Does anyone at the moment, mid workout, repping away in your dusty and lonesome garage, sometimes get this odd feeling of overwhelming emotion crash through you like a powerful wave?

It’s weird. I can’t put my finger on what It is or what triggers it. Maybe it is just the collection of everything going on at the moment, the uncertainty, the strangeness, the whole world-turned-upside-down thing. When all of that is bubbling, all it can take is the physical stress and discomfort of a workout to force it all out. I even had the soundtrack of my teenage angst days cranking in the background, defining with absolution the mood I was in (back to back AFI). Did I choose the music because I was feeling nostalgic and keen for some punk emo rock? Or did the music choose me, delivering familiar music to a familiar feeling?

As I was jumping on and over my new Valor box, my eyes were fixated on the crafty “VALOR” inscribed on the top as I jumped and turned and circled and jumped and turned and circled. I started thinking about why I chose that to be the second name for our gym.

Valor stands for courage, and is used primarily in relation to war and great courage shown on battlefields throughout time. I then thought more about courage and what courage is and what it means. Courage means to be brave, to sacrifice for what is most important, to face adversity and uncertainty in order to reach a greater goal or purpose. To be absolutely shit scared, but face it all anyway. In order to show courage, one must display complete vulnerability. Not one single act of courage ever has occurred without opening oneself to massive vulnerability.

We all fear showing our vulnerability to different degrees. Some handle it better than others. There is no denying that vulnerability is uncomfortable for everyone. But there is also no proof that some people are born incapable of showing it. Or that those that struggle with it significantly always will. Every person is capable of it, though every person must face their fears in order to show it.

Today’s current situation is strange, unfamiliar and downright fucked. I’m sure every single one of you has felt it at some point, the weird overwhelming wave of emotion. Probably many times over. I sure have. I surely will again over the next week too. 

But circling around and around that word Valor tonight gave me confidence. It gave me calm. It gave me hope. I am feeling incredibly vulnerable right now. Sharing all of this with you. Never has my situation been so insecure. I know it will be fine, but the feeling still pops up from time to time. But just reading that word and reminding myself of what it stands for reminded me of what can come from courage and vulnerability. It is uncomfortable, it is scary, you won’t be certain of your outcome maybe right up until the very end. It will occasionally make you feel indescribably emotional mid workout (or whatever it is you’re doing). But if you show courage, if you show Valor, all of this discomfort and adversity can help mould you into a stronger, more resilient human than you ever thought possible.

Face what fears you. Be vulnerable, show courage, act with Valor.