The Phoenix is a national organization dedicated to providing men and women in recovery with a “sober active community that fuels resilience and harnesses the transformational power of connection.” We at Guiding Light are grateful and proud to partner with the Grand Rapids chapter of The Phoenix so that our men can have a place to bond with each other and others in the pursuit of physical well-being.
On Monday, the men stopped by to participate in a “Bootcamp” class, facilitated by local Phoenix coach, Dan, who proceeded to put them through the ringer. The men completed cardio-intensive training circuits which involved rowing, kettle bell lifting, jump ropes, sit-ups, and push-ups. It is great to be able to partner with fitness professionals like Dan, who can show our clients (who’s ages can vary from 20 to 60+ years old) proper form, stretching excercises, and how to prevent injury.
Physical fitness is a big part of programming here at Guiding Light. Although it is important for men recovering from addiction to become stronger and healthier, it is more important to develop one’s mental fortitude through physical exercise. There is a very real correlation between how hard a client is able to push himself physically, and how hard he is willing to push himself to stay sober. That is why, at Guiding Light Recovery, we believe physical exercise to be an integral part of our program. It is not a matter of how in shape, or out of shape, how capable, how old, or how young a client is. It is about learning to re-train his brain to remember that he is capable of pushing himself so much farther than he ever thought possible, even when his addiction would tell him otherwise.
All the men enrolled in Guiding Light Recovery are united through their common struggle with addiction. The community that men form while going through Recovery together is one of the most powerful and significant aspects of the program. Men form bonds here that last for life and, more importantly, they form an inter-connected understanding and commitment of accountability with one another. Many of the clients that come through here did not know what it is like to have a supportive community of peers that is worth staying sober for, or what it means to have others that can help pick you up when you are down. A common saying heard among men and women in recovery is “I drink/use, we stay sober.” The friendships and connections formed at Guiding Light will carry on when these men move out to Iron House, where they will have a remarkably high chance (81%) at achieving long term sobriety.
We would like to thank Dan and The Phoenix for their willingness to work with the men of our Recovery program. We cannot express how big of a deal it is to see our men receiving the kind of community support that you are providing them. For a newly sober man, every little show of reinforcement and encouragement goes such a long way. At Guiding Light Recovery, we focus on the long-term success of our clients. Our clients are not a number, a metric, a statistic, or a paycheck; they are human beings that have fallen down and are worthy of God’s grace. Being able to help these men get back up is a truly worthwhile mission in our eyes and one that we take very seriously. Thank you for helping us to continue on our mission of helping men struggling with addiction to reach their God-given potential.