Making Space for Yourself

Written by Coach Ren

The “Long Dark” is upon us, and the holidays are challenging for many people. We’ve been sharing ideas during our class check-ins about how to support ourselves during this time of the year. Light subconsciously helps us regulate and gives us energy – it’s good to think about how to create that for ourselves in an easy-to-manage way since we aren’t getting it for free this winter!

I shared in one class that having many sources of yellow light in my house really helps me – I’m from Florida and long dark months is not something I experienced growing up! This got me thinking about the concept of “lightness” and how to create it – what’s the emotional/social version of “lightness?” Maybe…good vibes within classes and spaces…laughter with cool people…good food and drinks…warmth and friend/family time…

What’s a way you’re bringing light into your life this winter?

A hand holds a small potted plant with a beautiful red flower in front of a lavender wall with white string lights draped on it.

Making space for yourself can also look like doing what your body needs when it needs it (even if that’s not what you’d most like to be doing or what people around us expect and reward). One night in our Ballard gym space I was helping a member with a max effort bench press, coaching them on breathing and driving the bar up from their chest. Next to us, a member was lying on the floor recovering from their last set of exercises. It struck me that both people were in the process of building strength, even though what they were doing looked very different! 

When it comes to getting stronger, you need both exertion and recovery. Muscles get broken down when you lift heavy, and the rebuilding only happens through rest. Try hard, then chill. Often, the “fitness” world (and society in general) focuses on and praises the effort we put forth, and discourages us from taking the time needed to rest, learn and grow. Let’s make sure we value that time in the coming weeks!

If you’d like to make some space for yourself at the beginning of 2023, consider signing up for our 30-Day Core Challenge! It’s fully asynchronous so you can more easily fit it into your schedule, and will help you tap into how you use your core in your daily life!