The Analogy Machine is back after a brief hiatus… Get ready to sweat, people.
Yesterday afternoon a bunch of friends and I did this beastly workout called Booty Boot Camp. It’s a 45 minute circut training workout aimed at (yes) the booty. And beastly is an understatement. Basically it’s a bunch of sets of lunges, squats, burpies, frog jumps, anything to do with the booty, plus a bunch of core work like sit-ups and planks. For 45 minutes straight. After only a few minutes my legs turned to dishrags. I couldn’t breathe. It was too hot. I was dripping sweat. Oh my goodness, I’ve never done anything so hard in my life.
But I did it. Of course my writing-brain instantly made a connection: that grit and determination that kept me from falling flat on my face is a quality that all of us writers can’t live without. We are fighters, teeth-gritters, winners. We battle sentences because we have to reach THE END, and we push through dry moments for the joy of success. Let me tell you, finishing that workout was joy.
What is that determination? What made me complete that impossible set of deep squats when my legs felt like they were on fire? What keeps you writing at the dullest, driest, darkest moments? Three things:
Dedication: Okay, so I am not a dedicated exerciser. I exercise, don’t get the wrong impression, but this 45-minutes-of-death thing isn’t something I do every week. I was dedicated this week because me and my friends were super pumped up to do it together (and because my booty will be rock-solid!). Are you dedicated to writing? Dedicated to not only finishing the job, but doing it with style and joy?
People: Dude, I could not have done that workout without my friends. If I had been doing it my room all alone, I would have stopped before the warm-up was halfway done. My friends kept me going. Encouraged me. Laughed with me. Groaned with me. We were in it together, and we were going to finish, no matter what. Who’s along with you for the ride? Who will support you as a writer and a dreamer? Who will dream with you and push you to get better?
Hope: Hope for water breaks, yes, and hope for the end of the final set of deep squats — and hope for your future as a writer, whatever it might be. Hope drives our determination.
Let me tell you, I am glad I finished the workout. That “runner’s high” was bomb; I cruised through my homework last night. This morning I am noooot so happy with the way my legs cannot move and with the way I can’t sit down or stand up or do anything, but hey, it’s gonna be worth it.