Updated: Mar 8
I made it through the first week! It’s been interesting, but overall it has been great.
I know not every week will be like this one and that some will be more challenging than others but I am enjoying putting my energy into planning and developing ideas for the future.
In a nice round up to the week the Facebook page hit 400 likes, the website 100 subscribers and Instagram 500 followers. Not big numbers in the grand scheme of things but the majority are engaging and interacting which is nice for me to know that people are liking what I am posting.
Thank you for being one of those people!
I have been trying to catch my negative self- talk this week. It is going to be high in these first few weeks and months of being self employed so I am trying to be more conscious of it.
Interestingly most of my negative self-talk hasn’t been about the business, it has been outside of ‘work’ in training.
Let me explain some more:
This week is England’s Strongest Woman Championship. This will be my second year competing at this level. Last year I had no idea what to expect, I had no expectation on how I would do and I threw myself into training 100% to hit the weights in the events.
It wasn’t easy, week after week I was hitting new numbers but it still wasn’t enough. Right up until the week before I was still fighting for those final kilos. This is a very strange feeling and it becomes a tough mental challenge. You get the euphoric feeling of a new Personal Best (PB) followed by the realisation that you still have a long way to go.
This year has been very tough but in a different way. This sport is a hobby, it doesn’t pay the bills. It will not always be a priority. This year amongst other life related ‘stuff’ I was put at notice of redundancy. I posted about this a little in my blog last week to explain the impact this has had on me emotionally, add to this the pressure of securing work, the last few months have been very challenging.
The sport of Strongwoman is not an easy one, preparing for a competition at this level isn’t easy either, you have to put the work in. The sport is as much mental as it is physical and the success of a lift or event is down to the conversation between your ears just as much as it is about your physical capability.
The last few months I have been very distracted in training, I have found it hard to gain and maintain focus and at the first sign of failure I have crumbled. I have found it hard to get the’ grrrr’ and step back up and go again. I haven’t fuelled my body in the best way to give me enough energy and I haven’t slept well enough to get the rest needed to recover from training. The physical impacts of stress, tight neck and shoulders is also not conducive to lifting heavy stuff!
I haven’t missed many training sessions, I have stuck at it and fought through as much as possible, followed the plan as much as possible but It has been a constant battle!
Last week was the ‘peak’ week of training. It’s the final week of heavy weight before you take time out to eat sleep and rest up ready for the comp.
Last week I think I peaked in negative self-talk!
“I always struggle with this”
“I’ve never been able to”
“I hate this “
“This is my worst event”
I have a very supportive team around me, (even if they have called me ‘moaning Margaret’!). I have a very supportive coach. They aren’t the issue. The issue is the conversation that goes on between my ears, something only I can control.
This isn’t something new, I did this last year too and I set a goal this year that I would work hard to reduce these self-limiting beliefs and work on confident,enabling beliefs. With less than a week to go I have had the dawning realisation that I have dropped the ball on this one.
There is still some time to work on this. On the day I need to ensure that the conversation I have with myself is positive and reflects what other people around me are saying.
Over the next couple of days, I will do some visualisation and I will be checking myself every time a self-limiting belief pops up and turning it around into an enabling belief or positive affirmation.
“I can’t” will become “I haven’t yet”
“I always struggle with this” will become “I might struggle but I am still trying”
“I’ve never been able to” will become “I aim to PB this on the day!”
The truth is I have given it 100%. It hasn’t been the same 100% that I gave last year, but I am ok with that. I had to give 100% to finding work, building a business and to my son and his future. That had to be the priority.
I am incredibly lucky to be in an arena at this level with some amazing women. Not many sports exist where you see competitors cheering each other on, lending each other their equipment or sitting around eating cake and haribo (other brands are available) between events but that’s why I love this sport!
I don’t know what will happen on Friday but I have never been in it to win it, I have always been in it to do my best, and I will go there on Friday and do exactly that.
Doing it for the cake and sweets!