Nathan’s Journey: A Little Bit About Me

My name is Nathan Okuley and I am 29 years old, living here in Columbus, Ohio. I am a Digital Marketer by profession with a passion for specialty coffee, baseball, and folk music. I grew up in rural Ohio and ended up in Columbus just four years ago after spending a few years of traveling around the country and living in AirBnBs while producing film festival events on college campuses. It’s been a heck of a journey so far, and I’m just getting started.

Now, more about me and why it matters.

Generally speaking, I love people. I get energy by being around people, connecting on common ground and creating environments that create a sense of joy, curiosity, safety, and/or collaboration. So when I was asked to come meet the team at The Human Form, I had no hesitations. A few friends of mine have been coming to The Human Form for a few years, and they always talk about their “gym people” in a way that I’ve never heard. For me, “gym people” are 24 year old guys with fake tans and tank top straps smaller than rubber bands. But for these friends of mine, it sounded like a generational, open-arms group of people that believes in the power of community. They went and got breakfast with their “gym people”. And we’re not talking protein shakes, either.

I’m excited to get started at The Human Form for a few reasons. The first is I’ve craved a physical fitness community that made sense; I’ve never bench pressed 300 pounds and the idea of doing burpies for 10 consecutive minutes gives me a stomach ache. I want to be around people that challenge me, but never intimidate me. My people are the ones that admit that they struggle to pass on a piece of homemade apple pie, but know just how much running 3 miles can suck on a Thursday morning . I want people who feel what I feel and are interested in doing something about it.

Secondly, I have a lot of goals in my life connected to my physical activity. I love to climb mountains, hike long trails, and conquer fears and feats as it relates to physical conditions. And I’m fortunate that I have been able to take some of these on already.  I’m still less than 30 years young, but I have aspirations ahead of me in my active pursuits that I know could be taken away from me in an instant with serious injury or health complications. Because of the level of energy that I get from this activity, the need for me to take care of my joints, bones, muscles, and organs is more important now than ever.

Next and perhaps most importantly, I desire to see change in myself. I like to believe that I love who l am, but my biggest challenge since childhood has involved self-image. I’ve always been shorter, stouter, and heavier than most of my friends or classmates, and there are some profound moments in my life where I felt rejection or fear as a result. In college, I found myself overcompensating for that lack by investing boatloads of energy into my career and purpose. While some may challenge that there is no such thing as being “too confident in your work or purpose”, the odd truth is that it often fed into the very core issues that continue to challenge me today, one missed workout or stress-induced fridge raid at a time. My relationship with how I feel about myself has some work to do, and I want to see the confidence that I have in myself professionally and see equal confidence in how I look and feel.

Lastly, I am ready for something different. I’ve seen the rewards of intentionality in both regimented physical activity and dedicated food choices, but I’m yet to experience a methodology that has long-term sustainability. So starting now, I’ll occasionally be writing about my own experience, my learnings, and my updates. If you find yourself asking a lot of questions, there’s a good chance that I had/have those same questions. Stay tuned!

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