**Day 28 disclaimer: I drank a little too much wine at a dinner party and then wrote this post. I have not changed it since, I hope you find it amusing and confusing. Additionally, my internet is down again. Sorry for another delay. **
Day 28: Working out for 365 days in a row is going to prove to be difficult at a point. Today was my point. This morning I went to my first restorative yoga class at Core Power Yoga. Restorative yoga is to sugar what power yoga is to a double chocolate chip cookie. It’s incredibly tame, to say the absolute least.
This morning was my first attempt to practice this type of yoga and it was actually a lot more difficult than anticipated. Holding stretching poses for four minutes does not just test your muscles, but it tested my mind as well. Many of the poses promised to “help sleep better at night” and “decompress a stressed back.” I have no clue how to measure that, however, I am willing to try many times as long as this is considered a workout.
Day 29: Today started off beautifully. A dear friend was in town this morning and I had her over for coffee and breakfast. Her dog and my cat toyed with the idea of playing, but settled on some good ol’ butt sniffin’. After hours of chatting we went on a walk at Washington Park. It was sunny, there were hundreds of geese and her dog chased every squirrel he saw…it was perfect.
That was going to be my workout, but since I declared today my day off from work I decided I actually wanted to do more. I went to Pura Vida and ran two miles and then did 30 minutes of cardio on an elliptical. I followed this up with 45 minutes of weight lifting and 15 minutes of abdominal work. Afterwards I iced my sore (maybe arthritic) wrist and called it a day. Tonight they are calling for the third snowstorm in two weeks in Denver and I am so prepared; two movies, a new cat toy, extra firewood and a skype date with my fiancé in the Phillipines. What a great end to a perfect day.
This morning I went to a spin class at Pura Vida in Cherry Creek. It was my first time spinning in over six months and I can already feel my inner thighs screaming from all of the “up/downs” that the instructor had us doing.
The instructor, Jasmine, kept reminding us to “be still” on our bikes. At first I didn’t understand what she meant. She explained that we had to keep our upper bodies still and let our legs do all the heavy work. I have a strong feeling she was speaking directly to me since my upper body was boppin’ away to the tunes. Once I calmed my upper body down and concentrated on my legs, it became a much more difficult but I could tell that if I stuck with that movement then it would yield more results.
As I was trying to be still, I thought about all the times in my past that it has felt like a tornado has hit me and I let myself get caught up in the eye of the storm. Lately, I have realized that the best way for me to get out of a storm is to remain calm and present. Not flailing and bouncing to music, just still and present. Be Still. What a nice reminder to get through life and workouts with a more gracious ease.
My friend Jenny and I walked around Washington Park twice (a little over 5 miles) and dished out about our lives. It was one of those talks where you do not even realize that you are walking or doing anything good for yourself. Doubly awesome when you consider the benefits: talking + walking = a healthy soul. If you have someone in your life that you can talk to for hours, then do it while walking. Take advantage of the beautiful outdoor days of Fall and get to steppin!
Tonight I am working at lululemon and practicing (youuuuu guessed it!) another hour of yoga. Two lovely workouts in one day. I am so grateful to live a life that supports this lifestyle. So grateful to have turned in my business pants and heels to embrace a life of stretchy pants and head stands. I am blessed to get to talk about life goals and dreams everyday and share them with the world. I am so happy that I get to help guide my clients down a path of a more inspired life.
What about you? What would you change in your life to guide you to more happiness?
Every morning for breakfast I have a green smoothie. When I start my day off with something really healthy I believe that it sets me up for continued healthful choices the rest of the day. It’s also the easiest way to get 3-4 servings of my daily intake of fruits and veggies. Here is my recipe if you are thinking of going green (I promise they are not as scary as they look):
1 small banana
1/2 cup of frozen peaches
2 cups spinach
1/2 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
one scoop of soy/whey protein powder
Today was my fourth consecutive day of yoga and my body is really happy with that. It was also the first time that I noticed my feet were getting closer to laying flat on the ground during down dog (whoo-hoo!)! I went to a level two class at Core Power Yoga and sweat out every once of water my body could muster. It’s amazing how good it feels to do that when it is only 32 degrees outside. Hot yoga should really be called, “Warm Your Soul,” it would attract a lot more people during these chilly months.
Today is my 24th consistent day of working out. I feel amazing,
but my body is sore and tired. I realized that during these first few weeks of
the challenge all of my negative thoughts about what it means when I miss a day
or two of working out have been eradicated. It has freed up my mind to think of
more positive and helpful thoughts. My mind is now consistently thinking about
how I am making myself a priority by showing up at my workouts.
“Showing up at my workouts,” probably sounds like a
strange statement. What I mean is that I have decided to give my best at every
workout. This challenge is meant to be hard and I am testing my body everyday
by trying a new yoga pose, running a faster mile and checking out a new
class/studio. By pushing myself, I am breaking my own boundaries and setting
Today’s workout was an all level Vinyasa Flow at Kindness Yoga with my friend, Molly (I told you I would be taking advantage of that free week!). The instructors at these two studios do more than just teach a class, they actually teach life
lessons while explaining complicated poses with grace. If you have not tried
these studios, I truly recommend it. It could possibly be your yoga home in the
Yesterday I received a one week trial at Kindness yoga. Therefore, the next six posts will all be about this amazing studio. Today I was nervous to go because I decided to try out my first Level 2/3 class (intermediate/advanced). Again, my co-worker just happened to be in the same class…perhaps I have a stalker dressed head to toe in lululemon? Hmm.
