fun · holiday fitness · holidays · motivation · self care

Making Space 2022: Day 7

When I saw that Martha’s post for 2020 was a reminder that laughing is good for you, I decided to wander YouTube in search of a laughter-related workout and meditation.

And I had a GREAT time watching Laughter Yoga videos and listening to fun meditations. I have included a delightfully irreverent body scan meditation below but if you need more funny meditations, search for ‘cursing meditation’ and you’ll find something fun.

Meanwhile, when you first look at the videos below the *idea* of laughing on purpose (without even something to laugh at, per se)might feel a bit strange at first but the ACTION of laughing is helpful in itself so it’s definitely worth trying.

If these videos aren’t a good way for you to create space for yourself in your day, please choose something else that makes you happy. These posts aren’t about making you do the thing I suggest, they are a reminder that you are worth making space for. So, take up that space in whatever way works for you.

Oh, and be kind to yourself about the whole thing, too.

Pretty please.

A 5 Minute Laughter Yoga Workout from Celeste Greene. The still image features Celeste, a person with short hair wearing an orange shirt, smiling and waving at the camera.
This video Funny Laughter Yoga Session is from the ‘wellness & laughter’ YouTube channel. The still image features a person in a light-coloured sweater with chin-length brown hair smiling and pointing the index finger on each hand toward the ceiling.
This Laughing Yoga video is from the Yogi Ramesh Pandey YouTube channel and the still image features a person in a long shiny gold robe and dark brown beads standing in a garden setting.
The title of this video is ‘The Most Hilarious Guided Meditation and the still image shows a short haired person with gold earrings and a black shirt smiling at the camera, text blocks next to their head read ‘Funniest Meditation Ever! 300k+ Views!’

In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.

For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.

These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.

Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.

advice · habits · health · holiday fitness · holidays · meditation · self care

Making Space 2022: Day 6

Back on December 6, 2020, Martha was advising us to Get some fresh air and she was downright inspiring with the list of fun things she did outdoors on a unseasonably warm day.

That, in turn, reminded me of one of my posts from the fall of 2021 when I got into the habit of catching up with friends while out for a walk.

And THAT made me think of one of the reasons that this time of year can get so overwhelming. Most of us have lots of things that we want/must do but we don’t necessarily have company while we do them.

I find it less stressful to run errands if I bring a friend along for company (Hi, Mary! Thank you!) and I like to have a ‘body-double’ for tedious tasks of any kind. If I can’t have in-person company, then I often do check-ins with a friend online (Hi Trudy, Michelle, Kevin W, Janet, and Martha – all at different times! Thank you!)

Hanging out with a friend in-person or virtually really helps me stay on track and makes even a tedious task kind of fun.

Maybe you’ll find that the same thing works for you?

If you can’t partner up with someone for your current tasks, maybe a different form of virtual company might help.

You could try one of the many body-doubling/coworking online options: ADHD Actually Body Doubling Sessions, bodydoubling.com, and this article about the app FLOWN.

Or you want a way to frame your worktime, have some background noise, and be able to see someone else working away, you could check out the huge variety of ‘Keeping you company while you do stuff’ videos on YouTube. Here is a big list of suggestions:

Color and Chill With Me (Christina Lorre’ – this one starts with a fun and chatty intro but at around 10m 30s settles into colouring) Color with Me (Art Jalons – this one is quite short but fun), Color with me (Gea – this one plays soft music starting a few minutes in)

Read with me (shin – 45 mins with piano and rain sounds), Read with me (Kate – 30 mins, no music but there are bird sounds in the background), Read with me (Morgan – 1 hour with music)

Study with me (cafe.studyy – 66 minutes, soft music), Study with me (beetles in the sunshine – 1 hour, 39mins – rain sounds, no music), Study with me (Merve – 10 hours(!) – background noise but no music)

Clean with me (Lynn White – 17 minutes, music), Clean with me (Kris Hui – 25 mins, conversation), How to clean when you don’t want to (Aleisha Jay – 11 mins, friendly encouragement at the beginning, cleaning company after that)

Work with me [Vicky Zhao BEEAMP] – 75 minutes, music and typing noises – this video is using the pomodoro method of alternating 25 minute work sessions and short breaks), Work with me (Alexis AKA MissTrenchcoat – 3 hours with ambient music), Work/Study with me (Hara Studies – 2 hours, coffee shop background noise)

Mostly, I want you to be able to do the things you need to do in the most enjoyable way possible. If that includes in-person company or some sort of virtual company, so be it.

