I wanted to start this week off by thanking all of you for your incredible and overwhelming outpouring of support and love over the past week following my mother’s death, last Saturday, February 14. In a time of such suffering, I also feel so deeply grateful to be part of a community and surrounded by people full of such love, grace, and kindness. Your emails, your comments, your words, your flowers, and your cards have all lifted my spirit and allowed me to hold my head and my heart up during this most difficult time. So, thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
I was strongly questioning speaking about my mother’s death in my letter this week, as I have already written so much about her, and I don’t believe in just dwelling on the negative aspects of life. As I’ve said before, I also never intended for The Sweat Life to be an exposé on my personal life, and sometimes it feels as if I am doing just that.
Then I realized I would be doing complete injustice to our theme this week — “NEVER COAST” — which is also the motto of our featured studio, Flywheel Sports - if I were to ignore the happenings of my life, and coast right by this ever-so-important grieving process. It is in the wake of all that has happened that I truly understand the deeper meaning of this phrase, and how powerful it is.
On the simplest level, “Never Coast” was designed to help push riders through Flywheel’s challenging spin classes, and it is what their teaching method is designed around. With teachers and technology that never allow you to just coast through one of their classes, they always cheerlead you to your highest potential, even if it helps you push just a bit harder through a two minute hill interval, or through the 45 minutes you are on one of their bikes.
However, “Never Coast” is a motto we should apply to all aspects of our lives - especially the challenging times. Would it be easier for me to just coast through this difficult time, try to feel my grief as little as possible, and attempt to move on with life as quickly as possible - yes. In our society, I would even be considered “strong,” slapping a smile on my face and moving on with life as usual. However, in truth, that is not the stronger or braver choice at all - nor the healthy one. It is these challenging times in life when we have the opportunity to truly learn about ourselves: what matters to us, and how strong we truly are. Facing our grief, our challenges, our discomfort, our fears, and our weaknesses is the harder and braver choice and will only leave us stronger for doing so.
This is true for all aspects of our lives - including our goals, hopes, wishes, dreams, relationships, and careers. We are not fully living when we are coasting. Your goals, your life, your passions will only be fulfilled if your full heart is behind them — and if they aren’t worth pushing for, maybe you need to rethink those goals!
I have never thought about my choices in life so deeply as I have this week in losing my mother, planning her funeral, and spending the first week of what will be a lifetime remembering her. It is only natural that celebrating the life of someone you've just lost makes you examine how you are living your own life, the choices you are making, and the relationships you’ve made. Suddenly, nothing is taken for granted and you feel a new sense of urgency to be your best for yourself and for all those around you — and even how you, yourself, would want to be remembered and the mark you want to leave on this world.
While we all have these moments at different times in our lives and in different ways for each of us, it is with this awareness that we should always live - and THAT is never coasting.
So this week, we offer you an inspiring slate of content dedicated to this very concept. Flywheel co-founder Ruth Zukerman talks about how Flywheel Sports grew from one Flatiron studio in 2010 to over 12 cities just a few short years later; spirit coach Trish DiGaetano talks about never coasting in relationships; Soulcycle instructor and holistic nutritionist Eve Kessner paid close attention to what her body needed and went back to “mostly vegan”; and yogi Jason Patrick used his addiction and medical diagnosis to change his life and live each moment with purpose, refocusing his life on love and helping others.
Life is a gift, never coast through yours.
Until next week,
Founder, CEO, and Host
The Sweat Life