Letting go: A lesson from my magic fightin’ gloves

They are ripped, torn and barely holding on. Yet, I cannot seem to part with a tattered treasure in my life.

A pair of black and red weightlifting gloves has been with me since I started this health journey back in 2012. I got them to feel like a real badass boxer and fighter in my friend Jeremy Gant’s body combat class at Onelife Fitness in Norfolk.  I wasn’t just fighting to lose weight.  I was fighting to save my own life.

When I started taking the class, I was well over 200 pounds.  I could barely make it through the 60 minutes of punching, kicking and (motivational) yelling without thinking I’d collapse on the floor.  I felt like I had an impossible journey ahead of me.

During one of those classes, Jeremy suggested that I get gloves to help me feel like I was actually in combat.  I went to a sporting goods store, and bought some black Everlast gloves with red trim.  I hoped they would have magic powers and propel me forward into my goals.  Silly, right?

Well, not really.

When I wrapped those gloves around my hands, I felt like a warrior in the battle to take action for my health.  Every punch, kick and “hi-yah” exploded from my body.  I was in the ring, and determined to win every round.

I continue to wear those gloves for just about every workout, even if it doesn’t involve kickboxing or combat moves.  Lifting, elliptical, a brisk walk. No matter what, I’d put them on to get me into the fighting mode.

But here’s the thing.  They’re in such bad shape these days, that they can do more harm than good. You do a few weighted squats or chest presses with old gloves like that, and deep calluses and burns on your hands are not far behind. So now, my old faithful and magical gloves have taught me a new lesson.  Keep the past in its place.  Respect it for what it is, and what is has taught you.  Then, let it go.  If you hold on too long, it can do more harm than good.  There’s a saying that things come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.  The problems come when we try to drag things from our past into our future that won’t serve the same purpose.

Will I keep my old gloves around?  Absolutely!  One of our News 3 viewers suggested I put them in a frame as a nod to where I started.  That way, I can celebrate what they taught me, and move forward with the next magical motivational tool God has for me in this leg of my journey.