What does it mean to push your limits? Do you push your limits on a daily basis or maybe monthly? As human beings, we encounter challenges and struggles on a daily basis and react to those challenges in some way.

I have been learning recently that my ability to overcome obstacles is becoming easier as time goes on. I, like anyone else, have experienced my own struggles throughout my life. I am a firm believer that we can create the destiny that we so desire, but we have to work for it. We have to put in the hard and sometimes brutal work to get to the other side.

After leaving the corporate world behind, it took a while to settle into life as my own boss, but I did it. It has taken a lot of blood, sweat, and tears to get me here. I wouldn’t say my journey in that arena is over, but instead, it is just beginning. I know there will be more challenges that will come along.

My most recent challenge was starting a training program with my husband at the gym he works at. We have been training with an intern at the gym. This is a huge deal for me because I am stepping out of my comfort zone big time. Last year, I participated in a Burn the Bird workout the day after Thanksgiving, and I pushed myself so hard I ended up throwing up mid-workout. This was devastating to me because I have always considered myself to be in shape. After this incident, I had not worked out at my husband’s gym. I let that moment defeat me. Even though everyone around me said that sometimes it happens and I will learn to pace myself, I just talked myself out of it.

It took me nine months to build up enough courage to workout at that gym, and especially let someone train me. As a Pilates instructor, I feel comfortable in that element and tend to stick to it. The workouts these past two weeks have pushed me so far out of my comfort zone that I have surprised myself in many amazing ways. I have been sprinting, doing box jumps, pull-ups, Romanian deadlifts and so much more. I wanted to share three tips I have picked up that have helped me push my limits.

Believe you can push your limits

If you can’t believe in yourself, no one else can do it for you. Believing is something you have within you, but it can’t be taught. You can hire a personal trainer, but if you don’t believe you can push yourself further, it won’t matter how many challenges they give you. It isn’t the responsibility of the trainer to give you motivation. They are there to hold you accountable and guide you. Believe that you have the power, stamina, and agility to do anything, and your body will surprise you!

Get competitive

There is nothing like a little healthy competition to rev you up. My husband and I have been training together, and our trainer is giving us partner drills and timing us to see who is faster. I surprised myself today by finishing our entire workout sequence only 2 minutes behind my husband. To me, that is a huge achievement.

He started training four weeks before I did, so the fact that I could hold my own was amazing. Why not get your partner, friend or loved one involved in your workouts? Having someone there to hold you accountable and push you to be better may be just what you need to push your limits further than you ever dreamed.

Reflect

You will hear advice sometimes telling you to push through and don’t look back, but reflecting on where you came from is a powerful tool. If you finish a killer workout, take a moment to think back a month or six months ago when you wouldn’t have been able to push yourself so far. If you don’t remember you’re starting point, it becomes easy to get wrapped up in little things. Reflection is a way to acknowledge the past and continue pushing forward. Imagine what you can achieve in six months or a year.

We all have challenges we will face throughout our lives, whether it’s pushing your limits in the gym or losing your job. These three tips will help you with any challenge you may face. The most important thing is to believe. My favorite saying that I share with my Pilates clients often is “the body achieves what the mind believes.” As you are progressing in your personal fitness, try new things and don’t let the word “can’t” enter your vocabulary. I realize how had that is, and it’s something I struggle with daily as well. Keeping these three tips in mind will help you bust through fear and push your limits beyond what you could dream.

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