You’ve likely heard the adage, “Slow and steady wins the race”—and this can certainly be applied to many areas of one’s life.
When it comes to fitness and well-being, I believe this adage is so fitting and appropriate. The only way, in my humble opinion, to make long-lasting changes for your physique and in your thinking, is to go slower than slow, similar to a turtle’s pace.
I have a quick story to tell:
In my profession, I teach group fitness classes for a living. I see hundreds of people in any given week, and I talk to many of them privately, as well. Every single person has a unique history to share, and sometimes, I’m taken aback by the stories I’m privy to.
Last week, a woman approached me after one of my sessions, her T-shirt soaked with sweat, her face red from physical exertion, and she had a half-smile plastered across her face. She then said, “Look at what you did to me, Stephanie. Look at how hard you made me work.”
And suddenly, her eyes welled up with tears. She continued on to say that she’d just resumed her fitness journey after years of being unhealthy and unhappy, and that she was so delighted that I was a part of her “rebirth.”
Right after she said this, I welled up with tears.
The thing is, you can never truly know the impact you might have on another person, on any given day. This beautiful soul shared her vulnerabilities with me, she wasn’t ashamed to admit her foibles, and that made me love her more. I gave her a big hug and told her that I was so honored to be a part of her path to healing, and that she was definitely in the right place. She was so comforted by my words—and I kid you not, she rarely misses an opportunity to attend my sessions, as I see her in virtually every class I teach.
You can tell how grateful she is to be alive and that she’s thankful to be part of a loving community.
Why did I tell you this story?
Not because I’m trying to tug at your heartstrings—but because the human spirit is so varied and compelling; it’s awe-inspiring to be able to witness it. I’m not just a fitness instructor teaching people how to move their bodies. I’m encouraging people to step outside their comfort zones, to open their minds to possibilities they haven’t considered, to nurture their souls, and to make slow, lasting changes for a lifetime.
In other words, I practice what I preach.
I truly believe I have the capacity to make indelible impressions on other people, especially given what I do for a living. I believe I hold great power in my hands. I truly want people to feel good about themselves. I want to transform people’s lives for the better. I want the masses to view fitness as fun—not as a chore to be despised, or used as punishment .
Slow and steady wins the race.
One more personal story for you:
When the pandemic started in March of 2020 and all the gyms shut down, I didn’t make an income for almost a year. It had quite an impact on my self-worth, but I did get some assistance from the government during the lockdown, and that kept me afloat for a while.
Nevertheless, I decided to take on a personal challenge while I was at home. I converted my unfinished basement into a gym and I exercised five days a week for those nine months of quarantine. I kept myself moving and accountable, and I never once thought that if I did my workouts consistently, the results would be immediate. In fact, the results came after two years of dedication, hard work, and patience.
I totally transformed my body, mind, and soul in those nine months.
And, I did it for me—not for weight loss or accolades. I did it because I wanted to—not because I had to. I made it fun for myself. I created a schedule that focused on all aspects of my health and wellness. I even went on YouTube for some workout inspiration from other fitness professionals, and then, I added my own signature flair and style to my sessions. And voilà—I came out of lockdown with a renewed sense of self, a healthier mindset, and a fit, muscular, and lean physique.
It took two years to reap the benefits of my labor. And if I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t hesitate for one moment. Hard work certainly pays off.
So, remember this adage and use it regularly and often:
Slow and steady wins the race.
And I’m living proof that it ultimately leads to victory, utter joy, and contentment.