I Face To Be My Strongest Self

I turned “there’s no way” into “I freaking did it.”

Here’s to my year of being my strongest self.  

Stop making excuses, quit holding back. You are the only person that limits you from being the best version of yourself.

That is exactly what I am working on.I am learning that the ONLY thing pushing my back in life is my own thoughts, perceptions, and beliefs. Yeah, there are many outside influencers but the way I internalize and process the world around me is my own personal choice. 

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The winter blues have been real throughout the start of 2018. I’ve struggled to stay motivated in the midst of the bipolar Chicago winter. The dark days and cold temperatures are not my favorite, but I have been finding ways to help me through it.

This past month I decided to channel all my stress, anxiety, uncertainty, and basically every emotion I feel, into physical energy. Meaning that instead of sitting in my bed analyzing each aspect of my life as ups and downs approach (which many did), I pushed myself to break a sweat and get active.

I didn’t ignore my worries and stresses, but I choose to stop letting them define me in that very moment. I am aware of how my body feels mentally, physically, and emotionally after an intense workout. My energy is high, my mind is clear, and my heart is open. I am more productive, happy, and motivated throughout my day when I make time to release everything and just let my body do work.

Now I can lie and say I was motivated to make working out a priority for my mental health all on my own, but truth be told I wasn’t.  One of my favorite workout places in Chicago, Barry’s Bootcamp is what pushed me to face myself.

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Barry’s Bootcamp has challenging workouts that push you mentally and physically. The hour-long workout is designed to efficiently lean and tone the body. BUT IT IS ALSO FUN. The “red room” is constantly packed with high energy people working towards their goals, a dim red lighting to take away “comparing yourself to others”, and exciting and upbeat party music. It is honestly the best workout I have ever done. I always leave feeling sore, but also refreshed because every workout is different and certain days focus on certain muscle groups.  

So what exactly did I do? I pushed myself to complete 16 classes in 30 days. I signed up for their #faceyourself challenge and crushed 16 hours in the red room throughout February. That is a countless number of all-out-effort sprints at 10mph as well as numerous maximum repetitions of push ups and chest press. It was extremely difficult, but totally worth it.

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There were times where I snoozed my alarm because I wanted to sleep in and skip class, but I didn’t. I dragged myself out of bed and by the time I physically showed up for class, I was mentally ready to do my best and create a change within me. I was determined to always run faster, to lift heavier, and to stretch deeper. 

If I was going to commit my time and money by signing up for the #faceyourself challenge, you best believe I was going all in. I crushed it. I am so proud of myself for getting out of my comfort zone, showing up, and committing to something to benefit me me mentally, physically, and emotionally.

The #FACEYOURSELF challenge was the kick-start I needed to start breaking down the mental barriers I put up against myself. I am capable. I am strong. I am enough. It is up to me to create the life I want to live.

I can achieve anything and everything I truly desire if I am willing to:
Approach with an open mind
Commit & hold myself accountable
Appreciate and accept the ups and downs for what they are
Focus on the here and now but visualize the end result
Smile and breathe cause I am alive and capable

Thank you Barry’s Bootcamp for teaching me a lesson in personal responsibility and self-appreciation. I am motivated, inspired, and feeling like a badass. I worked hard to face myself and become my strongest self. 

I recommend to everyone and anyone to find what works for you. You are aware of your interest and passions so put the work in. Stop waiting. Stop avoiding it. Put yourself out there and start working towards what you truly want out of life. If I can achieve greatness, so can you.