My last blog post was about being strong, not only physically but mentally and emotionally as well. Since writing that post, I have really reflected on where I am currently in my life, and how that compares to the person I used to be.
I’ve written before about my fitness journey, how my life changed since I became a Beachbody coach 2.5 years ago, and how I’ve grown throughout the process. But I don’t really talk much about the person I was even before then.
Growing up, I remember being very shy. I was a smart, quiet girl who had good grades in school without needing to study, but had very few friends. I had no idea how to talk to kids my age and often felt like an outcast. I was the very definition of a “painfully shy” child. Assignments that required speaking in front of the class made me turn beet red and sweat buckets. I came very close to having a panic attack in college when I had to give my first speech.
Even into young adulthood, I continued being socially awkward. I wanted friends, and I had a few who were close to me, but I was never comfortable in new situations or when meeting new people. My self-esteem was so low that when one boy gave me attention, I wasn’t sure whether to grab on for dear life or run far away. I married my high school sweetheart and had my daughter fairly young. When our marriage went sour, I had an extremely difficult time getting out of the relationship. I struggled with anxiety and depression, and didn’t see value within myself. I was an emotional wreck without the strength I needed to pick myself up and move toward a more positive place. I hit rock bottom. I tried to take my own life because I truly felt that my daughter would be better off without me. Luckily, I failed.
I went to therapy for a year, and felt like I had some strength and control of my life. I moved on, dated a string of men, and tried to find someone to be my “other half.” I needed attention and needed to feel like I was loved and wanted. While I knew that I needed to be mentally well on my own, I still couldn’t stand to be alone. Eventually, I met my second husband and we got married. I was jealous, anxious, and untrusting of him… mostly due to my own insecurities. I never felt pretty enough, smart enough, thin enough, or good enough. I ended up in therapy again, and tried to really practice the healthy thinking that I knew I needed. But it was always a struggle to keep my mind in a positive place.
Then I found Beachbody, and my life slowly changed.
Today, I stayed at home while my kids were in school. I practice a new PiYo workout because I am teaching fitness classes in two separate gyms on Thursday. I created a video to share on social media of me – in my perfectly imperfect body – doing a portion of a workout. I supported my online challengers and lead my team of coaches. I applied to be a contributor to a running blog as a guest writer. Sure there was a tiny voice that said I may not be good enough and I may not be the type of writer they are looking for…but I applied anyway. Just a few days ago I broadcasted my first ever Periscope — seriously?! Live video!! Of a workout! What if I messed up, what if I did it wrong… and in the end…so what. What if I didn’t?
Posting videos of myself online, teaching fitness classes in 4 gyms/studios, flying to LA to be filmed for a P90X workout, training for a bikini competition, being an entrepreneur and running my own coaching business, applying to be an ambassador for a local marathon (and being selected!), and continually taking risks in my life… These are things that make me emotional when I really think about what I’m doing right now. This was NOT the type of person I was, and isn’t even CLOSE to the type of person I ever thought I would be. There are times I get scared, times I get nervous and sweaty and red in the face, and times I get the urge to crawl under the blankets and hide because I am afraid.
And then I look at how far I’ve come, and I hold my head up, and run straight forward into my future. Because I am strong and I am worth it.