Your mind takes work: A conversation with Laura Gonzalez

Everyday we carry on with our lives somewhat scared of how mysterious and challenging the world is, when in reality we forget that our biggest challenge is ourselves. There’s no way around it! If you’re reading this you most likely (99.9% chance) have all the tools to achieve anything you set yourself up to do. Whether its a fitness goal or just an overall better practice for your life, you can do it and no one can possibly stop you except yourself. For this week of the Powerful Blog, we talked to Professional CrossFit Athlete & Powerful Team member: Laura Gonzalez. Laura took some time to talk to us about overcoming her biggest challenge in life: herself.
Laura:
I’d like to start my post by expressing gratitude and appreciation for this opportunity to share a little bit of my fitness journey.
It’s crazy to look back at when I first started, because never in a million years did I imagine that this would be my life. Struggling with body image issues my entire life, I started dieting as my new year resolution, and being “all in” to things as usual, I did everything I read on the internet to a T and lost myself throughout the process. What started as a diet without guidance or knowledge turned into using weight loss to deal with the stress of the sudden changes in my life, because it felt like the only thing I could control. Even as I had long passed my goal weight I just wanted it to keep going down and when it would stop I would cut down the amount of food I would allow myself to eat. I dreaded doing anything out of the routine that would put me in situations where there was food or people eating, and I would hide how little I ate. I remember having a food log journal, and at first it was normal, but then it was kept secret. I also punished myself with exercise. My entire life I was the typical tomboy, always active and played every sport you can imagine, and through this I found myself hating to workout but making myself do it to not be “fat”.
I dropped to 90lbs, and was all bones. I remember sitting down hurt because all I sat on was bones. My rib cage was visible, I was always cold, mood swings, sadness, anger, dizziness, lies. It’s all a blurr.
The road to recovery was long, hard, and really bumpy with many ups and downs. I went from under eating to binging and purging, and eventually it got so out of control that I would pass out before purging the food I binged on.  One day, I walked into a CrossFit gym to try a class and immediately fell in love. It kicked my butt and I loved it. I stopped worrying about what I looked like and became focused on becoming stronger and fitter. I wanted to fuel my performance, and the moment I let go of the scale, everything started to get better. More and more days went by and I stopped feeling guilt and shame whenever I ate. I started competing in the sport, actually enjoying life again and training a lot because I wanted to reach my goals, not just punishment for being “fat”. A couple of years later I managed to reach my main goal at the time which was to qualify for the CrossFit Games Regionals, a goal that in the beginning could’ve been considered impossible.
To anyone out there looking to make a positive change in their life, or going through hard times, you are stronger than you know and it’s time for you to try to push past your perceived limits because we are all so capable of more than we think. You are POWERFUL. Start believing it TODAY.Find an activity that you enjoy and makes you feel good and take it day by day. Work hard and don’t stop until you reach your goals. Build those healthy habits and become the best version of yourself.
“Pressure can burst a pipe, or pressure can make a diamond”  Robert Horry