And, of course, I always recommend creating extra space for yourself in your day by including some movement and/or some meditation (videos below.) But if none of this works for you today, just take good care and be kind to yourself.

Your efforts matter and you are doing the best you can with the resources you have. ⭐

A 10 minute walking workout for seniors, beginning exercisers from the yes2next YouTube channel. Still image features two women in exercise clothing mid-step with their left legs forward and their right arms forward/left arms back. They are both smiling. The left hand side of the image has a purple background and white text listing the name of the video.
This 5 minute ‘meditation for busy people’ from Kendra Fried features a still image of a pond surrounded by trees. The trees and sky are reflected in the calm water.

In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.

For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.

These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.

Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.

ADHD · Dancing · fitness · fun · holiday fitness · holidays · meditation · self care

Making Space 2022: Day 5

December 5th seems like a great time to prioritize fun.

Or, at least, to make fun ONE of your priorities.

Have a look at your to do list for today and see if there are any fun things you can do sooner rather than later. Maybe you love writing cards or baking cookies or shredding old files or making schedules or whatever you find fun but you put those things at the end of your list because you feel like you have to get everything else out of the way before you do the fun stuff.

To hell with that: DO THE FUN STUFF FIRST.

If you are worried about getting carried away with fun stuff and never getting around to the less-fun stuff (this is a worry for those of us who are neurodivergent) then modify my advice above to:

DO SOME FUN STUFF FIRST. Set a timer or some sort of other limit so you get to have your fun and do the other things on your list.

Just, please, please, pretty please, don’t think that you need to EARN your fun. You can put fun first, you can mix it in the middle, YOU get to decide where fun belongs on your schedule.

Martha is also pro-fun – you tell when you read her 2020 Move with Music post that she will back me up on my have-more-fun position here.

So, it the spirit of that, here’s a fun dance video to try.

Not only do I love this song, I love the instructor’s energy, I love how much fun the other people in the video are having and I love that there are some hikers and their dog wandering down the path at the back part way through the song.

Whether you get up and dance, dance in your chair, or just nod your head or wiggle your fingers in time to the music, I think you’ll find this fun.

A dance video from Caleb Marshall AKA The Fitness Marshall entitled “Love Shack – EASY LOW IMPACT CARDIO | Caleb Marshall | Dance Workout” The still image is of Caleb and two back-up dancers, all with one arm extended overhead and one arm stretched out behind them, standing in a field. There is a red highlight outlining each of them. There is a trail extending up a hill on the right side of the image and there are trees behind them. White text on the lower part of the image reads ‘Love Shack Easy To Follow Low Impact’ and there is a rainbow filter behind the text.

Next up, our meditation for today is about feeling energized. They get into a bit of colour visualization that I am sure is related to chakras but if that’s not your thing, you can just do the breathing and build up your energy in black and white. 😉

A Great Meditations meditation video called ‘Feeling Full of Energy A Five Minute Meditation’ The still image is a cartoon-style drawing of a person’s head and shoulders. They have long black hair and gold earrings and their eyes are closed. The background colour is light orange with a mandala in various shades of yellow and orange drawn in the centre behind the person.

Whether you are able to prioritize your fun, do the dance video, do the meditation, do something of your own invention, or just take a few moments to breathe, I wish you ease today.

Please be kind to yourself. 💚⭐

In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.

For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.

These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.

Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.

fitness · habits · health · holiday fitness · holidays · meditation · rest

Making Space 2022: Day 4

Here we are on Sunday, December 4 and I think it’s an excellent time to plan for a rest.

Martha’s advice on December 4, 2020 was to Take a Nap and I am 100% behind that. Even if it is not possible for you to actually sleep in the daytime, planning a short rest period – sitting still, listening to restful music, taking deliberate slow breaths can make a huge difference in your well-being.

If you’d like some audio company for your rest, check out this episode of Dacher Keltner’s The Science of Happiness podcast featuring Tricia Hersey, AKA the Nap Bishop, from the Nap Ministry.

