Edmonton’s newest fitness craze, the indoor Fitset Ninja Warriors Course inside of Kingsway Garden Mall.Read More
Warm salad recipe with brussel sprouts and green cabbage. Super simple dressing recipe included.Read More
Accupressure Mat For Pain, Stress and Circulation
A few weeks ago I got my Dosha Mat, Accupressure mat and I’ve been having a lot of fun using it.
Accupressure mats have a ton of health benefits, some claims for health are:
reducing pain and muscle soreness
stress and anxiety reduction
reduction of insomnia
creates relaxation and sense of calm
The acupressure mats have 4500 pressure points per the entire surface of the mat through the 190 lotus flowers (25 points per flower). These pressure point stimulate the area of the body and send signals to other parts of the body through meridians to help calm and relax. This is much like acupuncture, however not to specific areas and not puncturing the skin of course.
Looking at it from a yogi/massage point of view, I like using it sometimes in a manner that helps me massage a bit. This is also helping relief stress and tension through fascia releasing.
How To Use Your Dosha Accupressure Mat
You can use this mat in many different ways, in many different places. Here is a couple ways I’ve been using mine:
Simply laying on it. Sometimes I lay down on it and relax, do legs up the wall or at the end of a yoga practice in savasana.
Moving on it. I like to lay down and tuck my knees in and roll back and forth or in circles to get a bit of massaging action.
Sitting down with it. In an office chair or on the couch and leaning into it.
Standing on it. I personally have been loving having it beside my bed when I am doing laundry. I find it’s a bit to intense for me to stand on completely, but I will stand with it one foot at a time.
Want to try one out for yourself? I’ve partnered with Dosh Mat to offer you 15% off your vary own from the Canadian owned company! Offer is only good until November 4th 2018! Use the code BITCHINHOUSEWIFE15 at Dosha Mat.
Fall Intention SettingRead More
3 Perfect Spots to Float Down the River In Edmonton
We recently bought kayaks (If you follow me on Instagram, I'm sure you are already sick of seeing my pictures of it!) I've been getting a lot of questions lately of where to go or how to do it! Realizing not everyone has kayaks or canoes, but float devices seem pretty accessible to most, here is three of the top places to get into the North Saskatchewan River.
These locations are perfect for a float after work one day or you can do an all day trip on a weekend afternoon. Over the course of summer the sun sets anywhere from 10:30pm (June) to 8:25pm (early September)
Terwillegar Dog Park
Bonus to this location: the dogs you get to see and pet along the way. Based at the bottom of Rabbit Hill Road. Park in the parking lot and walk out to ward the water and there is a lot of space to get in from there.
Quesnell Bridge Edmonton
Make you way as if you are heading to Fort Edmonton Park, and before you head into their parking lot, you can park underneath the Quesnell Bridge. There is a bit of beach space, but mostly it's from a concrete pad.
Under Henday between Lessard Drive and Terwillegar Exits
If you park on either side of the Henday at the bridge between Terwillegar and Lessard exits, there are trails that will take you all the way down to the water. You can also park your car at 321 Heath Road and follow the walking path down. This will be a longer walk however.
You can park your cars and/or get out:
- Laurier Park (shorter float)
- Emily Murphy Park (Medium Float)
- Dwson Park (Medium Float)
- Capilano Park (Long Float)
Couple of Tips:
- Pack snacks
- Pack water
- Bring Extra Sunscreen
- If possible, I recommend buying a dry bag like this one from Amazon. Keeps your stuff (including your phone dry) and because it's made for this you can attach it to the side of the float so it doesn't take up float space.
- Grab some friends and tie your rafts together or go in on a big one together!
Wall Climbing at The University Of Alberta
Wall Brawl is a series of wall climbing events being put on by the Climbing Centre at the University of Alberta. All ages and skill levels are welcome to come try out new boulder problems!
The next one is being hosted Friday July 27 6-9:30pm and only costs $20 for the public! $15 for Alumi and current students. Great date night or grab a friend or older kids possibly?
When: Friday July 27th 6-9:30 Pm
Where: University of Alberta Wilson Climbing Centre 8708 114 street
Register here or call 780-492-2231
Mega Bounce Run 2018
Who says kids get to have all the fun? This July the Mega Bounce Run is coming to Edmonton! A fun run with 10 different bouncy obstacles to bounce through, over, under and down!
