You can do anything, but you can’t do everything. This is something we say time and time again on the podcast, to our coaching clients, and to each other. And one of these days, I’m going to take that advice and really follow it. I’m delighted/devastated to admit that I finally recognized the validity of the advice in the last couple of weeks and put a stop to my other podcast, The Business of Fitness. As a very Type A person, you can imagine that suspending a project is not something I am particularly good at. It wasn’t an easy decision, and it was an even harder conversation.
However, I have to admit, it was a no-brainer that I needed to put a stop to it. And that’s because I have a pretty specific sense of purpose in my life right now.
Athletically, I have the Leadville 100 coming up in under 200 days. That’s one layer.
And then, there’s the Consummate Athlete side of my life here, along with Strong Girl Publishing, my micro-publishing company, and the three books that we’ll be putting out this year alone with Strong Girl. There are a lot of moving parts with both of those companies, and they both need a lot of my attention. (And this isn’t including my other freelance work, which adds up.)
At some point, something had to give if I wanted to hit my big goals. If I wanted to double down on Leadville training while also planning two summer book releases and a few surprises over here at Consummate Athlete HQ, there simply wasn’t room for another project on the plate. The time it was taking to book guests, record episodes, record intros, write shownotes and get it all to the (amazing) producer was do-able, but it was time that could be spent focusing on the other work projects, or on maximizing my athletic life—more recovery, better food prep, etc.
We talk about this often in the context of athletic goals for clients and listeners: Often, we get excited about wanting to do an ultra-run, a MTB stage race, a few criteriums, maybe a weekly cyclocross series, definitely some e-sports racing and weekend CrossFit with friends… It’s all do-able, but if you want to see success in any of those events, you need more focus and less of a scattershot approach. You can do any of it, but not all of it all at the same time. Which is hard!
Often, it’s boring. Consistency usually is. It feels too routine, it feels like you’re not making big strides. But this is where we build gradual success. This is how we get from Point A to Point B (not Points B-G).
If you’re struggling to get it all done and feel like you’re not making meaningful progress in any of it, it may be time to assess your priorities and areas of focus. You may need to hit pause (or even ‘cancel’) on one or two things. You may need to ask for help. You may realize that it’s not necessarily a need to delete something from your to-do list, but instead, simply let go of the stress that you have around getting everything done. (I tend to look at my week’s schedule and start to feel like I’m on a never-ending treadmill and have a bit of a stress reaction to it… But lately, I’ve been reminding myself that if the list did end and I was done with all of my work, I’d be in a much worse position and very unhappy about it!)
Anyway, from one Type A to another, consider this your permission to look at everything that you’re doing in your life and do an honest audit. What’s not working, and what can you potentially take away so that you have more space for what really matters? This is where it can be helpful to come back to your ‘why’ and your goals, whether it’s your broader mission in life type thing, or your specific list of goals for this year/season of life. For me, my overarching ‘why’ didn’t work when it came to if I should cancel the Business of Fitness, because my why is about bringing more women and girls into sport. I needed to go to my more granular goals for the year, which include growing the Consummate Athlete and Strong Girl Publishing, and doing absolutely everything within my power to perform at Leadville.
You’re not a failure if you give something up to double down on what you really want.