Three years ago when they introduced the Walk Leader certification program from Leslie Sansone, I saved the postcard that my Aunt Barb gave me announcing it, and put it up on my desk. I wondered if I would be a good leader. However, at that time, I was still at the beginning of my journey. I still needed to lose 100 lbs. And I wondered, how could I lead, when I needed to be led? So I put that postcard away and shelved that dream. But as anyone knows with a dream deferred, as the poem by Langston Hughes states, it “explodes”, meaning this dream kept building in my head and it was something I would think about, then disregard. This certification is only offered once a year, so every year come certification time, as I grew closer to my weight loss goal, I would think about it, but then think of a million reasons why not. It cost too much money. Who would come to my class? Who did I think I WAS, really.
Well, no more. This past year when the class was offered I went through the usual hemming and hawing, and then I decided I was going to DO this. I got so many signs that it was the right step to move forward with this. They say you should do what would make you happy even if you didn’t make any money at it. For me, that is simple. Writing and walking. I lead walks for my family in Michigan all the time; I led my sister when she was pregnant with twins, my parents, my other sisters, my own kids and family. This was something I loved to do, and the core of my workout program during this weight loss journey. A walk always makes me feel better. Wouldn’t that transfer to other people and help them? I had to try. I wasn’t afraid of failure anymore.
Now I am just so excited to be a certified Walk Leader for Leslie Sansone so that I can teach others how to start working out and becoming stronger. I am thrilled to be able to say I am now a certified "Fitness Instructor". I lead 3 classes a week. I am still pinching myself, I can hardly believe it. And to hear my students say "I love your class!" as they are leaving? Just amazing.
And to think at the start of this journey I couldn't walk even a half mile with Leslie. The journey of 1,000 miles does indeed start with that one, first, single step.
I can't wait to inspire others to take the first step, if they haven't already.
Is there a dream out there that is deferred to you? What steps can you take to reach out and grab it?
Graduation Class of 2012 in Chicago
Picture of my class. There's my daughter Lucy in the front row!
What happens to a dream deferred?
~ By Langston Hughes
Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore--
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over--
like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?