Saturday, 24 January 2015

Go to your happy place

Today, whilst I was driving on my way to help out at my pole school’s open day, I was on the phone to my mama having a catch up and it got a little emotional and sad – not in a bad way but you just get into deeper stuff when you talk to your mum! Anyway I was a bit low when I walked into pole but then two hours later when I was driving back home; I was in a completely different mood. I felt so happy and content.

This is what pole fitness does for me. Exercise usually puts me in a good mood and makes me feel satisfied but after pole it is just a whole other level. I can’t really explain it but I feel awesome afterwards.

I remember the time before pole and feeling my life was a bit boring. I knew that a hobby might be the thing that was missing and then I found pole and I haven’t had that feeling since. I can’t get enough of it and no matter what type of lesson I have, whether it is successful or really challenging, it doesn't make a difference; I still look forward to when I get to go back and try again.

I have learnt that it’s all about the challenge. I go back each week because I am not the greatest and I can’t get all the moves first time. It isn't easy, it’s actually bloody tough! But that makes it all the more rewarding and special when you get those moves that you have been pushing for. It helps that you see girls in your class nail moves after trying to get them themselves. There is never any bitchiness or jealousy as everyone has their own aims and our job, as friends and fellow polers, is to encourage and celebrate when someone gets something they really want. I love that about Gemstone. We all want to see each other do well, we all feel great when we get a move and the other girls are so happy for us.

Even as I write this I can tell I am not expressing how I really feel well enough. But all I can say is that even in the shittest of times, pole makes me smile. When bad things happen you see what type of person you are and how you manage them. You can’t always be strong and can’t always put on a happy face but even at my hardest times pole got me into a better place. It never failed me and I guess, because I kept going, I never failed me.

I feel I owe a lot to the inanimate object that is the pole and the beautiful people I have met through it. Life kicks you in the balls but it’s important to find your happy place – pole, Gemstone, is my happy place.

Thursday, 1 January 2015

New year, new challenges

Well, I realised that I have gone over a year without writing on this blog. What a lazy ass for someone writing about health and fitness! As most people will know, the writing may have stopped but the activities never did. I have been doing pole, body pump and running throughout the year and am so much stronger and fitter than ever before. I love doing all my activities and am really happy with where I am but I still have aims and improvements I want to make.

So I decided to make specific fitness and nutrition resolutions for 2015. Here are my fitness resolutions: 
  • ·         Get my handspring move at Pole Fitness
  • ·         Pass my beginner pole instructor course
  • ·         Get to the point where I can hold a handstand
  • ·         Improve my splits and flexibility
  • ·         Improve my lower abs
Now, I have a head start on most of these. Get my handspring move at pole. I have done my handspring move but I am not at all confident in it and I want to be able to do without hesitation - this is sort of what it would look like but I got into the move a different way: 

Pass my beginner pole instructor course. With the course, I am almost there! I need to finish up my coursework but mostly I need to teach a class and record it in January otherwise I have to pay to do the course again. PRESSURE!

Get to the point where I can hold a handstandLast year I did ‘Handstand February’ and got to the point where I could hold a handstand for about a second or two. I can’t do that with any confidence now so I have decided to not just do it in February but keep trying every month. This is the end of last February and the best I managed free standing:

Improve my splits and flexibility. Well I am lucky enough to have a good start with flexibility. I can do the splits already but they aren’t fluid and are quite stiff so I want to improve that and I also want to improve my box splits. In addition. I want to be able to get my leg vertical – definitely a challenge.

Improve my lower abs. Now people might throw things at me and call me stupid for this one (please don't) but I have put it in there, not because I think I am fat, but because I think it is based on nutrition as well as exercise. I have always struggled with that area of my abdominals. You can see my top two, and sometimes my top four abs, but you can’t see six. Even though I don’t want to be overly muscley, I would like to see the effects of all the work I do on my abs as well as the rest of my body.

So, nutrition wise:
  • ·         Seriously cut down on any dairy produce, especially during the week
  • ·         Limit the amount of processed food I eat
  • ·         Start taking protein shakes again

Nutrition is a big one for me and I always struggle with it and I definitely suffer for it. Not just because of the abs thing I mentioned above but because I have IBS – like most people probably have! It is the most frustrating thing to get told you have because that’s it; you don’t really get any help after that. I have had tests and everything comes back fine and yet I suffer still. Off my own back I have taken allergy tests, cut wheat out of my diet (for 6 weeks with no change in my symptoms), cut cucumber and broccoli out and now am noticing that dairy is a big contributor to my problems. 

But it isn’t just food, it is emotions. Unfortunately I am a very emotional person so if I get upset or nervous I get tummy pain. That is something that is hard to control so because my stomach is affected by both emotions and nutrition I have decided to focus my efforts to improve on the thing I can control - what goes into my body. That is my aim this year.

So there it is; they are my fitness and nutrition goals for this year. Very short and sweet! I am just hoping that by posting this it will make sure I do them – I hope my pride doesn't let me quit!

Happy New Year everyone. 

For me, it is important that 2015 be a better year so… bring it on!