I’m happy to introduce Amy Christensen who hails from Expand Outdoors and has agreed to join us here today. I love guest bloggers. Not only do I get a day off of blogging (What? You thought this was easy?), but I also love adding new voices. That way it doesn’t always feel like I’m talking to myself here. Thanks so much Amy for being here. Take it away! (KK)
Every day we are faced with decisions. Some days they remain fairly ordinary.
Chocolate chip or oatmeal raison cookies this week? Should I bring a sweater into
Other days, we’re faced with decisions that will alter the trajectory of our lives.
“I could never do that.” “I’m not a runner.”
When I first began to run, these were thoughts that went through my head all the time.
I was dating a runner. My friends were runners. I went to their races and cheered them
But me? No, I couldn’t do that. I wasn’t an athlete. I couldn’t run around the block, much
less three or six miles.
And then something changed. I was 26 with borderline high cholesterol. The kind of
high cholesterol my doctor explained could be lowered with exercise. So I signed up at
a local gym with the intent to swim. For a few weeks, I swam slowly one or two times
a week for about a half hour at a time. Hardly a serious workout, but for me, it seemed
One day, curiosity led me to the treadmill for a “warm-up” before I got in the pool.
I stepped onto the treadmill feeling like a total fraud, sure everyone was looking at me
and silently laughing at my inexperience. I found the start button and increased the
speed. I planned to run for five minutes.
After five minutes I thought maybe I could make it a half mile.
After I reached that half mile, I thought, well… maybe ten minutes. I was feeling
After ten minutes I was close to a mile. Well… I thought… let’s see if I can go a mile.
And so I did. In just over 12 minutes on a cool March morning in 2000, I’d run the first
continuous mile of my entire life.
And in fact, most surprisingly, I’d survived.
I just hadn’t believed it possible until that moment.
Pushing Beyond Our Limits
We all have limiting beliefs that influence our decisions, choices and actions. We’re not
fit enough to get started. We’re too clumsy or uncoordinated. We’re too old. It wouldn’t
be seemly. We’ll be laughed at. Not taken seriously.
I could go on and on. I’m sure you have a number of additions of your own you could
The most life-altering lessons I’ve learned from sports has been this:
I’m stronger than I think I am. I can do more than I ever thought possible.
These realizations transcend from the sports—from 50-mile runs, downhill bike rides
and scaling granite walls—world into my relationships, career choices, life adventures,
and every other aspect of my life.
Sports—particularly those that take place outdoors surrounded by nature—just taught
me (and continues to teach me) these lessons.
Here’s what I know: That we’re ALL stronger than we think. That our bodies are way
more capable than our mind can ever envision. That getting outside, being active can
fundamentally transform your life.
The line our minds draw on our capabilities are infinitely impermanent; ready to be
pushed, challenged and redrawn bigger and more expansive as we continue to grow
Where is your line? Your self-imposed boundary? Can it be pushed? Challenged?
What’s holding you back?