What’s holding you back from reaching your dreams? Is it time? The fear of failure? Or is your past still finding a way to affect your future?
As a mom, wife + teacher, Sandy Zimmerman knew that she was living a good life. But she didn’t realize that she wasn’t living a great life until she started her American Ninja Warrior journey. There were walls that she still had up from her childhood that was not only keeping people out, but you’re trapping herself in.
By putting herself out there in the Ninja community, it hit her that she didn’t need these walls in her life anymore. This mindset led her to become the first mom and the oldest woman to ever complete the American Ninja Warrior obstacle course.
But her story is about more than just hitting a buzzer… press play to hear how Sandy knocked down her walls through Ninja and how that has allowed her to leave the world a little better than she found it.
Sandy Zimmerman is the first mom and the oldest woman to ever complete the American Ninja Warrior obstacle course. Sandy’s ANW journey started four years ago as she was channel surfing with her son and the show with a grown-up obstacle course competition grabbed both of their attention and sparked an interest in Sandy. Her and her family then started going out to the park to practice ninja-like moves and that spark ignited as she decided to apply for season eight to see what would happen. She got the call that would take her one step closer to her dream and that would unleash to what she had been holding onto since her childhood.
As a mom, wife + teacher, Sandy knew that she was living a good life. But, until she started her ANW journey, she didn’t realize that she wasn’t living a great life. There were scars from her childhood that she was still carrying around and that’s where Ninja became her therapy.
Throughout Sandy’s childhood, she experienced all forms of abuse. So, in order to survive, she put walls up and became guarded. By putting herself out there in the Ninja community, she realized that she didn’t need those walls in her life anymore.
What Sandy discovered is that when your walls are up you’re not only keeping people out, but you’re trapping yourself in. By letting her walls down, she has enjoyed + embraced more people in her life, has done things that she never would have done before and is now truly living a great life by being her most real self.
Grab some tissues and tune into 8:14 to hear Sandy’s inspiring story on how getting over her fears of opening up has allowed her to leave the world a little better than she found it.
TRIAL + ERROR
How do you define success? Is it by who has the most points on the scoreboard? Who crosses the finish line first? Or is it who is raising up the trophy at the end of it all?
What Sandy loves about Ninja is that it changes how you define success. It teaches you that success is measured by trying to get a little better than you were yesterday, whether that’s physically or mentally, and how you handle where you end up. With Ninja and life, you learn through trial and error. Anything that is difficult and challenging is going to come with trial and error.
Sandy likes to iterate this message to her kids when they are training in the backyard. If one falls off an obstacle, laugh it off, get back up and try again. She is teaching her kids that failure is the learning process, so you need to embrace it, love it and then let it motivate you to keep going.
A GROUNDED HEALTHY LIFESTYLE
This is something that Sandy has quickly learned the importance of since becoming a Ninja. Growing up, her brain was wired to believe that in order to get out of her rough childhood she needed to work hard. The constant pace of work, work, work was really taking its toll on her health. After accomplishing everything that she has with American Ninja Warrior, she has had more rest days + slept more than she ever has before.
Sandy admits to used to feeling some type of guilt when she would take a rest day or if she got in her full 8 hours of sleep, but she realized that you have to give yourself permission to embrace the fact that rest is so important. Rest is how your body refreshes and heals itself to perform as a Ninja or mom.
Surround yourself with things that are positive. Whether it’s something you’re reading, listening to or the people that you’re interacting with, make sure that it’s keeping you in a positive mindset. Being positive is something you will have to work at by making sure that you take the time each day to be grateful for what + who you have.
MENTIONED IN EPISODE
The material contained within is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. You should seek prompt medical care for any specific health issues and consult your physician before beginning a new regiment or purchasing any product(s).