I just returned from a wonderful weekend at a fitness conference in Ft. Lauderdale. As a motivational speaker on food, fitness and fun, I was overdue for a tune-up and required CECs for my fitness certifications. I have to tell you, I was a little hesitant at how I would do at 56 years of age and a perennially pulled hamstring!. After all, I had signed up for Booty Blast, Core Camp, Suspension Training and other grueling sounding classes!
My friend and I were distracted at the registration desk by the driving beat of a kickboxing class in session. We peeked in and my worst fears were “round-house-ing “and “triple jabbing” before my eyes. Holy crap! Everyone was young, chiseled and killing the complicated routine!! Oh well, I thought, I can sit on the sidelines and take notes.
Dressed in my most slimmin, black gear I showed up at my first class, Double Trouble. 8 lb. medicine balls, tubing and my friend, Shawn, as my partner for this class. Time to dive in. Yikes! Yes it was tough, yes I sweat buckets, but I had fun, I was happy, and I was successful at doing all the drills. That’s when the teacher laid out her objective for any class she teaches: connect with your class, make them feel welcome, help them feel successful, make it fun so they leave a happier person and are sure to come back. It’s not about “the instructor”, not about how many people you get in class, not about how hard and kick-ass you make the workout. If, as an instructor, you’re there only to get the glory then you’re there for the wrong reason.
That’s the right message for me as an instructor, for me as a speaker, for me as a human being. I was once again reminded of Mother Teresa’s words of wisdom quoted by the talented speaker, Marilyn Sherman, in one of her fabulous posts: “Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.”
The next morning’s YogaLean class had another wonderful message: connect with your body so that you can treat it in the best way possible. And then the most inspirational class was Sunday morning, called “Let the Praise Begin (a Gospel Workout)” with energetic, gospel music mixed with the joyful instructor (seen above) and awesome choreography!!! (Think hands in the air) I was smiling all the way to my last class called “The 7 Secrets of Success” where Carol Scott, the CEO and founder of ECA Fitness, shared her success tips: Do what makes you happy, work hard at what you love and persevere through the self doubt, rejections and setbacks.
Oh my, my muscles are sore from some intense workouts but I came away from this past weekend with more than new moves for my classes. I came away with the unexpected message of my role as a teacher to inspire success and happiness to every audience I have the privilege to be in front of. I better serve myself by continuin to improve my message and therefore better serving my audience to help them be successful and lead happier, healthier lives.
What an inspirational and exhausting time!