When I first started my “fitness journey” I surrounded myself with the beasts. Everyone who could lift more, had better form, and higher endurance. I wanted to be just like them so I worked as closely as possible and learned as much as I could.
But since starting Move Society and diving into the world of training, I have never felt such passion and pride as I do when I see someone at the very beginning of their own journey. The drive it takes to get out of bed early and get into the gym. The amount of self-doubt that floods the minds of beginners is immense and to know that they are overcoming it and making it happen for themselves lights a fire in me to be better, to train harder and to educate myself more. It is so easy to become complacent and content, but seeing people grind to hit their first set of goals emotionally strikes me and pushes me to be a better form of myself.
So what’s in my bag? A LOT. This is why I love my Locker Pack; it’s truly the only bag I’ve ever owned that can fit it all!
No kidding….. it ALL fits!!
Written by Brent Price
Brent Price has spent the majority of his life being obese. Tipping the scales at a whopping 310 lbs, he made the decision 5 years ago to prioritize his health - with remarkable results. Brent trains at Studeo55 Crossfit 6 days a week along with regular running, swimming and spinning. He also offers lifestyle and fitness coaching at Move Society for people looking to start their own journey in health and fitness.
There are certain moments in your life that make you stop and recollect on what you’ve been through the past few years. Shooting with Ally Pintucci from RYU was definitely one of them for me. When did I become a person that an athletic apparel brand wanted to have in their advertising? How have I been so fortunate to have this happen to me? My reality today couldn’t be more opposite than it was as little as 5 years ago. As I stood in front of her camera I was hit with the realization that the path that has led me here was sparked by a moment that unknowingly changed everything.
100lbs ago, I was crippled with self-doubt. Social situations were uncomfortable and the thought of doing anything physical wasn’t even a question. I was burdened with an emotional weight that had a deeper effect on my every move, than I even knew at the time. Then one day I woke up and made the most confronting and life altering statement of my life. “I Am Gay.”
LIVING AN UNAPOLOGETIC LIFE
In the months and year that followed, I started to live a genuine, unapologetic life and spent most of my time focusing on my mental and emotional state. I read books and took courses geared towards developing a stronger sense of self and before too long, I realized my physical health was in dire need of help. I had allowed myself to become so weak that I was unable to do a single push up. A simple body weight squat made my knees feel as though they were about to burst and my lungs would strain to take a breath moving up a set of stairs. At one point I weighed in at over 300lbs and was convinced that my weight was the only thing people saw in me. I felt like no one knew who I really was.
THE HARDEST THING I HAVE EVER DONE
Walking through the doors of my first Crossfit gym, my coach said very bluntly “This is going to be the hardest thing you’ve ever done.” And he was absolutely right. Every step of the way was met with that same paralyzing self-doubt and every socially accepted excuse to quit. But this time my mind was strong enough to say “NO, this is NOT an option” Temptation was in my face at all times but somehow, with the weight that was lifted as I started to live my true and genuine self, I was able to push it all aside and stay focused on my goals and finally let my total overall health be my #1 priority.
While it slowly got better as time went on, it quickly became evident that the lifestyle I was working towards was not a short-term solution, nor would it ever be easy. There is always another challenge, always another goal and no matter how many times my alarm goes off at 5am, it’s never become “easy” to get out of bed. I tell all of my family, friends and clients that we need to celebrate every time we make the healthy choice because it is a hard decision to make every single time, and we deserve to recognize that fact no matter how long you have been doing it.
THE DAY IT ALL CHANGED
Every single day I look forward to the challenges that wait for me at Crossfit; excited to jump onto the bike and lead 35 people in a beat driven sweat fest at Spin Society, and commit myself to helping others find their path in health and well-being in Move Society. My entire life has evolved into the one thing I was most terrified of growing up into. But now I can’t imagine it any other way. Until last week, if someone were to ask me “What was the moment it all changed?” I would have said “I don’t know, it was just time.”
But today my response would be different. The day it all changed is when I understood that my mental and emotional patterns would dictate my physical results and I decided to conquer my fear of failure and recognize the potential in everything I couldn’t do. It was the moment I became committed to do what it takes to have what I want and that was the day I decided to be the most authentic version of myself I could be. Everything I ever wanted (and everything I didn’t even know I wanted) started to unfold in front me. Which brings me to today. Here I stand in front of Ally’s camera with a barbell on my back, sweating and proud of every bead that drips from my chin, because it takes work to sweat.
And it takes work to succeed.
