#My500Words: Day 10 of 31 "The Gym is My Therapy"

When nothing goes right, go lift - gym therapy.

The saying goes that "your health is your wealth" and I couldn't agree anymore. Maintaining and balancing your health is essential to wellbeing as the other saying goes "Mind, Body, and Spirit". All three aspects of well-being are all connected and affect our health . Yet, it is essential that there is a balance between all three as your mind is affected by your body and vice versa. And your spirit is a culmination of your physical health and spiritual health.

We all want a quick fix but there is no shortcut when it comes to your health. It takes commitment and dedication in all three phases of well-being. Especially when it comes to improving your body and physical health. But once you start it's hard to stop, as fitness is as addictive as the worst of drugs. When you're addicted, you're not going to want to stop. As a recent fitness addict, I can attest to such a statement. Working out has been my drug of choice that causes a natural high filled with endorphins.

GymTherapy

The past 2 to 3 years I have dedicated myself to improving my health, which has turned into being a consistent member at the gym. My primary reason for working out is not the physical attributes that come with it. It isn't to get the arms, or the six pack, and not for the Christmas tree back. No, that's not why I work out. But, those are some damn good consequences that come with it.

I work out because it keeps me level. It keeps my mind fresh and quick. As someone who has a past with anxiety and depression going to the gym has been my therapy. Even though the weights aren't listening to my problems, they do assist me to face them.

I first made the commitment to better myself and improve my health after my freshman year of adulthood. I realized that I could no longer sustain the lifestyle that I grew to love in college. The binge drinking, the Del Taco, the late night food runs, the munchies, and more drinking. We all have those moments where you look at yourself and realize something has to change. I had that moment and it wasn't pretty. In that moment, I didn't look familiar to myself. I wasn't healthy. It was the skinniest that I have been since high school as I was close to resembling Wiz Khalifa in build. That wasn't good, or at least to me it wasn't. After that day and realization, I told myself that I would never look like that again. Things changed ever since.

Once in motion, I started to work on the building blocks of my health. My eating habits began to change. They say it usually take up to a year for your body to react to the dietary changes. I didn't have a gym membership but I made sure to do the basics. I would start to learn that health and fitness is a game of patience and persistence. After a year of clean eating and doing basic workouts I would begin to see changes not only in my physical appearance but also in my state of mind. I was happier.

Then, I moved to New York City. It wouldn't be until I lived in New York that I would take my fitness and health to the next level. It wasn't that I wanted to be bigger physically but it was more out of necessity. New York City will eat you alive if you let it, and I wasn't going to let that happen. NYC ranks among the worst when it comes to stress. Taking that into account, while working and attending grad school, I couldn't let the city get the best of me. So how did I beat New York? It was the gym.

I relied on the gym to answer questions that I wouldn't myself. The gym was my personal therapist without the co-pay. The bench press took on all my problems. The curl bar eased my stress and anxiety. The squat rack would help me take on depression. Any issues that were on my mind before I entered the gym were a distant memory as soon as I left. After every gym session, I'm walking on clouds.

The gym is the only place where everyone has something in common and that is bettering themselves. A gym is a place where people go after a long day of work to relieve the stress or take on any problems that they may have. The gym is a destination for those who are working on identity issues. A gym is a place where you go to not only find yourself but to transform yourself. The gym is therapy.