31 days of pop pilates and yoga | monthly update #1

one of my goals for 2017 has been to work on my health and fitness. so for the month of january, i decided to really focus on fitness and get myself into a routine of working out and stretching regularly. i’ve been doing this off and on for quite some time, but have never seemed to be able to actually stick to it. so last month, i decided to try following the blogilates workout calendar every single day, yoga with adriene’s 31 day yoga revolution, and my own stretching routine that i’ve been doing since i started dance lessons in third grade (with variations as i’ve gotten older). and here’s what i discovered on this little adventure…

i did so much better than i thought i would!! sticking to a workout routine has always been hard for me, and something i never really imagined myself doing. but i really want to get my body in shape, and this is the year it’s finally happening.

while i didn’t complete every single video on the blogilates calendar each day, i did at least do one video a day. i remember being so proud of myself on january first because i completed all the videos, day one of yoga revolution, AND my daily stretches. i mean, what better way to start the year, right?! there were a few other days that went that well, but for the most part i just did on average two to three videos each day, depending on my schedule and the difficulty of the workouts. there was literally only one day the entire month where i didn’t do anything, and that was just for personal reasons. there were also a couple days where i missed yoga, but i just caught myself up the next day and in the end i did finish the 31 days on time.

there were a few things i noticed as a result of this experience. first, in the beginning everything went really well. i felt great, super motivated and enthusiastic about the whole thing. my flexibility started to increase quickly, my balance improved and i was able to hold the yoga poses better. everything seemed to be going wonderful and i thought i was well on my way to doing the splits by the end of the month (something i’ve been working on for as long as i can remember, but never quite accomplished).

then things went downhill. around the 10th of january, i noticed my body suddenly started to stiffen up. stretching became more difficult because out of nowhere my flexibility kind of disappeared. my legs didn’t want to move as much. i was honestly so confused and a little concerned that i did something wrong or there was something wrong with my body. but apparently this is a normal thing that happens when your body isn’t used to physical activity and then you do something like this all of a sudden. it goes into shock and needs a little time to adjust. so turns out i wasn’t dying, my body was just not prepared for all of that. haha. i took it a little easier after that, and things started to get better. i focused more on yoga and less on my own stretches from then on so i didn’t overstretch (plus my schedule got a little busy toward the end of the month), and planned to get back to stretching when the month ended.

now, a month later, i can honestly say i am so glad that i made this decision. while i still have a long way to go, i’m starting to see and feel real progress for probably the first time in my life. i’m able to get through more pop pilates videos without feeling like i’m about to die (although i still struggle a lot with the ab workouts). my posture has improved. my flexibility is coming back, and i know it’s going to get better and better, and one day soon i WILL have my splits down. and finally, i just feel so much better. my mood is a lot more positive, i’m much more motivated and inspired, and i just have this super calm feeling. i’m a naturally positive person, but i get frustrated over little things sometimes. lately i’ve found that i have more patience (which is something i’ve always struggled with, especially when it comes to myself), and i’m more understanding. my self confidence is improving, and i feel like i can accomplish so much. AND YOU GUYS I HAVE A LITTLE BIT OF DEFINITION IN MY ABS FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER!!!! (sorry for the caps, but that’s something i used to think was impossible). i’m feeling confident that this will finally be the year i feel comfortable in crop tops and maybe even a bikini.

i’m ready to make this the best year of my life so far :)

and that brings me to february! i decided about halfway through january that each month i’m going to choose one main thing to focus on. last month it was fitness. this month, eating better. i’ll check back in at the end of the month and let you know how it goes :) and feel free to leave a comment with your goals for the month!

see you soon,
— ariel 💙

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