I’ve been taking my time with answering the Beautiful You prompts, mostly because I don’t always have an easy answer when I read about what I’m supposed to be thinking/writing about that day. Sometimes it takes some time to think everything through enough to take a stab at talking about it here. For instance, I’ve been ruminating over today’s prompt for almost two weeks now. Slow and steady wins the race, right?
Day 21 asks us to consider how we’ve been championed, either by ourselves or others. Who has stood up for us, told us we were worth something, made us start to realize it for ourselves? I’ve got to be honest with you, this took a long time to wrap my head around. It’s not that I don’t have some wonderful, supportive people in my life. It’s just that until lately, when it came to the mental and physical battle of coming to terms with my body, I felt like I was all on my own.
Tomorrow’s the last day of the Iron Tribe Transformation Challenge. I was having a hard go of it last week, and now I’ve been sick for the last couple of days, so I’m having my doubts about winning the competition. However, I’m starting to come to terms with the fact that no matter who gets the prize in the end, I AM a winner. I have won something really important over the last 40 days: knowledge that I can change, that I am much stronger and more capable than I’d imagined, and that there’s a support system in place for me. I’m not on my own in this any longer.
Throughout this journey, I’ve been so lucky to have some amazing coaches there at the gym, and on social media, and via text. Shelby, Joe, Hayden and Jim have had my back every time I had a question or a worry. Joe sent me a note in the mail the other day to tell me he was proud of my improvement, and I cried like a baby – because I KNEW I deserved his praise, and that’s not an emotion I’m really familiar with. Shelby in particular has been there for me every step of the way, and I can’t begin to tell you how important that has been for me. She’s so warm and genuine. She’s given me support when I was struggling (mentally and physically), offered me advice and laughter when I most needed it (but as always, was too proud to ask), and has been a shining example of what a coach – and a human being – should be.
It’s tough to explain it, but like a lot of people, I spend probably 95% of my time mentally beating myself up for not being good enough. The coaching staff at Iron Tribe has made me start to take a look at myself and realize that I don’t deserve that kind of mistreatment. Sure, I’m not lifting crazy heavy. I might be the slowest ever at burpees. I still haven’t mastered the double under or the handstand pushup. But I’m getting better at box jumps, and my deadlifts aren’t half bad. My squat is 100% better than where it was a few months ago, and you should see my calf muscles and triceps – killer. If I keep this up, I’ll be wearing a bikini this summer, and rocking that Star Trek TOS uniform mini by next Mardi Gras.
Rome wasn’t built in a day. I’ve lost almost 14 lbs over the course of this challenge, and I’m so much stronger and wiser. I’m eating healthier, drinking much less, and feel like I could keep this up indefinitely. Which I’m guessing is the entire point Iron Tribe is trying to get us to realize – those sneaky bastards.
So I guess what I’m trying to say is that whether or not I win a single thing, I’m winning inside. Thanks Coach.