When I started Pilates, I wanted my body to feel better, and maybe even feel good.
I didn’t realize it could or would become so POWERFUL!!!
Rewind: If you haven’t read my About section - my story is there. I’m going to emphasize that my knees were basically ”shot” - bone on bone - and I was in pretty much constant pain.
I worried that I wouldn’t have a fulfilling life as a parent. My toddler was active, as toddlers are, and mine seemed to be getting into trouble more often than most. He had to be watched and quick reactions were needed as he learned how to live in our neurotypically designed world. He is autistic and keeping him safe was (and still can be) challenging.
I had so much trouble getting up from the floor because of my knee pain and I knew I needed to gain strength somehow. I couldn’t sit with my knees bent for longer than 15 minutes without shooting pain in my knees. I also had trouble sleeping because my back was always hurting. I probably tossed and turned every 20 minutes throughout the night. I wasn’t in good shape...or even just “shape” - I was tired, I was (am) fat, I was tight, and I was weak.
I had ALL the thoughts:
▪️ “Even if I start now, how long will it take me to feel better? Is it even worth it?”
▪️ “Is there even a point to starting when I am so far gone? I probably can’t do any of the exercises.”
▪️ “I’ve started and stopped other fitness routines over and over again for over 15 years, will I be able to commit to something new?”
▪️”How can I rationalize the cost?”
▪️ “Everyone online is skinny and bendy (flexible). Will I be a complete embarrassment? Will I fit in? Will they laugh at me??”
▪️ “I’m so fat, I won’t be able to do anything. I probably should just stay home and find a video” [SO glad I talked myself out of doing videos because I found out that I needed accountability; now that almost everything is virtual - I turn my camera ON as often as possible]
▪️ “What if I can’t make it through class?”
▪️ “I don’t have the right clothes.” (I used to change clothes 4-5x when I first started because I didn’t have anything that fit right and I didn’t want to spend money on new clothes until I knew I would commit to a practice. I usually ended up in the same outfit.)
I knew my body was tight and weak. I was thinking Yoga was a good place to start, but ended up at a Pilates Private Session and that’s when everything changed for me.
I found acceptance and community. Where I am now, in my practice, is directly correlated to those two things.
♥️ I was ACCEPTED exactly as I was and where I was in my life. Fat, tired, tight, weak - no questions asked. NO JUDGEMENT. I was there to move, and the teachers were there to help me.
♥️ I found community. A no judgement, ‘I’ve been there before’ type of community. One where everyone knows that Pilates is hard, but TOTALLY worth it.
I found my happy place. I found it inside myself. It was JOY. I thought I’d lost it, but it was hiding. It was connected to movement. I found that moving my body created my joy. Movement centers me - body, mind, and spirit.
I had no idea when I started that my body would feel as good as it does today. I had no idea that I would be playing around with movement and doing things like Walkover! If you would have asked me if I thought that possible when I started I would have said, “Are you crazy? I’m just trying to build some muscle, so I can get my ass up off the floor. There’s no way I can do something like that!”
But now I know that anything is possible, and I want others who are like me to know that it is possible to find your joy. It might take you 18 years to find it like it did me (I hope not!). And - it might not be Pilates 🤩 - but it’s there, inside you.
When you find your joy, you realize how powerful you are and how powerful you can be.
“Walkover” shown on the Ladder Barrel or High Barrel [Level 5]
Showing only the first part of the exercise - because I am still working on doing a handstand 😍
Another thing I LOVE about Pilates? You don’t have to do a Level 3, 4, 5 exercise to feel empowered.
Every small victory is celebrated in every fiber of your body, even if you don’t realize it until much later.