"If you want something, go for it." This sounds like an extremely practical and encouraging quote to live by and it's a mantra that has inspired me to achieve most of my personal, professional and athletic goals to date. As a natural born planner, for a long time, I lived my life as if I was checking off boxes. Everything I ever did was articulated just so. I love numbers and math and therefore I knew I wanted a career in Finance from an early age. I took the appropriate undergraduate classes and attended graduate school for business, to properly align my background with my desired occupation. The same thing applied to every one of my athletic accomplishments. I had a goal to complete a triathlon, so I followed a strict schedule. Swim, bike, run, repeat. When I had the desire to run my first marathon, I attacked the training in a similar manner. I created a running program for myself that I would not dare deviate from, no matter what the circumstance (I remember running up and down the dark stairs of my power-less high rise building during Hurricane Sandy because it was just a few weeks before the NYC Marathon). Needless to say, when I wanted something, I went for it.
Living with this kind of mentality can be rewarding but it can also be emotionally exhausting when you hit a road block that is out of your hands. When I first had the wish to become a mother 3 years ago, I shortly came to realize that with my fertility complications, no amount of planning could help me reach my goal. I could not just follow an ovulation schedule or mimic xyz protocol to become pregnant. For the first time in my life, I felt unstable. Sure, I could listen to all of my specialty doctor's recommendations, ingest every medication prescribed and try every fertility treatment under the sun (I did all of this), but ultimately I could not govern my own destiny. Failed invetro attempts, unfavorable surgical results, miscarriages and eventually a high-risk, bedridden pregnancy were all unforeseen obstacles that left me powerless and vulnerable. Truth be told, I was accustomed to getting what I wanted. Whether it was a result of a loving upbringing, good luck or hard work (probably a combination of all 3), I had never dealt with misfortune prior to the challenge of having a baby. Despite feeling defeated month after month, year after year, I strongly believe my athletic background helped me get to where I am today - 9 months pregnant.
There is a certain "never give up" mental component that is present in every marathon runner. No matter how tired you get in a training run, you complete your premeditated mileage. No matter how bad of a race you have, you bounce back and run stronger and faster the next time around. Even though I had to adjust my way of thinking, that not everything in life can be planned to a T, I did use that same tenacious attitude that I learned from athletics throughout my fertility journey.
So maybe if you want something, you can't just go for it. Maybe some goals can not be reached by intense strategy and effective scheduling. Maybe sometimes we are confronted with challenges that just seem too impossible to overcome. Just remember that adversity is all part of life. Treat your hardships like you're running a marathon. You may hit a wall, but eventually, if you never give up, you'll get to the finish line!
Jamie has been with WiO since we first opened our doors. First a dedicated client, Jamie then received her Mad Dogg spin certification and AFAA group fitness certification - and now teaches Ride, Ride Mixer, Next Stop Skinny and Sweata Weatha. She brings her "never give up" attitude into all of her classes - Don't worry, she'll be back on the schedule soon!