Every single day I hear you speak badly about your body
(Every single day I hear you thank the miracle that is your body.)

Every single day I hear how you hate your thighs
(Every single day I see you run up those hills.)

Every single day I hear how you hate your stomach
(Every single day I see you sweat while you push through another round of sit-ups.)

Every single day I hear how you hate your wobbly arms
(Every single day I see your determination as you lift those weights.)

Every single day I hear how you hate your wrinkles that are starting to form around your eyes
(Every single day I love seeing your face, as it dissolves into heartfelt laughter.)

Every single day I hear how you hate.
(Every single day I want to see you trying to love yourself.)

Change your story.

@edsrunfree

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That shit takes courage.

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How many times have you thought you didn’t fit in?

Have you stopped at every criticism? Every self doubt?

Have you stopped doing what you love because you thought you didn’t fit in?

Those feelings aren’t unique. Those feelings aren’t rare within the human race. They are pretty much part of most of us if we were to be honest.

I can honestly tell you those exact traits have nearly stopped me over and over.  That is exactly what  makes me so passionate about this? I know if I’d listened I would have missed out on life. On every single achievement I’ve reached and am still to reach.

Sometimes , the human race are pretty damn stupid.

Scenerio one: We have a gym full of people. Everyone looks around and sees ~ We all look the same. We all have the same health/medical/ gene history. We all have exactly the same athletic ability. We all put in exactly the same amount of effort and the same goal.

Scenerio two: We have a gym full of people. Everyone looks around and sees~ We all look different. We all have different health/medical/gene history. We all have different athletic ability. We all put in different amounts of effort and have different goals.

Do you see where I’m going with this?

That ‘fitspo’ shit you see.  It Ain’t Real.

We aren’t robots. Nor Clones.

We are individual fucking people.

Each one deserving the space they are in, doing what they love.

Think hard about the person living their best life ~

Person one : Only observes others. Constantly compares themselves. Works hard just to meet someone else’s standard.  Inner mean voice.

Person two: Looks inwards. Works hard on their goals. Treats themselves kindly and gets shit done.

Who is really living an authentic satisfying and enjoyable life?

Something I want to show my kids is : Not fitting a particular ‘right’ mould is more than OK. It’s ok to look around and be different, to be you, it’s ok to perhaps think you don’t fit in doing what you love……but To keep at it anyway.

Sometimes just getting out there, doing your own thing over and over, regardless of ‘wins’, ‘places’ , how you look is the biggest win.

Striving just to conform to be ‘normal’ in my books is not a strength. It takes no courage.

Getting out there living a life you love without the fear of others judgement

That shit takes courage.

#edsrunfree

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

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  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

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 unconditionally 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