Saturday, December 20, 2014

In or Out of Motivation...

Have you ever had a thought or idea that keeps getting presented to you?

It has been happening to me a lot lately, in terms of a deceptively simple question.

Are you doing something in fear?
Or out of Love?

Over and over again, I was asked that question..
and I realized something.

I had been doing something right for the wrong reason.

It was not something that was easy to admit or sit with, but it explained quite a bit.  It explained why I had never been consistent for the long term and why I was having to start over once again.

I asked myself if I was doing it out of Fear?  Or in Love?

Sounds simple enough right?  The kicker, once you ask the question,  it really is.

I was exercising out of fear.

It dominated every moment of my workouts.  If I missed a workout, it meant I was wrong and made me feel guilty.  It made me a neurotic mess on race day mornings, because if I did not make a certain time, I was not good enough...

For fear, it is never enough....

Love, on the other hand, accepts....

Love accepts that today you felt like going for a long walk around your neighborhood, instead of a run that you were dreading doing because you were worn out and tired.  It is just happy you did something active and healthy for yourself.

Love accepts you are today.  It does not require you to be 20 pounds lighter.  Love does not require tight abs.  Love wants you to accept yourself as you are today.

Love wants you to find a passion that goes beyond race day or whatever goal you have set.  It wants you happy on race day and beyond.

Since I have been home, I have been planning my workouts out of a place of acceptance and love.  I have moved a workout by a day and felt so much better for it.  I went to a restorative yoga class instead of a more vigorous one and felt better for it.

The most important part of it all,
I have not felt guilt once.
I have felt love.....

Melissa

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Yum!

Fish and Veggies wrapped in a Banana leaf
For a week, I did not have to think about the food I was going to eat.  I did not have to think about what to cook, its preparation, and the timing of it all.  All I had to do was to sit down and be grateful for what had been prepared for me.

It was glorious....
Food, Glorious Food!!!  (Sing along.....)

Haramara Retreat knows good food.
It is just that simple.

It is healthy and 99% Organic.
They will cater to your dietary needs, including my nut issues.  There were over 20 people in the group and a lot of us had specific needs (vegetarian, no dairy, no nuts, etc.)  The staff handled it with great care and attention.

Have I mention how good it all was?
AMAZING!  DROOL WORTHY!!  SPOON LICKING!!!  YUMMMINESS!

Breakfast was buffet style with eggs made to order.
Lunch and Dinner were sit down 3 course adventures in yum.

Grapefruit Ice with Honey

Lentil Ceveche...  I could have eaten a Gallon of it!

Another Yummy Lunch....

Forgot to take the picture, so it is a half eaten Coconut bar covered in Dark Chocolate

They know their Salad Dressings!  All prepared on site.

Twice Baked Potatoes and Mushrooms with Pesto Sauce

Gluten Free Cake (which was light and fluffy) with a fig/rasberry topping
The variety of food served was amazing and inspiring....

Inspired to learn new recipes.
Melissa

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Guides and Doubt

A sign along the way

Two days before I left for the Yoga retreat I was going to, I began to doubt whether I should attend.  I was not at 'the right weight' to practice yoga; my muscles were tight and not at my most flexible; and my energy levels were at the bottom of the meter.  I doubted my ability and even my right to go...the only reason I was even considering going was the amount of money I had spent for airfare and the week of accommodations.

Then a guide, in the form of my Mom, told me to go and I would be ok.......

I went with a fair amount of trepidation, but I went.

The first night, at our introductory Satsang, Swami Omkarananda, who was going to be one of our teachers for the week, told us about his doubts as he was at the gate at the airport as he was starting his journey from India to Mexico.  He called his Guru and said he did not think he was going to get on the plane.  His Guru told him he needed to go and that it would be ok......

I was shocked.  

Why would he have doubts?  He looks like he has it all together........
But I had forgotten something important,

We all have doubts......

But more importantly, we all have guides to help us along the way if we are willing to listen to them.

So listen,
and be a guide if you are needed
and listen to one if they are placed in your life.

Thank you to all of my Guides,
whether you have said "Welcome" when I arrived at an event to calm a fear, 
or to the ones who have said "Go" when I needed to leave,
or to the ones who have said that exact word or phrase or sentence that have brought me Peace.

I Thank You All!!!!!!
Melissa


Monday, December 15, 2014

The Return.....

Two years ago, I went to a yoga retreat in Sayulita, Mexico, and it put me on a very good path.....

When the opportunity opened to attend again, I immediately said, "YES!"  It was going to be wonderful to attend with out any injury and my life in a good place.  You can read about my experiences from two years ago, here and here.

In January of this year, life was going well in all aspects, physically, emotionally, and financially.  If you have been reading the blog this year, you know that there have been some big events that have knocked me off of that stable ground.  I had no clue how much I needed to attend until I got there....

So my Return was not only to Haramara Resort but to myself......

The Hammock where I found myself again....
My yoga practice was once again, not in the best place, thanks to tight muscles and emotions held in me, but I learned a very important lesson this time.  Yoga is not all about the asanas, or physical practice, it is so much more.

It is also about being kind to yourself....forgiving yourself, speaking kindly to yourself, and living in the present.  It is also about doing those things to others in your life.  If you are not doing those things, your physical practice will not go well.  It may be a great physical exercise, but it will not be yoga.

As a result, I spent a lot of my time at a yoga retreat not doing the physical practice.  I attended the Asana class almost every day, but spent quite a bit of my time in Child's Pose or another restorative pose.  I had to take my ego out of it and do what was right for my mind and body.  It was no easy task for the first couple of days, but as the week progressed I did yoga by doing a very simple pose due to the fact that I did it with intention and acceptance.  I am so very grateful for the instructors who allowed that freedom in the classes.

I pushed through unsettled emotions and old habits with specific activities and in journaling to the point of my new pen running out of ink...  I asked questions when I was blocked....  I listened and processed a lot of information...  I realized that every person that was there with me was a teacher....

In other words, I returned....
and learned tricks and tips and accepted offers of help to not let it get so bad if circumstances happen in the future, so it does not require a week long intensive to get me back.

I signed up when life was wonderful and had expectations I would arrive at my best....
However, life had another plan to make sure I had learned previous lessons, and to be quite honest, I had learned some, but not the heart of them.  (I'll do another blog about this later to explain.)  I had at least learned enough to go.....

Returned to myself...
Melissa

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Finding my Balance...

I've been a little quiet lately...
in real life and here on my blog.

I needed time to find my balance again after this crazy period.

First of all,
my Dad is on the road to recovery.  It was crazy how fast it all turned around.  I spent a little over a week in Georgia visiting and helping them out.  Plus, I got the added bonus of spending some time with my brother, his wife, and daughter.  :)

I feel like I am getting back to me again....
and that I handled and survived all that was thrown at me pretty well.

I now have a plan for something that I had no clue that I needed to have a plan for....
I now know how I respond in extreme stress situations, and quite honestly, it surprised me.
I now know that I have an amazing support system, not just in theory.  (and not just family)
I now know that no matter what happens, it will be ok.

Life is a crazy adventure...
and in January when this year was just getting going,
I would of never guessed what I would have to deal with all of this,
but I, at least, knew that a Retreat in Mexico would be a good idea in December.

I leave tomorrow....

Thank you for being there for me,
when I'm really chatty or when I'm really quiet.

Melissa