What are you doing on a daily basis that challenges you and what you think (or believe) your limits are? Recently, I’ve been learning a new skill, and it was born out of a conversation with my father some months ago about why I wasn’t training to compete in the Masters Swimming program.
Years ago, I was a swimmer. I grew up in a pool, had green hair (I’m talking chartreuse… that ghastly color that Kermit the Frog is), and sported muscles before it was attractive on a woman. I got to travel a bit, and had some success in the water but I also developed a mean allergy to chlorine. The question about competing in Masters Swimming got me thinking, though.
Having been a competitor, I definitely appreciate the value of not only training, but the thrill of testing myself in competition. But… I just couldn’t bear the thought of being in chlorine again. I hate it. My skin crawls, and my eyes burn… it’s just not worth it.
Then I googled “Olympic Weightlifting” and “Masters” and discovered that older (my age) women were in fact competing and succeeding in the sport of weightlifting. That in mind, I’m giving it a try.
With my good sense of body placement and relative strength, I’ve had some great sessions but I wasn’t really prepared for one result of the training. My trainer is actually having to coach me in being “mean”. She says, “Get angry” before I make an effort to lift the barbell (she even uses some expletives that I won’t use here, but swear words are helpful). What is interesting to me is that even though I use the term, “fierce” in my Amazon training, and I use it a lot – I’m seeing that even I don’t have instant access to ferocity… I’m having to cultivate it.
I know that I have it (and was born with it), but it takes an awful lot for me to really get pissed off and then it’s just ugly and destructive. It’s like I just explode with rage, and no one takes that seriously so I don’t do it very often.
Thing is, I am now thinking that I “unlearned” anger in order to be a “lady”. I’m over being a “lady”. It just isn’t the only thing for us. We must be willing to access anger sometimes in order to move out of despair, and cultivating a relationship with that emotion again is a very positive exercise for us women.
And, on a more practical note if it takes getting angry, mean and pissed to lift a stupid amount of weight over my head, then I’m game.