Have you ever tried something WAY outside your comfort zone? How did it make you feel?
Here's one of my "step-outside-the-comfort-zone" experiences and what I learned...
I took a Pure Barre class.
Pure Barre is a full-body workout that you feel ALL OVER. It's becoming more and more popular with boutique studios opening up around the nation.
I learned a few things from my first class. Thought I'd share with you.
1. Having a good teacher/mentor/coach is imperative. Rebecca is the owner of the Pure Barre studio near my house. She was also the instructor of the class I chose to take as my first class (I specifically chose to take HER class so I could benefit from her knowledge).
Even before the class Rebecca was encouraging, helpful, and communicative. She made me feel very at ease throughout the process. During the class, she paid attention to my form (which was often off target!) and quietly gave me instruction. She is personable, helpful, and passionate about what she does.
I think any time we try something new, step out of our comfort zone, or stretch ourselves to a new level, an excellent coach/trainer/mentor is imperative. Thank you, Rebecca! You rock.
2. It's good to change things up every once in a while! The beginning of a new year is an excellent time to evaluate every aspect of your life and get out of a rut if you're feeling stuck. I have always been an active person (used to be a personal trainer), but I was feeling a little "stuck in a rut" and knew I needed something different for my PLAY time (physical activity). I knew my body needed a new challenge. So, I sought out something different. I had been hearing about Pure Barre and what an amazing workout it is, so I thought that would be a good thing to try.
3. The right equipment and clothing helps the whole process (even if it feels weird). In Pure Barre, there's lots of different positions and movements. They suggest tight fitting workout wear for the most comfort. If you know me, you know I'm not a tight clothing kinda gal. So, this was a rather huge hurdle for me to jump over.
However, I understood the necessity, so off to Academy I went. Purchased some body-hugging leggings and workout shirt. Though it was weird to see me in those clothes, during the class I was glad I bit the bullet and wore them. They didn't ride up, fall around, or show anything I didn't want to show. For that, I was thankful. (Though, I do think next time I'll wear a little bit looser fitting shirt over the tight one just for my own comfort.)
4. It's crazy how easy it is to revert back to high school days and feelings of inadequacy and rejection. So, this is what went down. When I arrived, I had no idea where to go or what to do. Yes, I felt quite inadequate, self-conscious, and weird (like high school!). However, Rebecca came to my rescue (like that nice girl in high school!). She showed me the equipment I needed, and the spot on the floor to claim as mine for the class.
In front of "my" spot a few feet, there was someone else's equipment. (She had gone to the bathroom.) I just assumed there was enough room for both of us since that's specifically where I was told to go. So, I was sitting there, alone, waiting for class to start and wondering what I had just gotten into, when the owner of the other equipment came back from the bathroom and very loudly said, "Oh, that's my equipment there, you'll need to move." She was friendly enough, but...how embarrassing! I had no idea where to go.
The class was full. There really were no other spots available. Luckily, another gal behind us heard the remark (as I'm sure the whole class did) and had mercy on me. She told me I could come squeeze in by her (which was actually much less room than where I was in the first place). So, squeeze I did. She was so nice and helpful.
But, boy, I really felt like a kid in high school again. Embarrassed, unsure, inadequate. It made me realize how fragile feelings can be and how easily they can surface. If we're not conscious of it, negative feelings/energy can derail us in a heartbeat. (So, be conscious!)
5. Having a group of like-minded people working on accomplishing the same goal is essential to success. All of us in that full class were there to finish the class. We were there to challenge our bodies and push limits. It's so much easier to accomplish difficult tasks when you're not alone, when you have other people in your boat and on your side.
There's such good energy when everyone is working on achieving a goal. It makes you not want to quit! Yes, it's hard. Yes, your legs are shaking. Yes, your body is tired. But, so is everyone else...and you ALL just keep going. You just keep moving.
I think this is imperative to remember in life. Whether you're starting a business, starting a new workout routine, starting a new healthy lifestyle, be sure you're doing it with friends or other like-minded individuals. I always say, "Health is more fun with friends!" It's true. But, it's not just more "fun," it's easier and more meaningful when you take the journey together.
6. I learned that I'm not nearly as flexible as I used to be!! My legs were shaky the entire day after that workout. And, I was SORE the day after. Every time I moved, I groaned. We lose flexibility as we age and that has never been more apparent to me. So, I'll be working on flexibility. Stretching daily. It's so good for your body and your mind. I encourage you to do the same!
I highly recommend Pure Barre for anyone who wants to take their fitness, strength, and tone to the next level. You can modify it to fit your needs. Push yourself, but don't kill yourself. Listen to your body.
But, if Pure Barre is not your thing, find SOMETHING that is outside your comfort zone to continually push yourself. If not, life gets stagnant. :)