Embracing Discomfort: Progress through Denver Fitness
"I enjoy taking classes with people who are stronger and more skillful than I am. Often, people stick to the things they are already good at, so they never learn new skills or progress. At Awaken, I have learned to embrace the discomfort of new movements. This attitude has not only helped me to become physically stronger but also mentally tougher."
Laura Slavin, 32, Financial Consultant
Having never done gymnastics-style training before, I was lost when I started taking classes. Not only were the movements new and challenging, but it often felt like the teachers were speaking a foreign language. For example, I didn't know the difference between protraction and retraction, and before joining Awaken, I thought "PPT" meant PowerPoint, not posterior pelvic tilt.
When I began training, I attended classes about three times a week. After a few months of this and noticeable improvements, I signed up for unlimited classes. These days, I go to classes five or six days each week. With so many excellent class options, my biggest problem now is deciding which days to rest.
We all have weak links. For me, I have trouble engaging my hamstrings and butt in certain exercises. They like to sleep when I want them to work, but gradually, they are coming out of hibernation.
Right now, I'm focusing on my straddle press handstand. Eventually, I would also like to be able to do the legless rope climb.
I enjoy taking classes with people who are stronger and more skillful than I am. Often, people stick to the things they are already good at, so they never learn new skills or progress. At Awaken, I have learned to embrace the discomfort of new movements. This attitude has not only helped me to become physically stronger but also mentally tougher.
One skill that always seemed far out of reach was the pull-up from a dead hang. Several of the women who come to Awaken can do many of these. This impressed me and I wondered if I would ever be able to do even one. A few weeks ago I did my first one, and now I can do 4! I recently passed the Level 2 test. To me, this indicates dramatic improvement in both strength and flexibility, as I was far from able to complete the test when I began attending classes.
Although it’s sort of an embarrassing question to answer, I would have to say that my back has become my favorite body part. In fact, after having intensified my training at Awaken, I have received multiple compliments about improved back muscle definition.
If you're scared to try a class, my advice would be to just try it! Everyone else in the class was in your shoes at one point and remembers how awkward and difficult this training can be, especially in the beginning. More experienced students are also happy to help.
I believe that continuing to train at Awaken will help me remain healthy and strong. I also think that the daily commitment to the goals that I set in the gym will help me to continue to pursue and achieve challenging goals at work and in life in general.