You have heard or read the saying “success is a journey not a destination?” Well I want to talk about fitness and look at it a little differently. When I speak to people they sometimes talk in terms of; when I get in shape, I want to do this or go here. Sometimes they think they will be happier, when they are in shape. But there is a flaw in their logic, they talk about fitness as a destination. When are you “in shape?” Is it when you run a marathon or maybe two marathons in a row? Is it when you bench press 500 lbs? Is it when you run a marathon and bench press 500 lbs?
For years people have tried to give us their personal description of what “in shape” means. The problem is that there are many different definitions for being in shape. It can mean different things to different people. However I think that most people will agree that the second that you think you have arrived and are in shape, if you stop training, you are not in as good of shape as you just were when you where still working out. It’s like trying to tell the exact time, by the time you read the time it’s not the time anymore.
Fitness is like being in shape, it is ever changing, and you must always challenge your body. As soon as you think you’ve done something hard once, the second time you do it your body will find a way to do adapt to it and usually it no longer affects your body as hard as it used to. I use the example about the first time you walk to the store, it was hard, but the second time it’s easier and by the third and fourth time you could do it in your sleep. When an overweight deconditioned man, riding a bike, once told me he was in shape. I smiled and waited for is explanation. He then told me he was round and that round was a shape wasn’t it? I did have to agree, it was a shape. It made me think, he was in shape too, and by that I mean, that he could have been in much better shape but he could also have been in worse shape.
Being in shape is a relative thing and we must embrace fitness in all its forms and strive to hone our fitness. We must enjoy the journey for what it is, it is our destination. It’s like striving for something that we have always had, but never fully appreciated until it was gone, striving for a city only to find that we have lived there our entire life.
Being in perfect shape is like chasing after the wind. It is something that we can never do. We must enjoy the journey because it is the destination.