When I was a child, I was very involved in raising money for Jump Rope for Heart by the American Heart Association. I remember having matching outfits with my childhood friend because we both raised enough money by jumping continuously for a few hours to receive sweatpants and a sweatshirt.
At the time, I think I was motivated by the cool outfit, but also by knowing that jumping rope was a task that would be fun to do with friends. This week, I was asked to try out the latest and greatest of jump ropes. As a fitness professional now, I am happy to test out new gear, but jump ropes is a piece of equipment that I probably haven’t touched since those days of fundraising.
When I saw the photo, I immediately knew this tool was not for children. It was metal and a quick stumble could mean perhaps a black and blue bruise on my forehead or calf. As soon as I started jumping, those fears disappeared and those days of childhood quickly came rushing back. It was so fun.
Jasmine and I had so much fun sharing activities which later expanded into selling Girl Scout cookies and then being cheerleaders in high school. When my wedding came last fall, she was the first one to tell me that she would be there. She would get a sitter for her three young children, fly 3000 miles, and ensure she was there to lead me down the aisle as a bridesmaid. I felt so fortunate.
When I created my DVDs in 2008, it was based on the premise that when people exercise together, they are clearer in mind, and then can create closer or more meaningful relationships. The organization “Jump Rope for Heart” probably didn’t have this in mind when they initiated their fundraisers, but for me, it worked. I’m so pleased to be still jumping today with my friends from those days, both in my heart and on those very important days.