You Can Get Fit!

Posts Tagged ‘dreams

Hi, Friends.

I’m typically not much of a Wednesday poster, but inspiration struck (duck and cover!) and I totally felt the need to get this out to you.

While driving yesterday, I realized how much time I’d lost this past week wallowing over this freak vocal cord nerve injury. And before that, I’d probably done the same over the hip surgery that didn’t go well (in 2010) and had to be redone, plus some.

But why waste time crying over things out of our control? None of us are getting any younger.

It’s fine to feel sorry for ourselves, true. And I’ve found that sometimes, the current path just seems so unbearable that I just can’t find focus and have to chill out. But either to ourselves or others, it just becomes the broken record after a while. And just like a broken record, it continues on the same useless pathway. At some point, we have to pack up and move on as best we can.

Which is what I have done and have continued to do. And you know what? This approach has shown me opportunities I never would’ve imagined, if I’d been left to continue along my same road.

OK, so the Leprechaun of Ideas doesn’t jump onto your shoulder at 2pm every afternoon. (I wish! But then, we’d all be rich.) This takes some brainpower. But think of it this way: you’re developing awesome critical thinking skills!

Case In Point 1: prior to my first hip surgery (April 2010), I was running a fitness business with two corporate clients and a few private clients as well as teaching fitness classes for 4-5 gyms. I wanted to expand my business, but I didn’t have time to think about how to do that, or to do it at all… despite being married to an MBA in marketing. Surgery #1 led to complications and Surgery #2. After the requisite feeling sorry for myself, I got going and put my brain to work. I talked to other instructors. I did some marketing (and learned what does and doesn’t work in this area and field). I hired more contractors. I expanded my business to include other types of classes. I even tried a second business (which… didn’t work, but it was a great learning experience!). I now proudly call myself a small business owner!

When I was getting ready to teach again (that is, working for others), I almost didn’t want to let previous employers know I was available. I preferred having the time to strategize for myself! (Though, gotta say that I do like the steady income stream that I get from bigger companies.)

Case In Point 2: My current struggle. Just when I literally got my feet under me to teach again (and also got a college class to teach in the fall), I have a timeline of potentially three months until I can talk again. This hit me from out of nowhere–I didn’t anticipate this sort of limitation when I was dreaming up projects to take me into the end of the year and going forward.

But life has a way of throwing us curveballs, doesn’t it? And again… we can’t stand still while it blows past us. To me, that just isn’t living!

So, during the next few (loooonnngggg) months, other than non-work-related stuff such as improving my piano playing and cleaning up the jungle that is my backyard, I’ve come up with four work-related projects that don’t require speaking:

1. Getting my body back to the strength that it was before Hip Surgery #1 (which was the best shape of my life other than torn hip cartilage)

2. Make a new trifold brochure for my business, now that I offer Zumba classes, which may get me more corporate business (and plan a guerrilla marketing attack for the beginning of the year!!!)

3. Keep going on the….. (book) that I write in spurts. Since I’m oh-so-experienced in rehab (plus 500-hour Pilates certified), I’ve been working on a… document, in laymans’ terms, to help people recover from injury using Pilates-based exercise. I need to redouble efforts.

4. Lower priority, but script videos. I intend to create a YouTube channel of short videos that, once again, use Pilates-based exercise to help people reduce pain in various parts of their body. Big goal of mine in life is to help the world feel better without pharmaceuticals! (Ironic, given my masters’ degree in pharmaceutical chemistry…)

See? It takes a little bit of the gerbil running in that mental wheel, but you can come up with some fruitful projects that will get you toward your life/career goals, despite current limitations. (Try to make your projects meaningful, rather than, say, learning Swahili. Unless you are absolutely taken by the Swahili language, and by all means, go for it!)

Maybe by the end of allllll of this… I won’t need or want to go back to working for the man at all. Now, wouldn’t that be a hoot? Having had illnesses and injuries that supposedly take me out of work for a combined few years, but during that time, I end up generating a successful income stream. That would be amazing, and it’s my goal.

I encourage all of you to share this with anyone who’s going through a rough time in life! Any rough patch can be turned around… and can lead you into more exciting territory!!