This race isn't for those looking for best times. Honestly I'm going to sign up and see if I can make it the slowest run possible and enjoy ALLLL the time on the bouncy castles!
You can grab a friend or your kids (yes it's kid friendly) and enjoy a fun time on the bouncy castles! Everyone gets a t shirt and medal to take home afterwards too. Below is the course. I'm looking forward to finding out what "Pillow Land" is!
Where: Capilano Park
When: Saturday July 28 9am- 12 pm. Groups leave the start line every 20 minutes.
Grab your tickets for the event HERE Use The code BITCHIN5K to get 15% off!
Pina Colada Protein Smoothie Recipe
Sometimes a smoothie is a nice refreshing way to get in a meal or a snack in between meals. I am all over the smoothie train especially in the warmer months.
Because I have smoothies so often I like to experiment with them often so I don't get bored. This one is a simple 4 ingredient recipe (that can be easily swapped for rum instead of protein powder, hint hint)
- 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 3/4 cup coconut milk (can be swapped out for other milks)
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder. (Ive been using this allmax one)
Blend it all up and enjoy. You can add more juice for a thinner smoothie. (or rum ha ha)
Feeling Gratitude When Things Are Hard
The last couple days have been challenging for several reasons. And something I'm learning is that it seems a lot of tragic and crappy things will happen to us. As time goes on we love people and places and things. We learn to discover what it is we are passionate about and what we are not.
This can lead to heart ache when things happen, or don't happen as planned in our lives. Which can leave us feeling sad or angry or otherwise.
But all those inspirational quotes tell us to feel gratitude. "Gratitude changes everything" or "There is always something to be grateful for."
Yes. BUT. BUT it is REALLY hard to feel gratitude when you feel shadowed by a gloomy cloud. It's easy to share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #blessed when you landed the job you were after or nailed something you've been working on. So much more difficult when it seems like you are stuck in a dark room with no windows or doors.
So where do we even begin?
Name it. One of the most interesting concepts I have come across I learned from my teacher Michele Theoret and one of her peers Pamela Moskie. Emotions are not good or bad. They are simply emotions. If we can take what we are feeling and name it as sadness or anger then we can work at it from there. Once we recognize we are sad, hurt or angry and name it, we can start to find ways to deal with it.
I've named my sorrow. Now what?
Feel it. Honestly if you are sad. Be sad for a bit. Let it happen. Again no emotion is "bad". Be angry. Be happy. Feel it. I can't give you a time limit to be guided by. I don't think there is one honestly.
I've cried and felt it, where is the gratitude in that?
Let's find out why we are angry or sad or otherwise. What is the opposite? My example of a loved one passing away. I am filled with great sadness. Sadness that feels like a heavy weight on my chest. I am grateful that I was able to love. Love someone so much that I miss them. Grateful I have memories of them. Grateful I knew them. Grateful she helped make me who I am today.
Angry? Pissed off at the world? I am grateful for my passion. I am grateful for my knowledge of wrong and right. I have gratitude for the lessons in my life that have gotten me fired up.
Now I must say that my advice here is given from personal experience. I am not a therapist or psychologist. And some cases such as depression and anxiety may require the help of these professionals. I encourage seeking help if you feel you can not manage.
I hope you find peace in whatever you are managing and that you take care.
Last spring I went through a difficult time and I wrote in my journal something along the lines of "it's dark. There seems to be no windows or doors. No light. But I have to believe that there will be one again." It did come.
5 Favourite Podcasts on Self Help and Development
Are you a podcast junkie? I have my ups and downs. I like them running and driving to teach classes. Recently on my Instagram I was talking about a podcast I was listening to that sparked a curiosity, leading to me attempting a no sugar experiment. Then Of course I was asked, well what podcast was it and what am I listening to?
These podcasts are mostly about self development/improvement/help, whatever you want to call it. Depending on the mood I'm in or the title of course I will listen in.
1.The Upgrade. First of all Melissa and Alice have similar sounding voices and I find that hilarious for some reason. But they both have really pleasant voices. In the description of their show they say "Look, you're doing great but quite frankly we think you can be a little better." I love this.
