Monday, February 13, 2017

Patience in the Process

I can definitely remember as a kid looking for my Christmas presents hidden around the house before Christmas day. I just had to know what I was going to get under the tree. Forget being surprised. I had to know right away. So if I'm being completely honest, there were a few years that I found a few of my Christmas presents hidden away in the closet or tucked under the bed before they were wrapped. Or if they had already been wrapped, I'd try to peel the wrapping paper back just a hair to get a sneak peak. I'd feel sneaky, yet at first satisfied that the wait was over.

I remember one year I found one of the presents my mom was really excited about giving me. The funny thing is now I can't even remember what the present was...I felt guilty and told my mom that I had found the present. She of course, as I can totally understand now, was pretty disappointed. So what does this story have to do with your journey with Pilates or truly any fitness practice? A lot actually.
Joseph Pilates said "in 10 sessions you’ll feel the difference, in 20 you’ll see the difference, and in 30 you’ll have a whole new body."

I remind both myself and my clients of this all the time. See I'm about 8 months postpartum now and with it being my second baby, I feel like it's taken a little more time to pull my abdominal muscles back together and build back up powerhouse strength. I had to be patient with myself and my practice. I had to use modifications as needed. I couldn't just go straight from having the baby to an Advanced Reformer workout. It's taken time, but with consistent practice, working gradually to increase my strength, I absolutely notice a difference. But the thing is even though I started Pilates around 8 years ago, I'm not done learning. There are still things I'm learning about the method and how to work deeper. The journey never really is over. 
I remember my first Pilates equipment lesson wanting to know: Am I doing this right? Is my alignment right? How many repetitions? What's the breathing pattern? How do I do this exercise? I'm suppose to be able to do that? Why can't I do it now? And I could go on. See I wanted to understand and be able to do it right then and first time even using a Pilates Reformer. Our society has placed such a high value on the "right now" results. But it takes time, persistence, and dedication- not something that can be discovered in one lesson or a handful of classes for the matter.
I find the same with my Yoga practice as well. I was reflecting about this whole idea of being patient with ourselves in the process and how change takes time after taking a Yoga class yesterday...hence why this post was written. For the first time, I was able to sit in Virasana while doing an arm/shoulder stretch without sitting on a block. I have pretty tight hip flexors, so this is an area I've been working on. I think it's important to humbly celebrate our successes, then appreciate that there is more to learn. We must be patient with ourselves and know it takes both time and practice.
How often do we take time to enjoy and appreciate the process? I'd like to think now I'm a little more patient than I was as a kid to be able to do this. I'll give a little credit to that to the lessons I'm learning being a mom and practicing both Pilates and Yoga. I'm pretty big on believing that what we face and discover about ourselves in our fitness practice applies to our personal lives and vice versa. On the mat and in life, we'll miss out on some valuable lessons and beautiful moments when we do not practice patience. 

(For this post I'm linking up with A Fresh Start on A Budget for Motivational Monday and The Life of Faith for Mommy Moments.)


  1. Yoga has been a wonderful help to me during certain seasons of my life. It's great to encourage it's discovery! Happy Monday, from the Motivational Monday link up!

    1. Totally agree with you! I found Yoga to be perfect for me during my second pregnancy and I still love it now. Thanks for stopping by!