Introducing our Resident Bear, Self Love Advocate and CrossFit Babe
Posted on 25 July 2017
"My choice to open up fully on a public level came shortly after a very nasty breakup..."
Hi! My name is Claire (better known as Bear)…I am a lover of all things fitness, a Personal Trainer and a CrossFit Coach.
If you follow me already on Social Media you would know this is about the time I touch my nose for no apparent reason because I am nervous and have trouble starting conversations and introducing myself!
Good for me, go me, yay, winning! #sendhaaalp
I am currently that girl, all up on your feed, all up in your face, championing for you to love yourself. I am that girl who understands how deeply painful it is to hate yourself that I would give anything to pull anyone still stuck down there out to stand in the light with me. I am not your teacher but I am your friend, your sister and your cheerleader.
I struggled my whole life with body image and self love. I was another victim of this world where diet culture and unattainable beauty standards reign supreme. It didn’t matter what I did, I felt I was never good enough...never worthy.
My journey to claiming back my power as a human being, as a woman, started when I found CrossFit. Suddenly my successes were not measured in how much weight I had lost, how many dress sizes I had dropped, but in how well I was physically performing, how much weight I was lifting. It became my safe place. The place I could go to escape everything else in the world that made me feel LESS. I had found the holy grail. I was now untouchable. But being the ever self-reflecting human that I am, I began to question if I had led myself into a false sense of security. Had I simply just found a way to mask the pain and to feel a sense of achievement without actually addressing the real issue. If I took away my ability to lift, to run, to jump - would I still feel worthy?
Not long ago I found an old journal of mine from when I was a teenage girl and I couldn’t believe what I had written about myself on those pages, in ink, for me to read over and over again. It broke my heart. I guess there’s a reason it was hidden in an old box. I read it, it exhausted me, I went to sleep and then I woke up in the morning and took it downstairs and threw it in the bin...never to be read again. But it begged the question again, is that girl really gone or have you just covered her up, the way you would with a beautiful new rug over a wine stain on the carpet.
To get the answer I had to pull the rug up. I had to look at the stain. I had to show others and be ready for their response, for their judgement. I had to stand in my truth and embrace who the hell I was and in the face of non acceptance I had to fight for myself. I had to own every inch of who I was and what I looked like and I had to choose me, everyday. It took work, it still does. It also caused me a great amount of anxiety (which I already suffer from anyway so you know, always make it harder for yourself!) but I had to be authentic.
My choice to open up fully on a public level came shortly after a very nasty breakup. During our final argument I remember sitting in bed while he was standing over me, listening to him try every avenue and approach to break me down. Telling me my friends didn’t really give a shit about me, they just used me, that I was a selfish person, that I had been trying at something for years and wasn’t anywhere so what made me think I would actually get there, I was delusional. I listened and then I started laughing (yes this shocked me also!). I laughed and then I proceeded to tell him that he could continue to stand there and find as many ways as possible to make me believe I was worthless, that nobody cared about me, that I would never really be anything or do anything good in this world, that I was an awful person but there were not enough words in this world that would ever change how strongly I believed in myself and how much I loved myself and that I KNEW I was a kind, caring, loving and compassionate human being. Nothing he could say would change the my truth so he was wasting his breath because there wasn’t a damn thing he could say that could break what I knew about myself.
I don’t know where that woman came from. I guess she had been waiting for her moment. Well I do know - I had been cultivating her strength this whole time. I had been choosing me.
I felt so empowered, I felt like I had unlocked this human being inside me that had been waiting for her time to shine. That I was now giving her the space and visibility to come to the forefront.
I also wanted to be responsible in setting her free. I had to do it with authenticity. I could not unleash her upon the world without letting people know I didn’t and still don’t bound out of bed everyday with a sunny disposition. There were so many times I was in dire need of hope, just one small glimmer and I would come across someone’s post that resonated so true with me that I needed to pay that forward. I needed to create a safe space for others to come and feel accepted, understood and loved.
That is my mission. To keep spreading awareness, to spread love, to spread acceptance. For anyone looking to know that someone out there understands their pain or if I can’t then at the very least I can sit down, listen, accept and love them as they are. This is why I share, why I will continue to share and I am very blessed to welcome you all into this journey with me.