Making a truce with your body can help achieve your personal best.

28340471_10155254419121787_1371510178_o

  1. Focus on YOUR PB. Not Debra at the Gym, or Franks on Instagram.  Unfollow any douchebag on social media that doesn’t make you feel motivated, inspired or good about yourself.  Stop worrying about everyone else. Focus on your own body.  Enjoy it! Push It. Don’t be afraid of it or what anyone else thinks of it.  Remind yourself that luckily you are one of a kind and that your best outcomes/results will be individual to you – and that’s OK!
  2. Don’t direct all your energy into one specific event/goal.  What I mean by this is by putting all your energy/training into one specific goal it can bite you in the arse.  What happens if you either fail? or what happens when the event is over?  Sure have those events you are passionate about and training your hardest for – but don’t take the win or lose approach. You want something that allows more growth. Set Milestones along the way. Allow them to be flexible. Just keep moving forward any way you can.  Ive always been stubborn with my goals, but im learning to be a bit more flexible in the method at times!
  3. Be Patient. I laugh when I say this as I am the worlds least patient person. Set markers within your training, as well as getting your fastest 1km time done, can you focus on flip turns, dives, different strokes. Break it down, be patient in awaiting results and dont forget to enjoy the ride!.
  4. Find your passion.  Don’t run in fun runs, or participate in Tough Mudder events because you feel you have to. Find your movement that you are passionate about. Don’t waste time on shit you hate.  I believe that given the right environment everyBODY can find movement they actually want to do…not just need to do.
  5. Partner with the right tribe.  Dont spend your time working out with dicks that make you feel inferior or not supported.  Fuck that.
  6. Work for it. Want it. Yep, sorry you aint going to progress without working for it and wanting it deep down in your belly.  Ive beeen ‘under done’ in events before and I tell you it aint pretty! Get out there train for it and want it badly.  Be passionate,  hell life is short – get the most out of it.
  7. Make a truce with your body. Stop being so bloody hard on yourself. Be kind. Treat it kindly, rest when injured or when need be. Rest and recovery is part of the journey.  Start loving it more and hating on it less.
  8. You gotta believe in yourself.  Once you start believeing in yourself – anything becomes possible. If you want it – you have to believe deep down that YES -I can do it.  I had thought of running through that finish line a billion times before I actually crossed it at my first half marathon.
  9. Start Now. Yep, you are allowed to start on your PB now.  Right now as you are. You will never feel 100% ready.  Every little action you take counts, because you matter.  Most the time half the battle is starting. Starting is winning.
  10. Just do it- even if you suck! Yep, if you love it – do it. Ive never broken any records in any of my events. A back of the packer but hell im still moving forward and beating down my own goals.  That is where we need to put the focus.  Who is the judge of whether you suck anyway! You are demonstrating and building strength everytime you thought you couldnt, just by showing up and giving it your all. Appreciate that.
  11. Don’t forget – when you love something – you treat it kinder.

 

#EDSRUNFREE

Advertisements

When you hide your scars, you hide your stories.

IMG_3694I think now more than ever its important to share our real stories.

The good stories,

The bad stories,

The not so ‘perfect; images. Sweat, tears, scars, cellulite, wrinkles, lumps n bumps. The runs that we hated and walked back to the car, the fitness classes we struggled through, the self doubt that we let stop us.  Everyone has those stories. Although from what we are presented with you would be forgiven to believe that not everyone does.

We are inundated with instagram images and apps that allow us to ‘perfect’ our images. Hide the wrinkle lines, the scars, the lumps..basically hide all the signs that show we have and we are living.

I constantly try to drill into my boys that what matters is how you see yourself.  But am also aware that my actions speak louder than words.

I’ve tried to share my journey with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome for many reasons but I still find myself falling back into old habits.

A couple of weeks ago, I had a rather spectacular fall.  I wish I could say I was doing something adventurous but nope… I slipped over a wet floor, haha!.  No big deal, no big injuries. But enough to shake my confidence up a little again.  Initially after I had determined what damage I had actually done, my first thought was – Here we go again..I will have to tell people.  I don’t (like most, i assume!) like to be thought of as fragile, clumsy or perhaps weak.  But the reality is most people would have come out of it with perhaps a bruise or some redness, whereas I had some pretty cool bruising and a skin laceration on my knee.  No big deal. But, I knew it was enough to probably have to field off some well intended questions and to stop me in my tracks for a little bit .

