Archive for May, 2010

Practice makes getting-closer-to-perfect

Friday, May 21st, 2010

The other night at the end of my weekly power yoga class during shavasana, the time to relax and rejuvenate the body and mind, I could not quiet my mind.  I was stressing about the fact that I had not yet written a blog this week and was trying to figure out what to write about.

In frustration, I wondered why I still struggle to clear my mind, be in the moment, and just stop thinking.  I’ve been attending power yoga class for months, and I am still challenged by some poses, keeping my breath, and quieting my mind.  As the two sides of my mind — the one that wanted to keep spinning and the one that wanted to give in to shavasana — kept going back and forth, I had two thoughts (I guess the “spinning” side won).

First, a bit of my own advice to others came to mind.  When a personal training client expresses frustration that she has not progressed toward her goals more quickly or can’t seem to get the form right a particular exercise, I remind her to be realistic.  If you only train or work out once a week, it is unrealistic to expect your progress to be disproportionately quick; improvements will come, but much more slowly than if you work out (or, in my case, practice yoga) more often.

In a bit more forgiving internal voice, I reminded myself of one of my favorite quotes.  As a side note, I first saw this quote, of all places, on one of those Quote-a-Day calendars — the type that requires you to tear off a little square page each day to reveal the new bit of wisdom awaiting you.  I won’t remember the quote exactly (and though I have searched, I cannot find it or to whom to attribute it), but it goes something like this: “No one ever started out doing something an expert.”  And with that thought, I remembered that yoga is a practice.  The same principle can be applied to any fitness pursuit.  You’re not going to start out strong or fast or flexible or buff ; but with time…with repetition….with practice, you will improve.  Maybe you’ll even become “an expert” if that is your goal.

It is not my goal to become an “expert” in my yoga practice.  I do plan to stay committed to improving, to challenging myself, to learning, and to letting someone else teach me.  Next week, I’ll be back in that class with more realistic expectations — given the amount of time I am able to commit to it — and I will try, once again, to let my mind rest during shavasana.  That is, of course, if I’ve already figured out next week’s blog.

Is something better than nothing?

Sunday, May 9th, 2010

This is a question I often field about exercise from clients, friends, family….and occasionally from my own tired internal self.  When I worked at a fitness club as a new personal trainer, I watched 75% of the members just “go through the motions.”  I would think that they were wasting their time; they might as well have found something more productive to do for the minimal effort they were putting into their workouts.

My thinking on this has shifted a little as I have worked with more and more clients.  Something IS better than nothing…as long as just doing something is not your routine.

Something is better than nothing when you feel tired and would rather stay in bed a little longer or go home after work.  Something is better than nothing when your day is jam packed, and you can only fit in 15 minutes on the treadmill.  Something is better than nothing when you are in a “fitness funk” and just not able to jump start yourself back into your regular routine. Something is better is nothing because it keeps fitness a part of your life until you are physically and mentally able to get back to your workout routine.

Try to do something everyday.  And before you know it, you’ll add a little something to that something.  You’ll find it’s fun and that you usually feel pretty good afterward.   Eventually, you will keep building on something to challenge yourself a little more….until doing something isn’t “just something”  any longer.

Testing…1…2…3…Is this thing on?

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

Venturing into something new is scary…but exhilarating, too!

That is how I feel about this blog, website, and officially launching my personal training business.  Though I’ve been training clients as a certified personal trainer for over 4 years, I’ve always had “something else” at the same time, another job to depend on.  I’ve never committed 100% to personal training.

Maybe that’s how you feel as you contemplate taking your fitness to a new level.  Maybe you’ve always gone for walks or hit the gym for the obligatory 30 minutes on a cardio machine but you’ve never committed 100% to making fitness an integral part of your lifestyle.  And so it’s a little scary.

Well…It’s time we venture into the unknown together.

You can feel confident in my commitment to your overall well-being.  I’m in this for you — for each of my clients — because I know first-hand the sense of empowerment that looking, feeling, and being fit can bring into your life.

I also know that no one can or should embark on a scary adventure alone.  We can do this together.  Let me help you look, feel, and BE fit and confident.