Stress is a killer, and at 25 years old, I have dived head first into a life that is nothing short of stressful. I just started a sales and marketing job to gain the necessary business experience for my future fitness related career. I also have been running this blog that you all have the privilege of reading while slowly, but surely, working on several other projects ranging from building up my Beyond Organic network, co-teaching at Pittsburgh Kettlebells, studying for my NASM certification as well as my training for RKC Vienna in April, 2013. WHOA NELLY! LOTS OF STUFF ON THE PLATE! This first month of training for the RKC certification was intense considering the other factors in my life and…well…hate ot be the bearer of bad news, but yours truly felt so zonked last week I could barely think straight.
It was all from too much stress. Stupid stress came and bit me in the butt. The reason? I had totally overloaded myself with work while simultaneously worrying about my own RKC certification. My month long of grueling training was inspired by a whole host of fear most notably the fear of the RKC Snatch test (not to mention the RKC graduation workout I saw at RKC Philly. I’ll save that bugger for an entirely different post though). All that fear was weighing on me so much that my workouts started to suffer, and suffer terribly. Thoughts ran through my head that were nothing but negative. Thoughts like “how am I going to pass my certification if I continue to manage all these things on my plate?” or “God, I put on a lean pound of body mass. I’m 122 lbs and the cut off for the snatch test is 123.5. What am I going to do?” And the kicker of them all was “what will everyone think if I admit that right now, at this time, I can only study, train, and market things as best as I can because studying and training are top priority?”
Stress. Fear. Negativity. I will not tolerate them. Knowing all those thoughts had creeped into my Burgher brain, I decided to do something about it. I took a weekend off to get away and meditate at Twin Lakes Park, located just outside Pittsburgh in a town called Greensburg (call me a hippie, but HEY! Sometimes you need to recharge. And that’s real talk, ya heard?)
I spent some time walking around the park exploring the old nooks and crannies of the woods I used to regularly visit as a teenager (confession: I grew up in Greensburg PA. I moved to Pittsburgh in May of 2011). It was a really great way to spend my Sunday afternoon to just relax, recharge, and think about my goals for the future. Sometimes, you need to give yourself the necessary you time to decompress and reassess what it is in life that is truly bothering you. I found out that day, as I sat on a park bench meditating in the woods what it was that was bothering me.
I had taken the road less traveled and given up a huge portion of my life to train and pass my RKC certification. Sometimes, it feels like the entire world is watching me get closer and closer to my certification date. The pressure of actually training for the RKC is immense for me, and truth be told, it bothered the crap out of me. I was afraid of the one thing my entire life is geared towards, and I was even more freaked out as I watched people fail the RKC snatch test in Philly a month ago. Add the fear of this on top of my daily stressors and you end up with, well, a red-headed stress ball (which, by the way is not cool). It hit me then that i needed to figure out how to truly combat this fear of mine, and the only way I could figure out how to do so was put all of last month’s heavy training to the test.
I have read too much (most notably this amazing article), trained too hard, and spent considerable time as of now training with the top people in the Kettlebell industry. Surely, I had nothing to fear from this RKC snatch test portion. Hell, at 5’3” weighing in at 122 lbs, I am as strong and as lean as I ever have been in years. Knowing that the cut off for the women’s weight class is 123.5 for the snatch test, I decided to say “Screw it! I’m getting stronger! I am DONE WORRYING ABOUT THIS!”
I drove home, got my workout gear on and grabbed that 16kg kettlebell named Maxim (the name Maxim means “the greatest”, and I found this challenge to be one of the greatest challenges to face as a portion fo the RKC certification. It’s appropriate, right? 😉 ). I set my timer and went for the 5 minute RKC snatch test. You have to complete 100 snatches in 5 minutes to pass the certification. My results?
100 snatches using a 16kg kettlebell were completed in 4 minutes and 30 seconds. 2 months ago I struggled to get 70 done in 5 minutes. PRAISE THE LORD! How’s that for erasing stress, fear, and negativity? WOOT WOOT!
Guys, this just goes to show you that if you take a second to BREATHE ONCE IN A WHILE, you will gain all the momentum, courage, and determination to push through the obstacles you have in front of you. Now, I am not perfect and will openly admit that I am not happy with how slow some of my other endeavours are going at the moment. However, I AM happy with the fact that I have overcome my fear of this whole RKC certification. Now that the fear is gone, I can more effectively move forward with my fitness goals. Bring on NASM baby! Once I get that certification, I will only grow as a trainer, Beyond Organic Health Coach, and all around Primal Burgher. I just have to take things one step at a time. So…WATCH ME GO!
I hope that this blog post serves to motivate you all who may be training for the RKC certification or have any other fitness goal in mind. Fear not!. Take the time to clear your head. Most of all, be BOLD! When you take the road less traveled, you find your inner strength!
Eat Smart. Train hard. Enjoy your life!