Ack! Give me my dunce cap. I posted my yummy salad yesterday, but didn’t post anything regarding the writing challenge. Mea culpa. I’ve been in the middle of last-minute interviewing and hiring a new contractor for the business who starts teaching on Monday, and I got a surprise (which is super-secret for now!) while I was out auditioning contractors… Anyway, hiring done as of yesterday! (Paperwork still to be worked out…)

Excuses, excuses. Yesterday’s writing prompt reads:

That which each can do best, none but his Maker can teach him. Where is the master who could have taught Shakespeare? Where is the master who could have instructed Franklin, or Washington, or Bacon, or Newton? . . . Shakespeare will never be made by the study of Shakespeare. Do that which is assigned you, and you cannot hope too much or dare too much. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Identify one of your biggest challenges at the moment (ie I don’t feel passionate about my work) and turn it into a question (ie How can I do work I’m passionate about?) Write it on a post-it and put it up on your bathroom mirror or the back of your front door. After 48-hours, journal what answers came up for you and be sure to evaluate them.

Bonus: tweet or blog a photo of your post-it. (Author: Jenny Blake)

Obviously to be finished tomorrow….. or, whenever is the end of my 48-hour-period, since I haven’t yet come up with a thought. Maybe business expansion and moving into different business-to-business markets? I need to sleep on this one. (I keep thinking like an entrepreneurial geek. My true colors are shining through…. !!!)

Or, daring to dig deeper… fear of risk-taking. More on that later.

Anyway, before the dinner guest shows up, onto today’s writing prompt, which is a timely one:

If we live truly, we shall see truly. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Not everyone wants to travel the world, but most people can identify at least one place in the world they’d like to visit before they die. Where is that place for you, and what will you do to make sure you get there? (Author: Chris Guillebeau)

Ah, Chris. (Great guy, btw, if you ever get to meet him! Glad I did.) The past few days, I’ve been struggling with the idea of traveling before the end of summer, as I may have some fall work that can’t be interrupted. After all of my health problems over the past few years, I’ve been reminded that anything can happen, no matter how much we take care of ourselves. Unfortunately, I’m also reminded that everyone travels over the summer, and that’s no good for someone who’s been very underemployed the past 14 months. I hope I can work something out…

This doesn’t answer the question… I’ve seen 49 states, I’ve seen a lot of major cities in Europe, and I can’t say I have ONE spot I need to go. I’ve always told people that I’ll travel anywhere, as long as it’s interesting and safe. I don’t have a single “I won’t go there” country. Yet I have a strong pull to live in Germany, for whatever reason… I’ve really liked my visits there.

I guess I’m pleading the 5th. 😉

OK, all, dinner guest scheduled to arrive in two minutes! I made it in under the nose! (A few Indian recipes tonight! They may come up in a future post…)

And now… the continuation of my “goals-post” from a few weeks ago! I’ve had so much to talk to you guys about that I haven’t been able to keep going.

For those just joining in, I’ve written a list of 40 goals to complete before my 40th birthday, about 3 years from now. I’m sharing them ten at a time, and shared the first batch a few weeks ago. I’d love to hear your goals and comments! Goals keep us alive and excited!

Anyway, here’s batch 2, with some commentary about how I might be making progress:

Goals 11-20
11. Host a Pilates retreat mostly because it requires my having grown my business to that stage… however, I kind of get to cheat here, since my neighbors want to rent out their cabin, and I could just invite friends up for our own retreat. Does this count?
12. Write 5 thank-you notes (not emails!) to people who’ve made a difference in my life I keep intending to start this! I just saw an address for a favorite high school teacher go by…
13. Stand at the top of a mountain and sing This would require being physically able to hike up the mountain, unless somebody carries me. I’ll work on that part, first.
14. Complete a NaNoWriMo Challenge NaNoWriMo is in November. Assuming I don’t have a trazillion things going on, I’ll tackle it this year, and maybe do it every year. I’ve been doing a lot of writing, anyway, so it shouldn’t be too tough… maybe? (writing 50,000 words in a month, though… ack!)
15. Lose 10 pounds Well, since I’ve been allowed to do more cardio, I’ve already lost two pounds. Maybe I’ll try to lose 10 pounds from here, as well!
16. Make gorgeous chocolates/truffles to give as gifts I’ve been working on a variety of kitchen skills, and lemme tell ya, making things look really pretty is something I still need to work on. I’d love to be able to whip out professional looking chocolates as gifts!
17. Visit a country that most people have never heard of Not just for the sake of obscurity, but these places are usually really interesting to me. Probably the closest I’ve come is Latvia.
18. Help build a Habitat for Humanity home I never feel as though I give enough, and I love being physical and working with my hands.
19. Meet my cousin Sara in AZ Actually, a second cousin, who found me through the internet while doing genealogy research. But we seem to have a lot in common (similar age, love being outdoors, we’ve been teachers, we love cooking…) and I think we’d get along great.
20. Start expressing myself style-wise (clothes and hair aren’t really “me”) I’ve realized I spend too much time in “safe” jeans and t-shirt, looking just like everyone else. While I hate to buy more stuff and join the consumer crowd, I also hate fitting in. I’m trying to find a balance, showing off more of my own self while not overconsuming resources–life is too short to blend in with the background.

