Thankful for Resilience

I am blessed beyond measure to work with a stunning 24-year-old young woman named Victoria. She is on fire to achieve her very best state of wellbeing. Victoria burns up every obstacle in her path to reach her goal and better understand her WHY.

What’s her goal and what does understanding her WHY even mean? These are great questions that have more answers than you might imagine.

The first time I worked with Victoria, her goal was to lose weight by exercising more. The reason WHY she wanted to reach this goal was to look better. Sounds great right?

Victoria invested in a personal training package, and we proceeded to work together weekly, developing a custom training program that included stability, balance, strength, power and cardiovascular conditioning. During our PT sessions, Victoria mastered proper form and learned how to use her time wisely in the gym to gain maximum results from her workouts. She developed lean muscle mass which helped her burn more calories in her everyday life outside of the gym. We worked together to set up her weekly workout schedule with the appropriate amount of resistance training and intentionally placed cardiovascular sessions. Each session was tailored in duration and heart rate zone, allowing her to burn fat for energy, rather than gobbling up the muscle she worked so hard to develop.

Victoria began to see great results; she felt stronger, she was losing weight, and was ready to face the world in her first professional role out of college. The story could have ended here, with Victoria relishing in her weight loss success and me feeling good about helping a young woman work toward her wellness goal. That wouldn’t be the whole story, that wouldn’t be the entire truth.

When it comes to the personal journey towards your best state of wellbeing, the whole truth is the thing that will finally set you free.

The second time I had the privilege to work with Victoria, her goal was to lose weight with an open mind to the whole wellness process, including exercise nutrition and self-care. Along the way, she learned that her WHY had changed, Victoria wanted to live a healthy lifestyle that would guide her through all that life had to offer her. Victoria made the decision to be honest with herself and honor herself.

Believe me when I tell you this girl puts the work in every day. Victoria exercises five days per week and is very intentional when it comes to her time in the gym. Now, in addition to putting in the work, Victoria has the mindset necessary for long term personal wellness success. How did she achieve this mindset?

Victoria achieved this mindset by enduring failures, then deciding to learn from them, and try again and again until she connected her goal, and her WHY, to her day-to-day decisions.

This required Victoria to be honest with herself at a deep level. She acknowledged her childhood struggle with weight and was honest with herself about the behaviors and habits she had developed that were driving her away from her wellness goals.

Victoria decided to step back and look at the 30,000 ft view to see the whole picture, the entire truth. Often when our vision is focused on the one single thing in front of us that we think is our goal, we miss the more significant, longer-term picture. Victoria made peace with the truth that achieving her very best state of wellbeing would be about embracing the journey, not just doing anything it took to get to the destination. Victoria has learned how to practice self-care, trust herself, take breaks, and eat nutritious whole foods that fuel her body.

Will she experience failures as she continues to tackle her wellness goals? Of course. When this happens she will capitalize on what she learned from failing. She will try again, reconnect her goal, her WHY, and her day to day decisions, until she succeeds.

Victoria recently wrote me a letter and permitted me to share some of it with you in the hope of encouraging others along their wellness journeys.

Excerpt from Victoria’s Letter:

“Today my reasons for wanting to lose weight aren’t the same as they have been over the past nine years. I still want my body to look better, but I also want to learn about what fuels my body and what ruins my body. I want to know what my body needs more of and what my body requires less of? I’ve learned all of these things during this 90-day Quest challenge with Ann as my fitness and nutrition coach. The benefit of the past nine years and this elongated journey is at some point during the time, I began to grow comfortable in my skin. I developed a true love for exercising. When I’m having a bad day, I always go to the gym. It never fails to elevate my mood, refocus my vision, and remind me of who I am. I don’t want to ‘look good’ anymore. I want to continue to FEEL good for the rest of my life.

“During the Quest 90-day Challange, I’ve realized there is SO much to be thankful for. This week I choose to be grateful for Resilience: ‘The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness; elasticity.’

I’ve realized that throughout my time in this challenge if there’s one word that describes my abilities, attitude, and overall self—it’s resilience.”

I see myself in Victoria—she has given me the gift of awareness about my own resilience and for that, I am truly grateful!