See I’ve got this ‘thing’. That makes me want to hide my scars, hide the fact i’ve been hurt..again. Embarrassed & Ashamed. I should be letting it remind me of my strength.  The fact I get up again, I keep moving forward.  I still train, I just change it up.  I still focus on what I can do.  That once again I didn’t let it break or stop me. Instead it lights the fire to dream a little bigger.  But it takes work.

I really do need to practice what I preach so vehemently to my children.

– Be proud of your scars. They have a story to tell! What ever tried to hurt you, failed –  You got over it. You were and are stronger.

–  You can have those moments of self doubt and being self conscious. I believe everyone does.  Self doubt may always be there, thats ok, thats natural..let it have a moment and then fuck it off.  But never let it win and stop you doing the things you love.

-Don’t think you have to hide your scars.  Think of them like people who proudly show off tattoos and the stories behind them.

-Instead of seeing them as weaknesses, see them as badges of strength.

So I urge everyone to show the real ness that makes you, You.  Of course share and be proud of your victories and celebrate your hard work,  but also don’t be afraid to share the struggles along the way.

Those hard times made you.

#Edsrunfree

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You are the only person you need to be good enough for.

23107393_10154974389996787_413696236_oYou only have to spend 3 seconds on social media to see how we are constantly being ‘encouraged’ to change our aesthetic selves.  Endless before and after transformation photos, photo shopped ‘workout’ Pics and unscientific, unhealthy cleansing rad diets being thrown at us. The underlying scripts always screaming at us ~ You cannot love yourself UNTIL you tick all these boxes. Until you achieve the unachievable.

Im not denying that at times we all perhaps want to make changes to our lifestyles.  Change is good.  The notion we have ability to access change is a privilege…BUT just don’t forget that before, during and after any changes (if you decide to make some) you are still allowed to like yourself. Hell, even love yourself.

I believe we are so far off the mark when it comes to knowing what helps motivate, educate and supports people. The messages/images being portrayed to young people is outright frightening.  How will they ever see the truth?

Focus on what our bodies can do right now. How we can enrich our lives now. Enrich them through movement & goal setting/smashing with experiences we love, not ones we must do to punish our “horrible” bodies. Living and loving life right now ~ perfectly imperfect.   People may stare, may judge, may troll you,  but I’m willing to take that on to support the change I want to see.

You are good enough.

Fuck the noise.

You are the only person you need to be good enough for.

#Edsrunfree

There will always be something getting in your way. Learn to side step.

I have endless stories of times where it would have been easy to give up. When things were hard and the easy option would have resulted in a lot less pain and (in my head) embarrassment. I’m the same as everyone else and I will be the first to admit my ego takes a pounding and I have to work all the time to remind myself that no matter where I come in a race, or whether I can or can’t keep up with my gym group – I must not stop trying.

Whats the alternative?
Stop trying all together?
Stop experiencing life?
Get stuck in a pattern of being a spectator in my own life?

No. Fucking. Thanks.
Been there, done that.

What will happen if you don’t stop trying when things get hard?

The good ol’ saying “Get comfortable with being uncomfortable” is something I am working towards.

I think this can be a lesson in most aspects of life.

Of course no one likes to be uncomfortable, to hurt. But sometimes to achieve, to get stronger – you have to push that bit harder. My biggest achievements have come from my greatest times of hurt Training runs where its been pelting with rain, freezing cold, pitch black and I’ve wanted to be asleep in bed. Gym classes where you watch people effortless go through with motions whilst you are left for dead, The last kilometre of a 21km race where you’ve already given it all, and you have to dig deep, learn to work with uncomfortable and keep on going until you reach that finish line. Hard moments also make unforgettable moments.

Sometimes it can feel overwhelming with how to start with a new goal. I think the best advice I ever got was to just bloody start.
Start with what you’ve got. Right now.
Start with Fear,
Start with Self doubt,
Start with pain,
Start with that insecure pesky inner voice,
Start with sweaty palms.
Start right now – with what you’ve got.
Because we are lucky we can.

What makes it easier to start or to push through?

-Realise you are just as worthy to be there as everyone else & Own your space.

