I've typically been a gym-rat; one of those guys who's standing at the door at opening (5am) and first in so I can get a good workout, shower, and make it to the office early. I put in my headphones, crank the music, and game-on! That's been my routine for quite a while. That is, until my wife ran into someone she trained with previously. Both of them had recently relocated to Frisco and she said she was leading something called Camp Gladiator so Susie decided to try it out...and asked me to join in. I reluctantly agreed to go for 1 month but then I was heading back to the gym.
Well, I'm not standing at the door anymore at 5am. Instead I'm in a parking lot of a local park either wrapped up against the cold and Texas-sized wind gales or stripped down as much as I can get away with legally to manage the heat and sweat. And, honestly, I really like it. The workout switch up is great for my body (for the record, I programmed my own lifting to include HIIT and cardio but still had a few common patterns I'd find myself in) and the people...they're actually the reason I'm there still. It's funny how we can get our ruts and think we're growing in the comfortableness of routine and known when really what we need is to experience different.
Our group is a collection of people of all levels and walks of life. There's a few higher-functioning athletes that sm0ke everyone. A number of us (me) are in the middle most of the time. And then there's a group that's just trying to get moving; they're the best because they have every reason to skip out or not show up and they don't. There's hard work for sure but the banter, the laughing, the noticing of each other really has an aspect to it that makes us a community. Oh, and our trainer, Mary, generally puts up with me; which is a lot.
It's amazing how much a sense of community can draw you in and keep you coming back. Now, I'm not sure that I'll darken the doors of the gym again for quite a while (although I will be filling a parking space with a serious amount of sweat). Where have you found your community? What unexpected places have you felt welcomed and that you belong?