athlete

All or Nothing

I have said this before I’m an all or nothing woman.  This is in all parts of my life.  I work hard, rest hard, love hard.  It’s the way I have been since I can remember.  I believed it has served me well for the past 45 years.  I have been successful, I have a great husband, I have a great daughter, I have my own business.  Notice the I’s: for my entire life I have run the show.  It has been me and my hard work that has gotten me where I am.

I did a Crossfit competition a couple of week ago and it was hard, really hard.  5 workouts (when there are usually 3) tough competition and my partner and I pushed.  We did well 2nd place, I was really happy with that.  But it took me 7 days to recover from this competition.  I felt like I had been hit by a bus.  My nervous system was shot, my workouts were crap and I was useless to my family. Through it all the word that kept repeating over and over in my head was WHY.  Why do I push this hard, why am I working out for as long as I do each day?  Why do I want to be this supreme Crossfitter?  Why do I care so much?

I came up with a couple of things:

  • I honestly do not know what I would do with myself if I didn’t have the goal of training hard to be a competitive Crossfitter. Who would I be?  I am good at Crossfit people know me for that.  And if I was really honest with myself I know exactly what I need to be doing instead of working out 2 hours a day and I am using Crossfit as a controllable distraction.  Something I can be sure of the outcome of because what God wants me to do is not as clear and straight forward as a 12 min workout.  The purpose he has for me cannot be improved upon in a 12 week training cycle and I won’t be able to know if I did well until I am with Him and He calls me his faithful servant.  No immediate gratification, no podiums.
  • I am afraid that my body will go to crap.  And I am pissed that I care so much.  Again there is no need for me to be 12% body fat.  It’s great but my body fat being that low and me being this muscular is really not necessary.  I can be fit.  I can be healthy.  My appearance is what I am know for, without it who would I be?  What would people think?  Again the all or nothing attitude.  I can’t just be fit I have to be the fittest.  I have forgotten who I am.  Who I am has absolutely nothing to do with my weight or body fat.  Who I am is who God says I am.  No where in the bible does it say I need to be super lean muscular to lead people to Him.  I know what you are may be thinking: it is good to be the best that you can be and I agree but it is NOT good to worship that ideal.  To make it an idol, to define myself by it.

These truths were hard to realize and harder to admit.  Now that I know all of this what do I do with it?  That is still a work in progress.  I am praying A LOT.  Asking for guidance and courage to let go of this need to control and distract myself.  Asking for faith and trust to wait on God’s plan and not to rush ahead on my own.  I am terrified of what the future holds.  Not because I believe it will be bad but because sometimes I don’t feel worthy enough for how good its going to be.

My biggest fear is that I will be average.  What I have forgotten is that I can never be average!!! That fear is a lie.

But instead of starting from a place of average, I must remember what God says I am and that is far from average and that is without doing a thing!

 

Update:

So it is 3 weeks after the competition and I am feeling a lot better physically.  This is giving me a lot of clarity mentally.  I am so grateful for this experience.  It has been a perspective and reality check for me.  It has woken me up to what matters most, what Gods plan is for me and challenged my faith.

What am I doing now? I am working out 5 days a week.  If I am tired I ease off.  If I feel good I push.  As for my nutrition I have not been tracking much at all for the last three weeks.  I am back to tracking with some adjustments and it feels good.  If I start to feel anxious about it I will stop. If I start to think about it too much I will stop.  The key for me is to constantly keep connected and honest about how I feel.  To trust that feeling I get inside when something needs to change.  Allow it to guide my decisions and not get in its way.

Excellence

The quality of being outstanding or extremely good; extremely high quality, superiority, eminence.

 I feel like this summer has been the season of excellence for me.  I think it all started when I went to the Northeast Regional of the Crossfit Games.  Watching the athletes seeing them performing at a level of excellence in their sport was so inspiring.  It started me thinking of how I can live my life with excellence.  I am not a professional athlete.  I am a wife, mom and Jesus girl who on most days just does the best I can.  What would excellence look like for me? And is excellence even possible?  Or is the journey towards excellence really what it is all about?

I stated to think about every part of my life:

Wife: Excellence as a wife.  For me that means respecting my husband above all else.  Praying for him, supporting him and giving him love.  There will be days when he makes me angry and respect is the furthest thing from my mind but excellence would be doing it anyway even when I don’t want to.

Mom:  This is a tough one.  On most days excellence is getting through the day with my daughter in one piece.  Excellence as a mom for me is loving my daughter, teaching her Gods word and praying with and for her.  If I get those covered in a day everything else usually works itself out.  Doing all of these thing even when I don’t feel like it is excellence.

Women who loves Jesus:  For me this is the hardest.  There is no faking this, no just getting by.  For me excellence is spending time with God each day in his word and speaking with him.  But most of all excellence is letting go of me and making it all about him.  I wake up everyday and ask for strength and wisdom to do both.  Doing all of these things even when I don’t feel like it is excellence.

Friend: Loving everyone that comes into my life.  Giving them support and the grace that God gives me.  Encouraging them when they are down, celebrating with them when they are up.  Believing in them even when they doubt themselves.  Being kind.  Doing all of these things even when I don’t feel like it is excellence.

Business Woman/ Athlete:  My weakness is peace.  All I want is to have quiet and nothing to do.  I can be very lazy.  As an athlete this manifests itself as holding back in workouts, overthinking lifts and doubting my ability.  In business this lead me to weeks of inaction, procrastination and Netflix binges.  To fight this I focus on grace and let go of perfection.  I try to treat every workout/business opportunity  as a learning and do not make failure the enemy.  I make instead make mediocracy the enemy. Doing all of these things even when I don’t feel like it is excellence

Feelings are really powerful and the world will tell you that they matter above all else.  But feelings are not the truth and are fleeting.  Feelings last for a moment and make us do things (or not do things) that in retrospect could have changed our life.  

The enemy of excellence is mediocracy.  Its remaining the same.  Its staying safe right where you are.  You may not fail but you will never truly taste excellence.