(Note: There’s a great quote from the Nap Bishop in Martha’s post, be sure to have a look.)

By the way, there are some guidelines for taking naps that you might want to have a look at – after all you don’t want your daytime rest to affect your nighttime sleep.

And now that you have been reminded about the hows and whys of resting, I have one more thing to ask you.

Can you plan short daily rest periods?

And/or could you plan ‘time off’ throughout this busy month? Even a few planned hours of deliberate relaxation scattered throughout the month can make a huge difference in how you and your brain feel about everything else on your list.

Seeing as we’re keeping today low-key, here are some relaxing stretches from Doctor Jo:

A video from the Ask Doctor Jo YouTube channel entitled Relieve Stress &Anxiety with Relaxing Stretches. The still image features Doctor Jo lying on her back on a blue mat and a pillow. She is bringing her left leg toward her chest and her right leg is bent while her right foot rests on the floor. She is smiling and she’s wearing grey pants, a green shirt, and light blue socks with whimsical patterns on them.

And next up, we have some yoga nidra – a wonderful way to get some deep rest without actually falling asleep (although, I often do.) This is a short video but if you like the practice there are plenty of longer ones available on YouTube.

A 5 Minute Yoga Nidra video from Ally Boothroyd’s channel. The still image features a person with a beard and chin length hair, wearing a light coloured shirt and dark pants, lying on their back on a yoga mat. They are in Shavasana, corpse pose. Text at the top of the image reads ‘5 Minute Yoga Nidra Rapid Deep Rest Reset.’

I hope the links and videos in this post help you find a little extra rest today but, no matter what you do or don’t do today, please be kind to yourself about how things proceed.

You are doing the best you can with the resources you have.

Be good to yourself. 💚⭐️

In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.

For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.

These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.

Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.

accessibility · disability · diversity · equality · holiday fitness · holidays · inclusiveness · meditation · self care

Making Space 2022: Day 3

This post has a lot of different things crammed into it, kind of like an average December day. I tried to make them into a somewhat coherent whole but I’m not sure it worked. Let’s roll with it anyway.

On Day 3 of her 2020 Wellness Calendar, Martha telling us to Remember to Eat. This is another one of the basic that we often let slide during this busy month. We don’t feel like we have time to sit down for a proper meal so we just grab a snack and the next thing we’re cranky and running on empty. While I get that this kind of thing will happen from time to time, please do what you can to prepare in advance. That might look like making a plan about when you will take downtime for meals or it might look like planning for something quick to eat while you are on the run.

Speaking of all the busyness of the month ahead, one of the ways I’d like you to create space for yourself today is by ditching something from your to do list.

I know that sounds like heresy when there is SoVeryMuch to do but that’s exactly why it is a good idea.

Have a look at your to do list -whether that is on paper, on a screen, or in your head and turn your attention either to the list of stuff that you will do ‘if I have time’ or to anything on your list that you are absolutely dreading.

I would like you to ditch (or at least change) one of those things.

Yes, decide right now that you are not going to do it.

If it is something on your ‘if I have time’ list, then you will be able to create a little extra quiet in your brain. You will have one less thing that can float up to fill any downtime you are trying to create for yourself. And you will feel better about not doing it if it is a decision instead of a lack of time.

If it is something that you are dreading but that you really feel needs to be done, I’m wondering if you might be able to pass it on to someone else. Could there be someone in your life who would happily take that on – maybe not exactly in the same way you do but that’s fine too. Perhaps there’s someone you can pay to do it. Maybe you can trade disagreeable tasks with someone else. Or, maybe the task itself can be changed, reduced, or reshaped to make it less dreadful.

And, I realize that in one of the paragraphs above I told you to add something to your to do list (plan for your meals) and then immediately afterwards I told you to ditch something from your list. I stand by that apparent contradiction.

Adding things to your to do list that increase your well-being and your ability to take good care of yourself are more likely to reduce your stress than increase it. Taking good care of yourself increases your capacity to enjoy the rest of the preparations that you choose to include in your month and to keep the things you *must* do in perspective.

When I prepared last year’s Making Space posts I tried to include videos of people with a range of body types and abilities. I was moderately successful but I am determined to improve things for this year.

