Logging on to Facebook this morning, I was greeted by a link that was oh-so-thrilled to show me my 2013 Year in Review! I’ll admit – I took the plunge and clicked on this link to see what highlights good ole Facebook thought would be most sufficient. I came to this conclusion: either Facebook is not the most stellar with pointing out the crowning moments in a year…or my year was seriously left wanting.
I kid. I provided the necessary “oohs” and “ahhs” (and some “ughs”) to make Facebook feel very proud of their Year in Review efforts. Well done, Mr. Zuckerberg.
Anywho, it’s damn near impossible to look at your own year in review and not think about things you could have done better – commitments you probably should have kept – and successes you’re most proud of. I, for one, got caught up in these thought processes, but it was actually more insightful than anything else.
In my last post, I wrote about how my life has changed for the better with CrossFit. Not that this is another post concerning CrossFit (though, honestly, I could write on it for days) – but it’s a post concerning one thing CrossFit has helped me improve on in my life.
It is no secret that I’m a competitive person. Hell, I play to win when I’m playing Candyland or Air Hockey with the daughter. 🙂 Even being that competitive, though, I feel I have really lacked *true* determination in many of my own efforts. It hasn’t been until I’ve endured the workouts I have with CrossFit that I understand what true determination is and how it feels. It’s a “never give up and don’t stop, no matter how much you hurt and want to curl up into a ball in the corner with your snuggie on while you cry and keep telling yourself that you’re pretty” feeling (I swear I don’t think those things…nor do I own a snuggie…). It’s a willpower to see every commitment through to the end. It’s a challenge to start new things and to get better at the old ones.
“Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.” – Og Mandino
So – my Year in Review highlighted one of my areas of determination. Running. I, for the longest time, have thought running is just stupid. I can’t do it on treadmills, and running down a long, straight stretch of road gives me the most overwhelming feeling that it will never end. Yet, I have run more this year (thanks to CrossFit, of course) than ever before.
I have completed three 5k races – all of which showed improvements in my previous finish time. I have run the Tough Mudder race, which was 10 miles and 15 obstacles. And I ran the Charleston Distance Run as a relay team (with my part being a 7-mile stretch). This determination – this new found drive deep inside – pushed me past the limits I had set and lived by for many years…and I absolutely love it.
Another display of determination is from my daughter and her gymnastics training. [I must point out that we are training for the 2020 Olympics – so please look for her when the time comes.] Just this past week, she did a backwards kick-over thingy on the bar – her first time unaccompanied by any of the coaches. Here’s a video for your viewing pleasure…
What I love about this video – besides the “daddy, seriously?!” look and smirk I got when she righted herself – is the evidence of determination in her movement. She was not giving up. Failure was not an option. She was going to accomplish this feat no matter how long it took or how much blood rushed to her head while she hung upside down. And by god – she did it. I couldn’t have been more proud of her. And neither could Marta Karolyi.
This realization of determination gives you a new outlook on many things. I’m doing the once-over on my life and I see areas that could use a little TLC [insert the ‘Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls’ song in the background]. From seeing things through to the end that I have made commitments to – to seriously considering a Paleo lifestyle – determination is the key to success.
And to not sucking.
The old sentiment that ‘you can accomplish whatever you set your mind on’ isn’t really all that far from the truth. Combine that with the necessary doses of determination and effort (and possible bumps and bruises…broken bones…heartache…flat out pain…previous failed attempts…a feeling of worthlessness…etc…) and – by gosh – the sky is the limit!
Get to it.