By: Karen Lilleyman
Along with kale and kombucha, “self care” has become something of a buzzword over the last few years, but what does it mean? And how do we incorporate it into our lives in a healthy way?
Like many others with a hectic work and social life, in my former years as an attorney, “self care” tended to mean just getting through the week without too many stress-induced meltdowns, making sure there were at least some clean clothes and healthy food in the house and squeezing in a few trips to the gym or yoga studio (usually at 6am or 9pm) to try to maintain some semblance of health and sanity. I assumed that after leaving behind the legal world, life would be all candle lit baths and running through meadows. Not quite. If anything, when we’re in charge of our own schedules self care can become even more challenging and less clearly defined.
They say that work expands to fill the time available. I have found that to be true even in my new life as a yoga teacher and entrepreneur. Even though I’m in charge of my days in a way I never was before, I can still find myself feeling like there’s too much to do and not enough time to be or to simply enjoy life. So, as much for my benefit as anyone else’s (they say we teach what we need to learn, right?), here are my self care commitments: walking my dog daily and looking around to see the seasonally changing mountains and duck dynamics on the pond behind my house; playing on the swings at the park for 15 minutes at least once a week; listening to music as I go about the inevitable daily chores (Drake is particularly good at helping me clean, I find); cardio and weights at least twice per week (full disclosure: I have not been managing this consistently recently and felt the consequences on the recent Leprechaun Race!); laughing with friends as often as possible; and of course attending at least 2 yoga classes which I’m not teaching.
There are many more things I could add to the list, but I try to keep it realistic and achievable, otherwise these helpful tools can become a stick to beat ourselves with. As with all things the key is balance. Some days self care will look like a burger, fries and a milkshake, other days like roasted veg and hummus; some days like sweating and really pushing our limits, others like curling up with a book. We don’t always get it right, and accepting that and moving on is probably the biggest act of self care of them all. I’ll let you know when I get the hang of that…
I’d love to hear your self care commitments, share away in the comments!
GROUP CLASS WORKOUT
Push press 6×5 increasing weight
Lean: No Strength
3 lap run
2 Rds: 14 OH Plate Lunges, 10 V-Ups, 5 inch worms
Finish: 1 min goblet squat hold, 15 PVC PT, GM, 20 leg swings
20 Cal Row
15 Hand Release Push ups
10 Lateral Burpees
5 Squat Cleans (135/95)
30 Double Unders
25 Knee Raises
20 Goblet Squats 53/35
15 Push ups
10 Burpee Pullups
Mobility of the day: Tricep Smash (pg. 276)
Improves: Front Rack Position, Overhead Position
Strengthen & Lengthen
6 to 7am
7 to 8am
4:30 to 5:30pm