2.Lewis Howes The School Of Greatness. I love that the people he has on his show are athletes, business people, celebrities and hearing their wild stories of how they came to their greatness. Lewis is pretty down to earth which makes it easy to bridge the gap between us regular Joes and the all stars he brings onto the show!
3. Lori Harder Earn Your Happiness. Well the name says it all. She's after happiness. How we get it, how we keep it, how we find ways to detach from things that prevent us from having it.
4. Kelly Covert, In Her Voice. Kelly has a very calming tone to her voice. I love her podcasts for early morning walks and more chilled out activities. Her view is all about women finding their own authentic voice and living out your own visions of your life.
5. Jenna Kutcher, The Goal Digger. This one is certainly more business based, but I see it as more improving things about ourselves to be better at business. Like stepping outside of our comfort zones and being brave to get where we want to be in business. Her Instagram is pretty the bomb too.
I describe myself often as an “urban semi hippie”. What I mostly mean by this is that I live in the city and see myself as sort of modern but with “hippie” values. I try to take care of my body, I use a lot of holistic medicines and treatments and believe in trying to save the planet anyway I can. I’m not perfect by any means but I believe in “do what you can, when you can”.
So when I saw that Sustainaval was coming to Edmonton June 7-10 I was VERY excited. I LOVE carnivals and expos, and the fact that it’s a carnival trying to make a positive impact on the world? Well EVEN BETTER.
Sustainival is more than an amazing day at the carnival, it celebrates the power of renewable energy to fuel exhilarating rides, games, delicious carnival food and community fun! Sustainaval is powered entirely by solar, wind and biodiesel produced by vegetable oil. How cool is that?
Sustainival is a unique experiential public education platform that celebrates energy literacy, sustainability, and the latest innovations in clean-technologies, all while having a blast at the midway.
There are the usual rides like the Train, Toon Town, Swings, Ferris Wheel, kids rides and a ton more. You can check out all the rides HERE.
In addition there is an educational aspect to the carnival. There is something called the Green Beast Eco Challenge. A fun race style event finding Eco clues all over the midway.
Admission to the midway is FREE as well Come and check it out and play some games maybe? If you are a rider, you can get a Day pass to ride all the rides!buy your tickets in advance for $30 here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/edmonton-sustainival-2018-tickets-42653960143or at the door for $45.
Always wanted to be a triathlete? Maybe not into the hours of training in running, swimming and biking? Well, I've got a triathalon for you! The Bekind Mindfitness Triathalon happening June 1st!
What's included in the triathalon?
- 3km walk or 5km run. You can do either depending on your fitness level (or tiredness!)
- Yoga classes taught by Susan Agrios.
- Meditation taught by Susan Agrios.
- Bonfire afterwards for some marshmallow roasting and community.
In addition to the triathalon Susan has created a FREE beKIND 40 day mindfulness challenge as well! You can sign up now or you can also get signed up at the Triathalon event too.
Date: June 1, 2018
Location: Alfred H. Savage Centre (13909 Fox Dr NW)
Cost: $65, $20 for children under 16.
What To Bring: yoga mat, headlamp (optional)
Fundraiser: Proceeds go to mental health and wellness programs in schools for students, teachers and parents.
*Dress appropriately as we will be outside for the walk / run. If it’s a warm evening we will also stay outside for the yoga & meditation. If not, we have an indoor facility with bathrooms.
CLEANSE /klenz/ - Verb - rid (a person, place or thing) of something seen as unpleasant, unwanted or defiling.
I think we can all agree social media is both amazing and aggravating. It's amazing how we connect with old friends, make new ones, find spouses and hear about the latest news all in a couple of websites. No matter what your "poison" you can find it all on most social media channels.
The problem is when we feel triggered, incompetent, addicted and/or just plain shitty by logging on. Actually the real problem I guess would be logging on and not being completely aware that we are having these feelings. So maybe let's start there.
How you know you need a social media cleanse:
Take some time after logging out of social media maybe once a day or once a week to "check in" with how you feel afterwards. Ask yourself a couple of questions:
- How do I actually feel? Jealous? Inspired? Angry? Annoyed? Connected?
