I am enough.
But I wasn’t always convinced of that.
Let me share with you a tale of two women:
On the left was me in 2011. I’d just finished the Tahoe City Xterra race and a season of off-road triathlon. Prior to that I spent 8 years racing mountain bikes – much of it in the endurance domain of 6+ hours – and running long distances.
What you might see is a woman who looks trim and confident and loves her body – but that couldn’t be any further from the truth.
I obsessed about my body, and I never felt small enough, even though this was the lowest weight of my adult life at about 58kg (128 pounds).
It was never enough. I was never enough.
I used competition to validate how I felt about myself and always pushed myself to do longer and harder events in order to prove my worth. I medicated myself off the stress response I got from punishing my body. It was exhausting.
What you don’t see in that photo is how weak I was, how much back pain I had, the terrible saddle sores I dealt with, the pain of a failing relationship, and how I constantly put myself down.
Funny how we tend to think that just because someone looks a certain way, their life must be friggin’ great.
It took a few years but gradually I started to change a lot of things about my life.
I started really eating to nourish myself. I started strength training – I was introduced to it by CrossFit – and focusing on what my body could DO rather than how it looked or how much I weighed. I left my relationship. I eventually left a career that was safe but didn’t fulfill me. I read a lot and worked with some amazing coaches. I scoured the Internet for quality information about mindset and nutrition and fitness to conduct this experiment of one.
And you know what? I eventually found peace, and I started loving me for me.
It didn’t happen overnight but it did happen. It’s not perfect. I still have my moments, but life is infinitely more gratifying.
On the right is me just a couple weeks ago. I weigh about 70kg (154 pounds)…yes, over 25 pounds more.
I routinely put my bodyweight+ over my head. I love my work. I’m not laser-focused on what I look like.
I am enough.
One of the reasons I created the Women’s Strength Summit is to share with you the women that helped me, and if this post resonates with you, I hope you’ll join us starting March 1.