Using Tough Times to Build Strength

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For me, my “hard” this past month was probably more ego, than life-threatening. I had the good fortune to attend bike camp in Mallorca, Spain. Truth is, I had signed up for this trip with friends 8 months ago, and between then and now, I have had 2 overworking hormone glands surgically removed, COVID and herniated a disc in my back.

I had lost 75% of my cardio fitness (by my own estimates). In fact, after my October surgery, I could not run for more than 2 minutes at a time. I also had several instances where I could not stand up straight after fairly short bike rides. I was truly nervous, for once in my life, about my physical capabilities.

But I decided to go. My primary concern was that my back would give out in the middle of a ride, I wouldn’t be able to finish and I’d be stuck in the middle of nowhere or that I’d hold my friends back from riding at their own speed.

My decision to go was because 1)  I really wanted to cycle in Spain 2) my friends were uber-supportive suggesting it didn’t matter if I couldn’t ride and 3) I wanted to see if my body could come back from all of this trauma.

Once I set my mind on going, I put a plan in place to strengthen my core to help to ease the impact of the hill climbing on my back. I also did some strength training for my legs, as I knew they’d need to be strong to counter my weaker back muscles.

I also considered the consequences of not being able to bike, and decided that I could hike, enjoy the sites and do other things in Spain if everything went awry.

Gorgeous Mallorca!

In the end, I was amazingly surprised, and it wasn’t just at the beautiful scenery.

Our bodies ARE resilient, and, although the first few days were a bit rough, by the end of the trip, I was happy to report, I was feeling like my “old self” again.

Whatever your “discomfort”, I urge you to consider pushing through. What waits on the other side is a stronger, more confident, more interesting YOU. I even challenge that it awakens the senses and makes you feel your most alive.

 You’ve got this, girlfriend! And be sure to give yourself some love when you do!  

Love, Anissa

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