My mate Alex wrote a wonderful story titled “Hills in Our Lives” about a physically grueling journey up an actual hill. I’ll add to this series by sharing a story of my own.
Most stories about surmounting metaphorical mountains highlight either the climb or the view from the top. But what about the fall?
For pretty much my entire life, I exercised almost every day. Usually, this meant playing soccer, but I would also do push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups... etc. Since soccer season finished in the fall of my senior year of high school, I haven’t had a reason to stay in shape. So, I didn’t.
It’s crazy how quickly someone can tumble down a hill. Obviously, when I stopped playing and practicing soccer, I had less opportunities to exercise. Besides that, the positions I played in soccer required lots of running— that was my main motivation to do core and cardio work. Once I stopped playing soccer, I stopped convincing myself to go for a run, go to the gym, or even complete a basic workout routine in my room. By the time I started college the following fall, I hardly exercised at all.
While I don’t consider myself unfit, I’m definitely not in the same shape I used to be. It’s not that I don’t have time to exercise, it’s that I don’t make time. That’s the thing about hills— they can be climbed. But is it worth the effort? Besides a bit of ground, what do we gain?
Exercising more is only one hill of my life. Others include improving at speaking Spanish, reading, writing, skateboarding, and learning about stocks / investing. Realistically, I need to choose how to allocate my time and effort accordingly.
Not all hills can be climbed because not all hills are worth climbing. Sometimes, climbing one hill means abandoning another. The nice thing about most hills of our lives is we can always return to the ones that make us happiest.
I love playing soccer. I want to improve at it because it’s something I enjoy doing. And if part of that process means improving my general fitness, I’m not afraid to tell myself it’s time to start an uphill climb all over again.