Sweat was pouring off of my forehead, dripping into my eyes. Arms shaking, legs off balance, all I could think to do was keep. breathing. Just one more side angle. Another lunge. Downward facing dog and another plank. More push-ups. No, I’m not training for a 5k or a Tough Mudder. I was at PiYo. My newest favorite workout, up there with Zumba, Pound, Holy Yoga and Revelation Wellness.
Really hard. And it can be incredibly frustrating to go and do the work and watch the scale go the wrong way. But as I keep doing it, I keep learning more about myself. I’m learning that those early days of yoga, just learning the names of the poses and how to do them the right way? It’s what’s keeping me from hurting myself in a considerably more advanced class.
I’m also learning that comparison and competition have no place in my practice. Just like in community, the second my focus turns to someone else, what they’re doing, how they’re doing it, I fall. I stumble and lose my balance, and I have to start over again. When I’m in this class I see what it’s like to be in community. Women standing side-by-side, chasing their goals. Working on their own but cheering with one another when we figure it out. Not taking ourselves too seriously, bringing our own personalities to the practice, and knowing that it’s not perfection that makes us successful – it’s showing up.
And in community? Some days all I can do is keep breathing. I go back to the little lessons I’ve learned along the way, the small community building or friendship sustaining skills that keep me on the right track. I’m learning to keep my eyes focused on what is solid, what is sure, on Jesus. When I fix my eye on Christ, the rest of me follows. I’m balanced. I’m steady. But when I look to the right or left, when I let my gaze and mind wander, I get caught up in comparison.
In community – and yoga, PiYo, Zumba, Pound, etc. – it’s not perfection that makes us successful. It’s that we show up. We try it again. We keep moving, our gaze fixed, knowing that the women with us? We’re all just giving it all we’ve got.
Keep your gaze steady today, friend. We’re in this together.