So I did a little throwback on this playlist. Jimmy Eat World really takes me back to middle school. Plus I was the middle girl of two boys, so I really felt like this was my song back in the day. My favorite of this week most definitely has to be RedFoo’s Juicy Wiggle, though. I mean seriously. How can you not want to dance during that one?! And that new Andy Grammar song? That one just screams sprint intervals. Let’s be honest… I’m music crushing this cycling playlist hardcore. Crank out those watts to this week’s playlist! See you in the saddle soon!
Be powerful today!
In my class you will often hear me tell my students that yoga is learning to accept yourself just as you are, and to appreciate the body that came to your mat today. This, like many of the things I tell my students, is something I have to remind myself too.
The other night I was taking a class where this mantra came into full effect. I look over to my left and this girl is twisting herself into a pretzel! One leg behind the head, the other, and then both! You’ve got to be kidding me!! Why can’t I do that? I still struggle in pigeon. What is wrong with me? Am I not yogic enough? All these questions, emotions, mental abuse come flooding into my mind. I stop. Just breathe, everything changes. What good is coming from this train of thought? I have to accept myself, and my practice for what it is. Appreciate the body I do have, and all the amazing things I am able to do with it on a daily basis.
Today I told myself, I am human. I have strengths, and weaknesses. Inside all of them is beauty. I will accept myself, body and mind, and my practice for what it is today, and learn to appreciate the light in all areas. I hope you too; can find the light inside of yourself.
This first playlist was pretty therapeutic to put together. I picked some favorites, some classics and found a couple new songs to make sure it had plenty of variety. Fast paced flat roads with sprint intervals and heavy hill climbs make up my first playlist for Watts. Enjoy!
And remember… be powerful today!
Hello powerful friends! Watts is going to be starting a new series of weekly yoga intentions to get us centered and able to dedicate our yoga practices (or personal meditations, or just something to reflect on) to a new intention each week. Yoga instructor Megan will be sharing this intention and reflecting and focusing on it during that week’s yoga classes here at Watts. To start us off, here is our first post on patience:
Patience… a virtue that is not easy. With daily practice you will begin to train your mind to live in a space of silence/hesitation/stillness/(insert whatever adjective patience means for you). For me, patience means finding love and appreciation for the current moment. Letting go of the anticipation of future events, letting go of the frustration of things not going the way I believe they should. Learning to trust myself, and the universe in that moment. When we become consumed by wanting more we neglect to see the beauty in the present moment. If you are always craving more, you’ll find your mind and body unable to relax.
My intention this week, and weeks to follow is to practice patience with myself, my thoughts, my practice, others, and in life in general. Join me in this intention and find out what adding a bit of patience to your day can make.
Be powerful (and patient) today,
When I was flying across the country every 4 days, watching movies on my iPad got pretty old. Just to give you some perspective, when traveling from Boston to San Francisco, that was 2.5 movies each way, and it was 2 movies each way from Indy. That’s over 200 movies of air time over the course of a year. On top of that, all of my work was on a computer, so I got really tired of staring at screens all day.
Enter: Podcasts and knitting
Now this may seem a little off topic, but bear with me for just a minute and I promise I’ll get to the point.
I imposed a “no screens” policy on airplanes because I was spending so much time on my computer at work, and as a result of that, I discovered the amazing world of podcasts. I became obsessed with “Serial” and binge listened to the first 5 episodes on one flight (if you haven’t listened to these yet and you love a good mystery, you can listen to them here). Podcasts, I should add, were exceptionally wonderful because they provided the same entertainment value of a movie, but I was much more productive because I could still concentrate on my knitting projects.
I started listening to a podcast called The $100 MBA. It’s 7-15 minute episodes about business, entrepreneurship, building an online presence, and all things related. They release an episode every day, and they’re super succinct, provide great examples, and offer up manageable action items.
I was listening to an episode of $100 MBA one day and they were talking about goals and celebrating your accomplishments. It’s a concept that really hit home for me and I noticed I was a big offender of what they were describing. It can be totally crippling when it comes to trying to achieve anything at all, and I call it: The Phantom Goalpost.
Instead of explaining the phantom goalpost, Here’s a couple of examples on what it looks like. Let’s call the person in this first example “Alice”:
Day 1: “I really want to lose 10 pounds in the next 6 weeks for my vacation.” – great, Alice, you’ve set your goal.
3 weeks later: “Wow! I’ve already lost 7 pounds! I’m going to go for 15 pounds!” – woah, nice work Alice, raising the bar!
End of 6 weeks: “Ugh! I’ve only lost 11 pounds! This is the worst! I’m just going to eat whatever I want and not care about my weight anymore.”
