Reacquainting Myself with Regular Yoga Practice

Can you believe it’s almost Fall? Where did Summer go?!

I start teaching yoga again one week from today, so I’m in preparation/panic mode this week. But, not totally panic mode because (ever the planner) I started preparing myself for teaching yoga again two weeks ago. I started by trying to schedule daily breathing time. Continue reading “Reacquainting Myself with Regular Yoga Practice”

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The Daily 10

So, remember way back when I did the Sun Salutation Challenge? I wondered what would happen to my yoga after it ended….and I found out.

Well, I stopped doing my yoga and it has cost me dearly! Last summer I killed it at running for A LOT of the summer. This summer, not so much….what’s the difference? Well, firstly is that last summer I was coming off of a great semester of teaching yoga, I was teaching yoga twice a week in the early mornings, and I was teaching Summer I and Summer II yoga. I was mad about yoga at the time and I knew that the fall semester would change my activities. Continue reading “The Daily 10”

My Assessment Results – Wellness Inventory

Another New Start?

I’ve written almost every January 2 since I started this blog 4 years ago on this same day. Usually my first post of the year is all about resolutions and starting over etc. This year is different….it’s about continuing my progress of self-discovery and journey of wellness.

I’ve chosen, this year, to work with a tool that I use for my students called the Wellness Inventory. While I can’t say that this is the right tool for everyone, it’s the one at my disposal and I plan to use it to its fullest this year.

Last year, in prep for teaching with the WI, I took a Wellness Assessment. I didn’t think to keep those results and now can’t seem to find them. I barely used the WI and all of the resources available and just skimmed over everything. Because of this, I don’t think I got the best experience I possibly could have had in learning all that there is to know. I’m sure many of my students did the same thing…….

But, I decided that 2018 will be my Year of Wellness, so today (while my kids are at school) I sat down and re-evaluated where I am at. I have chosen a simple plan for this year…..work the program for all 12 months taking it a little at a time. This will benefit me as a person and as an instructor. I have the time and I want to learn. Plus, life is ticking by and there’s no better time than the present to make sure your wellness (basically your whole self) is aligned.

The Results Are In…..

So, I’m only going to give the highlights here as I’m sure I’ll spend much more time on the results in the future. Basically you answer several questions for each of the 12 dimensions of wellness and within those answers you choose how well the statement reflects who you are at this moment as well as your current motivation to change. At the end you are given a total wellness score (mine was 62.2%) as well as a ranking of your greatest to least areas of wellness:

  • Greatest was a tie: Self Responsibility/Love, Moving, Intimacy, and Finding Meaning all hit 69%
  • Lowest was also a tie: Feeling and Playing/Working at 47%

and finally a ranking of your motivation to change:

  • My greatest was Playing/Working
  • My least was Eating
The First Step

So, that brings me to the first steps…..I will be working this month on the Playing/Working dimension. It’s an element of life balance that I have always struggled with and a great place for me to start. As I go through the WI I’ll post about what I learn and my progress. I’m scheduling time to do WI work for myself each week (part of my habits in my new calendar) and I’ve chosen the word BALANCE as my first word of the year; to remind myself of the need for both in my life.

My hope is that by the end of 2018 I have a greater understanding of my own personal wellness. By the end of January I hope to find greater contentment in my Work/Play life. I look forward to sharing those results then and the journey along the way with you!

Will you join us?

Click this link to sign-up for the Wellness Inventory yourself.

Take the assessment and share your results. What’s your greatest dimension of wellness? Your greatest motivation to improve? Link to your posts on the topic in the comments section below.

Here’s to a Year of Wellness for us all!

TOLT – Habits at Home and Away

I’ve been thinking more and more about my habits and how they’re effected by differing situations. Like how it’s so much easier for me to run when I know that I have a race I’m training for or someone to show up to run with. Location also seems to have an impact on my habits…..but not so much whether I’m at home or away. At first I thought that it was easier for me to give up my “good habits” when I wasn’t at home, but then I realized that location is only part of the equation. What’s the other part? Continue reading “TOLT – Habits at Home and Away”

Meditation Monday #49 – Answers Within

In the Day 81 Reading Gates writes

….we always have everything we need. When we fail to believe this, we suffer. (p.109)

How many times have I looked inward for the answer, seen it, and still kept searching? External validation doesn’t equal internal happiness…yet, it’s a hard cycle to break.

Today when I was doing my 68 Sun Salutations (more about why I’m not further along on Thursday) I asked my youngest to help me finish them out….because doing them with someone else somehow makes them easier to finish. I suffered and struggled through the first 67 and there it was…ease on number 68 with his little arms and legs moving beside me.

But, I need to listen better to myself because I am sure there are signs that I’m ignoring. This takes discipline….tapas

Are you still stuck in the cycle of seeking answers outside of yourself?

Do you know that the end to your suffering is within you?

What is always easier for you to do with someone else?

A Week Unhinged

It’s Thursday again and this week has been a little up and down. I missed yesterday’s Workout Wednesday post because I ran out of time to write and load. The video is all done and ready to go, but it will have to wait until next week.

