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We Shall Overcome! (Part Two)

October 30, 2009

Today’s post is the second of two coming from my friend, Rico.  Yesterday’s post brought us up to speed on his ability to attract injury and the pain he suffered for the majority of this life.  Today’s post brings us to the present time and how a program like P90X has assisted him in ways other programs and therapies had not.

Overcoming The Odds

I never finished my first cycle of P90X. It intertwined with Basketball season and there was no 5 - beating the oddsway I was gonna miss that! I was back to feeling normal again. My back didn’t hurt, I had abs again …. I was just ready to live my life normally again! My 08-09 season of basketball turned out to be my best one in over 7 years. I was sprinting up and down the court, rebounding, jumping, not feeling any pains in my back … I was happy and I was enjoying life again! I was complimented left, right and center on the way I looked and everyone noticed that I was in better shape than I had ever been in. I was stronger, lighter and felt mentally prepared for the grind of a long season.

My own Blog, originally about Basketball, was being taken over more and more by my P90X posts. I just couldn’t stop writing about it. And people were apparently reading! So I decided to split the blogs and have never looked back.

This summer, I suffered tendinitis in my left knee – the surgery knee. It cut my P90X time by about 2/3. But I still worked out when I could. And now, with my ankle fracture, I am set to be out of commission until December. But where I would have been defeated before, I am now confident and hopeful.

I was able to overcome one of the greatest tests in my life, to date. In speaking with my doctor earlier this year, he told me that the pain of childbirth is rated, on a scale of 1-10, as a 6 (temporary pain and discomfort). Passing a Bladder Stone and Herniated Discs, he said, both rated a 10 (excruciating). He was astounded that I was able to overcome the double injury I had and was very complimentary of my workout routine and my work ethic.

Having dealt with that, how can I look at an ankle fracture and NOT chuckle?

Disclaimer: To all the women who have given birth and disagree with my doctor’s pain assessment, take it up with him, not with me. I’m just the messenger.

The Effects of P90X

It took me a year and a half before I opted to do P90X during my injury. It took me another year6 - The P90X Effect to fully come back to normal from that injury. Up to this point, it’s been nothing more than damage control. The crazy part is that I haven’t yet even completed a full cycle of P90X yet! I don’t have rippling abs (yet) nor do I have the beastly body that some of the P90X guys do. But what I do have is a renewed confidence and a new lease on life.

But it’s not like P90X was a magic cure-all, cuz it wasn’t. It didn’t heal cancer, it didn’t remove my jackass boss and it didn’t solve my financial issues. What P90X DID do for me was help me get back in shape from a devastating injury. I went from a “you do it” to a “I can do it myself” type of mindset. I eat healthier, look to be more active and have become a MUCH more positive, independent, proactive person. Where I would have once driven, I now walk. Where I would have caved to cravings, I now turn it down and opt for the healthier snack choice – for the most part. I also no longer look at injuries the same way as before.

Leaving Rock Bottom

In reality, it took me hitting Rock Bottom before I realized that I had to get up and make the 7 - Rock_Bottomchange happen for myself instead of relying on passive methods and other people in order to regain my health. And I hope that, as you read this post and understand a bit of what I have gone through, you can get that message as well: That YOU need to get up and make the positive changes in YOUR life. We ALL have a cross to carry. And sometimes, waiting on someone else to carry your cross for you is not the answer to your problems.

Sometimes, the only way through hell is to go THROUGH hell.

Look, the changes of an active and physical lifestyle are great. But the process is not easy. Nor does it fix everything. In my own life, trying to be fit and healthy, I’ve suffered an insane amount of setbacks and obstacles. And it will probably be no different for you, though your own setbacks and obstacles may vary. But when you look at the morbidly obese person downing 3 Whoppers at BK (I’m there with my friend, I swear!) or the Alcoholic or the Drug Addict on the street corner, passed out, face on the concrete, or the chain smoker, going through 3 packs a day … well, it becomes clear that the alternative to living healthy (and its outcomes) is simply not acceptable to an individual who has shed the rose tinted glasses and veil of ignorance.

It’s not just about being healthy. It’s about a longer life; a higher standard of living. It’s about realizing that you’re worth MORE than what you are currently valuing yourself at. It’s about having faith that you can do it.

It’s All So Clear Now …

You CAN do it! You CAN make that change! We were made with a strong spirit and a strong 8 - Clarityresolve. We are capable of enduring great hardships and trials and we are capable of overcoming them. But we first have to let go of the pain and stop living in fear. We have to remember to get up, dust off, and keep pushing, even when there doesn’t appear to be any progress.

But that realization isn’t something you can learn through osmosis …. you have to reach that destination yourself. Hopefully it won’t take you a year and a devastating injury to reach it.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 30, 2009 1:17 pm

    Awesome post Jeff, and Rico. I so totally agree with everything you have said here. It’s really true. A person needs to get there to feel it, to live it. It’s not something anyone can understand until they get to that spot! And when they do….oooh boy, “it’s a beautiful thing.”

    • October 30, 2009 9:47 pm

      Thanks for your positive feedback. And thanks to Jeff for allowing me another Forum (aside from my own Blog) to share my story. I’m not saying that my story is the best or that I’ve had the hardest life of anyone. Far from it, there are people who have been through much worse than I have but that have overcome their obstacles as well.

      But I can only share what I, myself, have been through and hope that I can help other people out there who are struggling, as the people around me helped me when I was down.

      The important thing in all of this is NOT what we go through, but what we take away from it and whether or not we go it alone or with the love and support of those around us. Pay it forward.

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