A buddy of mine mentioned in an email that I was "Determined and driven," which I freely admit is true and accurate.
I'm not dealing well with other people's reactions to it, however.
Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are Shire Workout Nights. I'm only able to make the Monday night session, with the other obligations and with the event season in full gear.
The first Monday, I'm the only one who showed up. And I showed up promptly at 6pm, which is when it starts. I fully expected the same thing to happen again -- but I was wrong and the rest of the shire came. It wasn't too long until I realized that Shire Workout Night was Shire Social Night with Weights. (Kind of like how Fighter Practice is Shire Social Night with Armor.)
Now, Michael/Nichollas knows what he's doing, but the rest of the guys are:
a) very haphazard about doing full sets
b) not choosing weights that solve their strengths challenges, instead of their machismo
c) whipping through the exercises so fast that they're hurting their joints and not getting the full exercise (the release is as important as the clench, guys...)
And the gals are:
a) complaining about how they can't do this exercise or that exercise, how it's too hard, too heavy, too much
b) sitting on the sofa, chatting
c) doing a few haphazard exercises and then stopping
I was in my workout zone, which is very similar to the fighting zone, which is very...zen, I guess. When I'm in my workout zone, I'm filling my body, maintaining awareness of muscle and balance and I can even feel my toes flex as my weight shifts. My mind is so full of my body, that I don't have any room for anything else. I can hear and accept information/data/environmental input, without reaction or analysis (that all comes later), and keep doing what I'm doing. What I was doing at that time was my third set of split squats (easier on my knees than full squats).
Michael/Nichollas was getting to his second set (he's easily distracted, I've seen) and was attempting to inspire/challenge/cajole the ladies into doing some exercises. He said, "Go on! Go for it! Look at Vesta!"
Their reply was, "Oh, well, Vesta." And the tone.... the tone of voice was this odd mingling of dismissal and unattainability. Along the lines of...SHE can do it, but I can't.
I was so startled by that tone that I almost fell out of my workout zone. I'm sure I hesitated into my next squat, lurched and stuttered a bit.
I have powerful reactions to this. They are so many of them, and they conflict with each other.
One is frightened and frantic and it says:
I'm not doing anything extraordinary! I'm just doing my workout. Is what I'm doing so unusual? It's not unusual. I'm not unusual. So why did you say that? It must be unusual -- it must be freakish, wierd. I'm wierd again. I didn't mean to be wierd again. I came to be part of the group, not be an outsider again. These ladies want to be fighters and I can't even inspire them to do a workout. I'm some kind of freakish inhuman impossible thing to them. I'm a total failure at inspiring people.
One is defensive and angry and it says:
Oh, come on! If *I* can do this, YOU can do this. You don't really want to do this, do you? You just want to complain about how you can't do this. I said I was coming here to work out, and now I'm working out. I made myself a promise and I'm keeping it. I know what I want and I'm willing to work for it. I don't respect people who say they want something and then don't do anything to attain it. I went outside with you and did the yoga stances, which I suck at, yet I did them cheerfully. A few I found helpful and useful, so I'll do them again. Then went back in to finish my sets while you stayed outside to talk. If you stopped complaining about how you can't do things and just tried to do them, you would find that you actually can do them. Perserverance is not difficult, if you really truly want something.
And there's this other sensation, that I'm afraid of. I'm so frightened of it that I'm ready to cry.
I am extraordinary. I know what I want and I'm willing to work for it. This IS freakish and wierd IN THIS SOCIETY (both SCA and mundane). But that says something unfortunate about this society, not me. I am stronger and more fit than many women I encounter, even women who are taller and larger than me. My body is strong and I work to keep it strong. When I was injured and my body got weak, I worked to make it strong again. And it is again. When I seek something, and fall down, I tend to pick myself back up again. Over and over. Because I really want it. This is extraordinary. I like this about myself.
I feel like I ought to feel personally responsible for the women who want to be heavy fighters, no matter who they are. Even if they talk about how they want to be fighters but don't do the work. They're waiting for their Primary Trainer to inspire them, to guilt them, to cajole them and browbeat them and make them do the work it will take to get to where they want to go and to get to do the things they say they want to do.
And I just don't have time to babysit them. They know what to do. They have exercises listed to do, they have weights to grab to do those exercises. And they'd much rather sit on the sofa and chat. They're nice enough gals. I just don't think they really want to be fighters -- at least if it's going to take this much work.
So. People. Reactions. Stuff.