Those are my hands at one o’ clock-ish…..Carol Diaz’s Triple Threat class… that’s spin, TRX - which uses suspension straps that add core and balance to every strength option — and yoga.
I believe we carry all of our significant experiences (and maybe every sunny day, too) with us, our entire lives. All the living (loving, grieving) from the beginning is embedded in our cells. It informs who we are (as does the past sacrifices and contributions of our ancestors), whether we realize it or not.
But I also know we are changing all of the time….who we are today isn’t who we were yesterday, or who we will be tomorrow.
I am a rooted sort and the change I have experienced in my life has never seemed dramatic, cataclysmic, or earth shattering (except when my dad died). I live with my mom and dog in my childhood home. I have worked at my job for 16 years. My grad school friends can tell you that we clung to one another desperately for a decade, until we were forced to move on and make new lives (some of us would have just lived together forever on a communal farm somewhere, if we thought we could get away with it).
Most of the change I have experienced - and everything I have learned - seems to have been the product of incremental shifting. Glacially paced change. Maybe it is like plate tectonics - barely perceptible change that results in new mountain ranges or new continents over many thousands of years.
In early 2012, I experienced a shift…..and I knew I had to take better care of myself. Nothing dramatic occurred in my life. I wanted to make changes forever - day after day, I said I would make a change, but I never did.
I always knew I wanted to practice yoga. I started a practice in 1997 and then let it go - but I felt jealous when people I knew started their practices. I knew it should be me, too.
Nothing changed significantly in my life in early 2012, but I was intuitively drawn to practice. It was just time.
I am 46 this year and I am entering a new phase in my life. Serious Middle Age. It is up to me to continue to build a present and a future, which will perhaps be different (shifting…slowly….) in this second half of life. Project Tanya is a building block. I know my health (mind-body-spirit) is essential to my creativity, productivity, ability to serve, and dare I say, ability to experience insight, perspective, and even enlightenment now and always.
I have been doing stuff - yoga, spin, some running …..for 19 months. More lately. I won’t lie: I feel a little disappointed that I have not achieved a super beach body.
I am fitter. I have more stamina. I am stronger. I look better, although I really have not lost any weight to speak of. If I ever *do* get a beach body, I will appreciate the significant work it takes to get there. Sorry to be trite, but it is true, nothing worth having comes easily. I appreciate the work it takes to be strong, and the achievement of super-fit women, because I am only one step down the path….
No matter. The journey is good. Energy. Accomplishment. Love, camaraderie, friendship, endorphin highs and chocolate milk.
I started out coddling myself…protecting my soft, sedentary body from too much stress. I wouldn’t say I am being tough on myself now (thank goodness for my teachers who push me harder than I would ever push myself)…but I am working harder than I would have a year ago, and I am surprised that my body responds to the stress and gets stronger. My body wants to be strong. It wants to be there for me.
The women who teach me and who have taught me ***Anna Barrett!!!!!**** Carol Diaz!!****Sarah Wolfgram!!**** Sarah Russell and Breathe folks! - are smart, multidimensional, committed and amazing people. And they are Beasts! If they can show up the way they do, I can at least get off my butt and do *something*. They are a freakin’ inspiration and truly keep me motivated and honest, every day. They are all significantly younger than me and have achieved so much in all realms of their lives (mind-body-spirit) and I am happy to learn from them.
There are no limits. I was never athletic as a kid (or as an adult for that matter). I was always the last one picked for the team. I wish I could have realized when I was 13 that it doesn’t even matter.