The Responsibility of Fitness

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Sometimes looking at ourselves in the mirror is illusive. Who is that person on the other side? We see what we want to see. The reflection is tainted by the image our mind helps create or in some cases fabricate. We may look into the mirror, but often avoid seeing what we don’t like. We make excuses and discourage real change. Real change requires looking closely at ourselves, and in turn understanding what we want or need to change.

I believe in constant work toward progress. I like setting goals even if I fail. I can keep trying. Taking responsibility is the first step to enable real change. We can’t blame others for our failure to lose weight, or our failure to build muscle or our failure to be dedicated in the gym, or because we feel someone failed to teach us properly. All we have is ourselves to blame. We are smart and should take initiative. Eleanor Roosevelt once said… “In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”

Over a decade and a half ago I had a personal trainer. He was cut and huge and in tip top shape. Yes…he had competed professionally taking several bodybuilding titles in Southern California. Fred is still around today and owns a gym here in Santa Fe. He never tried to soak me for money, and looking back he was only there to instill the basics. Fred constantly said that he would kick me “out of the nest” when the time was right. He did. Once he taught me: focus (“Keep your head straight.” and “This ain’t muthafuckin’ Carrows!!”); failure (“Can’t always be flavor of the month.”); and dedication (“Be here or be there.”); the rest was up to me. He gave me the basic tools to promote fitness…sweat, focus, and dedication.

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Personal trainers (more often than not) have been in competition shape or have advanced fitness/nutrition certifications/degrees. They have a tough job. The results that their training expertise yields is really only successful with an unwavering commitment from those who hire them. They can’t be blamed for our lack of drive and commitment. Unless they are Osmin, they won’t raid your fridge and take cookies out of your mouth. At night…at home…alone…where no one can see…where no one is watching…we must have strength to shun junk food and take responsibility. If we want to see change that is. We also have to work hard everyday by committing to fitness.

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I like to have photographs of my body. More often than not, I am disappointed by the slow progress. I have to remind myself how far I have come. I have changed my body. I am dedicated to change. I went from drinking Cokes at 2:00am over a decade ago (really?? disgusting in retrospect) to not touching sodas. I went from fast food to whole food. I went from hating to train every body part to fiending the pump in every body part. My mind grew strong. I understand the journey never ends, and I’m ok with that.

The last series of progress photos were inspiring and disappointing at the same time. Having a still photo to look at of my naked back is good. I could see where muscles are growing And where they need work. It gives me the opportunity to evaluate and refocus my training. My upper and lower back are progressing, but I saw that I needed to work on my middle back. There is no one to blame but me for inadequacies. On Sunday morning I made a plan. I researched the best exercises for middle back. I listed them. Now I changed Sunday to back day instead of chest day.  

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I believe in constant work toward progress. We can’t blame others for providing bad information or for not showing us the right exercises or for making poor choices with regard to food. Those are our choices and we need to be responsible for them. In the end…we will stand alone in the mirror when we are faced with those choices. Yes Mz. Roosevelt… “One’s philosophy is not best expressed in words; it is expressed in the choices one makes… and the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility.”

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Explore posts in the same categories: Addiction, Body and Mind, Dedication, Diet, Fitness, Fitness Rants, Gym, Health and Fitness, Obsessions, On the Right Track, Pleasure and Pain, Quotes, Reflection, She Muscle, Women, Workout, Worthy Reads, Writers, Writing

3 Comments on “The Responsibility of Fitness”


  1. […] old trainer Fred (read…The Responsibility of Fitness) from wayyy back in the day is opening a new fitness joint. This one will incorporate mixed martial […]


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