- Was there a specific topic/post that made you feel this way?
- Was there a specific person/group of people that made you feel this way?
After answering these questions you can make a decision from there. Is how you are feeling, a way you want to feel? If the answer is no, maybe it's time to "cleanse".
Schedule Your Cleanse:
Just like you would schedule some sort of food cleanse, schedule your social media one. Especially if you work in an industry that requires you to be on social media. For those that are social media strategist, one day might be all you can plan for example.
In the scheduling of your cleanse think about taking a decent amount of time if you can though. It's interesting to pick up on what fills your time after a couple of days without. I've done anywhere from 3/4 days to over a week. Which seem like online suicide a bit from a blogger/Instagramer's stand point, engagement and all that shit. However like anything else in life. When you take a break from it you become better at and more efficient at it usually. (I actually find myself most inspired right after a social media break.)
Tell bosses/coworkers you will be taking some time away. Schedule posts if you can/need to. Ask for help from others if possible.
For those that are on social media for the fun of it: well I actually recommend NOT announcing the break. You don't need a bunch of comments and even possibly negativity about it right before you log off. Plus, it is so interesting to come back and notice that you probably haven't missed much at all!
During the Cleanse:
If you can, delete the apps from your phone and log off on your computers. This is important. The harder it is to access it, the easier it is to stay away from it. Have you seen the commercials for those snack vaults? Put your favourite snack in there and set a locked timer on it, so you have to wait the days/hours until you get it. I also remember hearing about people freezing their credit cards in blocks of ice so they had to spend so much time getting it out to buy things. These are hilarious and extreme but in reality, if it makes it harder to get at, you are less likely to use it right?
Enjoy your time. Note when you typically grab for your phone to fill your time with social media. Red lights, line ups, bored on the couch, at the park with your kids, at a socially awkward party (see the irony there? lol). Make mental note of when you grab for you phone and how else you spend your time.
After the Cleanse:
Like a bad diet or juice cleanse, after the discomfort, you may actually feel better, but once it's over you can easily go back to your old ways. So here are some tips for mindful social media consumption post cleanse.
- Turn off notifications on apps. This may give you some sort of anxiety, but honestly I haven't had notifications on any of my apps for months. Maybe even closer to a year. Seeing the notifications and messages and all that's going on every second it comes in can be overwhelming.
- Log on with purpose. You purpose might be to kill some time, avoid that socially awkward party, check the latest news, promote something or so on. But log on trying to acknowledge and be mindful of what you are doing.
- Check your emotional state before, during and after. Notice if you log on to kill time and end up feelin inadequate afterwards. Do you log on to you favourite youtube channel to be inspired but end up feeling shitty afterward? Do you log on to Facebook and into a private group of people who uplift you? Make you feel better? Checking in with all these feeling can help us guide us to the last step.
Delete/Unfollow anyone or anything that makes you feel shitty:
Pretty straightforward I think. Forcing ourselves to follow people or look at their shit even though it makes us feel shitty serves nobody. Even the person you are following. Maybe I'm a bit more cut throat but I regularly unfollow friends on Facebook. We are still friends but have so I don't see their updates. I do this when I'm noticing I'm feeling triggered by them. Whatever they are up to or posting about. Then turn back on maybe when you've sorted your own feelings.
This one can be tough especially is it's family or a co-worker you see every day. Facebook easier then other platforms of course. If your business includes following people/business that make you feel this way, be conscious. Mindful of how you are reacting. This alone will help you work through the feelings so much faster.
Personally I log on and feel angry let's say, I seek attention from my husband, connect with loving my children or workout if I'm especially irritated. I know I don't have to like everyone and they don't have to like me, so I connect with those I do. And that's okay.
How do you take care of yourself in regard to social media? What do you struggle with? Let's chat it out.
Anti Inflammatory Tumeric Mylk Recipe
If you follow along on Instagram you'll know I'm totally into studying Ayurveda. It's basically a very old traditional Indian style of medicine, using herbs and food and oils and practices to heal. I've been studying holistic nutrition methods for years as well. One of the big things I noticed as a cross over between the two is that they are both big on anti-inflammatories AND they both love ginger and tumeric as a key anti-inflammatory.
