Get in loser, we're going cycling!
2017 was just one of those years. I was in my third year as a counselor and I was already experiencing burn out. I didn’t know it at the time but I realize that now in retrospect. That was the year I started going to therapy. I knew I needed to talk to someone but making the decision to seek help had taken some time. I was afraid I would find out something about myself that I didn’t want to confront. As a way to cope, I also started cycling. I had already lost about 40 pounds and was looking for something fun that would help me continue to stay on track.
I found a cycling studio nearby and finally took my first indoor cycling class. I was obsessed! I clipped into my bike and I never got off. After taking classes for two years, I received an email about an upcoming spin instructor training. There I went, signing up, thinking it was a stellar idea. My thoughts were, I love music, I love spin, what a combination! Once training started, reality settled in quickly. The six-week training was brutal, not because it was physically exhausting, but because it was challenging to be myself on the podium. I had so much anxiety and I was completely out of my comfort zone. I sat clipped into the podium bike, mic on, light focused on me, frozen without an idea of what to say. I cried a few times in front of my classmates and in front of the master instructor. Thankfully I was in a safe space but I felt like I was back in the 3rd grade. No te miento, throughout the training I thought that perhaps I had made a mistake and maybe I wasn’t cut out to be an instructor. I completed the training but still had so much to learn. After not making the cut after the first audition, I was officially ready to put cycling on the back burner. In true Mean Girls spirit all I could think was, stop trying to make fetch happen.
So I’ve never considered myself to be brilliant or extraordinary. What I do know about myself is that I am persistent. Even when I’m deteriorating and it seems like I’m about to throw in the towel, I pull through. I’ve been doing this since 1988 LOL. That is exactly what I did. Although I was embarrassed and wasn’t 100% sure of myself, I found the courage to keep going. I continued practicing, I kept taking classes, and continued showing up to auditions. My willingness to be uncomfortable and look like a rookie got me my first cycling instructor job. For the longest time, I thought anxiety hindered me from doing the things I wanted to do. The anxiety I experience has propelled me to take leaps I would have never taken before. When I began my journey of growth (and discomfort), I was afraid that I would learn something I didn’t like about myself. What I found instead is that I am courageous after all.