Today, July 25th is my half birthday. The optimism I was feeling, the confidence I felt as I came to terms with turning 30 in January has been replaced with a myriad of negative emotions of late: deep seeded self-doubt that comes with the territory of being a perfectionist, sadness (see previous post on Change), disappointment and generally the feeling that I am not doing what I need to be, at 30.5. I haven’t accomplished enough, I’m not successful enough, I’m not enough.
I had a few weeks of struggling with new lower target numbers for carbs, I took on new work to mobilize my shoulders, stabilize my scapula and hopefully improve my overhead position in my lifts. Likely the combination of this work on restructuring my shoulder complex combined with stress led to nerve pain in my back and neck that left me in pain every morning when I woke up and taking ibuprofen like it was my job. And somewhere in this morass my program started to ramp up and I began missing lifts again. There is nothing more discouraging then going into max testing feeling like you have improved and you’re ready to crush your 100% and then PR, but begin to struggle around 95%. Social media is a blessing and a curse in this respect. You can constantly compare your progress to others…
Someone is killing their squats, putting up big numbers, down 10 lbs in 2 months, just got married or engaged on a dream vacation in the Bahamas. It’s easy to feel like rather than crushing it at 30, life is slowly starting to crush you…
However, following a number of lifting blogs and fitness sites can start to lead you back to sanity.
In comes Athlete Daily over the last two days with the reminders I needed:
And today with this article entitled “I’d Be Better If…” I am ENOUGH. I come to school, to the gym and I give my best effort, whatever that is at any given moment. After all that is the goal and really the only requirement I have for my students.
Thinking back to the Life Map I mentioned in my Welcome post, what younger me expected for my life sometimes haunts me…
Have I accomplished the “goals” I had set for myself at 15, yes and no. But more importantly am I happy with what I have accomplished? Unquestionably. I have wonderful friends, a degree from one of the best state schools in the country and a graduate degree from another; one I completed while working full time. I continue to learn how to deal with the death of my father and at 25 managed his estate, redid and sold his apartment all while working. I am about to begin my 7th year of teaching at a school I love, constantly refining my teaching practice and looking for ways to improve. There is a very good chance I consistently spend the most of our school’s professional development budget. I hiked the Grand Canyon on my own in 2015, and not having a “partner” never stops me from taking on a challenge or new adventure. I am fiercely independent, passionate, strong and deeply caring.
No, I am not by any stretch of the imagination the person I thought I would be at 15. Because I set those expectations once upon a time, and because I am goal oriented, I often fall victim to negativity and second guessing myself. But it’s worth reminding myself from time to time, I am me. The experiences over the last 15 years both good and bad, those I expected and many I did not have shaped me for better or for worse.
I am enough and I have done and am doing enough, I just need to remind myself periodically and then actually believe it.