Don’t Sweat It

I sweat. A lot. Like to the point of “Hey now, heard there’s a water shortage in Southern California. Want some sweat?” Let’s get right to the point. Here’s a picture of me last night after an hour of boxing. We did these awesome drills called “suicides” where you take turns with your sparring partner and beat the bag in minute-long sessions – first uppercuts, then jabs, then hooks. It was badass.

After 55 minutes of pure cardio - I sweat!

See that dark smudge on my shirt? That’s sweat. See how my hair looks brown? That’s sweat. See how my face is shiny and red and blotchy? That’s sweat. See that smile? That’s confidence. See this picture? That’s proof.

A friend of mine joined my gym and we took this kickboxing class together. Afterwards she expressed her surprise at my level of  sweat by saying “You’re like.. WET!” My response to her was “That’s why I’m here!” My sweatiness is something that trips me out sometimes, because as ladies, we’re expected to be dainty, feminine and polite, and if we sweat, it should be little glistening dew drops that glimmer like diamond shimmer powder on our foreheads. Not big, rolling rivers of salty sweat that drips into our eyes and puddles onto the floor. Or at least that’s what we’re supposed to think. I now know that for me, a good workout is measured in the level of “dew” on my body – is the small of my back damp? How about the back of my neck? Do my hands feel clammy, like a 14 year old boy’s at his first school dance? When I work out, it’s not pretty. I’m not there to walk a runway. I’m there to put the WORK in working out… and I’m pretty sure hard work doesn’t always look pretty, unless you’re Heidi Klum or Alexander Skarsgard.

I joined a women’s gym because there’s a comfort level I needed to have to start working out. I sweat like a beast, and when I’m doing squats, I didn’t want to worry about Joe the Plumber staring at my butt as it rippled in agony. I wanted to wake up on Saturday mornings, as I now do, and roll out of bed with wild, frizzy squirrel hair and smudged mascara and have a hell of a workout.  I wanted to wear a tank top and not worry about my chicken wings flapping in the powerful air conditioning, and most of all, I wanted to feel like NOBODY WAS WATCHING as I began the intimate process of getting my body into shape. Because it’s my business – not theirs. (heh, the irony is not lost on me that I end up blogging about it anyways)

I’m a hot, sweaty mess after my workout and I don’t care. Actually, I do care. If I’m not sweating, I didn’t make my body work hard enough. No guts, no glory. So a little bit of wetness, perspiration, moisture or dew? Bring it on. I’m waterproof, and washable. I’m not sweatin’ it.