August 7, 2013 by mybattlebuddyfitness
It has been nice to be in Fort Leonard Wood for the past week. It has given me the chance to flee urban life, retreat to a small town, and power down for a bit. It has allowed me to spend some good quality time with my dear friend Elisabeth, who has recently had a lot thrown onto her plate. She had a big, unplanned move where she and Daniel did all of the heavy lifting on their own. She is starting school shortly, she is running a business, taking care of the home, trying to process the fact that her husband is going to be leaving her alone for 12 weeks, taking care of lovely Moose (the dog, for those that didn’t know), and is trying to keep up with a fairly tough workout routine. It is a lot to have going on in a short amount of time. She thinks a lot about her mom, who is far away, and working on new steps in her life as well with a big move, getting back to school and taking classes, getting in great shape (Elisabeth couldn’t be prouder of all the work her mom has put in to healthy living, she talks about it all the time), and taking care of her own mother who is battling Alzheimer’s. As for me, well, I have a ton of work going on right now, plus travel, plus an upcoming anniversary of my father’s passing, training for a half marathon with a Tough Mudder race the weekend immediately after the half. I am trying to keep my spirits up for my mom, who has to support herself, plus live without my father, plus handle the very real situation of having her new companion slowly succumbing to Alzheimer’s. And my mom manages to take great care of herself too, getting in a walk every morning, plus her own version of a Jane Fonda workout as well. I guess it turns out that everyone has a lot going on in their lives.
So that is why it is high time we start celebrating the everyday awesome in our lives. Elisabeth and I are both guilty of always demanding perfection, putting this enormous pressure on ourselves to be the best all the time, and then when we inevitably fall short, we make ourselves feel badly for not being perfect. Crazy, right? So it is time to abandon that way of thinking, which is not to say that you don’t try to make yourself better and better each day, but it does mean that you try not to set goals that are impossible to achieve. It also means that you find ways to celebrate the awesome you see everyday, in your life and in the lives of others.
My friend Tiffany. She is a full time pediatric oncology nurse (eeep, I hope I got that right). She is also a student trying to get through a Master’s program. She is raising two boys, and has the help of a great husband, but still, a good chunk of work falls on her shoulders. Her days can run from well before dawn to well after 10pm. But guess what? Tiffany has whittled away 20lbs so far, by being everyday awesome. She goes for walks, she walks away from the break room to avoid temptation, she cooks clean meals. Does she break? Sure, she’ll have a chocolate dessert or miss a workout, but day in and day out, she is awesome.
Or one of our favorite clients, Nani. She has 3 children that she is raising on her own, plus she is running her own business (daycare of all things!). She has to work incredibly hard all on her own to make her family function, and yet she will get up at 5:30am to workout with Elisabeth 2 times a week. She is making such wonderful progress, running races, and has even signed up with Elisabeth and I to do the Tough Mudder. Another person who has her slips (I have seen you on Facebook Little Miss Nani, I know about the occasional stops at DQ), but on the whole, she is everyday awesome.
Treating this whole healthy living journey as some sort of torture or a cross to carry is no way to go about it. You will make yourself miserable, and probably will end up failing. No no, this journey is actually fun, you have to look at it with that sort of positive mental attitude. Don’t think of it as depriving yourself of things you LOVE, think of it as making the right choices on a regular basis that are going to make you FEEL great. Celebrate your own personal awesomeness every day. You don’t have to run a marathon, or do a fitness competition, or win a cross fit competition to be a winner or to have the need to celebrate. You can walk a little farther, or run a little faster, or Zumba a little longer … those accomplishments make you just as awesome as that marathoner.
Focus on that person in the mirror who battles against the odds every day to make steps (sometimes baby steps, heck, even a step backwards from time to time) towards the best possible version of himself / herself. Celebrate your accomplishments, give yourself the high five for what you have done! You are awesome, everyday.