Written by Brent Price
Brent Price has spent the majority of his life being obese. Tipping the scales at a whopping 310lbs, he made the decision 5 years ago to prioritize his health - with remarkable results. Brent trains at Studeo55 Crossfit 6 days a week along with regular running, swimming and spinning. He also offers lifestyle and fitness coaching at Move Society for people looking to start their own journey in health and fitness.
Every athlete needs their favourite pair of go-to shorts they can throw in their bag with confidence, no matter what their training routine is. But it's hard to find the perfect short that can withstand your toughest workouts and provides support AND looks good at the same time.
So we put our athletes to the test and asked them to give us their biggest complaints with their current training shorts.
Here is what they told us.
- My shorts ride up
- I’m always having to readjust them
- There’s way too much extra fabric
- The lining in my shorts is too loose
- They don’t provide enough support
- They chafe and rub against my skin
- There are no pockets for my keys or phone
- They look gaudy and not very good
- They are poorly constructed
And the list goes on.
So we challenged our Beta 37.5 lab to take on a staple training garment and reinvent it. And solve our athlete's problems in the process. That's when they came up with the RYU Teclayr 2n1 Short. And athletes have been raving about them ever since.
These shorts are tough enough to withstand your toughest workout, yet look amazing on your body even when you are not training. Built with our innovative sweat wicking and fast drying technology to keep you cool and comfortable no matter what you are doing. Most importantly, they are designed with a relaxed outside fit and lined with a snug, Next To Skin fit liner. So the only thing moving will be you. Not your shorts.
Check out our shorts here.
We’ve teamed up with our friends over at Vega Fueled for 4 weeks of giveaways, but you’re going to have to show us your moves to score some swag.
Every Friday, we’ll toss up a post on Instagram with an exercise for you to do on the spot. When you see the post, give the person nearest to you your phone and get them to film/snap a pic of you completing the exercise.
We’ll be picking our favourite and sending the winner a RYU Quick Pack filled with $100 of Vega product along with an RYU gift card.
Try not to rip your suit pants at your desk though, ok?
To enter, follow these 3 steps.
- Follow @ryu_apparel & @vegafueled
- Challenge your friend to the workout in the comments
- Upload a photo or video of your completing the workout and tag @ryu_apparel, @vegafueled & #VEGAxRYU
Friday, August 19th, 2016
Friday, September 2nd, 2016
Friday, September 9th, 2016
Friday, September 16th, 2016
*Vega products may vary from the above image
“Good enough” is never enough in sport. Complacency is like death. This mentality keeps you driven, keeps you hungry, and keeps you performing. At the same time, it is important to remember that you as a person are enough.
It is important to separate the person from what he or she does. I find this hard to do at times. I have measured my worth based on my performance. Looking back at my journey with the perspective I have today, I can see that I am so much more than the athlete who participated in two Olympic Games.
If I had gone to two Olympics, then the next athlete had gone to three. If I won one medal, then the next athlete won two, or even six! Records are being constantly set and broken. Hardcore-ness is obtained and then some other crazy specimen of sport comes along and shatters expectations and sets the bar even higher. Very few records and accomplishments sit unchallenged for long.
It is humbling to know that there is always someone achieving more. This can also breed a culture and a way of thinking that believes nothing is ever worthy of being sufficient. Mostly I realize that my achievements in sport were more than sufficient, but when I am being hard on myself, I don’t think that way. I can tell by things other athletes have said to me that they don’t feel that way about themselves either. I hear things like, “Well, my sports career wasn’t as big as yours” or “I never got to the level you did.” Regardless of our achievements, sport teaches us all similar lessons that we can speak to universally. Let’s think of ourselves as athletes as we would think of our own child. If it were my child who brought home a silver medal and did what I did, I would be endlessly proud. Why am I not as gentle and proud of myself as I would be with my child (who doesn’t even exist yet)?
When your internal voice starts to gang up on you, turn it around. Ask yourself how would you talk to a younger version of yourself. Would you tell her she is beautiful and deserves unconditional love and support despite her flaws, or would you belittle her and break her down for every little nit-picky thing you can find? The answer seems obvious when I think about it, but it’s not as easy when my internal critic is in charge.
For instance, do you think you are beautiful? That is a hard question for me to answer. I have never thought of myself as beautiful. I have moments when I feel self-confident that I am attractive, but I have other times when I feel hideous. A bad image at a horrible angle can quickly turn into evidence that I am utterly unsightly. Why do I focus on what’s outside of myself to answer this question? We live in a visual world filled with access to all sorts of images. Current day cameras and photographic software used to enhance images unfortunately alter what we see and can make us feel less adequate in comparisons to others. What I have learned through my experiences is that things are not as they appear. From the outside, my life looks a certain way. I have great photos on my Instagram and a list of achievements that are impressive, but I don’t feel inside what you might expect if you reviewed my Instagram account. I have struggled with self-esteem since I was a young girl; the struggle was more intense in my school years. Retiring from rowing brought back much insecurity to the forefront of my daily life.
