Gymnastics & Life Lessons
This was post was totally supposed to just be a silly recap of a gymnastics meet this weekend but then I started feeling all the feels and I just couldn’t dump a bunch of pictures without getting a bit sappy.
Here’s the thing: If I had signed up to compete in a gymnastics meet at age 20, I think my biggest concern would have been wearing a leotard. I probably would have spent the whole time worry about photo angles, if my stomach was sticking out, and if my hair looked right. But at the age of 27, I was mostly just proud that I could still pull off a couple of backhandsprings. It’s not that I’ve gotten better at gymnastics (clearly, I’m no expert) but my focus has shifted as I’ve gotten older. Maybe it’s maturity or maybe it’s just finally appreciating and embracing the support system I have but, I’ve started appreciating fitness for what it is: fitness.
I also think there is tremendous value in having a fitness goal that isn’t “fit into a size…” or “look good in a swimsuit” because that truly doesn’t matter. If you set a goal of being healthier, getting stronger, or learning something new, you’ll get so much more satisfaction in the end. (And hey, you might even fit into that dress you ambitiously bought.)
Sometimes I’m amazed at how insecure I was in my early 20s. I think part of it comes with the territory. Aren’t we all a little awkward when we’re trying to figure out our place in the world? But I’ve learned not to take myself so seriously. If you’re not enjoying chasing your goals, what’s the point? (Hint: If your main goal is a number on the scale, you’ve got some re-prioritizing to do.) So maybe I’m silly about Fitbit goals and beam cartwheels but these are the very same goals that keep me healthy and make me feel better inside and out.
I feel so blessed for the support system I have. I’ve always had an amazing family and wonderful friends, but I think moving away really made me appreciate it even more. Friends that stay in touch despite distance and new friends that jump right into your life and support you like they’ve always known you- that’s not something to take for granted. Friends that will put on a leotard with you or a husband that will sit through a 3 hour gymnastics meet for roughly 10 minutes of actual excitement… that’s hard to come by.
Lastly, I’m grateful for the blog world! The internet is a weird place but I’m thankful that I’ve made some truly wonderful friends through it. Some of you, I’ve never met in person, and some of you ended up being my roommate. (Ok fine, that was just Lindsay.) The point is: if you throw your heart and soul into something, you’ll be amazed at what you get out of it.
Woo woo!!! Good for you. I definitely thought of myself when you mentioned staying in touch despite distances. Once I do something besides watching Sherlock and going to school over the next couple of weeks I’ll write you a big long email update. haha. But so far, it’s all same old same old! Hope everything is going well now that you’re back at work!
Hahaha YES! I love that we can stay in touch via Facebook/Text/Snapchat and then when I see you in person, we just pick up where we left off 🙂
I love this! I saw your IG pics the other day. You look so happy and that’s all that is important. I completely have changed the way I see my body too since my 20’s. New perspecitves are great
BEAUTIFUL post, Liz! So proud of you!
I’ve grown in similar ways over the course of my 20s and early 30s…and it’s so refreshing to feel that difference when you look back.
This is so amazing!!!!! You rock!
Oh my gosh girl – what a beautiful post!! I absolutely love this and I am so happy that you’ve found something that you can just dive in to! You look fabulous but most importantly, you look HAPPY! I agree – fitness is about more than looks. It’s such a better feeling to accomplish a goal such as gymnastics or liftinging or etc instead of just fitting into a smaller pair of jeans!
Liz this is SO great. That’s pretty awesome of you to get in a leotard and compete like you did. “if you throw your heart and soul into something, you’ll be amazed at what you get out of it.”<< couldn't agree more! Happy Monday Liz, thanks for sharing!
Your tumbling! You go girl. That’s amazing. I have a lot of admiration for you and Christina for doing these.
I agreed with everything you said, at age 55 going into a Zumba class, a Barre and Yoga class was scary. But coming out of the classes realizing I was in better shape than I thought and that I could still dance was amazing! You are never too old to accomplish a dream,
Very cool! Right now I’m chasing a lot of personal and professional goals but one definitely includes becoming a better rock climbing (being able to lead 5.9 outdoors,, gym climb top rope 5.11) and improving my yoga and flexibility. I could never do the splits when I was 8 and taking gymnastics, but now I have hopes of being 30 and doing them!
This is such a great reminder. I let my fitness and health goals slip over the holidays and have been feeling pretty upset with myself for the number on the scale. It’s time to get back to focusing on getting stronger and consistency instead. You rocked that beam cartwheel by the way. I am so impressed with your gymnastic skills!
Fizz and Frosting