Background: I have recently embarked on a little quest to somehow do some sort of exercise almost every day. Could be a class. Could be a bike ride. Could be the elliptical machine in my bedroom or even a walk. Whatever. Just do something. And yet, it seems that I am faced with roadblock after roadblock every time I try. But I am making progress.
This morning: I am challenged to even get out the door this morning let alone squeeze in a workout. For several reasons. But I am doing this. No matter what. It’s the only time today that will work and nothing is getting in my way.
So I go. We go. Me on the bike, pulling the trailer with 2 of my kidlets snuggled & strapped in. So I don’t even know how much weight that adds, but let’s just pretend it’s 500 pounds so I can feel better about myself.
We go. We chat and ride and I petal. The route is almost entirely uphill to our destination (Claire’s preschool). It’s slight but ever-so-challenging for this out-of-shape body of mine. And by the way, Crew took Claire’s lunchbox and threw it out of the trailer at one point. Let me remind you that I was on this slight hill. My thighs were already getting numb from the workout and I had to stop, get off, get the lunchbox, get back on and start pedaling … on. the. hill. Not really a hill, but an incline. Doesn’t matter. Can you feel the burn?
Okay, so all is well and I’m working hard and asking Claire to cheer me on with her little “Go, Mama, go!” chants that I taught her.
I turned that corner to the hill. The hill. This is the one I didn’t make it up last time. Just too hard. Last time I had to walk my bike up most of the hill, but I was okay with that. I’m just trying to get back into the swing of things and my body has forgotten how to feel athletic. So no big deal. But that was a few days ago.
Back to this morning. I start up the hill, knowing that I wouldn’t make it up the hill. I was okay with that. Again. I had already decided it was okay and I would do the best I could do. But then something inside of me just snapped. Why was I settling for that? Why couldn’t I make it to the top?
I’ll tell you why: Because I had already decided that I wasn’t going to make it.
So that “snap” I’m referring to? It suddenly dawned on me to visualize the result. I needed to visualize biking to the top of this hill, completely and totally focused on nothing other than getting to the top. And so I did. It was so. very. hard. But I kept that image of me biking all the way to the top in my mind. And I required Claire to keep up with her chants. And … AND …
I made it. I made it!
This may come off as a little melodramatic for a little hill-defeating situation. But for me, this was big. This experience reminded me of a principle that has worked time and time again. Begin with the end in mind. (Thank you, Stephen R. Covey.)
So if you find yourself a little unsure about a goal you’re working on, do yourself a favor. Picture yourself having already accomplished the goal. See yourself at the top of the hill. You’re a whole lot more likely to reach that point if you can see it.
Speaking of goals, these are two of my amazing friends, Bri & Tina, who just climbed “The Incline” (Manitou Springs, Colorado) together. It is a strenuous, mile-long trail of railroad tie stairs, straight up.
A few more bike rides like today and I’m ready to join them.