There was never a time I can recall when I felt more empowered and confident than I did when I was rowing. It became a great arena in which I could push myself and build confidence. I found strength in belonging to a group of like-minded women. We were like-minded, as well as being alike in body type and skill set. Outside the rowing world, I am always one of the tallest women around, which has always made me feel mammoth. Instead of appreciating what has become a gift, I loathed it. In rowing, I was one of many tall women and sometimes even the shortest.
Being five foot ten made me short, relatively speaking, in a pool of athletes. I remember standing tall, even wanting to be taller! This was such an astonishing shift in mindset and it came simply from being around others like me. I no longer felt as though I stood out; I didn’t feel insecure about my height: I owned it.
The camaraderie and understanding I received from my teammates gave me strength. The safe place I found in the world of rowing allowed me to explore who I am and who I want to be. Being empowered and confident, I began to see what I was truly capable of.
Leaving rowing and re-entering a world where I am once again the tallest female, sometimes the tallest person in the room, brings back many a demon for me. Now I have the armor of a silver medal and a purpose for which I use this height, but it doesn’t mean that my feelings of wanting to hide away from standing out have disappeared.
Written by Krista Guloien
This excerpt is from the new book entitled “Beyond The Finish Line” by 2012 Olympic Silver Medalist Krista Guloien. In it, Krista takes us from the elation of winning an Olympic Medal to the roller coaster ride of transition to life after sport. But this is not just a book about sport. It’s about a women’s journey to discover who she is, what is most important in her life and how she can contribute.
It can be purchased here: Amazon and Amazon(CA)
Krista Guloien is a hard woman to keep up with. Inspiring athlete, empowering role model, author, mentor, coach and Olympic Silver medalist, Krista truly embodies what beautiful tough is all about.
RYU recently caught up with Krista for a sweaty session at Movement 108 in Vancouver last week and got a glimpse of what she’s up to. From launching her must read new book – Beyond The Finish Line, to teaching spin classes and volunteering to educate and push young athletes to their potential – it seems Krista has no intention of ever slowing down.
Before she ran off, we wanted to know what she threw in her bag before heading out to train.
Take a peek:
1. RYU Locker Pack. It’s your locker on the go and it’s nice enough for both the gym and work. Shoe compartments, space for everything you need and a laptop sleeve on the outside so there’s extra space taken up. Your go-to everything bag.
2. RYU Teclayr Tech Tank. It’s lightweight, sleevelessand gives me the cover up I need. I don’t really like this half shirt business - I want to be covered and secured for my workout. The Teclayr Tank is great for my sweatiest workouts.
3. RYU 2n1 Shorts. These shorts! I love that I can lift heavy and deadlift without worrying about my butt coming out. I feel “securely packaged”.
I love this outfit combo because I’m comfortable when working out - the last thing I want to feel is my outfit.
4. RYU Shaker Cup + Protein. I need protein in me as quick as possible. It’s great for on the go and it’s quick access for me post workout.
5. Advil. Anti-Inflammatory. Enough said.
6. Tiger Balm - It’s great for my muscles and it just smells like I’m instantly healing.
7. Lifters - These give me stability and a solid foundation - necessity for my lifting.
I’m going to be completely transparent. I’m not a professional Olympic lifter. I started with a powerlifting base so strength has always been my go to. I was always pulling heavy shit. And to be honest, it will always be my first love and foundation. But when I moved into CrossFit and began learning Olympic style lifting, it was a completely different dynamic for me. And I really liked it. It was having that technique, that precision, and being able to be proficient in the movement, not because you can pull something heavy, but because you hit every single technical cue you have to hit in order to get to that place.
A DYNAMIC WORKOUT
Olympic style is a dynamic type of lifting that’s completely different from the type of training I was doing. As a powerlifter I was used to pulling 3 times the amount of weight I was now doing. But after working on my form over and over, I was getting an incredible workout from something I questioned would even be challenging when I first started. And I think that’s a key motivator for me. I get so exhausted because I’m working so hard going through the movement over and over. But that’s why you need the mental discipline and patience as you dissect your technique. I can easily spend half an hour of my warm up just working on a single movement, such as simply dragging the bar up my thighs a few inches.
