I had reason not to, but did it anyway and surprised myself!

Early Saturday morning, I woke up with a raging migraine. 

It was so bad that I was nauseous and every move made it pound so much harder. 

If you've ever had a migraine, then you know how terrible they can be! And if you've never had one, I am so happy for you! 

If just having a migraine alone wasn't bad enough, I was scheduled to do my second bicycle road race ever (think Tour de France but much shorter) that morning! I usually race mountain bikes (through the woods on a dirt trail) but at the urging of my boyfriend, I decided to sign up for this road race to see how I'd do. 

He has long said that I'd be a strong competitor on the road, so I figure why not? I have a massive passion for riding and racing bikes so I thought it would be a great new challenge for myself!

Unfortunately, that day, it seemed that I was destined for a day in bed rather than one out there pushing myself to my limits. 

I'm no stranger to migraines. I've gotten them on and off ever since I was a kid...I rarely get them now but I actually had one nearly every day for most of 2010. Seriously, no lie.

But Saturday was one of those rare occasions when a migraine it reared its ugly head. 

I had every excuse to just stay home, sleep it off, do some work, and perhaps get a nice training ride in later that day.

And I really wanted to do just that, but I decided to follow through on my commitment. I wanted to see how I'd do in this bike race. 

So, I took some medication and hopped in the car. Luckily, we were carpooling with a few people, so I napped during the hour drive. 

By the time we got to registration, I was feeling somewhat more human, but still definitely in pain. I knew that by the start of the race, I'd be back to 90% and just give it what I could. 

I felt that by showing up and following through on my commitment to myself that I had already won - regardless of the outcome of the race.

At 8AM, I was lined up with the other women in my race. I still wasn't feeling great but definitely felt way better than I did a few hours earlier. 

The gun went off, and away we went. 

For the next 1 hour, 10 minutes, we were to race through the roads of the rural Wisconsin countryside. The race consisted of three 8-mile loops. 

And my dear friend Penny (who is also an entrepreneur and LOVES all things adventure and cycling) described road racing to a small network we're part of as: 

They are scared surges and all about holding your ground, duckworth levels of grit and sheer skill to sprint just at the right moment and the hold on until either your lungs bust or you cross the finish line. 

I'd say that's about right. 

For that entire first loop, I really questioned why I was there...some major self-doubt started to creep in....

Why did you decided to push through this?

Why are you pushing yourself so hard?

Why didn't you stay in bed and rest?

You don't even do these types of races...you don't belong here. That's why you felt so terrible in the first place this morning. 

Why are you pushing yourself so hard?

Why didn't you stay in bed and rest?

You don't even do these types of races...you don't belong here. That's why you felt so terrible in the first place this morning.

I tell you, the self-doubt was SO bad! 

I seriously considered dropping out of the race during that first lap. And if I had listened to the voice in my head, I probably would have. 

As we headed into the second loop, I told the little voice of self-doubt to quiet down because we were going to push through this. 

I thought that if I could just hang in there that it'd be over soon. So I pressed on and decided to make a commitment to finishing. And did just that for the entire 8 miles. 

Ironically, as we headed into the third lap, I started to feel better. The sick feeling I had was nearly gone and I realized that I was in the lead group. With less than 8 miles to go, I decided that it was no longer enough to just finish, but I wanted the top spot. 

I set my intention and decided that the first place spot was already mine. I actually spent most of the next twenty minutes visualizing myself being at that top spot. 

There were four of us at this point and we were neck-and neck. At that point it really could be anyone's race. And as we headed into the last couple of minutes, another one of the women creeped up from the back and started to sprint for the finish.

Oh no you don't!

And I took off after her. 

I had already decided that the first place spot was mine and I was not about to let anyone else take that from me. I sprinted as fast as I could and gave it all we got. 

And as we crossed the finish line, I had her by half a bike length. 

The first place spot - I had taken it!

And it was only my second road race ever...and I did it with a terrible migraine. 

I could have let circumstance force me down a completely different path that day, but I didn't...I stayed on course toward my goals. And not only did I finish the race, but I did way better than I ever expected I would! 

That's me in the middle!

That's me in the middle!

You may not be into bike racing or any kind of racing at all, but there is a lesson that you can take away from this to apply to your life and business...

And that is - even when you do have justifiable excuses, it doesn't mean that you have to actually use them. 

Regardless of the hand we're dealt, it's still ultimately up to us on how we decide to handle it. 

We can either choose to give in and let our situations hold us back from going after our goals, or we can push past the roadblocks and not let them throw us off course. 

If you're currently not going after one of your goals - is it because you're letting your situation hold you back from going after it?  If so, I encourage you to take a little time to sit down and journal on that -->

How would I be showing up if I had nothing in my way? What would I be doing?

And

What would it mean to continue to let this situation get in the way of my dreams?

And then I really urge you to begin taking action. 

Life's too short to not live the life of your dreams. We all deserve to live the life that we dream of. 

xx, Kim

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