And that’s Round 2, halfway done! I have 20 more to list in the next few weeks. I’m still really interested to hear more of your goals, so… comment! What makes you excited to get out of bed in the morning? What do you want to have done by the end of the year? By the end of the decade? And… no goal is a “stupid” goal: if it’s important to you, it’s important! 🙂

Enjoy the three-day weekend! Thank you to all who serve our country and have served!

Spring is here! Time to spring-clean not only our houses but maybe our diets, our future plans… never fear, I’ve found some great posts from fellow bloggers to help you out with such deep thoughts! (Some of ’em date back a few months, but they’re still highly relevant.)

How many times have you heard that you should “follow your passion” in life? As Ash Ambirge says in this piece, you not only need the passion, but the courage to take the steps to follow through. This is one of many wonderfully sassy, straight-ahead posts on her blog–read it!

Feeling a mid-day (or late-day, or anytime of the day) energy slump? Amber at Epicself has this three-minute energy and posture boosting sequence. Did I say it only took 3 minutes? Why, yes I did. Try it!

Chris at Zen to Fitness lists some practical suggestions here that will get our bodies moving better and keep us that way. The take-home message? Functional fitness. (Don’t get discouraged by long lists, either: start off gently. Even 10 minutes, 3 times a week, is great if you’ve never exercised before!)

Here’s a thought-provoking discussion from Vlad on The Change Blog on Reducing the Mediocrity of Life. I’ll admit that when someone asks how I am, I’m not always at the ready with an “Awesome!”–many times, I’m feeling more a “could be worse”. Is this you? Read Vlad’s post!

Have a magnificent first week of spring, and catch you in a few days!

Happy Pi Day! (For those not science geeks like I am, it’s 3/14, or 3.14… at least on this side of the pond.)

And now, onto a topic that’s more career-related for me. (Hey, if your career isn’t in shape, you can’t be happy or mentally fit!)

I get a great thrill out of cooking for others (hence, the pre-Pi Day Party yesterday, and frequent dinner parties) and have been strongly considering informal catering work–with my initial clients being those recovering from surgeries and medical issues, who can’t cook for themselves. (I know some rehab people who claim their patients would love this service… I hope they would pay for it, given the opportunity?)

I’ve looked at some catering and personal chef websites, and it seems that all of them are professionally trained to some degree, whether it’s a full two-year course at the Culinary Academy of America, or several two-week courses at a variety of renowned schools. At this juncture, I really can’t afford to travel around to all of these schools, much less take the classes.

So, if any of you guys in blog-reading-land were to hire someone who cooked food in a commercial kitchen and delivered to you, how much does credential and pedigree matter? In other words, I’m trying to figure out how much training I should bother to get. There is a local cooking school offering general classes, but I can’t imagine I’d get the level of detail as I would from Le Cordon Bleu.

I’m considering return on investment… in this case, spending the money might not pick up many new kitchen techniques, but having “school” after my name might win me a few more clients.

I’d love to hear anyone’s opinions (either way!!) on this!

I think I missed a Sunday back there… back with this theme now, inspiring you through the wisdom of my fellow bloggers. I had a great time last night—I sang in a show at the Moore Theater with the Seattle Rock Orchestra! Good times!

Aileen Mahoney of Kaizen Vision guest-posts on Live Bold and Bloom (confused, yet?) about how to break through your limitations.

