Given my early-bird tendencies, I tend to favor early morning workouts. For me, my workout is the equivalent of a mind calming drug I can’t afford to miss a dose of, so the earlier the better. I also feel my strongest, with greater endurance early in the day. That said, I believe that biorhythms and other individual variances determine each person’s optimal time frame for peak performance and that’s why paying attention to what your body is telling and showing you will allow you to come to a more accurate conclusion as to what your ideal workout time may be than any blanket scientific study or person could. One size rarely fits all, despite what society would have you believe. So if you are not an a.m. person, don’t get hung up on the specifics of actual time here. The gist of the message will still apply, and that is this: Get one under your belt and every subsequent one will come easier. What do I mean by one? “One” is each personal challenge you face. Throughout your day, challenges, in varying degrees of difficulty, will be scattered along your path; that kick-ass workout you felt was beyond your abilities, a difficult co-worker, a dissatisfied client, an angry clerk, an intricate situation, etc… mountains by any name. But if you have already scaled a mountain and taken note of each as you go, there is a knowing deep inside you that you have everything you need to scale these as well, and you are able to move boldly forward in this belief. This was a method I shared with a former client while putting her through a particularly intense burst running session that she didn’t believe she could endure, which, of course she could. Later, while basking in the afterglow of her post-workout high, I told her that she would be facing something later that day and her first inclination would be to avoid it. “But when that happens”, I told her, “I want you to remember this moment and let it fuel you to do that thing you want to run from.” Sure enough, as she would tell me later, something came up. It wasn’t anything big- a parking challenge of some sort, but it was something she wouldn’t have attempted ordinarily. But on this day, she already had one under her belt and she was bent on being fearless. So she faced the dilemma and she triumphed. Now she had two under her belt and was unstoppable!
Getting one under your belt is simply pushing yourself slightly further than what comes comfortably to you. It means turning the shower to cold for a minute just to show yourself you can become uncomfortable without it killing you. It means going that extra 1/4 mile when you’re sure you’ve only got an 1/8 of a mile left in you. Or donating the money as was laid on your heart though it was your last $20. Or risking and/or experiencing rejection to move forward in an area you feel you’ve been led which seems illogical to other people. It means continuing with something you may not be particularly “good” at instead of quitting before you see improvement. Because it will be individual to you, I can’t tell you exactly what may present itself, but if you listen and ask for guidance you will be led to situations and circumstances that beckon you to jump in. Whether it’s a niggling sense of something or a brick to the head, don’t brush this guidance off- pay attention to it! Getting one under your belt simply means going balls to the wall and putting yourself out there. It means waking up, facing your fear of the unknown and often uncomfortable, and becoming alive in your life. Because really, what’s the point in being here otherwise?