Fit vs. Resilient

Published on 9 February 2022 at 16:51

I went swimming today to improve my fitness level. However, the plan to work on my fitness rather turned into a self-developmental opportunity.  

The swimming pool was fully packed; 3-6 people were swimming in each lanes, and in the slow lane people were standing in the middle of the way, chatting. 

First I thought to myself, that it would only be this busy for the first 20 minutes as there was an aqua-fitness class due to start at that time, and people would move over to the other pool for that activity. But 20 minutes can be very long if someone is always poking you on your side or kicking you on your leg, not to mention splashing water constantly to your face. I said to myself, I could do it. I pulled over when a splasher approached me, I changed swimming style when I needed to squeeze between 2 other swimmers and speeded up to take over a slow swimmer and the standing chatters when I reached them. It required focus, strategy and power. The exact opposite of what I had come down for: relaxation, calmness, joy. It was such an intense mental work trying to make my way from one end of the pool over to the other, so I was exhausted by thinking, not actually by the strikes I was doing. And when the 20-min finally passed, most people didn't seem to come for the aqua class, hence stayed in this pool where they were and even more people were showing up and entering "my pool".

Then I drew the line. That's it. I need to call this a day. I've tried, but this wasn't going to happen today. I came here to enjoy my favorite sport activity of swimming, and what I had been doing for the first 20-min is cursing, making mental plans, giving out of the business of the pool and the water on my face. I just need to stop swimming, get out of the pool and put an end to my misery. 

Then I had another thought. These people do not care what I think, how I feel and what action I take - whether I go or stay. The only person who cares what I think, feel and do, is me. I came here today with 3 intentions: to enjoy myself doing my favorite sport activity, to work on my fitness & endurance, to feel happy by taking one step towards my goal that I had planned to achieve in the coming summer. And these people have nothing to do with my intentions, thoughts, emotions or actions. 

So I decided to start enjoying the experience. Yes, this might have not been the experience I had had in mind, but this is for sure an opportunity to take all in. As long as I'm in the water, I'm still doing what I love to do: swimming. Why would I stop doing what I came here for to enjoy?? Also by completing the full hour of swimming would enhance my fitness and endurance what I need to move closer to my goal to do cross-lake swimming in the summer. So I stayed. Put a smile on my face, started feeling how the water stroked my skin, how awesome it felt like being able to move my arms, legs; I felt my muscles I was using each time, I stared at the reflection of the surroundings on the water. It was amazing. Same people were doing the same things around me, but my thoughts were different. Hence, how I felt has changed, and my action has changed too. And guess what? My experience changed in line with all the changes. Realizing that being resilient, focusing on the goal what I had come here for to achieve, was more important than what other people were doing or thinking. I had no influence on them, letting go the need to control what I couldn't, was my way out of the situation. I needed to get out of my head, not the pool.

Being fit is important. Endurance will provide energy, muscles, motivation for a long-run. Resilience on the other hand is an opportunity to bounce back; back to yourself, back to the center, back to your goals, back to your joy & happiness. This is what really matters! It is not up to what's going on externally. It's up to you, knowing what your goals are and keep finding your way back to them. That's where your strength is, that's how you can go for your dream life, dream job, dream relationship. It starts in you; with you.

With love, Andrea

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