I've been playing around with making Chai and even this yummy Digestive Tea for a long time, and I stepped up the game with this yummy Tumeric Mylk Recipe.
Why "Mylk"? Well because its just a way of identifying that is milk from a non animal source. I used coconut milk, but almond milk, soy milk or even regular milk would work here.
Additionally, don't worry about the spices being fresh or already ground in your cupboard. I like to have the whole spice and grind them myself, it's like a little ritual for me.
- 1 cup of chosen milk or mylk.
- tsp nutmeg
- tsp tumeric
- tsp cardamom (this is what makes a good chai for me personally!)
- 1 stick of cinnamon (or 1 tsp cinnamon)
- 2-3 pieces of star anise (or 1 tsp)
- 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger (or powdered)
- Put everything into a pot and let simmer 5-8 minutes.
- Strain in to a mug with a fine mesh strainer.
Seriously it is THAT simple.
What better way to start a Saturday then to Yoga + Brunch?
Join us for an all levels 60 minute sweet yoga flow class, led by Jennifer Neilson, followed by Bruch afterwards. The Yoga class is about waking up on a Saturday Morning and moving your body in a way that feels good to you. We will move, breathe, laugh a little and end in a sweet chill savansana before moving on with our day.
Then enjoy your included Brunch, Mimosa, Coffee + Tea and community at Central Social Hall downtown Edmonton.
What to expect:
8:00am doors open | 8:30-9:30am Yoga Practice | 930am - Freshen up + Brunch
- Bring your Yoga Mat + water bottle for the practice
- All Levels Sweet Flow inspired Practice
- A small break after practice so you can spruce up
- Brunch and time to connect after
-Ticket price includes your morning Yoga Practice, First Mimosa, Brunch item of your choice, coffee + tea.
Get your tickets here: Yoga + Brunch
Enough is Enough Lululemon - I’m calling you out.
Yesterday was International Women’s Day. A day to celebrate us Women. All women. Powerful CEO’s, nurses, artists, truck drivers, welders, teachers, stay at home moms, 17 year old high school students, 100 year old great grandmothers. Women of different sizes, shapes, backgrounds, colors, personalities, incomes and sexualities.
And Lulu just had to do it. Just had to abuse their reach and use OUR day to do it.
Let me back up a bit here. I am a white, female, 32 year old yoga teacher, who is in “works out but likes pizza” shape. I spend about an hour to hour and a half each day exercising 5-6 times a week. I have two kids, loving husband and run some boss ass businesses if I may say so myself.
I wear Lululemon clothes to workout and teach, among other lines. I have friends who work for Lulu and some that are ambassadors. They are lovely humans who are totally inspiring and bad ass.
You just had to go and do it didn’t you Lulu?
Lulu created a campaign that launched yesterday named “Enough is Enough”. A campaign where they sell you t shirts that send funds to empowering women through various charities. Seem noble? Sort of is. Sort of.
The charities picked are Yoga Outreach (trauma informed yoga), Red Clay Yoga (Focus on yoga for youth and marginalized communities), Exhale to Inhale (Yoga for violence and sexual assault survivors) and Our Mala, (Yoga for survivors of Violence and Cruelty). These charities are amazing. Yoga is a beautiful way to help with these processes and I don’t want to take away at ALL from these organizations.
Back to Lulu. They launched the Enough is Enough campaign and gave their ambassadors shirts and mega phones. Mega phones so they can be heard. Heard speaking rights for women.
However the flaw here is the women given these microphones (who again I know many and they are amazing) lack diversity.
Beautiful (by society’s standards)
In the 30 “ish” range of age
And oddly enough also mostly Yoga teachers.
Basically they are “Ocean”. If you haven’t heard of Ocean, she is the ideal customer created by Lululemon. Chip Wilson the founder of Lululemon describes Ocean as “32 year old single professional that makes $100,00 a year, is fashionable and has an hour and a half to workout every day.” and goes on to say “if you’re 20 years old or you’re graduating from university, you can’t wait to be that woman. If you’re 42 years old a couple of children, you wish you had that time back.”
