About twice a week, each of us answer the following question:
"So, what kind of gym is UF?"
That's a pretty open-ended question! Are we a kettlebell gym? Sort of. Are we a Strength & Conditioning gym? Yeaaaa, if you call taking dance breaks between sets of Floor Presses "conditioning".
Of course, the answer is multi-faceted, and changes from client to client! For some of our most seasoned veterans, we are a healthcare plan insomuch that we keep them on track for any and all outside activities that captures their fancy. For others, we are their weight-loss solution, offering on-going, supportive guidance over the journey that is successful body comp change. And for some, we are the first fun fitness experience they've ever had.
Obviously, each of these stories are rewarding to us in unique ways, as they are rewarding to each individual who benefits from moving in that positive direction. But it also points most directly to what exactly it is that we do here: coach. To rephrase it (and this is usually how I put it when people ask that question above):
"UF is a community of individuals eager to address the physical part of their life, and they don't give a f*ck what you think about it!"
We know that coaching works. We know, in fact, that it works better than any other single approach, mostly because it is adaptive to the needs of each individual--it meets them where they're at. Your friend who lost 30lbs doing Olympic lifting lost that weight because of great coaching; the barbell was just a tool to help them get there. Your brother who does yoga 4x/wk and has made peace with his inner gorilla has a teacher or 3 to thank; he could have been running or swinging a kettlebell, but the magic came from the human connection he made. In the fitness world, amazingly, this singular act--of coaching individuals in a long-term, consistent way--is not the "it" trend, and isn't being splashed across the web with anywhere near the same fervor as plans promising "15 pounds GONE in 5 days!"
About as often as we are asked the "What kind of gym..." question, people ask for advice on their fitness routine: "What should I do to get ripped?!" Simple! Find a great coach, and do what they say.
This holiday season as you look back over the last year, and ahead to the next one, consider how coaching fits into your life. Have you found a person or group of people committed to making you better, whatever that may mean? If not, now is the time to seek that out. If you have already found that community, have you shared that experience with those closest to you? Maybe someone who seems to be perpetually struggling when it comes to working out?
Either way, during this time of giving, sometimes the best thing you can give is a commitment to that which makes you strong (inside and out), all year long. And if it moves you, share that gift with your nearest and dearest.
Happy Holidays, and go lift something heavy!