Saturday I ran the Kiawah 1/2 marathon which was a personal goal of mine.
It was a journey that started over a year ago for me. I first signed up after having Tess. I thought training would be the perfect way to get back in shape post pregnancy. It ended being a total bust and I had a lot of shame around not being able to stick with it, which I now know is ridiculous because being a new parent is one of the most important times to show yourself grace, flexibility and love.
This time around the timing was right to take on this kind of commitment. My body was healed, I had more time and Tess is more independent.
After the race I spent some time reflecting on the whole journey. I can remember starting this round of training back in September. I printed out the 3 month calendar with every training workout laid out by day. My mindset at the time was I am going to stick to this and commit to doing EVERY SINGLE training workout EXACTLY as it’s laid out. No excuses!
This attitude of zero flexibility is a pattern I started to recognize in myself awhile ago and it showed up here again. I set the bar so high with unrealistic expectations and zero room for flexibility, which of course ended up fueling my inner dialogue with all the amo it needed to reinforce the shitty stories that I am not good enough, I can’t do it and that quitting was the only option. Sound familiar to anyone else?
The only difference this time was that I choose not to believe that voice and used meditation and intention setting to combat the thoughts that weren't serving me.
Here’s the thing, I did NOT stick to the plan. NOT.AT.ALL. I course corrected and rearranged that 3 page calendar print out about 500 thousand times because I am human and shit happens. I stayed committed to the miles per week and just did my best using what felt right in my body as my compass. I didn’t allow myself to have excuses and when I doubted myself or those stories started to play in my head, I refused to quit and leaned in to the challenge. In the end I got the results I was looking for: running on Saturday I felt prepared and good in my body and I felt that sense of accomplishment that you only get after finishing something hard.
So why am I telling you this? Because I think it can be so easy to think that we have to have everything lined up perfectly to start a wellness journey or really anything in life that we know will shake up our status quo. We analysis paralysis ourselves into a stagnant state where we never start because it’s never “perfect” and really that is just self doubt underneath the surface that we need to acknowledge and walk through because everything worthwhile in life is on the other side of our fear.
Bottomline if there is something you have been waiting to do for yourself, do it, do it now. Life is short and unpredictable. You will be handed things throughout your whole life that you are not ready for, that you don’t have a plan for, but if you have the right mindset, one that says I can, I am capable, I already have everything I need and I am already enough, then you will be able to accomplish anything.
The internal dialogue challenging you never ends, but you control your reaction to it. The whole time when I was running doubt would creep in. I would hear: “You are only at mile 5, you aren’t even halfway through” or “Look at all these people passing you, you’ll never finish." In those moments, I would quite the voice by repeating the intention I set over and over to myself: confidence, commitment, courage. I believed and so I finished. I believed and so I was able to do something that meant a lot to me. That's the kind of life I want. The kind where I walk into fear and doubt and find myself on the other side living a life I'm proud of.
Get your mindset straight, work on it everyday and step into the big things that scare and excite you. The things that keep showing up for you. The ones you can’t let go of. That's where your life is, that's where your life will begin.