Sooooooo what you are saying there Chip is that you are “Empowering” women through your Enough is Enough campaign, however these women are not good enough.
You want them TO WANT to be more than they already are.
YOU GAVE MEGA PHONES TO WOMEN WHO ARE LIKE OCEAN TO SPEAK FOR THE WOMEN WHO ARE NOT.
Browsing through your Instagram feed, you have Oceans and Dukes (their ideal man) and no other diversity.
So what really is your Enough is Enough campaign about? Selling more clothes.
We all know this isn’t the first time you’ve alienated people with an interview a long time ago, claiming you wouldn’t make sizes for women above a size 12. We won’t even go there.
I AM calling you out on your fake campaign.
I AM telling readers, friends, yoga teachers, personal trainers, weekend warriors to make informed choices.
Stick to selling clothes and leave your nose out of the women's empowerment movement.
YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE AN OCEAN.
YOU ARE ALREADY ENOUGH.
Update: This went a tad viral and we created an exclusivity photoshoot event in Edmonton to celebrate our beauty of uniqueness and amazingness.
Minimalist Style Ladies Watches
Recently I read an article in Time magazine that gave the suggestion for wearing a watch as a social media mindfulness technique. This way when you need to know the time, you look at your watch, instead of your phone that will get your distracted if you notice notifications.
The sandalwood is so soft and beautiful on the skin, and I feel like it pairs well in relaxed style and when I’m actually dressed up! Since I’m not a huge fashion guru, (I wear A LOT of spandex since I workout/teach so often)I like that it works with different styles. I’ve worn it with some jeans going out for dinner and with yoga pants heading for a hike.
Which of course this versatility feeds my minimalist approach to life. I like simplicity that can transfer into many different options.
But let me tell you how impressed my husband (builds wood furniture for a living) was with the care of the watch and the box it comes in . The watch has it’s own humidity control box and finishing oil to keep it looking new and in good condition. The box itself is also very beautiful and has a drawer to tuck away all the extra items that come with it. Once again, ,adding to the minimalist in me that likes clean counter tops and beautiful functional things.
Additionally, I picked a Sandalwood watch since sandalwood is something I wear often. They are very commonly used in malas. The scent of sandalwood actually comes from the wood itself not the leaves like some plants. Sandalwood scent is known to help the mind unwind according to this article from Mala Collective.
Each person will receive a 10% discount code as well (nice consolation prize if you don’t win)
The contest will close 03/11/2018 at 11:59pm CST. Both the $100 and the 10% off codes will expire on 04/08/2018
For those of you that read my recent post about How I Got My Fitness Motivation Back, you would have read that I am now training for the Spartan Trifecta races this year. Which means.... lots of extra running.
I used to love running a lot and gave it a break to try different things. Now I'm back, but my body is a bit older and needs more support and love.
I started using the Body Helix knee compression sleeve on longer run days for some extra support on my right knee. My right knee over lots of running (and some aging) seems to seize up a bit sometimes after runs or hurts while I am running. The support from the knee brace has been helping this pain and seizing. So I am able to run longer and with less pain!
So I've teamed up with Body Helix to giveaway a knee brace! You have THREE ways to enter!
- Comment below with your sport/workout of choice. What do you love and why would the knee brace support that?
- Head over to Instagram. Follow Bitchinhousewife and Body Helix and tag a friend in the post.
- Head over to my Facebook page and do the same!
No get out there!
A while ago(wow 2.5 years ago!) I wrote this post about how I got rid of my adult acne. After I switched to natural face wash and toothpaste it basically cleared up and went away. It was kind of amazing. I still use natural toothpaste to this day.
Brushing wasn't enough for me though. And since I despise seeing the dentist I figured I should take better care of my mouth. Especially since oral health is actually a HUGE factor in general health and wellness. But that's a whole other blog post.
Anyways, I started flossing more. I've done oil pulling but I feel like it takes a lot more effort then I'm into. I bought mouthwash and it was WAY to harsh and left a yucky chemical taste in my mouth.
Solution: this awesome Brushing Rinse by Essential Oxygen! It's made with fair trade and organic ingredients too!