OLYMPIC VS POWERLIFTING
In a powerlift, the range of motion is half the distance it would be for Olympic lifting, because the bar in Olympic lifting travels from the ground all the way up. In a bench press for instance, a staple powerlifting movement, you can imagine the distance the bar travels compared to a whole dynamic movement. That’s why when you’re starting from the ground in an Olympic lift, something even as mundane as deciding where you’re going to stand on that first pull is something you think about all the time. You’re always actively thinking. The mental effort alone it takes to be consciously training can be exhausting!
RESIST THE DARK SIDE
Another key aspect in Olympic lifting for me is the necessity to stay present. It’s easy for me to just turn off my mind sometimes, and summon the anger and pull a heavy deadlift. But you can’t be jaded by emotion when you’re doing a technical lift. You have to be present and conscious of your training.
SUPPORTS EVERYTHING YOU DO
Olympic lifting will support all the other sports or activities you do. It’s a dynamic movement that will supplement any movement because it’s a full body workout. You’re having to fire every muscle to get that pull. Before starting in powerlifting, I was training at a bodybuilding gym with the goal of simply wanting to lose weight. So I have experienced all types of lifting. That’s why I would never discriminate against any form of lifting or athleticism. And you can’t really judge something until you try it, which is why I have so much respect for anyone who lifts, no matter what their reasons are for doing so. But for me, it’s about performance. I always want to show off my physical exertion, rather than my abs or my delts. Because I believe if you prioritize performance over aesthetics, the aesthetics will follow.
Written by Karina Lemoncrystals
Karina is a Certified Trainer and nutrition coach who is committed to inspiring a lifestyle of happiness, health and fitness in others. She currently trains at CrossFit Lions and Dynasty Gym. Follow her adventures @lemoncrystals on Instagram.
Compression gear. Athletes swear by it. But what does it do and how did we make it better?
The compression tight is an essential piece of training gear that gets tossed into your gym bag. It can be used for any activity and helps with the recovery and support of your hard working muscles during training and competition.
Creating a compression collection was a no brainer for our design team, but before we did that, we went right to the source. Our athletes. We wanted to hear first hand what was missing from their current gear and how we could engineer something that better facilitated their performance.
What we discovered surprised us. We found out that no one was creating compression gear specifically for lifters. Our athletes showed us pants that were worn down and ripped in the shin and thighs from heavy bar action. So we created the toughest compression gear on the planet. In fact, it is the only compression collection that has abrasion resistant panels strategically placed where lifters need it most.
Our HardWear Compression Collection allows you to train harder and recover faster. They are engineered to increase blood circulation, reduce lactic acid build ups and lessen muscle cramps all with a technical design that incorporates abrasion resistance and support. It's all the benefits you've come to rely on from compression without the wear and tear.
Check our the HardWear line here.
"There is no shortcut to strength development, as there is none for the development of skill, agility or endurance in an athlete. No amount of fancy gimmicks or equipment or adoption of alleged time-saving 'fads' will substitute for a long term program of hard work, that is required to develop the quality of strength needed by an athlete for optimum performance in his specialty. Greater progress in track and field during the past 15 years has been the result of harder work by the athletes, not by resorting to shortcuts and less work."
These words are taken from a speech given to an assembly of elite level coaches at the National Collegiate Track Clinic. What makes this excerpt remarkable however, is that it was not delivered last month, but in 1964. What I find interesting is that 52 years later, despite knowledge to the contrary, we are still looking for shortcuts, silver bullets and magic pills to improve athletic performance. The truth now, as it has always been, is that the physical, mental and spiritual effort you put in to your training, is what you get out of it. Nothing more. And certainly nothing less.
So put away the magazines promising 6-pack abs in just 6 easy minutes a day. Forget the miracle fat burners. Or steady state cardio that allows you to catch up on the latest gossip in your favorite celebrity rag while you pedal away the pounds on a stationary bike.
Develop a plan, be disciplined in your approach, and show up for training. Because at the end of the day, you can have results or excuses.
But not both.
Written by Rik Klingle-WattExcerpt from Wrestling Physical Conditioning Encyclopedia, by John Jesse, published by The Athletic Press, Pasadena, CA, 1974.
New styles arriving soon.
INNOVATION FROM THE GROUND UP
In a revolutionary experiment where raw athletic talent meets technical design superiority, RYU pioneered a new process for bringing tailored innovation to market. It began with the formation of BETA\375, the Research + Development Lab tasked with inventing the future of athletic performance.
Isolated from the daily running of the business, BETA\37.5 is where designers have the freedom to create and enjoy a lifestyle that reflected the brand. Here they were able to reinvent the actual design process, which was a combination of ideation and prototyping in a unique partnership with our suppliers.
