We are working on adding more yoga at the gym! Thank you, Susan!
A year ago I thought yoga was a waste of time. You could say that I was anti-yoga and that I didn’t “get it”. I’d been to yoga classes a few times and I tried to like it. But, every time I went, I found myself attempting poses I had no business doing, feeling intimidated by the instructors, and watching the clock, anxiously awaiting the end of the class. I also felt like I was competing with everyone else watching what the person next to me could do. Now that I look back, I’m sure I had a closed mind, that I didn’t have the right instructor or attend the right type of class.Fast forward to January of 2012. My good friend introduced me to a little local yoga studio that specializes in just that. It wasn’t the big health club that had spinning, body pump, and yoga – all taught by the same instructor. My friend told me to keep an open mind. And, once class started, to just pay attention to myself – no one else. Once class started, I was on my own.At that first class, the instructor was wonderful. She was bubbly, energetic, and very much hands-on and helpful. She was warm and welcoming. I didn’t feel intimidated by her AT ALL. She walked around and helped everyone, and gave great cues and direction. She explained things that no other instructor had ever explained before. I tuned out everyone else in the room and just focused on me. I didn’t push myself or try poses that hurt. I had opened my mind to yoga.
I can’t claim to be any great yogi, but I continue to try to improve my skills and get to a yoga class once a week. I don’t think I’d ever want to learn how to teach yoga – I want this for me. What do I like about yoga?
* I have learned how to be still and clear my mind. I can just sit or lay in a yoga class and tune out the world and focus on me. I can show up to a yoga class stressed, and leave feeling refreshed and relaxed. I no longer look at the clock. I often find myself wishing class wouldn’t end. (I still don’t “om”, but I’m not totally opposed to it anymore.)
* Yoga is the perfect supplement to lifting. I lift 2 times a week and like to be strong. But, I’ve found that yoga compliments it so well. It has helped me learn how to breathe and relax, which has helped with certain lifts, especially squatting and Turkish get-ups. These skills will also benefit my cycling – I tend to be very tense, stiff and have a death-grip on the bars.
* Yoga has helped me learn how to take my time and do things well. I can’t rush through a yoga pose. I can’t rush through lifts, if I want to do them well.
* Yoga has improved my flexibility. I have some hip and lower back issues, and hopefully, those issues will continue to improve. I try to incorporate a lot of yoga-type of stretching in workouts for both me and my clients.
* Yoga helps me recover. I no longer consider a yoga class a “day off”. . . I consider it recovery.
As a former anti-yoga person, I’m now officially on the bandwagon. (I even ordered my own yoga mat this weekend!) Although, I still don’t think yoga is the be-all, end-all answer for fitness. I do think it is a GREAT supplement for anyone’s workout routine. I’d never recommend that anyone just lift, or only run, or only play tennis – for overall fitness – I’d also never have yoga be my only means for fitness. Being fit to me means being able to do a little bit of everything – including yoga.
Thanks, JB! Namaste, MF!
This is my new bike!
I officially look like a real cyclist when I’m out on the road! For the past three years, I road Granny. Although she’s been very dependable, has gotten me from point A to point B, and has taken me many miles around the area, I felt it was time to graduate to a real bike. I had to overcome my fear of falling and figure out how to get in and out of the clips. But, I’d like to say, learning how to ride this bike hasn’t been all that difficult. . . I went for my first solo ride today and didn’t forget to unclip from my pedals, fall over or crash!
I’m looking forward to a summer of cycling! I’ll probably still ride Granny to and from work this summer, because she’s got a sweet basket on back and I can drink a cup of tea while I’m on the bike path. But, now that I have a new bike, I’ll be able to go for longer rides with my husband (and not look like an old lady). I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep up, but I’ll give it a try! Another cool thing is that several of my clients ride. I’m working on organizing some group rides this summer. Hopefully, I’ll be able to convince a few ladies to dust off their bikes and hit the roads with me!
Once again, as much as I hate to admit . . . my husband was right. He told me I’d eventually want a road bike. He told me I’d love cycling. Dang it! He was right again.
Saturday (5/26) - 6:30AM – up! Hot tea. 9:30AM (hungry) - chocolate banana pancakes – 10:00AM hot tea with 1/2 & 1/2, plus a trip to REI. 2:00PM – strawberries, bar & a cup of coffee w/ 1/2 & 1/2. 4:00 – first, easy outing on the kayaks! 6:00PM (very hungry) - takeout pizza from Tomaso’s. Evening – 1 Oberon.
Sunday (5/27) – 7:15AM - Up! Hot tea w/ 1/2 & 1/2. 8:30-9:45AM Bike ride. 10:00AM coffee w/ 1/2 & 1/2, 2 eggs over medium, leftover fish, and a handful of bacon. I know this sounds gross, but it tasted so good. (Maybe I was just really hungry?) Afterwards, I had a piece of dark chocolate. 2:00PM – snack of leftover mango salsa and organic blue corn tortilla chips. 4:30-5:15PM – bike ride with my husband on my new bike! 6:15PM – dinner – NY Strip (grass-fed), glazed carrots, green beans with diced ham, 1 piece of dark chocolate.
One thing another one of my clients and I talked about at the gym this week was how freeing it is once you get your eating figured out. I no longer look to food for comfort. I view food as fuel. I no longer eat “just to eat” or because something sounds good. I eat when I’m hungry. The way I feel about myself now that I’m happy with my fitness and my body, FEELS much better and lasts much longer than the few minutes of pleasure that comes with a bowl of ice cream.
- How I Eat To Maintain My Weight – Part 1 (bamfitnesscoaching.com)
- How I Eat To Maintain My Weight – Thurs PM & Friday (bamfitnesscoaching.com)
- How I Eat To Maintain My Weight – Monday & Tuesday AM (bamfitnesscoaching.com)
I admit that I’m intrigued by Pinterest. I am a frequent visitor. That being said, when I look at “Everything Fitness”, I tend to get disappointed very easily and bored very quickly. Looking at these images confirms my theory why a lot of women & girls have eating disorders and body image issues. And, it confirms why people fail at weight loss and fitness programs. . . For most people, their perception of “ideal” isn’t realistic or even attainable. I’d guess that most of the photos of the “ideal” on Pinterest is of a woman with around 15% body fat. How many women can honestly drop their body fat percentage to below 20%? How many can get to 15%? Is that realistic? Is it healthy? Not really.
Today, for example, when I clicked on it, I see a lot of the same stuff – every day:
* Women/girls want to be stick thin.
* Women like yoga, pilates, Zumba & running.
* Women still think lifting heavy weights will make you huge and build man-muscles.
* Women are obsessed with the unachievable, for the most part.
Of the first 230+ pins, I counted:
> 35 pins about running.
> 110 pins with “diet”, “weight loss”, “skinny”, or some sort of diet or weight loss tip.
> 58 pins about a workout for various body parts – butts, tush, thigh, back, arms, abs, etc.
> 96 pins had a photo of a 1/2-naked woman exercising with a “perfect” body.
> Only 4 pins had a photo of a woman lifting heavy weights.
So, as I hit the gym this morning with my clients for Suffer on Sunday, I’ll continue to preach the gospel of lifting heavy, hard work, fitness, and clean eating. At the same time, I WON’T allow them to bash themselves. I will provide a positive environment for women that focuses on getting fit & strong – rather than promote being “skinny”, “thin”, or some other term that contradicts what I’m trying to do!
Here are a few pics of my buddies getting strong! Have a nice day!