I was at a social gathering over the weekend where I was asked about the Tough Mudder.
Several ladies gathered around me as I showed them my arms and told them about the challenge.
I intentionally kept my description nonchalant and short, knowing reaction would be mixed. My audience was SHOCKED — SHOCKED I say — that such an event exists, let alone that anyone would want to participate. One response hung with me. “I don’t know why anyone would want to do that.”
At first I thought it was something about the remark itself that bothered me, but later I realized it was that I didn’t get a chance to answer.
I think Andy’s response would have summed it up well:
“How do you know your limits?”
I learned a lot about myself on Saturday. And I am a better person for it. Here are the top three things I learned:
- I am able to accomplish whatever I set my mind to. It might take time, but I have determination, and I don’t easily give up. When I set my mind to a task, I can be successful.
- I can ask for help when I need it. This was huge. I tend to be a loner, and I lean toward doing things on my own rather than asking for help. But on Saturday, I NEEDED help. I couldn’t have scaled those walls without it. And I was grateful to each and every person who helped me.
- It’s OK to ask for help. Again — huge for me. Maybe it’s because I’m a woman and so used to people dismissing me, or because some subjects or activities aren’t immediately easy for me, but I tend to want to prove myself and not ask for help. But it’s OK. It doesn’t make me weaker. It actually makes me stronger.
Yes, I did walk away really beat up. REALLY BEAT UP. But as the Black Knight from Monty Python said, “It’s just a flesh wound!” I will heal. And I will heal stronger. (Because I still have my limbs, unlike the Black Knight.
Is the Tough Mudder an insane challenge? Absolutely. Is it for everyone? Hell no.
My goals were to attempt every obstacle, overcome some fears and finish the damn thing, and I achieved them. I’m really proud of what I accomplished, and no one can take that away from me.