I imagine that at this point in the PiYo program – seven weeks in, one week left – all you “normal” people out there are enjoying this sprint to the finish line. There are more intense workouts than not – we’re seeing Drench, Sweat, and Strength Intervals more often. This is it.
I, on the other hand, as I am sure you know by now, am not “normal”. I have a chronic back injury that refuses to stay quiet. It’s why I modify constantly. It’s why I still have a week left when everyone else in my challenge group finished a week ago. It’s why I’m feeling sort of alone right now.
Don’t get me wrong; I still have tons of support from my Beachbody coach and I am slowly ticking off the workouts. But in this story I’m the tortoise, and the hares passed me a long time ago.
I sometimes wonder what really went through that tortoise’s head after the hare passed him. As he watched the hare get smaller and smaller as it moved farther and farther ahead, until it vanished from sight completely. What went through the tortoise’s head then? When he was completely alone, with no gauge for just how far behind he actually was? No way of knowing where the finish line was? No end in sight, and no one to keep him company.
Did he dwell on the past, kicking himself (as much as he stubby legs could kick) for not training harder? Looking up at the sky and saying, “Why, God? Why did you make me a slow-ass tortoise?”
Did he ponder the future, stressing about what spectators would think when he finally, painstakingly crossed the finish line? Whether they would judge him for taking so long? Whether there would even be anyone left there to cheer him across the line?
Or did he just put one foot in front of the other, thinking neither of the past nor the future? Did he go off into his own imagination to distract himself, or did he stay completely in the present, gazing at the flowers along the path, or the clouds in the sky, and appreciating their simple perfection?
I am the tortoise; I may always be the tortoise. I need to learn to settle here, take comfort here. There’s no use in trying to be a hare or comparing myself to a hare when that’s simply not who I am.
I need to learn to rock this shell, and these stubby legs, and this slow pace. Rock it hard.
One step at a time.