Since today is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities I wanted to be sure to be open about my intention to be inclusive and to invite anyone who reads this to share any videos that they find useful. I don’t always know what search terms to use and I may be missing excellent videos because my vocabulary is limited.

These Making Space posts are not exactly the forum for an in-depth discussion of these issues but since I have your attention, I wanted you to know that the theme for this year’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities is “Transformative solutions for inclusive development: the role of innovation in fuelling an accessible and equitable world.”

I don’t think that my posts here are at all part of that sort of broad change but hopefully I can at least raise some awareness about today and give some of my readers something to think about.

I’ll be the first to admit that I know very little about disability activism but some things things I do know are 1) every person on earth has the right to live with dignity 2) change depends on listening to those with lived experience 3) any practice, policy, or accommodation that increases accessibility, diversity, and inclusion is a good thing for everyone who makes use of the service/visits the building/ participates in the activity – an inclusive world is a better world 4) inclusive practices are not about catering to anyone or providing special treatment, they are about creating a more just world.

And I think we can all be part of that change by seeking more just and equitable practices in our organizations, workplaces, and daily lives.

Okay, back to the stated purpose of the Making Space 2022 posts: short workouts and meditations to help create space for yourself on your to do list!

A video entitled ‘7 Minute – No Equipment Workout – Ella’s Wheelchair Workout- Video 40’ from Ella Beaumont, she is wearing a orange tank top, has her hair pulled back in a ponytail and she is in her wheelchair in her living room. Behind her is a couch lined with multi-coloured pillows and a bookshelf filled with books and knick-knacks.

If you’re not feeling up to a workout today, perhaps this meditation from Headspace might be just the thing.

A video from the Headspace YouTube channel called ‘Feeling Overwhelmed? Try This Quick Meditation.’ The still image shows an orange rectangle in the upper left corner that encloses the word ‘Meditation:’ in white and blue text below that reads ‘Feeling Overwhelmed SOS’ on the right side of the screen is a cartoon image of an orange bucket that is overflowing with drops of blue liquid falling from the side into a blue puddle below.

However you choose to take good care of yourself today, I wish you ease in the process.

Please practice self-kindness.

advice · holiday fitness · holidays · meditation · season transitions · self care · yoga

Making Space 2022: Day 2

No matter what you have ahead of you this month, things probably feel like they are about to ramp up but they haven’t quite gotten hectic yet. That makes this an excellent time to put a few things in place for future you.

In 2020, Martha was reminding us that staying hydrated makes a huge difference in how we feel. And when we’re busy, we want to make sure to do anything we can think of that will tip the balance towards us feeling a bit better.

So, with that in mind, what else might keep us feeling a bit better?

What other small things can you do for your future self? You know, the one who might be a bit more frazzled that you are now.

Are there tasks that tend to build up over the month that you can do a little bit at time starting now??

Is there something that you often run out when things get busy but that you could pick up now? Like scotch tape, sugar, or soap – to name just a few things I have had to dash out and get at inconvenient times.

Can you block off some downtime later in the month? This could come in handy when you are invited to something that you don’t really have the capacity for, you can tell them that you are already booked that night!

Speaking of small things you can do for your future self, here are two videos of neck stretches that can really reduce the tension you carry in that area. Reducing that tightness could be just the right way to prevent a future headache.

Whatever you choose to do today, I wish you ease. I hope you can find your own way to keep stress at a minimum and be kind to yourself in the process..

A Yoga with Adriene ‘silent’ video called Yoga for Daily Neck Relief. This video has only music and no verbal cues. The still image is a black and white photo of Adriene with her hair pulled back in a lace band and low ponytail. She is looking to her right.

I enjoy the video above but since Adriene isn’t giving verbal cues, it might not be useful for everyone. Sooo, I have included the video below (another favourite of mine), that includes clear verbal cues.

A video from Mark Wildman called ‘A 3 Minute Neck Drill That Will Change Your Life’ – I’m not sure if it is life changing but it sure is helpful! The still image is two photos of Wildman sitting on a set of steps in a gym. In the first he is extending his neck forward so his face is closest to the camera. In the second he is pulling his chin backwards to extend the muscles in the back of his neck. He has his hands laid over one another on his chest.



