Community is an extremely compelling reason to continue any activity. Whether it’s a good habit or a bad one, a welcoming community that you identify with will keep you doing what you are doing longer. In this instance we are talking about fitness and it being easier to achieve those goals with a community of people by your side. A community of like-minded people that are all striving to live a healthier life. A life that is built with your goals in mind. A fit life, a strong life, a better life.
It's hard to do it alone, but it may be even harder if you have the wrong people around you. Have you ever gone to the gym with that person that really doesn’t want to be there? They drag your workout down, spend more time on their phone than actually working out, talk about the reasons why they hate certain exercises, or why what they would rather be doing right now instead of just putting the work in to achieve their goals. This creates a barrier to you achieving your goals, or at least putting your best effort forward. Maybe they are not ready to make a change. Maybe it's just not a priority to them. They might be ready at some point but right now is not the right time. The point is, they are a pain to train with and it brings your workout down a few notches.
Sometimes they are part of a community outside of the gym that promotes this attitude. A community that does not support them getting better. A community that wants to keep them doing the things that are bad for them because those bad habits are what keeps that community together. A community that promotes unhealthy eating habits, regular binge drinking, and the avoidance of self improvement. This community doesn’t understand the exercise habits of someone trying to attain a fitness goal. They may say things like “That doesn’t seem like any fun.” or “Wow, you really spend a lot of time at the gym.” or maybe even “Why are you eating that way? That seems pretty boring.” Yes, it isn’t always easy, or fun; it takes work. I am not saying that you can’t go out and have a few drinks here and there, and I am not saying that you can’t enjoy the foods you want to in moderation. If you miss a workout or two here and there it's not the end of the world. Just think how much easier it would be to pursue these goals if you had a community that understood and supported all those goals waiting for you at the gym everyday. A community that even supports you when you are not even at the gym. Your fitness family.
Having a community that supports you through your goals, encourages you to progress in your fitness. Motivates you to continue to pursue higher goals and more progress. Supports you when you don’t feel like going to the gym or when you start to act like that workout partner described above, that no one really wants to workout with. This community is there to ask “Where have you been?”, to kick you in the butt when you aren’t working to your full potential. This community is there to congratulate you on a job well done. To keep you on track when you feel like quitting, to understand all the work you have put in and how far you have come;to make the gym feel like home. Going to the gym and working out should be something you look forward to everyday. Finding a great community will make that a reality.
Have you found your community?