A New Way of Fitness- When I Learned To Slow Down
It’s been a moment since I last touched on my fitness routine at home. But the thing is, although I’ve been exercising regularly, my “normal” workouts have looked drastically different. Before covid, I was semi-attending yoga classes, the occasional Barre3 class, but really doing an extensive amount of HIIT workouts. Suffice to say I didn’t realize the toll it was taking on my body. I’ve always told myself I need to slow down, maybe reduce the high-impact workouts to once or twice a week and replace them with long walks or a nice deep yoga flow. But all the times I told myself this, I continued to roll out of bed the next morning, half awake, prepared to sweat it all out.
Last week, it hit me. I realized I was no longer throwing together the hardest possible workouts to complete in 30 minutes or less. Instead, I started thinking “maybe I’ll just stretch” or “it’s a beautiful morning for a walk.”
For some, this may sound a bit crazy, to not have a set routine and fly by the string of your pants. (Is that a saying?) But for me, I think it’s been long awaited. Forever I dreamt of a time I could wake up in the morning and not rush to get the sweatiest workout in. Of course I love the energy it provides- the drive, and tingly feelings- but at the same time, it was draining me.
I was like a broken record- feeling knots build up, and growing body aches day after day. It seemed unfathomable that I could allow myself to simply perform yoga without profusely sweating (and actually do it more than once a week). So, just how this pandemic has wildly shifted my mindset, it’s shifted my views on fitness as well. I continue to exercise daily, but that word now has a different meaning. I’ve ran, jumped, and pushed my body less than ever. I’ve allowed myself to learn yoga stretches, instead of ways to elevate a burpee. I take long walks instead of running mile after mile. And now, my body is starting to thank me for it..
Today, I feel both mentally and physically stronger than ever. Gone are the days I scold myself for not pushing the limits. Gone is the mentality that I need to “be drenched in sweat” in order to have a good workout. Even though I can’t exactly pinpoint when this mindset changed, I can conclude something: too much of one thing is never a good thing.
I can’t help but think this all formed when being forced to slow down. Perhaps a slower pace brings peace to the areas that are screaming out for it, even if we don’t realize..
What has your fitness looked like at home? (I’ve enjoyed learning new yoga sequences here). Are you following a set schedule or allowing yourself to “do what feels right?”
I also love this podcast– perfect for those looking to slow down even further these days..