She entered the CrossFit box unsure of what she would find there. Acceptance? Challenge? Stares? This is not easy; this step into the unknown.
The class is full-- men and women of all shapes and sizes. To her left, a woman in six-pack abs and a sports bra. To her right, the rounder version of the man she married.
She remembers, not that long ago (or maybe it was?), when a walk out to the car didn't leave her winded. When carrying bags of groceries didn't make her arms ache. When pulling on pants was a stress-free occasion.
She looks at the board containing the workout. A foreign list of exercises... something about rounds... 1 minute for each exercise. Sounds fairly simple. The moves are demonstrated. She now begins to think that this first workout, this slow return to fitness will be a piece of cake. No, cake is once again off limits.
At the word "Go!" She officially leaves behind her sedentary life.
Hasn't it been a minute yet? Seriously? Sweat begins to flood from her body. These movements, this work... it's been so long. Next station. How many exercises until the break? When did her body become this heavy? How long since she has moved this rapidly?
The coach approaches, checks on her, encourages her with words that correct her movements to protect her knees, her back, her soul. She is working too hard to notice Ms. Six Pack. Did she just finish 2 rounds or 3? Her heart is pounding, pumping life. Life.
The coach returns. Smiles. Encourages. Sees. She slows her pace. She now is just trying to survive until the end. Breathe.
Something new swells inside. No, it's not new, it has just been absent for so long. Determination flashes fiery in her eyes. A touch of anger replaces excuses that have become the voice in her head. No more. This new person is person is not who she is. It is who she has settled into.
She will find herself again. She will move. She will fight. She will live.
This is beginning.