The first challenge of the year is complete!
The delay with the video is because of the laaarge amount of footage I captured and had to sift through, hence the longer video duration.
Phew. Glad that’s done.
I know I mentioned it in the video, but I’d like to reiterate and expand. Sometimes I’m not as articulate as I’d like to be when I’m behind the lens 🙂
I think one thing I gained from this challenge, beyond the physical aspect, was a renewed perspective about how change occurs with our bodies. Like I say in the video, I wanted to see rapid progress and whenever I seemed to feel tight or not progressing, I would get a little flustered internally and think that maybe I wasn’t going to see change like I wanted to. I do realize now that our bodies can only do so much sometimes and we have to be patient with the progress even if it’s slow or seems discouraging at times. And we have to love our bodies where they’re at. The more positive we feel about our body and efforts, the more positive experiences and outcomes we will attract into our lives.
I also didn’t mention that I really relaxed after stretching and had a better session when I listened to some peaceful music and focused on my breathing. In the video you can’t tell that I did that much, but I did numerous times and really felt like it made a difference.
I took notes everyday (some days more than others) to reflect on the session and keep track of what happened. Quotes from some of those days are below the video.
1/4 – Did if for a good 30 mins before work. I was nooot feeling good! Feeling a little discouraged and nervous I won’t see enough improvement.
1/5 – Really pretty sick and didn’t stretch. I’m definitely fighting off a yucky virus 🙁
1/10 – I lied down and relaxed after and it was SO PEACEFUL. I forgot how good that feels after. I think I won’t forget again 😉
1/13 – 60 mins. Starting to see some improvement on my splits and other poses. I love my stretching time. It’s hard to start but once I get warmed up, I absolutely love it. Laid down again after. Mmmmmm.
1/16 – Did it for a good 50 mins. Especially worked on forearm handstands and regular ones. Just kept stretching on and off. I love the feeling when you’re done with a stretch. Your legs and muscles feel so relaxed, and it just makes me want to go and do the stretch again to feel that after. I was working a little on ab strength while laying down and that was SO relaxing too! I loved it so much!
1/17 – Stretched for about 35 mins. Sometimes it’s a little discouraging because progress is slow. It’s like I want things to happen overnight and they don’t. Still seeing steady improvement though. Sometimes I wait until 1 AM to do my stretching because for some reason I always want to put it off, but once I start doing it, I remember how much I love it and it’s easy for me to spend a good half hour doing it.
1/18 – I woke up and started to do some row-ups and went on Instagram and saw this yogi girl. It inspired me to go practice my handstands and forearm stands. I’m getting better little by little, but I took a bad fall when my hands were placed too far apart, and hit my knee on the floor really hard.. I guess no pain, no gain! lol
1/20 – BEST STRETCH NIGHT yet I think. I felt so peaceful and relaxed and was just feeling my stretches so much more deeply. It was pure serenity. I was SO encouraged to see my progress and spent a good hour just doing whatever I felt. It was perfect. I think it helped to have the nice calm Pandora station playing. I’m loving this and am so glad I did this challenge. I’m getting much more bendy!!
1/21- Another great night of stretching!! I would say I spend a good hour again, but I also took some videos. I’m loving the progress I’ve made – it’s really encouraging! I’m getting a lot more flexible and a little better at balance. Still really practicing forearm handstands and getting a little better, but those are really tough! I’ve realized calming music and focusing more on my breathing really helps me do a lot better and feel so much more relaxed. It’s awesome! The feeling is so great and my body just feels so good. Especially coming out of a stretch and just laying there. Wish I would’ve done it more sooner.
1/24 – Stretched in the wee hours of the morning and did it for a good hour and 15 mins! I watched videos of Kino MacGregor and really focused on the tough yoga poses part. Realizing I should hold a little longer/breath into the stretch more. I also like having some guidance like with those videos! Even though I’m realizing that it’s hard to get some of these poses in just one month – some people take years to get them – I have definitely seen improvement, and I love it. I hope to dedicate more of my time to this beyond the challenge.
1/26 – I GOT MY SPLITS ON BOTH SIDES!!!! OMG! BEST DAY EVER! WOOO! I spent another hour stretching and watching some videos. It helped a lot and I loved it. I’m so excited!
1/28 – I spent almost an hour (55 minutes I’d say) stretching. It was a tougher one. I couldn’t get my splits as good as the other night, and I can’t fold over as much with my legs open out front. For some reason that one really hurts, the bottom part of my hips where it connects to my legs hurts. I don’t really know why. It’s been hurting a bit so I must be doing something a little off or too quick.
1/31 – Did alright for my last day. Recorded the video and did better on my forearm handstand! Overall, I’m very satisfied with this challenge. I really had to stay dedicated at times and it taught me better self-discipline. It also reminded me of how important and how amazing it feels to just breath and relax along with the stretches. I love the peace it brings me. Can’t wait to keep stretching and working on poses!