So today was the day I began to give notice to most to my clients – yet again. More on that later…
I have 4 Facebook friends who are now dead, but still have active Facebook pages. This haunts me, ongoing. I check those pages periodically. Not with the expectations that my friends will come back to life, but as a way of keeping their memories alive in my heart. Maybe this is one of the more useful aspects of Facebook.
I read recently that with the increasing decline of new Facebook users, that by 2090 everyone on Facebook might actually be dead. At that point, and when blogging has run its trendy course, all I have spat out through the years by way of social media will simply be a silicon fossil to be someday excavated by a cyber-archeologist. This may or may not be my last essay. We’ll see. If it is, it’s been a fun few years.
Through it all I have thought to share some ideals, and values as they relate to fitness and exercise, that they might be relevant to the lives of others. Of course I have shared some non-fitness ideals as well. Perhaps years from now if the content I have written is excavated and studied, it may actually mean something to people who may be interested in what I have had to say. I’m pretty sure the readers of today though, aren’t committing my shtick to memory.
Leading, And Futility…
I’m basically I’m no longer comfortable with a leadership role in fitness and exercise. Certainly not in the social media anyway. This isn’t a joke. I almost walked away from my business entirely today. However, a friend and client convinced me to sleep on it for a year or two, and reminded me that social media is my fitness hobby, not my fitness livelihood. We sat by my fire pit, and talked about the upsides and downsides of me walking away. Once he got me to listen to my own words, I realized how fortunate I am to have the business, the lifestyle, and the clients I have. The state of my industry though, has changed dramatically in the past decade, and has done very little to improve on itself.
Unrealistic expectations cultivated by social media, in my estimation, is a cancer attacking good fitness intentions everywhere. What the general population wants from fitness leaders and resources is this; exercise that cures aging, prolongs youth, and fosters hotness.
News flash: Youth is a synonym for history. Aging is inevitable. Hotness is little more than an interruption in getting more familiar with someone who we might love more deeply if we only choose to look more closely. Clearly the majority of my social media audience and I are on different pages when it comes to these. I’m just not willing to play the looking good game anymore. Both in teaching and in writing, espousing exercise for the sake of hotness is something I’m no longer willing to participate in, even if I do practice it to a degree.
I have written and taught for years that we have a responsibility to age. Though I believe we should attempt to do so with the best intentions, and under the best possible circumstances, we should proceed with caution, and respect the historic record of aging – for it is a requirement of living.
Gray hair. Wrinkles. Sagging boobs. Woodies gone south. Skin that bruises ever easily. Crackling bones. Shifts in posture. Loss of bone density. Belly fat. Memory lapses. Hair loss. Waning aesthetics. Lethargy. Veins, and not the good ones. All of these can be met, and addressed to a point with exercise, but none can be avoided.
Jhciacb; Part Ricky Williams, part Syd Barret…
I confided to my friend today that I have been approaching critical mass in my career path for a few years. He, and I sat by my fire pit, and talked about whether or not I’m burned out or really willing to call it a career. He asked me what I would do if I walked away from this. I suggested a job at Home Depot, or an assembly line. I have no debt so I don’t require much money. When he was done chuckling, he just made sure I listened to my own words, and then made sure I listened to them again. I did. I walked away from our meeting realizing that I’m here, and in this for the long haul – but in a functional, and in person kind of way.
I will no longer attempt to use social media to steer the good ship, Fitness. Fitness is in rough seas, and has a minimum of lifeboats. The passengers can’t make out the horizon, and the pilots can only describe a horizon that isn’t really there, and that is a horrible combination.
Yes, I am experiencing some degree of burnout, but I still love what I do. I am now just going to increase the focus on my analog clients, and devote less time to promoting my values by way of social media.
As one client put it today when I called to tell him I was through,
“I depend on you. Without you, Roy, there would be no exercise in my life, and I don’t trust any other trainer.”
I’ll take 28 of those, over a million Facebook likes who aren’t listening any time. Be well… rc
Please check back at some point to see what happens when I hit the stop button on the blender in my head. Oh, and there’s this from The Stone Roses. Enjoy…