Every strike brings me closer to the next home run. Babe Ruth
Batting Average: A measure of a batter’s performance obtained by dividing the total of base hits by the number of times at bat, not including walks. (www.thefreedictionary.com)
Let’s change a few words around and see what happens…
Fitness Average: A measure of a person’s performance obtained by dividing the total number of completed workouts by the number of days of the week, not including holidays.
What would your fitness average be?
Bad News Bonnie
Although I did play softball most of my childhood, I don’t really follow baseball as an adult. I know it’s baseball season, but that’s about all I know. Personally, I’d prefer to play than watch any day.
I played softball almost my entire childhood. I loved to pretend I was much better than I was. The 1976 classic, Bad News Bears was one of my favorite movies. Although I did learn to be a pretty good pitcher (eventually), I was not near as cool as the original girl Bear, Amanda Whurlitzer, played by Tatum O’Neal – but that’s what is great about being a kid. You can always pretend!
“Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, ‘Sure, every time.” Mickey Mantle
So back to the real reason I’m talking about baseball. Ok, here it is: I did NOT workout one single day last week! Can you believe that?! I can’t remember the last time I ever went a full week without working out. I teased Steve that I was trying to go for a full 7 days to see how bad my body could look. ha! The truth is, being a short work week, and being the end of the month, it was just a really hectic week full of deadlines – and Steve got home (for the first time in months) by 5pm almost every night.
Knowing boot camp was kicking off today, I knew this would be my last week I could enjoy some nice evenings with Steve. Since the only time I would have had to workout was after 5pm, I knew I’d have to forfeit time with him. So, I decided; I’d rather be fat and in love, than feeling fit and lonely. 😉
So not only did I skip workouts, we ended the week off with a bang at Disney – and ate like we were Kings and Queens of the whole Magic Kingdom Saturday! Then, yesterday, I posted my motivational quote “YOU FAILED…Get Over It!” while at the beach yesterday because I was thinking about how much I was looking forward to hitting the gym and getting back to my routine.
After the beach, I went to my friend’s house and I was telling my friends about my slack week. About 5 minutes after eating a chocolate chip cookie (which is rare for me), my girlfriend’s husband pulled up Instagram and my quote happened to pop up. He proceeded to laugh, hand me the phone (so I could see what he was laughing at), along with another cookie. (and we took this picture) haha
Honestly, back in the day, this one bad week would have probably completely thrown me out of the game. I would have beat myself up both mentally and verbally for being “bad” – OR, I would have just thrown in the towel for a while (until I got too fat and crappy feeling to continue the self-destruction any longer). But now, I can truly say I completely released myself from that guilt and any discouragement that might begin to settle in. The fact of the matter is one week off isn’t going to kill me. Do I feel fat? Yep. Is it going to kill me? Nope. In the big scheme of things, it’s just not a big deal. That’s when I realized, fitness is like a batting average.
Unfortunately, I think people often measure fitness by their BEST workout, their HEAVIEST lift, their FASTEST pace, or the MOST calories burned – but a successful fitness program is more about how often you “get on base”, not whether or not you can hit a home run. One strong lift, won’t make you fit anymore than an occasional home run would win you the World Series. It’s all about consistency.
The Power of a Bunt
“If I’d just tried for them dinky singles I could’ve batted around 600” Babe Ruth
Babe Ruth recognized the power of the small stuff. If you are a “go big, or go home” type of person, you may feel like every workout has to be insane and awesome to count. You may be tempted to discount a quick workout, or some light cardio, if you can’t give it your total best – but, with fitness, it all counts.
All my workouts aren’t record-breakers, but they all add up to be pretty powerful. If I didn’t workout a minimum of 4-5 times a week consistently for the last 10 years, a week off might have thrown off my “batting average”, if you know what I mean.
In addition to the power of consistency, comes the power of a strong defense. We all know a really good baseball player is just as good in the field as he is at bat. This is where our diet comes in. I found this clip from the Bad News Bears that perfectly fits this part.
(just watch the first few seconds).
When you are fielding balls, it’s your job to minimize the “damage” – which, in baseball, are scores against your team. Your team can score all day long, but you can still lose the game if your defense is weak – and it’s the same with eating. You can workout a lot, but ruin it with poor eating choices. The only way to truly come out a winner is to be a consistently strong player both in the gym and in the kitchen.
“You just can’t beat the person who never gives up.” Babe Ruth
So maybe you are like me and you messed up. Maybe you were sick, out of town or busy. The greatest part about fitness, like baseball, is you can improve with practice. You just keep getting up to bat. Even if you strike out, over and over. As long as you keep swinging, eventually you will make contact with that ball – and eventually you will knock it out of the ballpark.
If you are coming into this week, behind in the game. It’s time to get up to bat again. It’s time to improve our defense. It’s time to start winning again!
Make this week a WINNER!
A few great quotes to leave you with…
“Every day is a new opportunity. You can build on yesterday’s success or put its failures behind and start over again. That’s the way life is, with a new game every day, and that’s the way baseball is.” Bob Feller
“Don’t let the fear of striking out hold you back.” Babe Ruth
“Baseball is a lot like life. It’s a day-to-day existence, full of ups and downs. You make the most of your opportunities in baseball as you do in life.” Ernie Harwell