It is interesting to watch others in the gym. It seems to be a microcosm of what Singapore represents. There are old, young, and everything in between. There are those in shape as well as many like myself that aspire to be that way. As I reflectively watch from my vantage point on the elliptical machine I have come to the conclusion that there are only two groups in the gym. You will find the majority in one camp, engagement. The other is a bit harder to describe. While they are physically present and dressed for the occasion, they are, at best, unengaged.
I have let go of my presumptions of who is strong, flexible, and intense. There is a young woman with a clearly defined six-pack. She enjoys when others take note and actively works to improve the shape and tone of her body. There is an older gentleman who is one of the most flexible individuals I have ever seen. His work ethic with strength routines is inspiring! Others who have been intentionally disciplined for years are great examples of what can and will happen with time. They are the shining stars for the large majority, yet examples can be found across the spectrum.
In contrast, I have seen individuals working out for an hour without ever breaking a sweat. They watch TV, work on emails as they move their legs on a cycling related machine, or appear to almost doze. I am not sure why they are there. The only way I can describe their work ethic is by the following three phrases; low intensity, no sweat, and nothing changing from visit to visit.
From time to time, I need guidance. It is not hard to imagine where I get my advice. As I think about it, it is a two-way process that extends well beyond the gym. An old observation plays out when it comes to advice on compassion, community, and caring; “If I[/we] had been cozy with evil, the Lord would never have listened.” (Psalm 66.18)
Engagement makes a tangible difference.