I have been practicing yoga for a year and a half and only practicing it consistently for the past eight months. It has been in these past months that I have realized all the benefits of yoga. Not only does it stretch, tone and strengthen, but it clears my mind and makes me feel centered. I look forward to seeing where my practice takes me this year and cannot even imagine where it will take me the rest of my life. Namaste to you all.
A co-worker of mine recommended his home yoga studio, Kindness Yoga, as a place for me to find some healing this week. The studio name certainly fit the bill for what I was looking for. The studio is tucked between a few medicinal marijuana dispensaries, which felt a little strange, but I got over that as soon as I walked into the welcoming lobby and even lovelier “yogini” locker room.
The class was an hour-long vinyasa flow and there were many dedicated practitioners that emitted strong amounts of energy. It fueled me to set an intention close to my heart and deepen my breathing. The co-worker that recommended the studio also happened to be in my class today and as he walked out after class he told me “you already know everything you need to know,” (in context to Day 20 post). It was all I needed to hear today to put another piece of my life back into place. I find it amazing how when I open up to healing all the tools I need to get there fall right there in front of me.
Yesterday morning (my internet was down last night, sorry for the late post) I woke up at 6:30 and went for a run from my house. The convenience of being able to do that is a wonderful thing, unfortunately it takes at least 15 minutes of running to get into a prettier neighborhood. Since I tend to obsess over how long I worked out or how far I went, I decided to try something more fun and less stressing. I would run out for whatever five songs came on during the shuffle on my phone and then run home. I’m not sure how long it ended up being, but it was cold enough that by the time I got home my former frostbitten fingers and toes were solidly numb.
After my run I decided that I should go to church (which is something I have not done in way to long). I followed a friends recommendation and went to a non-denominational church in the Denver burbs. Let me give you a little tidbit about myself that you may not know. I love the kind of church where a band plays up front, the words to the songs are on a movie theater style screen and people throw their arms up to God while they sing. This was that type of church. I do not think I have ever lifted my arms all the way up before, but yesterday I had those bad boys up and open during all of worship. It was emotional, being so open to receive God and love. I am not going to get really religious on you, I just made a huge connection while I was there. I realized that the only other time I lift my arms to receive is during yoga. It’s such a powerful act to do and it feels as though you are giving yourself up to a greater being. Maybe this is why I love yoga right now more than any other athletic activity. I could not even imagine going to yoga and then church- whoa, powerful overload! But one can never have enough open-hearted, arms soaring, love coming and going, powerful healing, intention giving moments in life.
Since I truly believe this, I want to know what you do in your life that makes you feel this way? Share it with the world because these moments are what life is all about.
Depending on how well you know me, you might know a little bit about why this week has been upsetting, stressful, sad, scary….you name the emotion and I have felt it. If you don’t know me that well, then feel free to ask me what’s shakin’ in a personal email. There are some things that should not be blasted to the world and this is one of them.
On top of this restless emotional week, the wireless internet in my apartment complex has been down for three days. I am currently sitting at Starbucks on a Saturday night to tell you all how I sweat today. I am actually super grateful for the working out and the blog, as it has proved to be a great distraction to life’s events.
This morning was one of those morning’s that made me happy that I am a runner. The sun was rising as I took my first stride in Washington Park and by the time I ended it was a crisp sunny Fall morning. I ran four miles and I felt wonderful. The altitude did not bother me at all. It’s about dang time, as I have been in Colorado for almost seven weeks now!
So, thank you for being patient with my lack of consistent posts as my internet is down. Another thank you for understanding that my humor is currently on the back-burner, while my heart and mind are tied up in Washington, DC.
Day 18: The first job I took after college was in Human Resources at
Keystone Resort. If you craned your neck far enough out the window you could see the slopes from my office. My apartment was .5 miles from the gondola. Life was good. I lived there for a year and a half and had a lot of big first time life experiences; first pair of skis, first successful double black diamond run, first frostbite (in multiple places), first time eating sushi, first real job, first time paying bills, first serious car accident on ice, first love, first heartbreak, first eating disorder and the best decision I have ever made: leaving. I loved my life there, but I knew there was something else waiting for me.
Yesterday I skied Arapahoe Basin with a pair of fresh eyes and a changed heart. I am grateful for the things in my past that shaped the person that I am today. I have not dwelled on my mistakes, but I have built from them. To say that I was overcome with emotion yesterday would be an understatement. I let go of a huge part of my life a long time ago. And yesterday, more than ever, I embraced the present and my future.
The fresh snow, bluebird skies, snow-dusted pine trees and mountains framing the runs had little to do with my realization. Nelson Mandela said it best, “there is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.” The mountains will always be there for me whenever I need some soul awakening. For that, I am ever grateful.
Day 19: For lack of extra time today, I have to combine the two days. Tonight I am going to practice yoga at lululemon at our weekly Vino & Vinyasa.