Saturday, October 30, 2010

Today is the Day!

My personal goal is to be fit and feel good about myself. It sounds like a selfish goal; however, I spent so many years just doing for others, trying to please, and regarding my body as my enemy that now I have made it my priority. I think being in your fifty-somethings changes your whole perspective. Brian, my dear, handsome, funny husband, says, "We have worked hard to get this old. Now it is all about us." (:

I love to run, walk, work out at the gym, and especially practice yoga. Afterwards, I feel like I have really accomplished something and am proud. Exercise has to become something that you do every single day in some form or other. If it isn't a habit, being fit turns into spring or fall cleaning. Something that you need to do, something you ought to do, but definitely, it is something that you will do later or when you have time.

Today is the Tulsa Run. I have prepared for it. Training can always be more often, more expensive, and more intensive. However, today is what it is, and I am going to just enjoy it. When did we begin to look at exercise as something that we dread, but we know we have to do? I am choosing today to look differently at my running. I will enjoy the beautiful fall day. I will admire the other runners. I will enjoy the excitement of the crowd. I will have a good time. I will not be embarrassed that I have to wear a knee brace due to a twisting, weight bearing motion in zumba. I will cherish the moment and NOT be concerned about my time, my lack of speed, my competitive nature. I will do it, and in doing it, I will honor my body. I will breathe in a steady way. If it takes me three hours, so be it. I know this wonderful gorgeous smile of my husband will be awaiting me. He thinks I am amazing, and it makes me feel better about myself just knowing that kind man's opinion.

Afterwards, I will relish yoga stretch and hot tub time.

I am a little older, a little wiser (now I know not to drink water at all the QT stops), and a little more fit despite the knee issue. Amazingly enough, yoga has taught me all of this and so much more. Most of all, I will be a runner filled with gratitude at all God has blessed me with: a husband who loves me, five beautiful, wonderful children, two lovely daughters-in-law, one hard-working son-in-law, three amazing grandchildren and one on the way, and friends who believe in me even though I am not perfect.

John Wesley once said, "Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.”

Namaste' and Amen to that!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Challenge by Choice!

Our wonderful P.E. teacher, Michelle, taught us a skit the other day with her version of challenge by choice. The theme of the skit honored a Great Expectation implementation of the 17 practices in which "Practice 3. Students are taught as a whole group, thoroughly and to mastery, with intensive and specific modifications insuring success for all." I thought that this practice should be the theme of my boot camp class that I teach at my home studio on Saturday mornings.

Michelle called it "Challenge by Choice." I liked the idea so much that I have named the Boot Camp class the same name. Thanks, Michelle, for your inspiration! You are an awesome teacher.

What happens in a boot camp class? First, we walk, speed walk, or run for 15 minutes. It is the choice of the participant. Who comes to boot camp? We have the young, the middle 30's, the older, the thin, the average, the slightly overweight, and those who struggle with their size. Where does this take place? At our home yoga studio, Tranquility Yoga, in Owasso right off 116th Street North. When does the class meet? It meets on Saturday mornings at 9 (rain, cold, sleet, snow, or beautiful weather). Why would you add this class to your yoga schedule? I personally believe that balance is best in all fitness. This class gives cardio, core, muscle strengthening, and stretch. How do you dress? Comfortably with tennis shoes is the best idea.

After our 15 minute warm-up, we move inside the studio or outside on the yoga patio for our workout. A one to two minute sequence begins with sun salutations to stretch and keep our body heat going. Then, cardio for two minutes, plank for two minutes, abs or core workout for two minutes, and weight lifting for two minutes. This continues for about 45 - 50 minutes. Believe me, we actually look forward to the weight lifting portion on the stability ball because it is a resting period.

After the 15 minutes of warm-up, the 45 minutes of hard work (challenging your own body at your own pace), we begin a 10 minute yoga stretch and end with a 5 minute savasana or yoga rest. Most of the people say that is the best part; however, I find the whole time invigorating and fun! We laugh, groan, and tease our way through. I end the time with a positive meditation thought of encouragement. 75 minutes of challenging your own body at the pace that is best for you.

Many of the boot camps in our area have a big expenditure, but Tranquility Yoga's cost is the same as for all our yoga and Pilates classes. It is $5.62 for each class. Challenge by choice - what an terrific idea! Deciding for two minutes whether you do one, five, or twenty-five; it is all your own decision, and afterwards, you feel relaxed and rejuvenated. Come experience it for yourself! Our next session of boot camp on Saturday mornings begins November 6th!

Come work out with me; the best is yet to be!

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