Consistency has been one of my weaknesses for years! Prior to having my children, I was always practicing my art forms – dance, music, vocals- singing, rehearsing, practicing, rehearsing and performing, as motherhood set in and duties mounted I slowly put my gifts on the back burner to become provider, nurse, teacher, and everything else a single parent transforms into after a day at the office. The arts still reigned supreme, however, but I focused instead on nurturing the talents of my children pushing ‘them’ into dance, musicals, auditions, recitals and rehearsals -break dancing, visual art, poetry,or ballet didnt matter as long as ‘they’ were channeling energy into an art form I was satisfied. I delighted with the title of “Stage Mom” and felt content with their success and happiness.
Along the way, I kept to my natural health, alternative healing and spiritual practices rearing my family with respect for Mother Earth and making the right food choices to ensure good health in our family. But when it came to a personal fitness practice for myself, I’d dabble in yoga, then moved to Tai Chi, then Qigong, try Kundalina and practice for 6 months, while mixing it up with Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Yin Yoga, ahh Kemetic Yoga, some running in the park, a little archery, bike riding, but nothing seemed to stick. I was never consistent with my fitness programs. Life seemed to get in the way and the demands of survival always took my time and energy away from focusing too much on any art or fitness for myself.
Then I moved to Augusta Georgia and tried Crossfit, I loved it then hated it often enough, but loved the way I felt post WOD (“Workout of the Day” in Crossfit terms) but still that didnt keep me. Then I was introduced to Bodybuilding by a trainer at a local gym. He put me on what I now would call a “Military -Arnold Schwarzenegger-type- Beast” Training (smirk) it was grueling and my then 125lb yogini raw food physique was not prepared for this kind of muscle building training. I would often plummet in shear pain and anguish unable to stand or sit or squat (lol) or do the most simple mundane everyday tasks. When my Personal Trainer relationship ended I was left with a choice to be or not to be (giggle) I decided I would continue training because I truly liked it, there was something powerful, dynamic and uplifting about weight lifting, bodybuilding, weight training that I was slowing growing to love. In spite of the constant pain and dietary blunders I faced and learned from, this type of training kept my attention, zeal, tenacity and “love”. I was determined to learn this athletic art form myself and not depend on a Personal Trainer. In fact, Im am at this very moment studying my exams for certification in Group Fitness, and Personal Trainer.
I absolutely LOVE fitness and am addicted to bodybuilding. I remember my 2nd or 3rd initial Crossfit class and my trainer looking me in the eye saying “ahh you have commitment issues” I blurt out in laughter for he had been accurate up to that point in my life changing events, the twists and turns of my life were just unfolding and i was on the eve of transforming myself, emotionally, spiritually, and psychically. My once overly shy outer personality has transformed into a confident, self motivated, go-getter of my yesteryear in fact I’m loving who I am becoming more and more each day, discovering new aspects of myself in the process and using the medium of fitness to transform many areas of my life. As I told a fellow bodybuilder acquaintance, training has become my spiritual, intimate practice. Each new fitness goal i set for myself and accomplish are building blocks to the investment in my self and my dreams. When I feel discouraged I come back the next day ready to tackle a new, heavier weight or rep and then go home sweaty, exhausted and spiritually fulfilled using these powerful principles to set new or build my artistic and business dreams. I hold myself accountable for where I am in life and give thanks humbly for each choice and contribution I make to the whole. In this short time, I’ve relocated my inner centeredness and ground building on the foundation of consistent, daily, weekly, monthly fitness practice.
So when I run into my ex trainer at a local Lift Competition and notice the shock in his face for seeing me there I laugh and remind him, I’m training all the time, Getting my Fitness, Consistently and Loving It! (@RiaSweetraw, follow NaturalSelf™❤ Lifestyle+Fitness on Twitter!)