Sidenote: As I mention in this 2018 post called Cause and Effect, Effect and Cause I have realized that while anxiety and stress can cause me to have a tight neck, the opposite is also true. If my neck is tight for some physical reason, my brain goes into overdrive because it assumes I am anxious. And, of course, with enough poking around, my brain will always find something to be anxious about. That anxiety makes my neck tighter…you get the picture. If that happens to you, too, these videos might be extra useful.

Not up to neck stretches today? Maybe this grounding meditation is more your speed.

A video called ‘Managing Anxious Thoughts And Stress with Mindfulness’ from the Headspace YouTube Channel. The still image has an orange background and a smiling yellow blob with its eyes closed is on the right hand side. On the left is text reading ‘Lost in Thought? Try Grounding.’

About Making Space 2022

In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.

For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.

These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.

Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.

holiday fitness · holidays · meditation · yoga

Making Space 2022: Day 1

In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.

For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.

These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.

Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.

On December 1, 2020, Martha reminded us that we are always enough (a position that I whole-heartedly endorse) and that things don’t need to be perfect to be good. Please go check out that post for an excellent reminder of how it is ok (and encouraged!) for you to show up just as you are.

On that theme, I’m wondering if you know about Jennifer Louden’s Conditions of Enoughness? I find them an excellent tool for keeping my self-expectations in line with my actual capacity but, like most useful things, they take a bit of practice. If you feel like you are always scrambling or if you have a nagging feeling that you are falling short, the advice at the link above could be just the thing you need to give yourself a break.

If movement is something you need right now, perhaps this short series of stretches will help.

Ok, so most of us are already up for the day but feel free to lie down again for a few minutes and do these stretches with Joelle. Description: A video called Morning Stretch in Bed from the Yoga with Joelle YouTube channel. The still image shows a person with long dark hair lying on their back at the foot of a double bed using their clasped hands to draw their right knee towards their body while their left leg is extended.

If meditation is more your speed, give this a try.

A short meditation from the Great Meditations YouTube channel. The still image shows a cartoon drawing of person with long brown hair with a peaceful expression sitting cross-legged on a fluffy cloud against a blue background.

Whatever you try or whatever you do, I hope you can be kind to yourself in the process.

PS – If you are already feeling overwhelmed by the thought of the month ahead, you might find this old article of mine helpful. December is like a messy closet, here’s how to get it back on track. I’m not actually too concerned with you be ‘on track’ but I do want you to have peace of mind and I hope the suggestions in that piece can help you move in that direction.

cardio · fitness · holiday fitness · holidays · weight lifting

Sam leads the charge taking back the strength training section of the resort gym

So I’m back from a long weekend at a resort in the Dominican Republic. (I blogged this morning about doing an aquaspin class there.) I was originally worried about traveling so soon after surgery but I got the medical clearance and was just told to make sure I kept up with my physio.

On a rainy afternoon that meant a visit to the resort’s fitness centre.

It had a cardio side–spinning bikes, treadmills, etc–and a strength training side–cable machines, free weights, and benches.

There were 16 people in fitness centre and the gender break down probably won’t surprise you. Eight men lifting weights and eight women doing cardio.

Now, when I started I was one of the eight women doing cardio, rehabbing my knee on the spin bike. But after a half hour of that I wanted to move over to the weights. But all those men. So many men. I felt pretty uncomfortable with the idea of trying to work in and around them. I’m a woman, older than most of the people in the gym, there with my cane. So I kept spinning and kept stewing. I thought about the blog and the story I would tell. And then something clicked. I didn’t want to tell the story where I sat and stewed about the gender imbalance. Also, I don’t know any of those guys. Who cares what they think? I want to lift weights. They’ve all been there awhile. So I got off my bike and walked over and claimed one of the pieces of equipment.

A very wonderful thing happened almost immediately. First, one woman joined me. And then another. Some of the guys left.

The next thing you know it’s a mixed group using the weights and the strength training equipment.

I don’t know if there was a causal connection between my move and the other women joining me. Maybe? I do know it felt a bit like there was. That’s the story I’m telling anyway. We did smile at one another.

It does show you that the idea that women just naturally somehow prefer the cardio equipment, that’s that what they want to do, is false.

