My only choice

“Each and everyday, I only have one real choice…

is today going to be a good day or a bad day” – SL

choice

I had the pleasure of reconnecting with a former colleague yesterday. She’s the type of woman who just energizes you, excites your brain and makes you want to jump out of your seat to get moving!

We discussed everything from work to life, back to work and then back to how everything IN life revolves around this choice that we each have every single day. The basis for the topic arrived from a story she shared about mentoring she does with high school students… many of whom have been “written off” and labeled with “doubtful to graduate.” In her words they are amazing people, smart, talented beyond belief, scared at times, confused perhaps, and lost in many ways.  They have repeatedly been told they are not good enough or worth anything. Many of them come from environments we would shutter to even dream about.

So they each have a choice… a choice to be a product of their environment or to change their path and direction.  This led to my friend saying… it’s true for all of us. Each morning we wake up with the most important choice of the day.  Will we make it a good day or a bad day?  We each have the power to make that choice. Many other factors and decisions are made for us every second, each day – but this one, this is our own choice. It goes beyond is the glass half full or half empty.  I think of myself as a positive, optimistic person but I know I have days when I just feel down and that things are not going my way. At anytime during those days I can make a choice… a choice to change the direction, switch it up, flip the switch – however you want to say it… it’s MY CHOICE.

How empowering!!  

Think of it this way… we all have the choice…

The choice to change our environment

The choice to change a habit

The choice to change a relationship or improve one

The choice to be a product of our surroundings or not

The choice to be a victim or to be accountable

The choice to make a difference

What will you choose?

True Strength

Advertisements

New Year’s Reso – what?

I’ve read that within three weeks of making a New Year’s resolution over 75% of people have already broken from it and gone back to old habits.

The number 1 New Year’s Resolution year after year is to lose weight. Just move the needle on the scale to a lower number.  Sure… this can be a valid goal for some…but for many, many others why is it just a number goal?? 

Turn on your tv the week after Christmas and throughout January and you’ll hear the biggest secrets to losing weight, the one thing you didn’t do before that guarantees success, and society telling you… if you’re NOT trying to lose weight right now – something MUST be wrong with you??

Why not flip that notion and societal trend upside down and focus on living a healthier life, being stronger, looking better naked??  Yea… come on isn’t that the real reason to get in shape 🙂 

With the right combination of exercise and nutrition you can tighten, tone, and define your body; creating an image in the mirror that is smoking hot.  You can now do pull-ups, climb a rope, lift weights over your head… not those baby 5 pounders… I’m talking barbell… chalk… up and over… you’re strong and healthy.  You may step on the scale and sure… the number may be higher than before… but you are rock solid… rock out those jeans and bikini… your waist is smaller and you can see your abs, your arms have definition, your legs are shapely and you have curves in all the right places.

I personally struggle with this each year.  I have battled eating disorders and still fight hard to maintain a healthy mind and relationship with food and weight.   However, every time I walk up to the barbell and clean and jerk it, climb a rope, or get up on the rings for muscle ups, I know I would never trade my strong, healthy, full of life body, for the weakling I was at 30 pounds skinner. 

The time to make real changes to our habits and daily lives is a constant continuum.  We should continue to adapt, change, evolve and grow.  You have the control to make difference choices whether that means loosing extra weight or GAINING weight, making better food choices and/or allowing yourself to enjoy a healthy relationship with food, doing things that scare you inside and outside of the gym.

I challenge you to buck the trend… start a new one… be stronger, healthier, faster, happier, looking better… forget the number… that’s MY (all the time) Resolution!

TRUE Strength

Training for Three

Fair-warning… this post really is all CrossFit, all the time.  Nothing very philosophical  nothing all that profound just a blip on my journey through CrossFit while pregnant.

Training for 3

I (we) kicked off 2013 with great CrossFit workouts at CrossFit New Albany.  Since entering the second trimester I’ve had my energy (and stomach) back so my workouts have gotten back on schedule and into a good solid routine.

So far this has been an experimental phase… I listen to my body and when something doesn’t feel right I respond.  Luckily I haven’t had too many of those instances – really only specific stretches on my left side feel not so good.  Once I get over 100# on cleans I feel the need to stay put right around there and I’m noticing kipping pull-ups can feel a little off now and then.  I’m really focusing efforts on proper form and strength where I can.  I’m reading about the changes in flexibility due to relaxin increasing in my body.  At first I thought… sweet I’ll be more flexible!!!  But then read how it can shift everything and impact body position and form.  So, yea, not so sweet.

I know not everyone is lucky enough to continue working out throughout their whole pregnancy  especially with twins… but my goal is to keep moving as much and for as long as possible and healthy for the babies.  I know in the long run this will make the pregnancy better, delivery easier, and post delivery recovery faster.  I also am dedicated to instilling a strong work ethic and drive in our children through role modeling positive, healthy behavior.  

My next goal… get up on the rings and do a few muscle ups.  I had them before getting pregnant and because of the very early, very severe complications we went through I wasn’t able to continue working on them.  Now I know it is fear holding me on the ground.  So… hopefully soon I’ll be posting a picture of the three of us at the top of a muscle up!

TRUE Strength! 

Stronger, Better, Faster, More… more… more

THE NEED… The need to be stronger, better, faster… to do more… to go more… more, more, more

Is drive an inherited trait?  Is it something that can be learned?

Where does that little voice come from in the back of our minds saying that pushes us to new goals, levels and keeps us going during hard times?

Drive can be amazing… it enables us to dream… and turns dreams into accomplishments.  Drive takes what others struggle with and turns them into habits and “ways of life.”  Drive helps us move forward educationally, professionally, athletically and personally. 

Drive can also be a slippery slope.  The drive to perfection can be a path to disappointment.  Drive can give one tunnel vision and make you forget the other important parts of life.

This need of stronger, better, faster, more… perfection drove me to unhealthy behaviors, choices, and actions… all in the name of reaching higher, going longer, more… more… more.

It has caused me to compare myself to friends, competitors, MYSELF.  This need has been the culprit of me loosing sight of the reason I started my fitness journey (running and now CrossFit), it took MY goals away and replaced them with working towards goals I felt someone else imposed on me.  It drove me to loose sight of the people around me who I value and treasure the most.  It created an unhealthy and unbalanced mind and relationship with food and exercise.

However, the same drive that may have slid too far also helped me battle back and win.  However, it is a constant battle.  One I’m finding harder to fight and keep under wraps as I travel through this pregnancy.  I find myself comparing what I do now to the athlete I was while training… comparing myself and what I can do now to friends at the gym… questioning myself and body (and babies) when I’m being told I need to rest.

This is a battle that will only make me stronger (better, faster…).  It will be what helps me, not only stay healthy and strong throughout the pregnancy, but also return to a healthy and strong person after.  My priorities have already shifted to focusing on these babies and family… those shifts will also help keep MY dreams, goals, and accomplishments in focus and remain MINE.

My goals will not deplete, if anything they have and will continue to become higher, stronger, bigger because I’ve lived the unbalanced road and continue to fight and battle.  Each day I fight on and get stronger within, which is where real drive comes from. 

Drive is a powerful tool.  I wouldn’t give it up for anything, I’m not the person today with out my (perhaps sometimes flawed and over) drive.  But, I’m proud of who I am today.  And I’m excited to see where this drive takes me.

Continue to find you drive, battle on, and fight for YOUR goals.

TRUE Strength