As I’ve been writing about my schedule I notice a few things that I need to work on:

  1. Timing
  2. Fluidity
  3. Fun

Let’s start with Timing. I mentioned recently that I probably should have gotten a calendar with time slots in it because I need to start ordering when I am doing things. Timing also means knowing how much time an activity will take. This blends into Fluidity. When planning my activities I need to figure out what I can do when to make things flow. So, I don’t want to be out and then need to come home before I go back out again. I used to be much better at this when my kids were smaller and had certain nap/feeding times. It was easier to map out what needed to be done when and to pack accordingly. Now, I feel like I run here and there and am constantly shuffling things to the next day.

Fluidity and Timing have had a big impact on Fun. My word of the week is PLAY and that was almost like bad permission to throw the schedule out the window….

On Tuesday I taught a pumpkin workout with medicine balls. Because I had to carry them all over the place and did 62 Sun Salutations, I skipped weight training. (permission to play and not to work out) Yesterday I ran with T and then she and the kids stayed over to play which pushed back the time I went grocery shopping and therefore made me skip posting and….because my arms were dead from Tuesday….I also skipped Sun Salutations. (too much permission to play) Today I am still feeling DOMS from Tuesday, but will be conquering my 64 Sun Salutations as soon as this post goes up. I skipped my swim today to come home to a “sick” kid (just reflux) and now I will not hit 108 SS on Thanksgiving Day.

Fluidity to me also means going with the flow of things. So, a goal has been missed, but that doesn’t mean that I’m dropping it. Part of the Sun Salutation Challenge is part of me forming the habit of a more regular yoga practice. I feel like I need to renew my commitment to yoga now that I’m not currently teaching it.

So, a few things have thrown me for a loop this week and my timing is off, but it’s only one week.

One final thing to announce…..I had applied for that full-time position and found out on Monday that I was no longer in the running. This is a good and a bad thing for me, but I’m not quite ready to talk about it in full this post. It’s probably what set me off track this week.

Tomorrow I have a few more notes on habits in the Fave Reads Friday post…all I can say for now is IRONY!

What do you do with off weeks?

How do you maintain commitment?

A special Thank You to Amanda for the TOLT space to share.

Play

Happy Halloween!

This would be a fancier post if I weren’t sitting in my car, waiting for my youngest to be done with preschool for the day. ┬áBut it is what it is….

Today has been a relatively great day so far. I taught all three of my classes in a Halloween themed boot camp Outdoors. We used medicine balls instead of pumpkins, as pumpkins often get smashed during this type of activity. And my word of the day today is play. Play is an amazing word to fall on Halloween!

Play reminds me that not everything has to be perfect; that life should be fun. And it reminds me not to take myself so seriously. It’s easy to get caught up in the idea of making sure that everything is just right with yourself, your work, school, your children, and your relationships. It doesn’t have to be that way. It’s just right when you’re having fun and smiling! This is what play reminds me of today.

Tonight we’re going to eat hot dogs and macaroni and cheese and probably a ton of candy. This doesn’t align at all with how I want to be eating, but it’s part of the celebration that we’ve done the last few years with friends. Celebrating is part of play. Play is part of life and happiness. And friendship is definitely happiness in my book!

My kids are going to be a dragon and Batman for Halloween. I look forward to seeing my youngest’s homemade costume and my oldest son in a store-bought costume that is almost too small for him. It’s not perfect, but they will have fun and they will play and they will be loud and they will be happy. We will all wander around from house to house in the dark and probably a little bit of chill. There will be kids that fall down during the process, candy that is spilled and Lost, chocolate fingers that will probably touch the furniture, but throughout it all we will be together. We will be having fun. And my heart will be at Play.

I’ve been considering lately, whether or not to make the word of the day the word of the week. As this is the last day of the month, I plan to extend my play throughout the next few days. I plan to use Tuesday’s not just to write about my word of the day, but as the jumping-off point for embracing that word. I’m still looking for more words, so feel free to leave yours in the comments below. But for this week… Play is the agenda!

7 Things

Another Thursday; Another Habits Post…..

A lot of my habits revolve around scheduling. This is something that I need a lot of work on. I have the bad habit of putting too much on my plate. I want the good habit of managing my time wisely. I didn’t think this through before buying my new planner, but I think it will help me take a baby step in the right direction.

I wrote before about how it only has 7 lines for each day. I’m going to try to keep with only doing 7 things each day. This means that certain things have to give. For instance…..today I put only 7 things on my schedule:

  1. Teach
  2. Sun Salutations
  3. Swim
  4. Do lunch orders for school
  5. Write a habits post
  6. Attend Fall Festival
  7. T-ball game

I am currently on #5, but had to skip #3 because I didn’t put in there – make time to catch up with students that need questions answered. I have only 50 minutes between when one class ends and when I absolutely need to leave the gym to be on time to pick my youngest up from preschool. That meant that talking to students took up 15 minutes and sun salutations almost 20 minutes and then no time to change, swim, shower, get dressed, and out the door in 15 minutes. So, it got sacrificed.

