Have you ever thought about trying something and the first thing that pops into your head is "I can't do it"? That there is no way, it is too hard, that you don't have enough time, money, or that people might think negatively of you if you fail so you don't do it. You push the idea out of your mind and go on about your life as is. This has definitely happened to me more than a time or two and I hope you can relate.

During a long walk outside this week, I was listening to the RISE podcast by Rachel Hollis titled "Asking Why Can't I?" Rachel was talking with Nick Sanonastasso, a bodybuilder, motivational speaker and fitness model. He also has just one arm and no legs. Nick is one of four people alive with a rare genetic condition called Hanhart Syndrome. When Nick was born, doctors told his parents all the things their son wouldn't be able to do. His parents thanked the doctors and then tossed the list to the side, raised him just as they did their other children ultimately shaping Nick into the inspiring person he is today. One of Nick's mottos that he shared with Rachel was "Why can't I?" He went on to discuss how he continually changes his perception of thinking "I can't do something" to why not? He mentions that the biggest disability anyone has is a bad mindset. That is so powerful! Asking "why can't I?" continually helps push Nick beyond his comfort zone and what himself or others perceive as his capabilities or limits.

This podcast was so fitting as I was walking, six miles in fact, to help prep me for the Illinois half marathon quickly approaching next month. I haven't done any long distance running or walking since January's half and while it's not like I haven't been active and working out but full on half marathon training, I have not. It's semi-intentional actually as I kind of want to test myself and see, that in spite of training for January's race plus cross-training with a few added long walks/runs in between, that I can still go out and successfully do a half. However, as race day approaches, I would be lying if I wasn't feeling a little bit nervous. Hearing this message from Nick was absolutely the right thing to hear at the right time. Why can't I do this half? Well, I can do it. I absolutely can. The only person second guessing anything is myself. The only person saying that I can't do it is me. Sure people might think I'm crazy for doing a half or doing a half with minimal training but that's just it, other people's thoughts, not my own. The only person that can change perception and just go for it is me. I get to choose that I can do it, that I will do it. It might be hard. It will be hard but my body is strong, capable and ready for the challenge.

Besides that long six mile walk, the rest of the week was spent trying to get back into my normal gym routine. The first few workouts post vacation are always tough even when you manage to workout while on vacation. It didn't help that I was feeling a little under the weather for a few days. It was not challenging for me at all to get up at 5am while in Austin to workout but this week back in Champaign it wasn't quite as easy. All things considered, I still got five great workouts in so I'm heading into the weekend feeling strong of mind and body.

I also spent a good part of my workouts this week with fellow mommas at Fit4Mom Champaign-Urbana. My April feature gym of the month is Fit4Mom and while I won't share too many details as that's an entirely new post coming soon, I did get to try out a few of their different classes the last few days. Suffice to say, it is a really fun group of mommas and a great approach to healthy living while exercising alongside fellow friends and moms at the same time.

If you're interested, I've also included this week's strength training session details...

Back & Biceps
Lat Pulldown, 3 sets of 10, 50lbs
Lat Pushdown, 3 sets of 10, 30lbs
Underhand BB Lat Row, 3 sets of 10, 45lbs
Alternating DB Hammer Curl, 3 sets of 10, 15lbs
Wide-angle DB Bicep Curl, 3 sets of 10, 12.5lbs
Cable Single-arm Cross-body Curl, 3 sets of 10, 20lbs
BB Clean Press, 3 sets of 10, 20lbs

Chest, Shoulders & Triceps
Tricep Overhead Extension Rope, 3 sets of 10, 40lbs
Cable Cross Body Single-Arm Rear Delt Fly, 3 sets of 10, 10lbs
DB Chest Press, 3 sets of 10, 20lbs
Tricep Dips, 3 sets of 10
Plate Shoulder Raise w/ Twist, 3 sets of 10, 10lbs
Single-arm Chest Fly Cable, 3 sets of 10, 10lbs

How did you move this week? Despite it being a little difficult to pick back up my usual workout routine, I know it serves me better and overall I feel better when I show up and get it done. If you're like me or Nick Santonastasso and ever thinking that you aren't cut out for something or it's a little scary to try, ask yourself "why can't I?" and figure out a way to do it. Let your mind be open to trying something new. Let your body show you what its capable of. Don't be limited by your own thoughts or excuses.

Change your perception, change your beliefs, change the outcome.