I have been off my game for the past week or so in regards to my mental state. It seems like I wake up and go to bed feeling so defeated. I feel like my body, mind, and soul are failing me as a human being, and I can’t seem to shake the feeling. I constantly find myself obsessing over the small things and comparing myself to others. But why?
Not too long ago, a friend told me she hated scrolling through my social media news feeds. She claimed she gets pissed at what I’ve accomplished in my fitness journey and wishes she had done the same. It really didn’t sit well with me, and I’ve been irritated by the comment since it was made. What does my fitness journey have anything to do with her? Why should I feel guilty about what I’ve accomplished or how I’m performing just because she hasn’t done the same? I bust my ass daily to develop a healthy lifestyle, and I shouldn’t feel guilty about it by any means.
Then, I started two “Yoga Challenges” via Instagram, and all of the sudden I found myself in that same trap. The trap of comparisons and jealousy. I want my Dhanurasana to look amazing. I want to master Pincha Mayurasana in the next few weeks. I want to look beautiful and composed when I’m in Utthita Parsvakonasana. Obsessing about how I look has completely distracted me from the entire purpose. My fitness journey… my yoga journey… is about me… and only me. It isn’t about comparing myself to the girl next door. It’s about embracing my body and being thankful for how far I’ve come. It’s about slowing down and allowing myself to feel my body in the moment. It’s about being thankful for the things I learn and the movements my body creates over time.
Vrscikasana – Scorpion/forearm balance
As women, I feel we are quick to compare and become jealous of the women surrounding us. I’m guilty of doing it. So are you. Here’s the thing.. we are all unique in our own ways. I’m a tall, stocky woman. I’ll never be naturally slim. I’ll never have large breasts (well, until I get that boob job I’ve always dreamed of). I’ll never have a small ass or a tiny forehead. I won’t have those things… but, I’m able to do high impact aerobics with 15 pound weights. I can slam an entire medium pizza without gaining a pound. I can bike up/down hill for 5 miles with a 70 pound trailer attached to my bike without breaks. I’ve mastered advanced yoga poses in merely three short months. I don’t ever have to wear a bra if I don’t fucking feel like it. I have a variety of belt selections. I’m able to challenge myself and learn from myself based on my own body type. While there’s so many things other women can do that I can’t, there’s so many things I can do that other women can’t. It’s time to stop wishing I had a different body type and start embracing the one I have.
My fitness journey hasn’t been easy. I’ve had my fair share of challenges, but I’ve kept going. I’m learned to adapt and utilize the techniques that work for me. I’ve learned that having Fibromyalgia means some days I’ll feel like a bus ran me over, and that those crazy Yoga poses I want to master aren’t going to happen that day. That cardio workout I’ve been avoiding probably isn’t going to happen. Hell, getting off the couch might not happen. My disease doesn’t define me, but embracing the rest my body needs to heal and function is something I’ve learned to accept and understand.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy every aspect of my fitness journey. I love utilizing the Beachbody programs I’ve purchased and running on the elliptical. I love seeing the happiness on my children’s faces when we turn on a 21 Day Fix workout. But, I’ll never stop gloating about Yoga. Yoga saves me. Yoga saves me… every… single…. day. Yoga reminds me to embrace the love I have for myself and to accept the skin I’ve been given. Yoga reminds me to slow down and learn patience. Yoga reminds me to be positive and encouraging. To challenge myself while learning ways to avoid frustration. Yoga makes my disease seem like less of a burden and more of an advantage. No, today I might not be able to master Pincha Mayurasana… but embracing Eka Pada Rajakpotasana makes my hips feel like I’m pain free. Pain free in that moment and quite possibly for the rest of the day. Yoga has helped me learned to adapt and go with the flow. Yoga has helped me learn to be positive and uplifting and to rid myself of negativity. I can’t stop saying it…. Yoga saves me.
Eka Pada rajakapotasana – Mermaid pose
Yoga isn’t about a fitness journey for me. Yoga is a transformation of my entire body, mind, and soul. It allows me to learn characteristics about myself I wouldn’t know otherwise. For instance, I easily become frustrated. In my fitness journey. With my husband. My kids. My friends. If something doesn’t go as planned, I instantly lock up and become irritable. Yoga is helping me learn to slow down and appreciate the little moments. To understand that maybe my body isn’t ready for this pose just yet. Maybe my life isn’t ready for this change. Maybe it’s time for me to take a break from cleaning the house and play on the floor with my children. Maybe it’s time to forego the nap my body is craving and to grab a beer and good laughs with my husband.
If you follow me on social media, I’m sure you’re sick and tired about me discussing my love for Yoga and my need for a healthy, fit lifestyle. Let me tell you, it’s not going to change. I’ve had many people reach out to me stating I’ve sparked their interest and they want to learn more. You should want to learn more, too. You won’t regret it. You don’t have to run 5 miles a day. You don’t have to bike uphill without stopping. You don’t have to learn a headstand or how to stand on your hands. Just laying in Shavasana, closing your eyes, and embracing life can change how you view your world. Don’t get caught up in everyone else’s journey. Learn to love your own. Learn to accept the world you’ve been given around you and embrace the love you need for yourself. Love the body you’ve been given and brush off those unwanted jealous feelings. Learn to just be you… boo
Navasana – Boat pose … with my little sidekicks of course!