I would definitely do that again.

I would also do this again!

Sam on the beach!
fitness · holiday fitness

Stilts costume: We did it!

Six friends and I participated in a neighbourhood Halloween parade this past weekend: we dressed up as characters from Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal (1982).

As I noted in my previous post on stiltswalking and fitness, wearing stilts as a quadraped animal in the parade was indeed a good workout for my arms, legs, and core. It also took a lot of mental effort to stay balanced and aware of surroundings and obstacles. I felt shaky and vulnerable like a newborn deer for the first hour.

But I got my “stilts legs” and eventually could even walk mostly upright in them. Friends were a BIG help in supporting us as stiltswalkers. It was fun!

We also won best group costume!A video by journalize Rebecca Zandenbergen and photos are below.

Happy Halloween, if you celebrate, FIFI readers!

fitness · fun · holiday fitness

Why not have more fun? Try a Halloween workout!

With Halloween just 7 days away, I thought it would be fun to post a few themed workouts in case you wanted to get in the ‘spirit’ of things. (ooooooh, so scary!)

A dog wearing a pumpkin hat
Khalee’s idea of a themed workout is to wear her pumpkin hat for approximately 90 seconds of her walk. Image description: Khalee, a light haired dog, is wearing a pumpkin hat and looking toward the camera with a doggie ‘smile.’ She is standing on the dark laminate flooring in my kitchen.

I haven’t watched or completed all of these, I just picked the ones that seemed fun and weren’t obviously problematic. Please take good care of yourself if you choose to do these – don’t do anything that doesn’t work for your body and turn the video right off if they seem to be buying into any diet-culture crap.

A Halloween Dance Party HIIT workout from Emkfit. I really like how she is goofing around here. Video still shows the title of the video in green and white text and there are two images of the host in dark green leggings and a sports bra exercising while making funny faces.
A 25 minute Halloween Dance Workout from Kyra Pro – the theme is pretty much just in the music but that’s still pretty cool. The still image shows the name of the video in ‘Halloween-style’ lettering and includes a photo of the host, in black workout clothes, with their hands in the air, shaped like monster claws.
A Halloween Walking Workout from Brand Fitness, I love how casual and friendly she is and she really seems like she is having a great time. . Still image shows the words ‘ 2500 Steps Halloween Walk’ in ‘Halloween-style’ text with cartoonish bats and spiderwebs in the background. The host is featured on the right hand side, wearing a witch costume with striped tights.
A 20 Minutes Halloween HIIT Workout from GrowingAnnanas – she does this whole workout in facepaint – I don’t know how it didn’t melt right off! Still images shows the video name in block letters with some white background and some red background. The red background has an added ‘blood drip’ in the bottom corner. The host is in black workout gear with face paint that looks like old fashioned mime or clown make-up – triangles pointed up from their eyebrows and down below their eyes, a black dot on their nose, and their lips are outlined in black.
A Halloween Zumba workout from Zumba Sulu. Another video done in full face make-up plus a costume and he has some spooky props in the background – very fun! Still image shows text reading ‘Halloween Special Dance Workout’ and shows the instructor in skull makeup and Halloween clothing making a ‘scary hands’ gesture toward the camera.
Yoga for ZOMBIES! by Yoga with Adriene. This one may not be as much of a Halloween theme as the previous videos but it’s close enough. And even Zombies need to be limber, right? Still image shows the video title in block letters, the word zombies is in red. Host is wearing a black shirt and red leggings and there is a background image of a black and white graveyard with leafless trees surrounded by mist.
A seated Halloween dance workout from Chair Yoga with Barbara. This video is pretty low-key but the host seems very friendly and the movements are straightforward. Still image shows the video title in Halloween-style text with a clip art ghost and spiderweb next to the text. The host is shown on the left side, wearing black shorts and an orange shirt with a Jack-o-Lantern face in black on the front.

I was only going to share 7 workouts but then I found this short chair yoga workout to ‘Monster Mash’ that is just so charming that I have add it to my list. I can’t figure out why it won’t embed like the others did but it is worth the click over to YouTube to view it.

I hope you found some fun workouts in this collection.

Do you have any other Halloween workout links you could share?