How you use it: Shake the bottle, put a small amount in your mouth and swish around. Instead of spitting out, like you would with traditional washes you keep it in while you brush your teeth. DON'T WORRY your mouth will not be on fire. It honestly just feels really fresh! You brush your teeth as normal with the rinse and ta-da! Fresh clean mouth.
Essential Oxygen says it's good for anti-cavity, teeth whitening, fresh breath, canker sores and sensitive teeth!
To top it off it's non toxic, organic and biodegradable...... so yeah, good for you, good for the planet, win win.
Get 15% off your own bottle using the code 15BRUSHRINSE.
It's funny, because up until a few-ish years ago I never thought of myself as am athletic person. Looking back I realized that maybe I always was. I loved playing sports, skipping rope and even was part of the running club in elementary. Maybe I wasn't so much in Junior High and High School but afterwards I would have spurts on and off with the gym and sports. I tried yoga for the first time 12 years ago and was a maniac about going for years. 5 years ago I completed a half marathon while 7 weeks pregnant with my second child. After she was born I was heavy into weightlifting and did a bikini competition. I think I have loved exercise, sports and working out my whole life. As long as I'm enjoying myself.
Two years ago our lives changed dramatically. My husband was laid off from a job that we never saw coming. In the middle of a terrible recession, just 6 months after buying a new house. We of course went into scramble mode. We were both exhausted from working our tails off. I was teaching lots of yoga and tons of hard on my body fitness classes. Yes I was still keep active, but at this point it was about survival, not fun.
Forward to a little more steady life a year later, I had surgery for my Endometriosis. A disease that causes awful and random pain in my abdomen, low back and pelvis. Working out hurt. And on top of that during my surgery, my tubes were removed, causing crazy hormone changes. I was a hot mess mentally and physically.
I have felt in a slump. For the better part of two years. Which is super frustrating as someone who loves fitness. As someone who's body has done and once was capable of great things.
I've spent some time sitting in thought about why I'm missing the pleasure from exercise. And here are the questions I've asked myself in order to arrive at where I am now.
- WHY? Why do you want to exercise? This is a very personal question. It can be for improvement of health issues, weight loss, time to yourself or anything really. Know that the answer to this is NOT wrong. It's okay to want what you want.
- WHAT? What do I want to achieve? For me I thrive on a end goal challenge. Something that scares me a little. This year I have decided I want to do the Spartan Trifecta. You may have a weight loss goal number, a certain amount of hours a week you want to yourself, learning how to do a pull up, reducing or eliminating medications (please work with your doctor). A specific goal is helpful to "keep your eyes on the prize".
- HOW DO I FEEL? Ahhhhh the one question I feel that is skirted a lot in the fitness industry. Take some time to journal or think about this one. And often. How do you feel about exercise? How do I want to feel? How do I feel about myself/my body? How does the answer to that positively or negatively impact you? How do you feel in the process? Maybe take some time to notice if some goal are motivated by shame or someone else's expectation of you. This alone is likely not a good motivator. It has to come from a place of you wanting to do good for yourself.
- WHEN? When will you start? When do you want to complete your goal? Remember to be realistic and allow for set backs. They happen. Trust ME!
- WHO? Who do I need to support me? Let spouses, friends and family know of some of your plans. More often then not I find most are ready to cheer us on. Sometimes there are those that aren't. That's okay. I find journaling helpful. Writing down accomplishments along the way. "Jen you are a badass! You finally were able to do......." Be your own cheerleader!
After all of these questions. I leap.
It doesn't have to be perfect.
It doesn't have to exactly as you planned.
It CAN be fun. It SHOULD be fun. Try different things. Different classes, studios, music, friends, trainers and so on. Rather then it being this awful thing you MUST do, it can be a fun thing you LOVE to do.
This is my motivation. I have goal. Because personally I do very well with scary goals. Just thinking of the Spartan Beast gives me a little butterfly in my stomach. The workouts aren't what I've done the past 4 years. It's new and different and fun. And I've now told the world (okay just my readers and close friends at least) that I'm doing it and need their support. This all makes the 5:45 am alarm clock not AS grueling. I look forward to the next time I run. I compete with myself to jump higher and be even better then yesterday.
Because it's about me. Not anyone else.
And that's how I got my fitness motivation back.