Week 2 of the #StrongestSELFever Challenge

I’m well within the second week of the Strongest SELF Ever challenge with SELF magazine. I am really excited to write this post as I am starting to see some great results. I was stretching the other day and found a muscle! I’m talking about a sculpted muscle in my bicep! To my excitement, I had to tell all of my friends about this newfound muscle. I know it sounds corny but I want to tell the world. I haven’t seen muscles in a long time!

As some of you may know, I have struggled with my weight for some time. I get very self-conscious in a swim suit, shorts and even dresses. I know that no one is really even looking at me but I still get anxious about it. When I started this blog back in January, I found confidence in myself and beauty in my body. I found confidence that if I put my mind to something and really work at it, everything will work out. I have found confidence that if I pursue my dreams, that dream will unfold in ways that I could not have imagined.

Of course, we all have doubt every now and then. As self-doubt creeps in to remind me that I am not a size zero, I shoot it down right away. I am working not only on my physical body but my spiritual body and emotional body. I am confident in myself and as I do this workout challenge, I have been giving it all that I have within me. This is not to get “skinny” but to get healthy, be healthy and stay healthy. I am here to show you how a normal twenty something year old woman can be all that she can be and so can you!

Don’t let self-doubt get in the way of success!

This challenge has not been easy but I have learned a lot about myself throughout this process. There have been numerous times that I have told myself that I couldn’t do a certain exercise because my body wouldn’t be able to hold me up. This is a lie that I have been telling myself for years and has come to the surface while doing this challenge. The great thing about the Strongest SELF Ever challenge is that the workouts are fairly short. This means that there are absolutely no excuses! Many of us fall into a pit of doubt that causes us to give up when we are faced with adversity. I am here to tell you that you can do anything if you put your mind fully into it.

I am halfway done with the Strongest SELF Ever challenge and I’ve had some fabulous wins! I feel stronger. I am seeing muscles that I have not seen for years and it’s so exciting! I have way more energy to do my workouts. For example, yesterday’s workout consisted of Y-raises, I-raises, push-ups, shoulder taps and burpees. This was the first workout that I was able to do the entire routine with an abundance of energy. I did full burpees without the modification. I think that’s a win in itself!

I am totally loving all of the cardio workouts. The other day, the cardio routine was 30 seconds of jumping jacks, 30 seconds of skipping in place and 30 seconds of crawl-outs. Then, repeat the circuit once or twice more. I had so much energy that I ended up doing the circuit four times. It was so motivating to be able to have the energy to do more than what was expected.

With all of my success, there have been some challenges. The plank exercises have been slightly difficult for me. This includes the full planks and the side planks. Planks use mostly abdominal strength to hold up one’s body. My abdominal strength is weak at this point so holding a plank is very difficult for me but I still push myself through it. We have also been doing mountain climbers and burpees this week. They were very difficult for me at the beginning of last week but I feel like they are getting easier. I am able to do the mountain climbers faster and with more intensity. It’s a great accomplishment.

When I am doing something challenging in these workouts, I use positive self talk to get through it. I tell myself that I can hold it for a little longer and that I will feel stronger after the exercise. The Strongest SELF Ever challenge has been great for me to keep myself motivated to get healthier. As I have been exercising, I have taken note of the food that I am eating. I have been very aware of what I have been putting into my body and how it makes me feel. This process has helped me keep myself accountable throughout the challenge and I believe it has made my workouts more effective.

This challenge is half way completed and I am really liking my results. I can’t wait to tackle this next week and take on new challenges. The fun is just getting started!

Have you ever done a fitness challenge like this one? Comment below with your experiences! I would love to hear from you. See you next week for another update on my progress with the Strongest SELF Ever challenge.

Be bold to live free, xo Aimée

“The person we believe ourselves to be will always act in a manner consistent with our self-image.” – Brian Tracy