Sweat dripping onto the spiral-bound notebook as I write down details of my WOD, I overhear one of the coaches explaining the terms of the contract to a newcomer.
“So, you should read through all of the terms yourself, but one big one I just want to point out really quick is cancellations,” he said. ”You can only cancel your contract in the event of death, dismemberment or something close to it. So just be aware of that when making the commitment.”
I smiled to myself. That kind of smile when you’re nervous and don’t really want everyone else to know.
Yep. That’s what I signed up for. One whole year. There’s no going back.
In Donald Miller’s latest book where he writes about adapting his memoir for film, he says that every protagonist has an “Inciting Incident”. An Inciting Incident is the door by which everything in their life changes and they cannot go back. Frodo picks up the Ring. Ed Norton meets Tyler Durden. The Dude gets his rug peed on. From which the person cannot go back to the way things were. They have to press on through the conflict toward their goal.
Some of you know this isn’t my first attempt to get into shape. I’ve hired trainers, started running every day, done fad diets; once I even lost a bunch of weight once having my appendix taken out (albeit that one wasn’t voluntary). In the end, I managed to wriggle out of my commitments, into a comfortable pint with Ben and Jerry for several weeks in front of the TV. If avoiding pain was an Olympic event, I could be the Michael Phelps of poor health habits.
I am the anti-Michael Phelps.
If you put us in the same room, it creates a paradox which threatens to tear the fabric of space and time.
I needed something more. Life and limb clauses aside, I could just as easily wriggle out of committing to going to CrossFit frequently. I could do what I was doing for a while, going once a week-ish (maybe) (if that).
My schedule is crazy, but I took a few minutes to finally sketch out Origin Story. I posted it late at night, several Tumblr users happened upon it and sent me really kind words in response. One told me she had an Internet crush on me (I Internet-blushed). I knew what I had to do. It was why I made this blog in the first place.
What started as a few notifications to my phone and laptop sitting in my low-rent office in downtown Long Beach (read: Starbucks), suddenly became a wave of FB and Tumblr messages, texts and even phone calls. Everyone responding to the news of the blog with such kind words of support. Honestly, people were so nice, I could barely stand it. My dear friend Sally called and said, “Glen, people will always love you no matter what, thank you for letting us know that you want us to call you out on this.” Or something like that. It was sweet. She’s a great friend.
You’re all great friends.
I can feel it in my bones: the fear. Panic. Flight risk. That feeling of wanting to wriggle out of this one. That wants to run away, maybe fake my death and start over in South America. Or at least pretend I never started this blog or told anyone I cared about wellness.
I wish the Ring had never come to me.
But that rug really tied the room together.
So I’m glad to have you all as my Samwise or my Walter Sobchak along the way.
Here we go then, I guess.