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The Power of the First Step

The Power of the First Step

The Power of the First Step

I would like to tell you the story about my friend, lets call him Jake. Jake and I went way back to
elementary years, growing up in the same town. Kept in touch pretty regularly throughout the
college and post-college years. Towards our late twenties, my friend was having some rough
times.

There were some job losses, among other issues, that put Jake in a bit of a depressive state.
This guy loved to laugh, and make others laugh, but found it difficult to ever want to leave the
house.

Around this time, I was just getting started in my original Sharon location of Field Martial Arts. I
would see Jake from time to time, and encouraged him to come try out a kickboxing class. He
begrudgingly agreed, coming in very skeptical that “kickboxing” would help him in any way. He
did however, come take a class.

Motion creates emotion. This is something I teach to my students and team of instructors. One
step can lead to many others, but the first step is most important. Once you take it, the hardest
part is over. Jake felt this effect to his core. He got a killer work out, and even though it was
challenging for him, he felt amazing afterwards. Day one victory! Here we go!

And go he did! Jake was consistently coming in, 2-3 times a week, and feeling better and better every
time. After a while, he was not just FEELING the positive effects, but he was starting to see
them too! As he started to really feel that it was working for him, and feeling proud of his
progress, that helped him to make other positive changes to his lifestyle. He started eating
healthier, limited his drinking, and even started doing a routine at the gym to supplement his
training. His body was getting stronger and stronger, however the mind was what changed the
most.

There were no more “pity parties” with my friend. Jake was back to the guy we all used to know.
He was feeling more ready to take on the world! However, my buddy was dealt a tough hand, as
he was diagnosed with MS a year or so after he started training.

This was understandably a devastating blow to my friend, especially since he was making so
much progress! It was this progress that helped him be ready to take on this new battle. Facing
a pretty serious surgical procedure, Jake stayed positive. He did not let this diagnosis get the
best of him, as his resolve stayed strong. The doctors noted that his healthy lifestyle was
helping him to get a head start on his recovery, and he worked just about everyday to keep it at
bay.

Jake is still fighting his battle, every single day. I don’t know if the Jake I knew a few years back would have been willing or able to take the same approach to this new life challenge. Now, I am certainly not saying that kickboxing or martial arts is the answer to all of life’s problems. However, when it comes to our health and wellness, we have to make sure that we are taking care of ourselves. Sometimes it can be easier to “skip that step.”

Consistency will lead you to great results, with whatever you do in the pursuit of a healthy, strong mind and body. And hopefully, this helps to give us the strength to take on life’s challenges.

Be well everyone!
– Derek Field

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