Over time, I got to know the characters of this crew. There was Richard, the older gentleman who rocked his bike shorts with pride and always had his suit in a travel bag hooked on his finger. Richard made friends with everyone and so, to know Richard was to know everyone in the morning crew. There was Carol who worked the front desk. She wasn't peppy in the least bit, especially to be bombarded with a line of members right when she clocked in for work. She made sure to let you know it, too. There was Sarah, who was my age and we always joked we were surprised we didn't see each other out the night before as Charlestown had all but three bars to choose between. There was the bookworm of the crew who always had her head down in her latest novel but we knew was listening to everything we said. George was a talker, and some mornings I hoped he and Richard would strike up a conversation so I could retreat under my hood with my headphones and iPod, especially during the cold winter mornings.
Some mornings we chatted, other mornings were quiet, but we showed up for ourselves and each other day after day. There was something really cool about this camaraderie with virtual strangers. Of course, new faces popped in for a day or a week at a time, but there were 8 of us who showed up religiously and pushed ourselves like badasses class after class, week after week, dripping in sweat, then heading off on our separate paths to work. We all had our favorite bikes and fell into formation pretty quickly once we headed into the room and wheeled them over to our spots. Our instructor Heather would show up late, always, but made up for that with playlists I so wish I could track down now and her infectious enthusiasm. I loved the way I'd get harassed if I stayed out too late and missed a class one morning and how accountable I felt to this crew. The thought of them standing outside the gym waiting for class got me out of bed many of those mornings.
I've always loved being on a team growing up, from chanting swim team cheers at meets together, busting out suicides side-by-side on the soccer field, enduring long road trips to tournaments and lately, completing 200-mile relays sleepless and smelly with eleven other runners. Screaming, cheering, high-fiving, winning and losing, and most importantly...lifting each other up, living our real life Rocky movies. This isn't just the stuff of high school team sports, this is something we can create for ourselves today, at any age, bolstered around our goals of self-improvement and empowerment.
BUILD YOUR CREW!
Look around the gym, in your group training, even on FB, for people doing what you are (or want to be doing) and reach out, introduce yourself. If you're connecting with a few women who are often at your same spin class, suggest a social get together outside of class like a walk on the weekend or a coffee after class. If you want to create a recurring social workout, email a group of women you know who are interested in wellness and build a hiking or walking group. If you want to get into weight-lifting but don't know where to start, ask your friends on FB who are always talking about deadlifts and squats to join them at their gym for a session or pick their brain about where to start. Connect with other women who want the same things for themselves and create a sisterhood around supporting and lifting each other up!
Don't be afraid of it! Be authentically you and invite a connection with others that will help you to make your fitness goals a part of your lifestyle. You've got this. Go ahead, your crew is waiting!
If you are local to the South Shore of Massachusetts, I'm excited to tell you that a new crew is currently forming in my newly renovated home gym (Old Oaken Bucket Road in Norwell). This month, I am offering free group personal training sessions to kick off my 12-week series, helping you jumpstart your health & fitness and form a new crew of powerful women with similar goals! Group personal training sessions are designed to burn fat, gain muscle and increase your all-around fitness and power! I will be offering Monday, Wednesday and Friday sessions for the weeks of February 8th and February 15th. Space is very limited so be sure to act quickly and reserve your spot for free for one or all of the sessions. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot.