Updated: Jan 26
Downsizing to go tiny, I discovered areas of improvement that never occurred to me in the past. After sorting through boxes of paperwork, art, books, clothes, and gadgets -- out of all things, I had the most emotional attachment to my Bowflex Max Elliptical Trainer. To move forward, I decided to identify and connect with my emotions.
Why am I so attached?
The Bowflex was one of the first and largest cash investments I ever made - specifically for my health.
I lost my first 100 pounds using the Bowflex Max Trainer.
When I was too embarrassed to go outside and walk, a unique, quiet machine just a few steps from my sofa or bed always reminded me how close I was to reaching my goals; if only I would commit. It also felt pathetic to buy the machine and still find an excuse not to work out.
Routines are hard. I feared that I wouldn't create a new habit if I had to return to the gym or use free weights at home.
All week, I had plenty of time to post the Bowflex to sites like Facebook Marketplace, Offerup, eBay, etc. But I procrastinated. At the time, it felt like a task I couldn't seem to get to - every day.
Even before that, I shared it on my personal Facebook page and my stories to see if one of my friends wanted to buy it first. I got excited when two women from my Fitness Challenge Equals Change group inquired about it.
For some reason, I had this strange, very unrealistic idea that if someone I knew purchased it from me - it could still be apart of my journey. As if I could come over to their house, pop in to say "Hi," and reuse their gently used Bowflex -- during a pandemic.
I knew that's when I needed to work through this attachment.
My Organization and Productivity Coach, Aimee, had previously recommended I sell my Bowflex twice already.
As it turns out, I felt like I was making the wrong decision if I wanted convenience and a less intimidating workout routine.
Before selling it, I made calls to gyms and recreational centers using my new zip code. All of them were either 20 mins away, not in the monthly budget, didn't have a kids center, or closed way too early. I'm not sure if I was picky at the time, but it sounded like great excuses not to sell it yet.
Bowflex was convenient.
Bowflex just made my workouts more exciting, and you couldn't beat the convenience it added to your lifestyle. I appreciated that a 14-minute intense calorie burn could achieve significant results.
I remember watching the infomercials with my hand in a bag of chips, glancing over my finances and my bulging belly -- that no longer fit into a size 3X. It was a purchase I thought long and hard about. After it was all said and done, there were no regrets or buyer's remorse - not once.
My Tiny Living journey is a significant commitment and transition. Getting rid of items that no longer serve me bring so much joy and clarity to my life, but it was different with the Bowflex, or at least, I convinced myself that it was.
Nowadays, it's challenging to get to a gym, let alone a reasonably priced gym with a kid's club that doesn't close before you can convince yourself to get up and go work out!
Bowflex was super convenient! If I couldn't work out in the morning, I could squeeze it in after dinner. If the motivation or discipline weren't there yet, I would eventually jump on and work out by 2 am, in the comfort of my own home.
I felt accomplished after every workout. Sometimes it was just because I made time for it and "won" my day.
Bowflex Max is perfect for every season of life.
Bowflex made perfect sense every time my life shifted, like becoming a mom and then a couple of years later...a single one. It made sense to keep it when I came home from work and my boyfriend at the time, put it all together for me. Then we separated, and I temporarily placed the Bowflex into a storage unit.
Even when I got it out of storage and donated everything else to single mothers and domestic violence victims, Bowflex made sense. It made it through every transition of my life. Every season of change, I could still fit it in somehow.
Letting Go of Possessions
As I posted the Bowflex for sale, I was secretly hoping it wouldn't. I know; it's strange.
Within six minutes of posting, ten people inquired about it, and three of them offered more than the listed price.
I felt extreme anxiety come over me! I wanted to delete it, block them all, and request even more money for it!
"What? Are you sure? I just posted it. Don't you need a little time to think about it? Please -- for me!?"
All potential buyers were specific.
The chosen one ended up driving over an hour away to come and pick it up. And I knew charging more wouldn't have helped my anxiety any more than holding on to it was.
After all, it wasn't about the money, for me. It was an emotional attachment and fear. So I held it for the first person to inquire about it. He didn't even make the best offer, but I honored it.
Of course, not before checking his profile out first. I just needed to know that he appreciated value and understood wellness. Not weird at all, right? He could have very well been a creeper too. Creeps don't deserve a Bowflex Max Elliptical Trainer.
The Last Burn
As I waited on his arrival and drowned out the notifications from all the other inquiries, I decided to tie up my pumas, put on my headphones, turn up the volume, and workout on my Bowflex--one last time.
I switched between programs.
HIIT, Manual, Fat Burn, Stair Climb.
I leveled up the incline.
Both hands, no hands, one hand.
Fourteen minutes of intense cardio typically feels like a lifetime -- but not that day.
I reflected on the day I stepped onto the machine for my very first workout. I thought I was too heavy for it, and it was going to break.
My chest pounded as if it was about to burst through my shirt! I thought I was going to die!
I recall, even back then, I allowed that to be an excuse before fully committing to this new lifestyle change.
As I built my heart rate up and worked through my emotions, that specific moment reminded me how long I've been making excuses when I'm scared of change and letting go.
The last burn brought me clarity. That day was no different than the first workout or the first few times watching the infomercial about Bowflex.
I mouthed these words as sweat, and possibly a few tears dripped down my face and into my mouth -- "This is not your last workout; you can do hard things. You don't have to own so many things to do it. This isn't the first time, and it won't be the last. You can learn to let go."
My Bowflex served its purpose
I finished what felt like the best workout in a very long time. And along with endorphins, I successfully released the fear of letting go.
I officially sold my Bowflex Max Elliptical Trainer. It was worth it, and I know the new owner will enjoy it too.
As I'm downsizing, there will be many more experiences like this one. The closer I get to living a more meaningful lifestyle, the more confident I am in my decisions. I'm grateful I no longer fear stepping into a gym or going for a jog outside. My Bowflex served its purpose.
What are you struggling to release in your life? What items do you feel attached to but seem to weigh you down at the same time?