Treat yourself well (and with zero calories)! A list of 12 Low-Cost Luxuries at Kaizen Vision.

Eat, Live, Run’s Kitchen Rules.

Jaclyn discusses body image and acceptance at both ends of the spectrum.

And with that… have a marvelous week! I’ll leave you with a quote from Paul Tergat, one of THE Kenyan runners:

Ask yourself: “Can I give more?” The answer is usually:”YES!”

Since I got good feedback before on this format, why not continue onward? Twice a month, I’ll be bringing you a few recent links that I found and liked, with content relevant to You Can Get Fit. I’m always happy to read your links, too—bring ‘em on if you got ‘em!

Passport to Prana If you live in one of nine major cities, yoga studios participating in Passport to Prana allow you one class each with the purchase of a card. Here in Seattle, over 20 studios are participating, and the card costs $30. What a great deal on a studio class–just over a dollar per class!

Angela of Green Monster Movement shares recipes and inspiration for healthy, tasty (yes!) drinks and smoothies containing leafy greens. (I love putting spinach in my smoothies!)

Chris Guillebeau is a lifestyle blogger, world traveler, and a thousand times the writer that I am. I relate to his post, Ever Feel like Giving Up? , on so many levels. Every time I read it, it’s brand-new to me.

Karen at the Accidental Seeker talks about the losses we experience in life, and how we may be able to reframe them as gains.

Go and enjoy the week! See you soon!

Regret is almost always a useless emotion.

I spent a lot of my childhood and teenage years inactive and severely overweight. Now, in my 30’s, I am a lot more active and choose (mostly) healthy foods. Sure, I have times when I look back and think of what I missed out on when I was younger—all of the long walks and hiking with friends, the other kids that ostracized me for my size… but what use would that be? I can’t change yesterday. Today, I will be the best me I can be.

Since none of us can change the past (at least the last time I checked), why not focus our energies on moving forward and making our future better? So, yesterday, you pigged out on fries. Eh, it happens. I do it, too, now and then. Today, you can spend extra time at the gym, or you can eat a nice bowl of fresh berries as your dessert instead of that evil i.c. (I won’t say it), or go for a long walk to enjoy the sunshine. Just try not to wallow in your yesterdays, because all it does is make you feel more negative!

What are you all going to do to make today even better than yesterday?
I’m spending the afternoon playing in the sunshine with my band, and sharing live music with Seattle. Go do it!

Have you ever had a day, an hour, a moment that you were having so much fun, you didn’t want it to end? Wouldn’t it be great to experience a lot of these moments? (Oh, and best yet, if we could get paid for them!)

I’ve been reading a lot of goal-setting blogs and books recently, including Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi. Ferrazi’s focus is more on networking, but he writes a great chapter on goals and finding your mission in life.

You might be thinking by now—wait, isn’t this a health and wellness blog? But think about it: if we aren’t mentally fulfilled, it’s hard to get started on improving our physical health. I believe the body and mind together need to be healthy!

That said, how do we “find our dreams”? I’m still working on fine-tuning my own, and I’m afraid to say that you won’t read a book, wake up tomorrow morning, and find instant clarity. But here are some things to get you started:

First, try to let go of any expectations of what you “should” be doing. Several of my college classmates grew up in families of physicians, so it was expected that they would earn an M.D. as well—even if they were not interested in pursuing medicine. Yet, there they were, sitting next to me in organic chemistry class. Sometimes, even if you excel in a field, if you dread the work, maybe it’s not work you should pursue.

Now that you’ve cleared any expectations from your mind, sit in a quiet place with your favorite writing implement and a piece of paper. Write down anything that comes to mind that excites you, no matter how silly it may seem. Include in that list any activity (remember, we’re including the abstract and ridiculous) in which you’ve totally lost track of time.

After you’ve been writing for half an hour or so, look back over your list. Do you notice any themes? Any common threads? Hey, you’re hopefully closer to identifying your passion!

Now, go for it! Do you have any contacts or friends in that field that you can talk to, about how to get started? In the end, their advice might fine-tune your route slightly off your initial path, but you will undoubtedly learn a lot along the way. And whatever you do, it’s far better than sitting around with unrealized dreams! (Yes… even the silly ones.)

So, what are the dreams that you are pursuing? I’d love to hear about them!

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