So Emily and I were chatting the other day about a bike ride she took around New York City. There was one part that had a very big hill. And she felt a little unsure of it until she said to herself "your body can do anything for 45 seconds."
It got me thinking that it's not necessarily our bodies that provide the doubt -- it's our minds. If we trust our bodies that we can do anything for a limited amount of time, we give our bodies permission to meet that goal and even surpass it.
When i first starting running on the elliptical there were times that I felt like I was going to die. It was usually when the cross-ramp and the resistance were increased and my lungs just weren't ready. But I'd urge my lungs to stick with it. I'd will my body to move the oxygen to the extremities that were starting to feel fatigue. I told my body what it was capable of those days.
Same thing with doing plank exercises. Even though I was injured (and didn't know it at the time), my body would give out on me. My trainer would get down on the floor right next to me and say "you can do it... just focus." It wasn't focusing my body, it was focusing my mind on a spot on the floor. I would tell the floor that i wasn't ready to touch it.
Today I will go to the pool for 20 minutes in a bikini. Yep, that's what I said.
Because seriously, I won't die from doing it. My body needs the help with vitamin D. And if anyone wants to get snarky with me, I have a very swift kick to the nuts in my arsenal.