Make It Count

How fast my day went from contentment in the idea of my mind being in a place able to question and analyze, yet remain open minded; to the feeling of exhilaration!  Before, I felt ready to face any challenge and come out on the other side with some new perspectives and a greater respect for different events.  Now, I’m excited for it!  The road ahead of me is long and unknown, but that’s what makes it so amazing.  I know I’ll always be pointing in the right direction.  Even if it seems backwards at times, the path I take is the perfect path for me.  Every step back, every mistake, every U-turn, leads me to something bigger and better than before.  If I go back, it’s an opportunity to learn something I missed the first time.  I don’t even think of a path “going backwards”, I think of life as a constant path forward, just in any direction.  It could look like a 4 year old’s drawing, full of scribbles.  But it’s what you make out of it that counts.  So, go out there and MAKE IT COUNT!

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Laughing at yourself

So, I think it’s healthy to laugh at yourself every once and again.  Today I continued my journey on basket weaving… Lets just say, basket weaving is not my thing!  My trainer wouldn’t even let me finish it was so bad… We came to the conclusion that it was a used grenade holder.

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Moral of the story: Don’t take life too seriously… you’ll never get out alive.

Better Day!

So yesterday was kind of weird, but I immediately felt better after I had wrote about the chaos that was going through my head.  I woke up with a big stretch and thought about a video I had watched from the day before.  Practicing a big posture and getting yourself psyched for the day… It worked well!

I got to talk to a few of my friends and share ideas about things I did not understand before my trip to Florida.  It was refreshing and I am looking for more light bulbs to spark in my brain in the future!  My day consisted of a few different things… I could have sat around for a few hours after I finished working, but I packed my bags and went to the beach!  After the beach, I did a little basket weaving… I think I would be better at knitting…

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Weightless

“The sky is the limit and I just wanna float,

Free as a spirit on a journey of hope.

Cut the strings and let me go.

I’m weightless. ”

– Natasha Bedingfield

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Today was a wonderful reflection day for myself.  I spent my entire morning listening to the ocean waves roll onto shore, feeling the warm breeze travel across my body, the sand in between my toes, and the sun brightening my spirits.  I imagined all of my inhibitions being taken in by the undertow to get lost in the sea.  I no longer had any attachments.  I felt so small when I thought about the ocean and it’s entirety.  Here I am, all five foot seven inches of me, standing next to the Atlantic Ocean where there are sharks, whales, and all sorts of other creatures living amongst it.  How crazy is that?  It’s a very humbling feeling.  After I had thought about all that exists in the ocean, I started paying attention to the people fearlessly diving into water.  The ocean directed them with each wave as they floated up and down.  I envied those people’s trust in nature.  They didn’t show any fear or hesitation that a shark would eat them.  All I could think about was a jelly fish grabbing onto my leg or a shark popping out of the big waves being washed right in my direction to gobble me in one bite.  I was thinking about this, and I took a second to realize that I had fear of the ocean.  At that moment, I got off of my towel and marched down to the water.  The initiation of a braver Heather, then ran in.  I submerged myself in the unknown and walked out smiling from ear to ear.  I felt completely revived and ready for whatever comes next.

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Growth

I feel like I’ve been making progress lately.  My body feels stronger, my mind more organized, and that’s all I can ask for.  I’ve made a few significant changes within the last couple of days.  First, I made a food schedule.  I went through a lot of groceries last week and I think it’s because I eat when I have nothing else to do.  I know that’s a hard habit to break so I’m going to nip it in the bud that way I can stay healthy, fit, and not worry about eating through all of my money.  It’s bad enough my horse eats through my wallet!

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I’ve only been with this food schedule since last night but I’m liking it already.  Now, I’m not diving into the fridge when I feel the slightest bit of hunger.  I drink water instead.  I prepared some rice, black beans, and Italian diced tomatoes that I will eat throughout the week.  I can put it on a tortilla shell for breakfast, eat it plain for lunch or dinner with a fruit or veggie side.  I allow myself snacks between my three main meals so my metabolism stays active.  I’ve always tried to eat relatively healthy, but I’ve never kept track of it before.  I’m excited to see if I have any changes in energy levels or even just my physical appearance with the combination of strength training and running that I have been doing.

Though it may not look like much, it is delicious!
Though it may not look like much, it is delicious!

Another thing I have been paying attention to is my posture.  I have a very long torso so it is easy for me to slouch.  An excuse?  Maybe.  But, I don’t really have sympathy toward myself so it doesn’t matter.  I’ve been working on keeping my abdominal muscles engaged, thinking of stretching down through my back, lifting my chest, and keeping my shoulders down.  Especially my right shoulder, that one likes to creep up toward my ear.  Instead of hunching over and flinging my arm and shoulder out to grab something, I am focusing on keeping my core engaged, back down, shoulders down, and stretching my arm out.  As my upper body strength improves, it is easier for me to operate with my arms farther away from my body.  I have very little flexibility in my upper body, so I am working on that as well.

Last but not least… MY HAIR!  I chopped it all off before I went to Florida… There was a lot falling out and it just felt incredibly dry and it knotted very easily.  My hair had never been like that before!  Normally, I had a lot of success with Pantine products, so I got one of their moisturizing shampoo and conditioners but it didn’t help.  Which, is why I decided to cut it off and start over so to say.  I wanted to get all of the damaged ends off.  When I got here, I had been using the little hotel samples for shampoo and conditioner.  My hair felt great from those!  Last week when I made my first grocery store excursion, I picked up some Pantine shampoo/conditioner…  After two days of using this shampoo my hair started doing the same thing. I couldn’t even brush through it with my fingers in the shower when it was soaking wet!  I threw that stuff in the garbage and got some Garnier Fructis.  My hair feels like butter now!  If only I had tried this before I cut off all of my hair… Oh well.  Good thing my hair will grow, too!

My hair before I chopped it off!
My hair before I chopped it off!

Teamwork

I’ve always been a very independent person.  I never truly felt comfortable asking for help.  I always wanted to do everything on my own.  Whether I was subconsciously trying to show my responsibility, or I was in fear that asking questions would be a burden.  I think it’s good to be independent in some cases, but working with other people is when the true magic happens.  Just these two weeks in Florida I have been trying to ask more questions and be interdependent.  I don’t want to rely on someone for my every need, but I can’t be afraid to ask questions or share ideas.

I’ve been put in a situation where there are so many new things around me, I’m am kind of forced to ask other people for help.  At first, it was like pulling teeth.  I would do everything possible to try to avoid that uncomfortable position.  But after the first few times, I realized it’s not so bad.  In fact, I’ve learned something valuable from each situation in which I could not figure out something on my own.  Fancy that!

This thought led me to another important one… From my experiences, I’ve always been in settings where there was only one trainer at a farm.  I am really curious as to how a farm with two trainers going for the same goal would work out.  I can imagine there would be a much different atmosphere at that barn.  Instead of a one way street of “my trainer said this”, what about incorporating teamwork?  Riders helping riders, trainers helping trainers.  Share knowledge of the bio mechanics, psychology, and all of the other fun things involved in horseback riding.  That’s something I am going to study over the next five months.  How can I incorporate more teamwork into my life.

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Good morning!

Some almonds, an egg, and an orange: a delightful breakfast!  I am going on a run with my trainer in a few minutes, I’m looking forward to it.  I woke up around 7:30 this morning and practiced taking very slow deep breaths.  I feel calmer, yet more energized when I start my day like that.  Also, I got to bed last night before 11:00pm so I got enough sleep!  This is a beautiful morning, the sun is shining into my window and I can hear all of the birds singing outside.  What a lovely day to be alive.