Do one thing a day that scares you, that’s what lulu lemon told me to do. Well, their bag did. I pride myself in typically being a critical thinker and not easily swayed by a company’s marketing, but the lulu bags always got me thinking. So, I decided to do something that really scares me – lift heavy weights often and stand on a stage in just a bikini in front of a large audience. Yes! I am going to enter a fitness competition. The NPAA Fitness show in May to be specific.

Hahahaha, I laugh in the face of the scary audience. I will slay the fitness show dragon. I will walk on stage with my head held high, brimming with confidence and win! Or I will cry with fear and run away. I feel like I am taking on more than the lulu bag intended.

The lulu lemon bag also states that “This is not your practice life. It is all there is”. I have always tried to live my life with the idea that I only get one and now is the time to start living the life I want. I have travelled to far off places, volunteered in my community, loved my family and friends intensely, and achieved athletic goals such as running a marathon and a half Iron Man. Stepping out of my comfort zone is not totally new to me, and grabbing the proverbial bull by its horns is something I try to do as habit. But my weakness has always been pain, I work really hard to avoid it. And for me lifting weights is painful.

Lifting heavy weights is outside of my comfort zone and is mentally and emotionally painful (I often cry when I am squatting heavy  weight). To achieve the muscle mass I require to successfully compete in a fitness show I have push myself in the gym harder than I ever pushed before. I have to push past the physical and mental pain, and somehow find a way to get satisfaction in weight lifting (I’m not sure I will ever like it).

The other, more obvious, scary part is standing in front of  large audience in just a bikini. But I will worry about that later. For now, my focus is on getting into the gym six days a week to lift heavy weights.

Right now, my biggest challenge is not motivating myself to lift the heavy weights (although I do at times dread it). No, the biggest challenge is managing my time in the gym, and crazy new diet (more on that later) while also being a mom and wife. Prior to taking on this goal I was already in the pursuit of “having it all” – I am starting a successful nutrition business, I am a stay at home mom (SAHM), I work hard to be a loving wife, etc. – and now I have added this one major new item to the list. I’m not totally sure how I am going to manage it all. But two things will definitely help, waking up earlier (hello 5 am club!) and my amazing, supportive husband.

Today is week 16. In about four months I will be on stage. This is going to be an interesting adventure…