I don’t aspire to be like anyone else. I am motivated and inspired to be a better version of myself each and every day. In my career I am a witness to just how resilient and adaptable the human body is. I experience this first hand with my training. The greatest disservice you could ever do is to not even try. Surprising myself with physical challenges is my greatest addiction.
Out of all the questions I get asked, the most frequent one has to be “how do you stay so motivated?” This is of course referring to my motivation for fitness.
For those of you just getting to know me, I work as a pediatric registered nurse in 3 different departments: a floor nurse on a pediatric surgical unit where 12-hour shifts are required; a clinic nurse in pediatric outpatients, providing IV therapy to children with chronic conditions; and as a bed manager, working as a liaison placing patients triaged from emergency, as well as ensuring patients from the operating room, and out of region are placed to the appropriate units of care within the hospital. All 3 hats I wear in my nursing career keep me busy, and all 3 are a lot of responsibility. I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world.
For the 5 years I competed in fitness, I maintained a position on the pediatric surgical unit. I worked 12-hour day and night shifts, and managed to fit in all my weight training and cardio sessions while following my diet immaculately. It was very challenging to say the least, but I was so incredibly passionate about both that it was a labor of love. As each season came and went, regardless of how I placed I had a great deal of pride in that I was able to pull off my absolute best each and every show.
So when people ask “how do you stay so motivated”- I almost always relate it to my line of work. Working in pediatrics is the single most rewarding thing I have done with my life. I have seen children and families face great hardships, and yet still find several reasons to smile within their day. I have seen some horrific incidences turn into miraculous recoveries. I have spent Christmases, birthdays, witnessed first words, held hands, laughed, and cried with these brave little soldiers. I don’t think people give children enough credit: they are strong, resilient, powerful beings that we can all learn from. I have performed painful procedures on patients that would ruin the average adults’ day; but instead the child (patient) then proceeds to play Xbox with their sibling. That’s TOUGH. Each and every shift, no matter how difficult- I always leave work feeling both amazed and inspired.
These stories, these experiences not only inspire me to push each and every day- they remind me just how grateful I am for my health. I have an able, fully functioning, working body and mind. Many of these kids don’t get to have both. I have some of my best workouts following a 12-hour shift because I know if any one of those patients I had that day could, they would kill it too. There’s the odd time I will think driving to the gym “I don’t know if I’ve got it in me today” and then I snap out of it saying “you have today. You don’t know about tomorrow. You only know for certain you have today.” Sounds hokey- but it works every time. Just move: because you can.