The Inner Monologue of a Gym Rat

“What is it about working out that you are so obsessed about?” “Don’t you get bored doing the same cross-fit circuits every time?“ “Skip today’s session and join us for drinks.” I generally hear this from people who hate working out or have never stepped foot in a gym, and of course I ignore every word they say. I usually smile politely and internally seethe.

I don’t mean only hitting the gym, I mean generally working out, whether its running, swimming, dancing or weightlifting. If you do not particularly do any form of exercise then you are missing out big time.

See, when I’m not exercising, and even if I’ve hit the gym the day before, I’m consumed with anxiety about the next day’s workout. What if I end up getting an afternoon meeting request that drags on till 8pm? What if I get invited to a friends dinner that I’m unable to ditch? How can I sneak just another set of extra squats today?

It has spread like a virus over the last few years: an extra jog here, maybe another short session of strength training before I hit the beach, or some hip-hop sessions in my bedroom might be a good idea to get me some moves back? Minutes at the gym started to become sacred. Everything else in my day has become organized around my workouts, and taking a day off because I’m starting to get sick is not an option. Hell no.

It’s an addiction, but a good one. It calms me down. It makes me perform better at work. It makes me a happy. Yes, I have to admit, I am a gym rat, and I think this syndrome runs throughout my family. My sister is one of the top cross fit athletes in Lebanon; my dad has never skipped a morning jog for the past 7 years, my mom can walk all of Beirut in a day, and my brother is simply born fit.

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Me and paps hitting some abs

and thats my sister doing what she does best.

And thats my sister doing what she does best.

I’ve been working out for the past 10 years, and with time I’ve finally discovered a practice I LOVE and look forward to do everyday. That is weightlifting and high intensity intervals. Thanks for my sister for her daily inspiration and motivational tips, I have found the one workout that works really well with my body. If you haven’t found your movement flow yet, I encourage you to keep experimenting until you find that thing that feels most you, and trust me, once you find it, it will change your life.

In short the biggest exercise lesson: Love the way you move. Enjoy your workout, whatever kind of move it is, and do it with passion.  Do what your mind and body tells you.  That’s the key to sustainability and happiness.

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