As I looked up a 14,000 ft. mountain of straight rock slab and boulders this morning, it occurred to me for a couple seconds that while most people were probably sitting at their kitchen table eating their first meal of the day…a bowl of cheerios…two sunny side up eggs…maybe even a piece of toast at the same time, I was wearing hiking boots and swaddled in a patagonia fleece sweatshirt. And gosh DARN IT. I wanted a piece of toast too.
Everyone has that friend…that one person, who always leads the entire group through the mall, or down school hallways…or, up a 14,000 ft. mountain. So you’re probably like, that was Leala. Miss Strong was running up a mountain this morning, leading an entire flock of people behind her. But Miss Strong is honest, as we promise our core value is…so as tempting as it is to be the owner and publisher of such a website…I won’t pretend like it wasn’t a challenge.
Here’s how this went. We got geared up, and stepped onto the trail at the base of the mountain. My backpack was piled high with containers of salad, tilapia and potatoes since I’m currently prepping for a figure competition. Two minutes up the mountain I realized that woahhh…I needed to stop and eat some food! We stopped…proceeded. The burn in my legs and booty kicked in, the heavy breathing started…and this proceeded for 3,000 ft.
It was tough in the beginning when we started down by the base. My body was suddenly thrown for a shock…moving at a fast pace up a switch back mountain with a rapid altitude change can prove to be a little bit challenging. As I encourage everyone to do in the gym…we kept pushing, motivating, laughing…of course my mind would tell me it hurt, or it burned, or it was hard to breath…but that’s what you do. You keep going.
This isn’t a story about me climbing a mountain, so we’re going to cut that part short. You get the visual. This is an article about overcoming a mountain in your own life. Starting at the base, and working your way to the top through all of the grudging, challenging, and unplanned obstacles that stick to you in the middle. As women, we plan to do things. We plan to start a diet and workout program to change our bodies. We plan to change ways we eat everyday, or things we cook for our families…we plan on bettering ourselves and our lives. Heck, we even plan the dinner parties that our men don’t know how to dress for, and we have to plan everyone’s outfits too! But tell me I’m right, when I say that everything we plan gets knocked down at the same time. Everything we plan is WORK. Everything we plan takes a long time to achieve, or a sufficient amount of invested time and dedication to achieve it.
We climbed for hours through sweltering sun and uncomfortable elevation because we had a goal. We were going to summit. I wanted to eat my lunch on top of the world, and man, it was going to happen. The path up was a little hard on the body and even harder on the mind, but hey, so is life. You set a goal, you start working for it at the bottom, and you push hard through until you reach the top.
There was one moment…I was pushing hard for the first half of the climb, and we turned a corner and the path turned into rock. Not steps of rock…loose boulder rock. People were slipping, and struggling to get up the mountain. It was a little intimidating, climbing next to a drop off on rock edges. I looked up, and the entire peak was ahead. We were so elevated, that my lungs decided to calm down, adapt, and keep moving. It was calm. Silent. Painful…yes. But there was the peak. And as we pushed and pushed and reached the top, I was surrounded by an entire mountain range. An entire life, if you will, of plans and problems, struggles and successes, obstacles and goals. I was standing on the top.
So what does that feel like? What does it feel like to succeed at what you’ve desired? What does it feel like, to want to reach a goal so badly, and to finally reach it? It feels like you’re standing on the peak of a 14,000 ft. mountain, looking down at everything you slowly pushed through and breathing in all the changes that you experienced on your way up.
You want a better body? You want to be able to start eating healthier, and actually stick to you diet plan? So do it. You have a tall mountain, and you have two options. You climb it or you don’t. Climbing the mountain can be the scarier choice…it’s something different. It’s something you aren’t used to. You don’t know what lies at the top. But you are a fearless woman. You have the right, and the power of starting at your base, and summiting at your own peak. I give you a tough mountain to overcome in the gym…you give yourself a far fetching mountain range of goals in your own life…it doesn’t matter. Every single woman, can and should, make it to the top.
Climbing a mountain was a great way to find physical and mental balance, enjoy nature, build endurance, physically condition…but climbing a mountain, was a reminder to me, and a lesson to all, that no woman is limited to reaching the base or the middle of her path. Every woman, is capable and brave enough to push through life and make it to the top of any choice, any ambition, any goal or any expectation. You are the only one who climbs your personal mountain. Summit, and move onto the next one. And heck, reward yourself with that piece of toast or bowl of morning cereal when you do!
Push hard and know that you are fearless.