Also getting sacrificed on this Thursday….grocery shopping, balancing check books, laundry, reading, and answering emails. Tomorrow I have 13 things on my list….not including things that didn’t get finished earlier this week. Saturday and Sunday each only have 2 things and hopefully that means I can “catch up” over the weekend. But I’ve already scheduled far more than 7 things for the days ahead.

I know that my time is finite. I can’t make more appear, but I can be more efficient at what I do. I am still using the Pomodoro Technique when I do a lot of things, in order to speed me up, but I think that I really should have invested in a calendar that had time blocks so that I could map out how long things would take and be more realistic with my scheduling. Hopefully 7 things in 2018 will get me closer to my goals, but only time will tell….

What is your best trick for managing your schedule?

What are the “have to’s” of your daily life?

What do you sacrifice in a time crunch?

ps – My Word of the Day….HUMBLE (so true!)

The Home Stretch

Wait a minute…..MapMyRun, Where is my Q3 Performance Report?!

Just this last week I realized that I had never done a post at the end of September about where I’m at and what I’ve achieved so far. I mean I did the Q1 for 2017 and the Mid Year Performance Report, but I have checked all of my emails and there’s no Q3….

So, with just over 2 months to go in 2017 I thought I would give a quick update and set out the plan for the home stretch of this year.

Mileage totals as of October 25, 2017 – 333.7 (prior to today’s run) Mileage consists of runs, walks, jogs, bikes, and swims

Sun Salutation Progress – Today is the “half-way” point to 108, although I do have to modify some of the poses from time to time to accommodate sore shoulders

Lifting – I have successfully completed 3/4 lifting weeks since starting the habits project. It’s all light weight (and I will be doing a video for it in an upcoming WOW post), but it’s something that I am able to keep relatively consistent at the moment.

Swimming – I have only missed one day of swimming since I started (due to shoulder pain) and am working hard on learning to breathe to both sides.

Going forward:

  1. November will bring back 3 days/week running along with Wednesdays being specialized for speed
  2. Mileage goal by the end of the year is 500 (my most mileage ever!)
  3. Weights will remain a Tuesday thing
  4. Swimming a Thursday thing
  5. Still on track to hit 108 Sun Salutations on Thanksgiving Day

Still need to register for my spring race….although it’s been decided. Come back next week for more WOW Yoga videos. Until then:

Where are you at on your 2017 Fitness Endeavors?

Fave Reads Friday #12 – Health, Happiness, and Habits

It’s FRIDAY! Although my Friday is not going as originally planned, I’m just sticking with it and seeing what happens. I keep ticking off things on my list and that’s what’s going to get me through the day. That’s part of my work on my HABITS.

One of the things on my list today was to read through an IDEA Fitness Journal because I’ve started to accumulate a pile of them again. I grabbed the top one which happened to be October 2017 and started to flip through. Things I highlighted for today:

And, more pointedly, should we think of exercise as a weight loss drug?

The answer to the last question, according to Yoni Freedhoff, MD, is no. “Exercise is not a weight loss drug, and so long as we continue to push exercise primarily (and sadly sometimes exclusively) in the name of preventing or treating adult or childhood obesity, we’ll also continue to shortchange the public about the genuinely incredible health benefits of exercise, and simultaneously, misinform them about the realities of long-term weight management.”

~ Beyond weight loss: The many benefits of exercise by Tom Richards

SO TRUE! I am tired of hearing about exercise for weight-loss. I only want to teach people about all of the other great reasons to get up and move!

What does a 19-year-old have in common with a 60-year-old? Both achieve about the same amount of weekly activity, according to new research.

~ Lifetime Physical Activity Trends; Making News by Ryan Halvorson

I stress this so often to my students right now….we’re not thinking long term. Why are we not moving now and later? I keep kicking my kids out of the house to get more movement. I encourage my college-aged students to move around more. I am moving as much as I ever have….why? Because I don’t want to lose the ability to do that and to be independent when I’m older! It’s not just a now or then thing….it’s an always.

Perishable edibles such as dairy, vegetables and fruits are tossed at particularly high rates, leading to significant losses of underconsumed nutrients.

~Time to Eat Your Compost; Food for Thought

This is not the case at our house currently. Although we get the occasional bag of whole carrots that will go bad before we can get to them….I’ve noticed that our compost bin is containing less and less wasted foods now that we’re eating less processed foods, less animal products, and (because I have less time to make them) less baked goods.

And finally, there was an article on Why Modern Diets are Lacking (a fitness handout provided by IDEA) that noted

First of all, remember there are no superfoods, but there are staple foods high in nutrients…

Focus on getting a variety of foods…..

I’m not all about diets and weight-loss…I’m all about moving and feeling great; fueling my body; and living the best life I can. With all of that in mind, my habits are keeping me on track for this. And if you need some ideas for easy ways to make yourself happier, check out my favorite read from Amanda’s TOLT link-up this week:

How to (Quickly) Become Happier in 10 Aspects of Life

 

What’s the best thing you read this week?