Written by Monica Johnson, Co-Founder of BurnThis.com. BurnThis is a mobile-based fitness social network, dedicated to helping you find motivation and inspiration to stay healthy and exercise more. Through customized photo-sharing tools, you can connect with like-minded fitness enthusiasts in a welcoming environment and discover awesome new workouts, tips, products and recipes that you can try yourself!
I admit it. I met my husband at the gym.
At the gym? Yes, at the gym. My one holy place where I had always just gone to decompress – to put my head down and sweat and look terrible and not care. My husband wasn’t the first person who had ever approached me at the gym. Others had dared enter my ice queen realm and had been promptly turned away with a scowl. Admittedly, the response my husband received when he first shimmied up to me at the Equinox Gym in West Hollywood was no different.
I was a federal prosecutor at the time. I had been reading a court transcript while on an exercise bike, trying to squeeze in a workout. My husband, who was a gym regular and a real gym rat – the “Mayor” of Equinox because he literally knew everyone there – sauntered up to me with a confident stride. I saw him approaching out of the corner of my eye and gave him a “don’t you dare” stare. He proceeded to ignore my usual cues and asked, “Is there a part in your script for me?”
My usual go-to move would have been to ignore him entirely but this time I felt compelled to tell him that I was a federal prosecutor, not an actress. I also shared that I was reading a federal criminal trial script, not a Hollywood script and that I would absolutely not go out with him. We did not end up falling madly in love that day (though I always joke that for HIM it was love at first sight). Quite the contrary: my husband took me to the Malibu Pier for a concert (I begrudgingly went). It was cold and windy. I didn’t want to be there. I wasn’t ready to meet “the one.” So we parted ways that day and did not go on a second date until much, much later.
From time to time we would see each other at the gym. I would promptly put my head down and become extremely engrossed in whatever “gym activity” I was engaging in to avoid all contact. The most contact I ever had with my husband during that time was the vague nod I would give him when acknowledgment was inevitable. And then almost two years later I received a text from him. This time he was inviting me to a hike in Malibu (did the guy ever learn?). I immediately thought he must be a masochist, but something made me decide to give it a second a chance. I don’t really know why to be honest. Looking back on it I would love to say it’s because I made the conscious decision to do the right thing and be open-minded but I would be lying if I said that.
The bottom line is that I don’t really know why I gave him a second chance or why I answered his text immediately. I do know that that day I went on the best date of my life (my husband likes to joke that he went on both the best date and worst date of his life with me). We went on a hike in Topanga Canyon in Malibu. It was the perfect date for us because we are both fitness junkies. During the hike, I stumbled a couple of times. He always caught me, stabilized me. I hiked boldly knowing he was there. I know it sounds beyond cheesy but it has been that way ever since. He is my rock. I dream bigger and am not afraid to stumble because I know he is there.
Is there a moral to this story? Yes. You never know when and where the best thing that could ever happen to you in your life will occur. It could be in the least expected place, at the least expected time and it may even take years to come to fruition (you may already know the guy or girl you are going to marry, but have never even thought of them in that way yet). Remain open-minded and trust that the universe is guiding you in the right direction (even when that direction turns out to be an exercise bike at the gym).