Navigating Adult Life After Sports
It’s a common story. The specifics are different, but the general idea is the same. You played (insert the name of a sport) growing up and it was your world. After high school, or maybe even after college, life got in the way and you stopped playing. You seem to gain weight much easier now than you did back when you were active in a sport and you are just feeling tired all the time. Joining an adult rec team is a great way to combat this, but what if you don’t have access to a team, or if you don’t feel comfortable joining a team? What do you do?
The answer lies in my personal story. I grew up as a dancer. I was born with glitter in my veins and a song in my heart. You couldn’t get me to stop dancing. I remember, in middle school, I was in a class with two other girls from my competition dance team, and we got in trouble for practicing our tap routine under our desks instead of doing our reading. I competed with my team until freshman year, when I chose to switch to my high school dance team. Dance was my life.
Then, after high school, life started to take over. I was taking a full schedule at CSU Sacramento and working a part time job. I was too busy navigating college, work, a social life, and battling depression that I forgot to make time for dance, my biggest passion. After a few years of this, I was completely out of the dance world. I needed do something physically active though, so I started going to the gym. I didn’t know anything about lifting weights or really working out in general. All I knew was the treadmill.
The Game Changer
This all changed one day when a friend of mine introduced me to the world of weight lifting. I learned how to use dumbbells and barbells and how to work different parts of my body. One day, it clicked. The gym became my outlet, the space where I could just focus on myself and block out the rest of the noise. When I stopped dancing, my activity level dropped and that had taken it’s toll on me physically and mentally. The gym began to reverse this by giving me the physical activity that I needed. I started to build muscle, gain energy, and feel better overall. The most important thing that the gym gave me though, was confidence. The lack of activity worsened my depression and sent me into a spiral of self loathing. Exercise gave me the needed boost of endorphin’s, as well as, helped change how I viewed my body. For the first time in my life, I was focused on my own health, and not just being skinny to fit into a costume. It was a complete mental and physical change for me that I didn’t know I desperately needed.
Join a Gym
This is my story, but it applies to so many people that once played sports. The answer to navigating life as an adult after sports, is to join a gym. You don’t have to gain weight now that you’ve stopped playing. You don’t have to sit back and reminisce about what you once were without any current course of action. So join a gym. It can be any gym. If the gym isn’t your thing, join a workout program. You have to find your vibe and what you like. Some people prefer weight training, like me, while others prefer running clubs, pilates, or yoga. The moral of this story is that it is absolutely possible to stay in shape even after we are done with our sport. We all need fitness at every age and stage of our life.
Ready to get started? Check out my Wanderfit Playground Workout HERE!