48 hours later: *Alice has eaten unimaginable amounts of food and has gained back 3 pounds*
This is an incredibly common form of the phantom goalpost. Here’s another true example of what I’ve gone through in my training this year so far:
January 1: “I really want to snatch 77kg by the end of this year” – nice job, Paige, thumbs up!
January 17: “I snatched 70kg! Only 7kg to my goal!” – great progress, Paige, keep it up!
February 19: “I snatched 75kg! I bet I can get 85kg by the end of the year!” – Fantastic! ….wait, what?
March 6: “Man, I snatched 77kg today and that was so hard! 85kg is going to be impossible!” – *insert sad violin music and frowny emojis here*
Today: *Has still not snatched 85kg*
Do you see what’s happening? In both cases, both Alice and I never got to celebrate reaching our goals. And we both met them! Instead of letting ourselves reach the goals we set and enjoy that sense of accomplishment, we moved them farther away and have ultimately been unable to achieve them. This is the phantom goalpost. It’s a goalpost that moves before you ever get the chance to score… and it will kill your ability to feel success because you never allow yourself the opportunity to actually get there. Reaching a goal is something you should celebrate, but first, you actually have to reach it.
By no means, does this mean you shouldn’t continue to set new goals, or that you should set the bar low. We set goals to push ourselves, but they do need to be realistic and achievable. I’m 24 years old, and I’ve only taken 4 gymnastics classes in my life, so going to the olympics as a gymnast is probably not a realistic goal for me. Losing 100 pounds (if you have it to lose) is a great goal, but losing 100 pounds in 12 weeks? Probably not. Goals can have any timeline and be related to any aspect of your life, and they’re an incredibly useful strategy when it comes to keeping yourself focused and on track when you’re working towards something.
Ultimately, my point is this: when you work really hard at something, you want to feel like you’ve made some sort of accomplishment or progress. If you keep changing what that is before you do it, it never actually gets done. That’s why I call it the phantom goalpost. You’re never really sure what the goal is, if it’s even there, or where it might go as soon as you get close. It continues to fade into the mist and scoring becomes utterly impossible.
Here’s a few tricks I’ve used to combat the phantom goalpost, and they’ve made reaching my goals feel (and taste) even sweeter:
1) Write your goals down and date them. Here’s my training notebook and some of the goals I wrote down at the beginning of 2015 (so they are not dated).
2) When you reach that goal, write down the date you reached your goal, and then do something to celebrate. This is the part I like to call “Treat yo’ self”. It doesn’t have to be anything huge or crazy. Hit your weightloss goal? Buy yourself a new outfit. Made it to the gym 5 times this week? Treat yourself to your favorite snack. Hit your 100kg clean and jerk goal? Crush a big a** rainbow sprinkles doughnut. Ran your first 5k without stopping? Go high five a stranger and tell them that you hit your goal. Just do something! Give yourself a pat on the back and 5 minutes to be proud of yourself before you challenge yourself with a new goal.
3) After you’ve sufficiently rewarded yourself, set a new goal. Raise the bar. Not insignificantly, because you still want it to be a challenge, something you feel like you’ve worked for. Write this goal down and date it. You can see this in my picture above.
4) Keep on crushing your goals and enjoy and bask in the warm fuzzy glow that comes from knowing that your hard work is leading to success.
Keep being awesome, and remember: be powerful today,
Want to check out a Watts cycling class? Sign up here!
I have been teaching group fitness classes for three years, everything from Insanity to bootcamp to group cycling, one of my favorite formats. I am currently a junior at Butler University where I am part of their Masters of Physician Assistant program and am a native of Plainfield, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. I am a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority, an avid runner, and I love reading and being outside. My favorite part of cycling classes is the high energy, loud music, and its adaptability to every fitness level. My favorite food is blueberry pancakes and I will never say no to trying out new restaurants or food!
Anna will be teaching our 5:30pm classes Mondays and Wedesdays when she is not out traveling the world! You can sign up for her classes here!
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Henry has been a spin instructor and avid cyclist for the past 11 years. As a Park Tudor and Purdue grad, his roots are driven deep into Indiana soil, but his mind wanders off from time to time! He enjoys being outside, whether rain or shine, staying fit and being around other positive folk. As an interesting tidbit, he is still just a big kid at heart that enjoys the occasional Sci-Fi/Action movie and has yet to give up on his collection of comics.
Henry’s favorite decadent treat – Klondike bars…What would you do for one?
Come check out Henry’s killer cycling class Mondays at 6:30pm and earn your Klondike bar! Sign up here!
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