-Compare yourself with no one

-Realise you have no idea what is going on behind the scenes of everyone’s lives. If you think, they have it easy, make it look easy and don’t work hard..think again. Learn from them.

-Get comfortable with being uncomfortable

-Accept you are always going to have things that get in your way. Big things, small things.—> learn to side step!!

-change things up when you have to. Injuries, illness can get in the way. But there is always a way forward. Perhaps you have to change plans. But forward is forward.

-If your insecurities make it hard to start or to keep going and you find yourself either never starting or easily giving up, I find it helps to stop doing yourself the injustice of comparison to others. There will ALWAYS be someone fitter, skinner, whatever than you. GET OVER IT. Learn from them and focus on your best.

Don’t end up living a life where you settle.
Don’t settle for people who don’t support you for who you are right now
Don’t settle for workout buddies who don’t cheer you along when you are trying your hardest.
Don’t settle for a life where you continiously punish a body that has always been there for you.

You deserve a life participated in, far away from the sidelines.

Believe it
Act like it

#Edsrunfree

You can’t stop me from being the best version of me. Not even if you tried.

IMG_2603So I ummmmed and ahhhed trying to decide if I’d share this. Ya know the whole concept of don’t give the haters an audience. True. But I’ve always tried to keep my blog honest and real so I decided on sharing (or oversharing, as I do!).

So here goes. Stick with me.

About a week ago I got a notification that I had some comments that needed approving for my blog. Someone had decided in between their very fulfilling happy life, they would share a few truths with me. I won’t go into all the details but they abused me for my weight and accused me of setting a bad example.

So where do I go from here?

I have to be really honest and say once upon a time this would have been enough to stop me. To make me stop doing what I love. I won’t lie and say I brushed him off as a keyboard warrior and didn’t think about it again. It hurt and made me question my self. It also made me angry. Mostly Angry knowing that he could have this impact on someone else out there that doesn’t have the support I luckily do.

After I went for a run (ironic huh) and cleared all those self hate inner mean girl thoughts out of my head, I put on my fighting gloves.

Obviously my blog is out there for people to read. Some people might relate, I would love if some people might feel supported enough to give something a go that they have always wanted, some people’s eyes might glaze over and keep on scrolling, some people may and do disagree with me. They are all ok responses. I’m cool with that. I don’t expect anything.

No, sorry that’s not quite correct.

I do expect something – common decency towards another human being.

So I thought it only fair to respond to this keyboard warrior and write him a letter….here goes.

Dear Mr.Micro Dick

what ever happened to you to make you so bitter?

I know I’m not perfect, but hey at least I’m not you.

Then I stopped writing – nothing can be gained or changed by arguing with an ignorant fool. And meh, I ain’t got time for you.

So instead I decided to pen a letter to my supportive tribe- the ones I will spend my time on. My family, friends, my awesome PT Carolyn, the ever supportive Titans tribe, my EMTB running crew, my Body positive tribe, my Eds crew and everyone else! ( how lucky am I Mr M. Dick?)

So take 2, here goes.

Dear Fabulous Fuckahs,

Thank you for your words of support.

Thank you for your encouragement to train when I really don’t want too.

Thank you for accepting me uncondinally as I am.

Thank you for showing me your adventures and what life has to offer.

Thank you for keeping it real, honest, sincere and supportive.

If any of you reading ever need support, encouragement, a shoulder, a wine (!!!) I will always have your back. You are the ones Im lucky to spend my time on.

Love Caz.

As for you Mr…..sorry I’ve already forgotten your name.
You wanna be at my level?

Start climbing.

#Edsrunfree

Running slow isn’t a character flaw

IMG_2439So today I set off for my usual run. I had everything that you HAVE to have for a run: Running visor, 6 thousand dollar compression tights complete with Compression socks, the latest Hoka running shoes in the latest colours(that you have selected out of your hundred pairs of runners at home to match your outfit), anti chafe cream for all those ‘bits’, supportive bra (or four pairs of supported bras, depending on the size of your bosoms) dri fit singlet, long sleeve dri fit top with mandatory thumb holes, hydration vest with attached compess, flare & kitchen sink, fuel – gu’s, cliff bars, tailwind or just pure vodka, wireless ear buds, do not worry about undies (thats the compression tights job – so I’m told.. I just like to be pantie-less. I’ve always wanted to have the opportunity to add Panties into my blog!) your phone with the latest camera to take the ultimate running selfie and last and most importantly – your Garmin running watch.

