Persistence (Part 1): A Plan For Setbacks
At the beginning of 2012 I decided and committed to training for the Olympic Trials which would be held in 2016. By the summer of 2012 I developed a nasty injury in my hamstring and was laid up for awhile. In the midst of that, I became pregnant with my first son. Not long after his birth I dove back into training and within two months had a stress fracture. ItIt started to feelfelt like for every step I took forward I took two steps back.
After healing from that injury I dialed up the training, was healthy and getting fit, and (SURPRISE!) I became pregnant with my second son. You can imagine that my dreams of the Olympic Trials became a distant memory.
For years I wouldn’t think about that goal. I’d tell myself and others that I didn’t want to race anymore and I focused on other fitness work. But...those were lies and were simply a way of protecting myself from more disappointment I was sure would happen if I even whispered that goal again.
Here’s the thing about BIG goals. When we write them down, when we make a decision to commit to making them happen - or at least doing the work to get damn close - it’s hard to shake them.
That goal has always lived inside of me.
In 2016 I decided to say FU to the fear and cranked up the training again. This time around I had a few other things to contend with. My body was a littte different (two kids will do that!), I was a new single mom, and I was trying to build a business. The goal felt even bigger.
Six months in, just like the times before, I hit another roadblock. Another injury. Sidelined again. This time another stress fracture that hung around for a loooong time.
I know, at this point in the story you’re shaking your head thinking...damn, this girl is crazy.
I don’t blame you, shake that head, but listen...
My reason (my “why”) for not giving up runs so deep that I will NOT back down. As much as that goal just wants to shake itself from my grasp, I won’t let it.
I won’t bore you with the most recent two years - they involved more injury and health setbacks - and instead I will let you know where I’m at today.
I’ve since kept my BIG goal in the back of my mind. Like I said, I will not quit.
You know the story of Thomas Edison. If not for his relentless persistence he wouldn’t have kept trying and surely wouldn’t have made it to that 1001th time. He’s just one example, but the lesson we can learn from him and many other great achievers is that we will not get close to our goal if we don’t try. So even if we miss, even if we fail 1,000 times, we will be further along than if we just give up. You with me here?
This past November I tweaked the goal (it’s still a stretch, but not the damn splits!) and gave myself permission to fail 100 more times. My focus remains on the work. The stuff I can control.
Daily workouts (from my coach)
Getting adequate sleep
Eating health foods
Incorporating daily stretching
You get the idea. Small, manageable action items I can focus on one day at a time.
Now, here’s where this list comes in handy….
Two weeks ago, while doing an intense workout, I was caught off guard by severe pain in my foot and had to stop mid-interval. It brought me to tears and I could barely walk back to my car.
Yep, sidelined again. Six weeks out from my first race of the year in Nashville and days before being offered a spot on the Las Vegas team sponsored by Red Rock Running Company.
Punch to the gut. Again.
I know, this is the part where you say…”Girrrrrllll, don’t you think it’s time to give this dream up?”
No friend, this is when I double down. I ‘m focused on that action list and adding things that I need to do and can do despite the injury.
Here’s how I want to leave this post, as I will be continuing it next week. When you go after big goals, the likelihood of a roadblock getting in your way is almost guaranteed. (Especially if you’re on an upward trajectory.)
It’s a test. That doesn’t mean you have to stop, you just need to find a new route.
It’s challenging, but it’s possible.
Have you experienced this? You’re moving forward with great momentum and than BAM, you hit a roadblock. Immediately your goal feels a million miles away and you begin to question if it’s even worth it.
This is exactly when you‘ve got to pull out the damn GPS and find another route. It’s when you go back to basics and focus on what you can control while reminding yourself over and over why this is so damn important.
It’s when you remind yourself that you’ve made a commitment to get to that goal and you are going to do whatever it takes because it’s something you WANT. 🙌
I don’t want you to let roadblocks stop you. Cry a little, freak out for a minute if you need to, and then pivot.
Pull out a pad of paper or your favorite journal and start making a new plan. Write your goal at the top and then focus on all the behaviors you can control. All the small, easy things you can do once a day (ONE THING) that helps you get closer to that goal.
Stay focused on your goals because failing 100 times is so much better than regretting you never tried.
If this resonates with you, if you’ve let go of a goal because you kept getting hit with roadblock after roadblock OR if you just need a little help figuring out how the heck to get started, I would love for you to join my new Facebook Group, The Goal-Getter’s Club.
It’s in this group that you’ll find conversation, accountability and support, be able to ask questions AND get all kinds of tips and tricks from yours truly. Once a month I will pop in for a live Q+A session as well! It’s gonna be AMAZING1
If you are a high achieving woman who wants to figure out how to achieve specific goals while still being able to keep your health in check (or improve it), this is the group for you!
Next week I’ll be back with another post to continue this story…and share another tip for staying persistent AND consistent as you work towards your goals.
In the meantime, tell me… what roadblock have you experienced? How did you pivot?
Join me and other women in The Goal-Setter’s Club today!