I knew I was competitive. I knew I was willing to do work to improve but I didn’t understand what personal growth outside of my fitness level needed improving. CrossFit illuminated the first two of these immediately. “Growth” took CrossFit a bit longer to teach me. I am hard-headed.
I wanted to be the best “cross-fitter” in comparison to everyone around me. I was driven to train to the point of destruction to do just that. I was so focused on everyone else thatI couldn’t hear what my own body was telling me. Turns out, if you don’t listen to your body it keeps yelling louder and louder until you are forced to listen.
Blowing up my L5, S1 disc saved my life (we all know I am a bit dramatic so stay with me).When I came out of surgery I was told I would never Crossfit again. Fitness/Crossfit is my identity. I cried (but my fake eyelashes wouldn’t stay on so I had to stop the crying). I had to define who I was without fitness. There was a storm of thoughts swirling in my head, but that story is for another time. What I want to share with you is what came out of the storm.
Clarity. I began to understand growth as a whole body and mind concept. I believed the way to grow in fitness was through training alone. I was wrong. What I needed to grow at this point in my life was completely different than what I needed before my injury. What defines growth changes with time. Growth in fitness became so personal for me because I was going through this alone. I began to understand that all growth whether physical, mental, or spiritual was only valuable if it was positively influenced by those around me. I was on my “path” right next to others and celebrate their “paths” even though they were different. This is when I adopted the phrase “My Mat, My Practice”. I didn’t have to try to be who I was before I was injured. I saw my “path” with fresh eyes. I reassessed what was important to me, why I loved fitness, why I love to coach, how I could impact others and how I could learn and share what seemed to be a disaster. I fell in love with fitness and Crossfit all over again but in a way that felt more fulfilling.
I had to be my own best advocate. I started listening to my body. That meant when people who were less fit than me were doing more than I could, I celebrated their success. I left the gym feeling proud of my accomplishments and excited to be a part of the journey. Fitness was back to feeding my soul. I was no longer frustrated that I wasn’t the athlete I used to be but excited and proud to rebuild Kelli 2.0.
Some days we are strong and full of energy. Some days we are weak and tired. Each day is its own day. Respect your mind, respect your body,and respect the day. Give yourself grace when you need it. Give each day your very best and be proud of it. Learn something each day, be it a good day or a bad day.
Trust the wind. Change comes, hard times can’t be avoided. Allow these times to help shape your journey in a positive way.
Your Mat, Your Practice
- Kelli Hull