All set?

It really is a wonder we arent bloody exhausted just by all the preparation required for our run.

So yes, I was setting off on my usual run when tradegy occurred…. my Garmin flashed, what no runner wants to be flashed with… LOW BATTERY and then straight away died in the arse.

What was I to do?

No Garmin? My run not recorded. How was I able to scrutinise my run? How could I tell if it had been a good or bad run?!

So I did what any sane runner would do. I turned around and went home. No run to be recorded? That Mo Fo run NEVER happened.

Ok, so maybe this is all a slight eggaration but you get the drift.

We tend to get so caught up in times/paces/distances,  both our own and comparisons that I think most of us are guilty of forgetting to just enjoy the thrill, pain and endorphins of a good hit out.

My good friend and mentor just recently reminded me of the importance of a naked run. (Now before you get worried – I promise to never run without clothes on) but a naked run – without all the bells  and whistles… shock horror – no watch, no pace recorded. Can ya believe it? So good for the soul.

My fave most rewarding recent run was 11kms of trails with my 7 year old son. We recorded a time of 1 hour 30 something minutes which would usually have me classing it as a ‘bad,slow’ run. (Get over yourself Cazza) But his enjoyment reminded me not to become so obsessed (and boring) about racing against the clock or against my own or even others times. By doing so we forget to appreciate the feeling of strong, the feeling of freedom and take for granted the gift of movement. We won’t have it forever.

Im forever hearing comments like “I’d love to run but I can’t because …. I’m too slow or I can’t go far etc”. If you want to run – there ain’t no rules. We are sometimes stopped because of ideals of what times we should meet or body type we should have to run. Nope. If you want to run – run.  Fast, slow, big, slow – you set your terms.

Every time you step out for a run you are still moving forward. One day you won’t look back and miss the pace you ran or didn’t run or the person you beat, you will miss the exhaustion and thrill of feeling alive from your run.

The rest are minor details and really when did running slow become a character flaw?!

The way I see it :

Dream your goals quietly, focus only on yours, don’t lose the love of the run or take yourself too seriously. Strength and determination can be measured in many ways – find what’s important to you.

I like to remind myself that Running slow isn’t a character flaw – Quitting is.

#Edsrunfree

Waiting on Perfect.

IMG_2297.JPGSometimes I get stuck, distracted and even misled by what I call the ‘Waiting game’.

You know the thoughts of –

I’ll just wait for my body to get stronger before I participate in THAT gym class

I’ll just wait for my body to get smaller before I have a go and feel like I deserve to be there

I’ll just wait till my pace is faster before I enter that event

I’ll just wait until….

Until I remember that time is going to go past regardless on how I spend it.

That the ‘waiting for the perfect time’ can be your enemy. Wasting precious time pushing through the self doubt before you start to believe that hell yeah, I am worthy of this ride.

Letting the ‘waiting’ slow you down or even stop you – there lies the problem. Letting yourself get so consumed by the waiting that you forget to actually see and live the actual positive things that are happening around you right now.

Moving forward and participating in
life and in goals while things aren’t ‘perfect’ is ok – it isn’t giving up. In fact I think it’s the only way to go. Sure I can wait for my body to be smaller or stronger before I start participating. I can wait until I can smash out a group gym class before I actually participate(I’m sure you can see the irony there) or I can live my life fully right now as it is. Moving forward. Not giving up on any goals or hopes I have but living and loving myself right now. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing – it just has to be forward and positive.

You know what I’ve been thinking? What if you wake up one day after all those years of waiting and you’ve missed out on entering in those adventures because you were waiting? The freedom of movement and health is not to be taken for granted. So many don’t have it and so many have it taken away way before they ever dreamt they would. I appreciate the movement, I’m privileged to have had, especially with my little friend Ehlers Danlos Syndrome on board.

So my new drive comes from knowing I can sit and wait for the perfect everything but with the understanding that while I’m waiting – I won’t be getting any results. Or I can keep moving forward and remember that making progress is better than waiting and just making excuses.

Start being your own best friend, start to believe that it’s not what you say to everyone else – or those negative comments that people may say about you that determines your life.

Its those dreams and goals that you whisper to yourself, that you hold tight- they have the greatest power.

You have the power.

#Edsrunfree