The first day back to a regular fitness/movement routine is always the most difficult. I am generally pretty vigilant about my regular movement practice, but August was a challenging month for me. I have had some unexpected health issues, a short vacation and then was sick with Covid, so it was one thing after another that took me away from any kind of regular movement schedule.
I knew that my first class back would be a challenge, but thankfully, the instructors at The Pharm are amazing, and I found myself in Rafaela’s Tuesday morning barre class. If you haven’t taken any of her barre classes yet, I highly recommend them. They are challenging, but Rafaela’s encouraging and calm demeanor gets you through class feeling empowered and strong. Something that she mentioned multiple times during class really resonated with me – “give yourself grace.” This is something that I use as an intention for myself on a regular basis, but I needed that particular reminder during that class. I think that sometimes we can put so much pressure on ourselves to be better, stronger, perfect when each day our bodies and our spirits may be struggling for one reason or another. It was unreasonable of me to think that I would come to class after a two week break and get through a challenging class without needing to rest here and there. Instead, I celebrated how strong and capable I felt after completing a strenuous class.
My continual lesson is in listening to what my body needs on any given day. To celebrate the days where I feel super strong and energetic and to give myself extra grace on the days when I’m tired or not quite at my best for some reason. All of it is welcome, all of it is human, all of it is perfectly ok. Giving ourselves grace also means not berating ourselves on those days where things seem extra challenging. Simply showing up for ourselves and arriving on our mats or getting to class is half the battle. It is making a commitment to our health and to our well-being, whatever it happens to look like from one day to the next. May we continue to give ourselves grace when we need it, and keep showing up for ourselves in any way we can. As we move through the end of summer and into fall, let’s make a commitment to nurture ourselves so we can show up for ourselves and those who mean the most to us with renewed energy, focus and love.