Rachel Rodriguez  •  Fitness

Rachel Rodriguez  •  Fitness

Grit - The Inner Growth Experience

Talent, effort, skill, and achievement all serve a purpose; but what comes next after a goal has been reached?

Talent X effort = skill 

Skill X effort = achievement 

Talent is how quickly your skills improve when you invest effort. 

Achievement is what happens when you take your acquired skills and use them successfully.

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The Reading

It’s halfway through the year and I’ve read over 50 books, I’ve lost count so far…

When I was younger I fell in love with reading; romance novels got my attention... Oh to be young and searching for love! 

It slowly turned into reading about the body, I can give a lot of credit to my father. He’s a chiropractor and knew the body, muscles, and movement. I became intrigued!

The more I talked to him about how the body moves, why does it do this or that, I’m hurting here .... why? He would walk me through points of the body, explain muscles and name them, how the body moved, and what to look for. 

Anyways, our conversations turned to food where he talked a lot about nutrition and digestion. He believed in homeopathic remedies. Yet, would slather real butter on bread, savor his wine like an Italian and make a killer steak!

fitness relaxing

He’d eat cashews as a snack and taught me to never mix orange juice with spaghetti, I don’t know why I thought that was a good idea at dinner one time lol. 

Yet, I wanted to know more! Maybe that competitive side of me kicked in at a young age and just wanted to outsmart my dad at the time. The desire to learn was evident and the habit stuck!

Now, I make deliberate time in the mornings to read for about an hour and at night before bed. I’ve learned that reading is part of my inner growth and it’s very important to me. Knowledge, on the other hand, is only good for you if you put it into action. Then, experiences that come from combining reading, learning, and knowledge are where the real magic happens. 

In the last 6 months, I’ve learned more about myself and have gained so much knowledge from these authors by using this approach. I look at books now on the outcome that they can provide and what problem am I trying to solve or learn more about. I'm fascinated with the written word, there’s nothing that compares to it. 

There’s one book that stood out, and the most recent one that I devoured, called Grit: The Power of Persuasion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth. I highly recommend it! The author breaks down what Grit is in many stories and even a simple formula: 

Talent X effort = skill 

Skill X effort = achievement 

running for fitness

The Goals

Naturally, I try to apply everything back to nutrition and fitness. Beginning by asking myself more questions, including “how do you move forward once you’ve achieved your goal?” 

To put this into context, I'm using The Grit Formula from above and the breakdown of it includes, "talent is how quickly your skills improve when you invest effort. Achievement is what happens when you take your acquired skills and use them successfully." 

Then I'm taking it one step further to know the next step in this process. For example, you could be running every day to improve your skills, you’re making the effort because it’s every day that you’re doing the activity. And let’s say you’ve reached your weight loss goal. However, how do you stick with it? You met your goal of weight loss…. Now what?! 

This is probably one of the main questions that I get asked by my clients, and from random strangers when they ask what I do.

Goals are great, unfortunately, I do think they’re overused. I’ve seen it many times where the goal has been reached and then the person goes right back to their old ways.

Or they stopped halfway through because it was too hard. The original goal became too hard for them to achieve and then they reverted back to what they used to do.

I’ve seen that goals create a mental roadblock in people’s minds to just reach this goal and then they’re done. That’s not the case though, there should be the next level, with the effort to become someone better, and achieve growth. 

This is where the shift occurs, at least in my experience especially when I ran the half marathon this year. I liked being around other runners and feeling as if I was part of the community. But it didn’t drive me. I became aware. 

I liked the focus that I had while training and learned a lot about myself and my body, including different areas that I needed to work on; for example, my knees. I self-reflected on my body. 

My goals were able to expand further by becoming more aware and through self-reflection to develop a deeper meaning of inner growth.

The Inner Growth

Most importantly I learned that inner growth is within its name, it's what I want to happen on the inside so that I can experience more on the outside. 

It was the feeling that I wanted to experience, the gift of feeling "accomplished" is what I really wanted in the end. Adding to that, I loved seeing my husband and son when I finished. I loved the location I picked, which was running along the beach in Orange County, CA. All of these were "extra laters" that I added, one on top of the other to then shape my experience. 

There was this deeper meaning that I kept cultivating within myself; over and over again within myself that I wanted to push myself to the finish line. And I did…

two women running

I recently ran the 5-mile route I used while training and noticed that my pace was slower. I purposely took a month off to rest and recover. Although, I found myself with an itch to run again.

If you’re anything like me... that competitive edge - that grit has a way of showing up when you least expect it! So if you find yourself running slower than usual, I will naturally compete with myself to make it better. The 'grit' kicked in! 

In the meantime, I’ve been working on my knees. I became aware of how weak they felt and wanted to strengthen them by doing more heavy back squats, deadlifts, and lunges. It’s definitely the area that I reflected on while training, and knowing that it could set me back once I start running again. 

Likewise, it reminds me of another Blog The Flat Road Experience that I previously wrote where you will eventually reach a fork in the road and you need to decide to turn right or left…

"Setbacks, drawbacks, and steep hills are inevitable, not avoidable."

It’s why I believe the terms journeys and goals are overused. Instead, I believe in paths and roads. Running a half marathon was the initial goal since I got a taste of what I’m able to do...now I want more.

The path of running opened up so many doors for me when I was younger and even today. It continues to produce an inner growth mindset that I value and had since I was young. I love running, and being outdoors. Now I want to focus on improving my 5-mile run and becoming stronger. You can apply this to your life as well. 

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Smash Your Grape

Talent, effort, skill, and achievement all serve a purpose; it became clear after reading Grit.

As a matter of fact, now it’s time to look back at what I learned, cultivate new energy to put it into practice, and set out on my next focus of inner growth.

What's the next level? Start by asking yourself that question first. Then, set out on what you want to feel and grow from within.

~Rachel
Have A Grapefull Day!

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