I’m one of those weird people that like the New Year’s transition thing.  Being reflective, I think about the previous year, where I’ve been and how I can do better. As a result, I did something for the first time in my life this year.

I signed up with a personal trainer.

At 49 years of age, I am considered an old dog.  And you know what they say about old dogs? They can’t learn new tricks.  But every rule can be broken, so about a month ago I had my first workout with Andy at a nearby gym. I needed some new tricks.

The old dog was sore for two weeks solid.

It’s not like we did anything out of the ordinary, but what Andy took me through was out of MY ordinary.  And I would never have pushed myself that hard on my own. It’s been six weeks now and I’m finally starting to feel normal again.  I can make it through a workout without looking like a schlep.  I needed Andy’s help to get better.

Self-improvement is a difficult game.  It gets harder and harder to stay in shape, to learn new ideas, to push ahead and keep growing.  Age and time tamp us down into a mold that can make us both comfortable and safe. While there’s nothing wrong with comfort and safety, they can create an insidious force that convinces the mind that this is as good as it gets.

49’ers quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, tattooed this reminder deep into his skin; “My gift is my curse.” The things I am good at can eventually prevent me from growing.  If I only rely on that which comes easiest to me, what will happen when someone comes along that does it better?  Will I keep developing in other ways, or just fade away muttering about the good old days?

Looking back, looking ahead