IMG_1576Opportunity Rocks: Why Accepting A Challenge Is Vital For Growth

This time last week I was in the middle of competing in one of the top 10 adventure races in the world – The Mark Webber Tasmania Challenge.  Our team had never been in an adventure race in our lives, never been orienteering and all three of us came from completely different disciplines. This was a challenge in every sense: Mind, body and soul were about to be tested.

Even though EmmaLayne and myself were a team – we were all there for our own individual growth and sense of challenge. Each taking something different from day 1 to 5, each of us finding highs and lows at different times and supporting each other through those as they presented themselves.

There was not a lot of time to feel low – I think at the most, you had 30 second moments to pull yourself together and keep on running, biking or paddling. It might have hurt like heck, tested our physical limits, our patience and our navigation skills all at once – but we absolutely stuck to our guns, whatever it took.

I am extremely proud of our team, our resilience, our open-minded approach and our sense of spirit that kept us (and most of the people with us) laughing throughout the five days. Thank you to everyone around us, from the pro’s to the enthusiasts who supported us and helped out along the way.

Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be sharing some of the highs and lows from this amazing journey, with an incredible group of inspiring go-getting people across Tasmania’s breathtaking countryside.

However before that,  I want to share one of the key reasons I said YES and was so determined to complete the race in the first place:

The importance of  challenging yourself and the role this plays in personal growth.

It is not until we are tested that we learn more about ourselves. We can take the new road and the chance to step up, be confronted and grow OR stay with the path we know, shy away from something new and daunting, and maintain the status quo.

If you’ve been listening to my new podcast series then this ties in nicely with my chats with Ironman legend Trevor Hendy and our conversations about awareness and accountability. If you’re looking for a sign to create change in your life and lead by example in your work then this is it!

If I can do it you can too.

You create the life you want. It is entirely your decision. Stay where you are or decide to move forward and open up your world.

If you truly want to be your personal best then you’re going to need to accept challenges in your life and say yes to opportunities as they present themselves. Even if on a small-scale you can do one thing every 7 days that is out of your comfort zone you will be creating change and development.

Emma, Nikki & Layne I’m not saying that you should accept a 350km 5 day challenge every week or even every year. Each of you will have a level of challenge that is relevant to where you are in your life. However once you decide that you are open to change, and can trust in yourself the rewards will be beyond your expectations.

You may find little voices will tell you “it’s not possible, I can’t do that, I haven’t trained, I’m not qualified, it’s not my place to ask etc…” recognise these as they pop up and then push them away with a sense of conviction that you can do anything you put your mind to.

I am absolute proof of that statement. Before the Webber Challenge I had been traveling non stop and at the last-minute 6 weeks from the race squeezed in the following “training”

  • 6 mountain bike rides (3 in Mill Valley CA, 2 in Noosa Woods)
  • 10 Runs (3 in Mill Valley and San Fran CA, 1 in Venice Beach, 1 in Sydney, 5 in Sunshine Coast)
  • 1 Paddle with Trevor Hendy in Fiji (in July )
  • 2 map reading sessions (1 with Aunty Jan and 1 with Matty Abel)
  • Got our amazing new bikes 10 days before the race (thank you Specialized the Rumor is THE MOST amazing women’s MTB)

I just had this ridiculous self belief that I could do what ever it took to get myself around the course, that I would have the stamina and the previous sporting history to find the energy and the fortitude to finish.

My biggest challenge was not the physical element but finding the focus and not getting distracted by a sense of responsibility to outside elements and issues. It took me the first two days to really get in the groove, put everything else on hold and just be.

This focus was to be my greatest lesson and has a profound effect on how I will be managing my time, my vision, personal goals and my business from here on in. I have been reminded about the absolute importance to step back, to calibrate, think and centre my thoughts into what is truly crucial, to prioritise and to realise that setting clear boundaries is effective for you and those around you.

If you are feeling that you need to be there for everyone and everything, yet nothing is meeting your expectations, then maybe it’s time  to step back and to centre your thoughts, goals and actions. It could be time to think about regaining your focus, to simplify. If you find this challenging then it’s more than likely something you need to learn and to master. It will be vital for your personal growth.

Do you feel that you are being presented with the same issues all the time, or you are stuck in a rut?  Why not get out there and pursue a new challenge, go find one rather than waiting for something to come to you.

Perhaps you will be inspiring others by doing so and will be surprised at the opportunities that will arise and the potential you possess.

Whatever it is you decide to do, make sure it’s for you.

Team Spirit SMWTC

Team Spirit SMWTC

Opportunity Rocks! It really does. 

Nikki x

For more about Team Spirit and how we got involved then have a read back and some earlier posts

To see the Webber Challenge highlights from each day with Dream Team TV then hop online to the Webber Challenge Website

If you’d like to join my VIPFIT team for inspiration and tools on how you can set goals and achieve lasting change to be your personal best then sign up here

If you think someone you know could do with a fresh perspective and a sense of challenge then please share this and sign then up too.

Super Special thanks to the following people who will all get some extra air time in my SMWTC blogs about the race: Crazy John and Sam from Rapid Ascent, Clint & Thuy the magic physio’s, Champs Rich Ussher and Braden Currie, Courtney Atkinson & Kenny Wallace, Guy Andrews & Benny Allen, Mitch Evans, Jade, Jessie & Crew from Octagon, Aunty Jan and Kim from Tri Adventure, David and Lindy, Tracey our driver and team mate, Guru Steve, Stu, Stu McQueen, Matty Swain and the boys from Backcountry Adventure, Luke and Erin, all the volunteers inc the mechanics! Body Science, Specialized AU, Oakley AU, Brookfarm, Asics AU, YOU GUYS ROCK!





  1. […] weeks ago Layne Beachley, Emma and I raced the Mark Webber Tasmania Challenge and we all got to experience the highs and lows of an extreme personal challenge – […]

  2. […] not – then get onto it. Find a challenge that is completely out of your comfort zone and go tackle that. You will be surprised what you are capable of. Once you master those physical […]


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