Creating my happy life on the other side of fear.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Fall down 7 times, get up 8

For someone who has never consistently worked towards a fitness goal (current goals include, but are not limited to: freestanding handstand, being able to do the splits, scorpion poselotus - the list is long!), this new journey is full of surprises. Anyone who has ever played some sort of sports will most likely know these facts already and roll their eyes at my previous ignorance. But to me, all those coaches in High School giving fiery motivational speeches peppered with football references all of a sudden make sense!

I have finally, finally joined the ranks of people who love exercise. While I formerly looked at them with wonder - are they a different species? - and a bit of disdain, tinged with envy, I get it now. Exercise can honestly, seriously, really be considered fun. Who knew?? Not this girl.
I now peruse the athletics sections at Winners and Old Navy like never before. Not only am I currently the proud owner of 4(!) pairs of leggings, I also wear them when I go shopping, around the house, and when I take the dogs for walks. This formerly vehement "leggings are no pants"-girl is reformed. While I will forever love my trusty jeans and dresses, it's nice to add a new variation to my wardrobe choices.

Anyway, enough about outfits. Moving on to those revelations that have been popping up over the last 6 weeks of my fitness journey:

1. Fall down 7 times, get up 8.
I fall daily. During my practice I fall out of poses, onto my side, a few times on my back, often on my feet (phew!). In life, it is unavoidable to fall as well: making mistakes, saying something hurtful, not getting the job we want, not getting the results we are looking for. Falling is part of life, but the important thing to remember is: Get up again, don't give up.
This saying is obviously not mine, it sounded suspiciously familiar - did a famous baseball coach say it or something? I did a quick google search, and apparently it is a Japanese proverb. I like it.

2. Smile.   
Thanks to the self timer on my camera and taking pictures in rapid succession, I get to see the grimaces I seem to make a lot when working out. Let me tell you, it's not pretty. Once in a while I remind myself to smile, and you know what? It seems to make the poses easier. Besides, contorting myself in front of the camera is sort of ridiculous, what's not to laugh about? I always find life is much more fun when I don't take it too seriously.  

3. Listen to your body.
There are days when I get on my mat and nothing is working. Poses I was able to do the day before won't work at all. It is frustrating, but I'm learning to listen to my body and not force it. If I feel unbalanced that day, if something is bothering me, balancing poses will be impossible. It's kinda neat to see how strongly connected our emotions and thoughts are to our body! Instead, I will sometimes spend an entire hour simply doing gentle stretches, and feel much calmer afterwards. Still body = still mind.

4. May the odds be ever in your favour
I'm a Hunger Games fan, and one of the reasons for it is the portrayal of Katniss as such a strong, brave woman.
Being dainty, weak and helpless has never appealed to me. I'd much rather be physically fit and strong, literally being able to pull my weight, maybe even one-handed ;-)
Stories have always motivated me, and Katniss makes me want to push myself beyond my limits. Dorky? Undoubtedly. But like Dumbledore says: "Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean it is not real?"

5. Appreciate your cheerleaders.
It may look like I'm doing my practice alone, but nothing could be further from the truth. I have my IG community cheering me on and motivating me, and then of course my furry sidekicks who are always around for a quick encouraging lick across the face or a paw on my arm. Love their support!
We should never forget the people who love and support us. Be thankful, and let them know once in a while how much their encouragement means to you!

6. Make sure your worst enemy doesn't live between your own two ears.
This is a quote from Laird Hamilton, a world-class surfer, and one that is so important. We are so quick to tell ourselves that "I will never be able to do that", "I'm too weak", "I'm too stupid", "everybody else is better than me". Who are we to bully ourselves so mercilessly? I bet most of us wouldn't treat other people that way, yet we do that to ourselves all.the.damn.time.
STOP.
Change the tape in your head, and tell yourself that you are strong enough, smart enough, determined enough to achieve your goals.

Are you into exercise? Do you think leggings are pants? Do you love Harry Potter and Katniss Everdeen as much as I do?






Linking up with Treasure Tromp


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16 comments

  1. I love that last quote...I am so guilty of being my own worst enemy, and not just about exercise! I think we are so used to NOT being able to do something that it really takes a lot to realize that we CAN and that we have such great potential in life. I think you're doing spectacularly - look at that flexibility! You continue to inspire me, Miriam <3 May the odds be ever in your favor!
    ~ Samantha

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  2. This is a fantastic post Miriam! You totally nailed it: the smiling, the positive reinforcement, the self confidence, listening to your body, you could not be more right. I think this post totally proves that working out or fitness isn't always about losing weight, but it's about building, and finding a better version of yourself....a happier one.
    And I even agree with the message behind the first quote, fall down seven times get up eight, however this quote has always kind of bothered me. Mathematically, it doesn't add up, if I fall once, ill get up once, if I fall twice I get up twice, if I fall 7 times I still only get up 7 times lol.
    -Linds
    P.s. your workout outfits are looking super fun and cute! I love finding a new workout outfit: look good, feel good, do good!

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  3. Love this post! So motivational. Got to love Corgi kisses even if you are upside down. ;-)

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  4. Love this! I love yoga and discovering it since the beginning of the year lieterally has changed my life. Leggings for the win everytime! SO please you are enjoying it - exercising really does give all the happy vibes x

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  5. Great stuff!! You are doing awesome in your love for yoga. I can tell from the pictures that it just lights you up inside - so cool. Also, any blog post that mentions Katniss and quotes Dumbledore is a winner in my book. :)

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  6. Great post Miriam!! The dress is so cute in the one picture. Glad you are enjoying it so much and learning lessons on and off the mat :)

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  7. It seems to have come at exactly the right time in my life. Curious how that works, isn't it? Such a surprising yet thrilling addition!

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  8. Gotta love the wisdom in books, and HP is pretty much untouchable. Katniss is a great fitness motivator, she is so strong and tough, love her!

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  9. It IS life changing, you are completely right. I'm so glad that it's such a positive addition in your life, and now I'm experiencing myself how truly wonderful it is!

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  10. Dog kisses are the BEST! Being loved by animals is such a privilege ❤

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  11. I couldn't have put this better myself. You already knew the positive power of exercise with your love for volleyball and everything that's connectwd with it, and I'm so happy that I'm learning it now, too!

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  12. I love that quote too, and find it applies not only to exercise but to every other aspect in life as well. I'm not sure when the transition happens: Ask a little kid what they are good at, and they will confidently give you a long list of their accomplishments. But somewhere along the path of growing up we lose that and become overly critical of ourselves. Well, when we were able to unlearn being confident, we can re-learn it as well! Let's silence the negative inner critics!

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  13. LOL I was into exercise but it has forsaken me lately . Love Harry and Katniss both and leggings are like tights not like pants in my book, keep the butt covered. Man I hate the number of people who think its OK to wear leggings as pants out in public (they are for exercising or under long tunics)

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  14. I love Katniss and Harry. I am getting back to my yoga practice and it's amazing how sitting on the mat even just stretching or being quiet can make a world of difference. I love what you said about falling down and getting back up again. Falling is apart of life as well as any exercise practice but as long as we pick ourselves back up and don't let that stop us then I truly believe we can accomplish anything we put our mind to.

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  15. I completely agree. A little while ago we were waiting outside a restaurant for our friends, and I watched the people coming and going (it's a busy place, there were lots of people) - pretty much every girl was wearing leggings, for Sunday lunch! Where is this world coming to?

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  16. So true. I came across this pic on Instagram this morning, and loved every word of it. Those are all the reason why I yoga!

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