This week was filled with ups and downs in the cycling area of my life. I couldn’t help but be sad when my cycling guru taught her last class at the gym on Wednesday. She was quitting after 20+ years of teaching because of the programs coordination at the gym. Many other instructors are following her lead out.
Right now, all of the cycling instructors do NOT get paid for the hard work that it takes to plan, prepare, and teach a class not to mention, keeping up with our certifications. Although annoying at times, the volunteers buy their own teaching material, batteries, and class clothing attire. All of this does not bother me. I volunteer through the Red Cross teaching indoor cycling because I LOVE cycling and teaching. I love motivating my students to push past their comfort zones and achieve a new level of fitness.
The government does not want to put more money towards programs, and instead, wants to start charging for classes— $9/class to be exact. For those of you who might think this is nothing to pay for a class and your fitness, you are in the minority of those who can afford it. If you were to take a group fitness class 3 times a week for an entire month, that would run you $108/ month. This is absolutely ridiculous to me. If the government expects the active duty to pass PT tests, risk their lives in dangerous (unnecessary or necessary depending on your views) situations, have their family travel with them to foreign countries or even within the U.S. every 2-4 years away from their extended families, and spouses quitting their jobs along the way, they should and need to pay for gym expenses.
I know so many spouses who are stressed out from watching their kids for 6 months to a year straight because their other half has been deployed for that long. These spouses NEED a family room at the gym which we have been promised for years with no actual follow through. One of my good friends had to really push for a good year for a free prenatal fitness class at the gym. Don’t they realize that an unhappy stressed spouse can put undue stress on a deployed active duty member and ultimately contribute to his death while being deployed? Why does it have to be that difficult to get this through the lawmaker’s heads? There is so much red tape in the military, that it just drives me crazy!
I realize that the government is having to do a lot of budget costs. This includes having planes fly a little slower to save on fuel costs. I know things are tight right now, so lets just think about this logically and objectively: The government is already paying for the medical costs of service members and their family. You would think that they would look at this situation, and try to save money. Yes, that is right. I said SAVE money. Don’t they realize that if they invested more into military family fitness, they would end up saving on medical (and psychiatric) costs equating to a larger amount of savings in the long run.
No one ever thinks about the long term, only the short term. Why can’t America catch on that one’s fitness level does affect and is part of one’s health? This concept is so simple to understand, but easily gets garbled when you have politicians passing laws with no formal education in the subject matter of those laws. Ack!!!
The last class was great, but incredible depressing at the same time. My eyes started swelling up with tears during the cooldown, but I quickly got myself under control.
Thank you, guru, for encouraging me to become an instructor and realize my athletic potential.
The only teaching that I will be doing will be for my squadron physical training (PT) sessions from now on. I used to teach on Thursday nights, but a combination of this drama and some other management issues at the gym have caused me to drop that time slot. I was upset at first, but I try to look at everything that comes at me as an opportunity whether it is blatantly obvious or not. This will open up some more training time and some more cuddle time with the hubby when he gets back from his deployment.
On a somewhat different subject, my bike is now clean for this Saturday’s Tour de Flanders 75 km ride. This was the mummified slug that had been on my bike since last cycling season. I know, gross! Usually my husband cleans my bike for me (yes, I know I’m spoiled), but since obviously he is gone, I had to do it.
What are your views on military or civilian fitness?