It’s about finding something that’s PULLING (not pushing) you forward.

It’s about accepting yourself as you are — but knowing that you have control over your life and how you want to feel. 

It’s about setting your mind to something, and committing.

Committing because you want to be the best version of yourself you can possibly be.

Committing because you’re ready for something new.

Committing because you want to challenge yourself, purely just to see what you can do.


One last thing I wanna add... The more I devote myself to creating the best work I can, the more I'm reminded how damn important it is to have something outside of your biz or your job that's just for you. As I wrote about a little in this post, there's SO much more to life than how we make money and serve others.

For me, my business is very much about creating + serving others... But the gym, and working out — that's all mine. I'm not in it for anyone else.

Call it self-love, self-care, or whatever you want — you have to get out and live for yourself. 


And I can't write a post about gym life without throwing some love to my trainers Ben + Ethan. Thanks for kicking my ass and just generally being legends.

p.s. Want some extra inspo? Check out this Better For It video from Nike, this video by This Girl Can, or this Be More Human ad from Reebok