A Revolution in Thinking
The intention behind BETA\37.5 was to create a distinct design lab that brought real user designer interface into one ideal location. We began by recruiting some of the best designers and product engineers in the world and put them in a remote mountainside environment and allowed them to work independently and hands-on in a way that is completely different than anywhere else.
For instance, it’s common practice in fashion today for designers to develop illustrations and send them overseas where they are turned into something that’s a representation of the original idea. RYU’s vision was different. Instead of sending sketches or computer drawings to the factories, we mandated that our design teams physically build actual prototypes in-house - a lost art in the apparel industry. Then we take those same prototypes, beat the crap out of them, refine them, rebuild them, and make them better.
Our process is completely hands-on. It’s trial and error. By the time we finish building products they’ll get used more than if they were actually in the field. You might build a hundred versions of something and it might get used for six to twelve months. It’s not just this theoretical test. It’s not just putting fabric in a washing machine and saying ‘ok it’s done the 30 wash test’. No, we’ve worn it for six months. We’ve used it. We’ve seen the outcome.
- Nathan Kukathas, RYU Designer
Rather than focusing on individual hero pieces, our design lab focused on creating entire collections that have been strategically curated to solve problems for athletes. This includes There + Back, Train + Develop, and Rest + Recovery. Their vision has already paid off with the creation of a brand new apparel category: Urban Athletic Tailored Technical Training Apparel. Featuring intellectual properties, revolutionary patent-pending innovations and disruptive technology unlike anything the industry has ever seen before.
Award Winning Results
Within 6 months of opening our Flagship store in Vancouver, RYU has been recognized by some of the top design awards in the world. Our Carry System in particular has gained international notoriety for our design lab.
Quick Pack Lux
Silver A'Design Award for Excellence
The Fashion and Travel Accessories Design category recognizes world-class products, prototypes, and/or concepts exhibiting exceptional form, function, innovation and aesthetics. The awards are decided by a panel of international media, established designers, leading academics and prominent entrepreneurs and are presented each year in Italy.
Created by BETA\37.5, RYU's Quick Pack Lux is designed for athletes by athletes to work for all parts of life including to and from home, the gym, and work. The bag's sleek aesthetic contrasts a muted exterior with shiny interior, artfully capturing the brand's 'Beautiful Tough' mantra.
Locker Pack Lux
Nominated by Carryology for Best Work Backpack.
Carryology is a website driven by designers, retailers and overall bag enthusiasts who test and review carry gear for "fitness of purpose". They study construction, innovation and overall functionality for bags that transport the important pieces of our day-to-day lives. These are people who actively use and test bags and backpacks in both urban and outdoor environments, looking at all aspects of their design to confirm maximum performance and quality combined with modern style and versatility.
According to Carryology, "Labelling RYU as 'Arc'teryx for the gym' would be under-selling their early achievements. Despite the obvious DNA of former bird employees, RYU are working hard to redefine formats and approaches, such as those found in the Locker Pack. A novel drop-front opening allows for great access and doubles as a portable locker, perfect for flying by the gym. Minimalist patterning creates visual interest. And a great mix of fabrics adds some suave office appeal.
Lifts. Reps. Sweat. Sacrifice. Countless hours spent in the gym. We long for it. We crave it. We need it. But for what? Confined to the four walls of the gym, does all that effort become little more than sport?
I’m beginning to believe that what society has now popularized as an activity in itself - training - was never designed to be confined to four walls. The gym was merely meant to be the practice arena. An area to refine the craft. To bring it back out into the world stronger, faster and better than it was before.
I realize now that the hours of training were never meant to be the end result, but what allows us to interact with the world in ways we couldn’t have before. And that realization prompted a single question to run through my mind over and over…
WHAT AM I TRAINING FOR?
From that simple question came the idea to find ways to play, practice and move the way I do in training, anytime, anywhere, with anything available to me.
My goal became to redefine “training” from in a gym to anything I would interact with out in the world. And to incorporate anything I want to do in the outside world, into my training.
We’ve been given this ability to move, to use our body to do things and take us places. To not use that, to not expand that, and to not push that potential into the world you interact with every day, is a shame. My goal was to not be limited in my thinking and to be able to adapt my skills, my movements, and the body I’ve worked so hard for, to any environment. To force my mind and my body to change the way it took shape, performed movements, and interacted with what was in front of it.
MY CHALLENGE TO YOU
For any of you that want to push yourself in an unorthodox way, I challenge you this: View the world in front of you as if it was your only gym. Take what you wish you could do in the world and bring it into your training.
Let those neat and tidy lines that have been place in front of you begin to blur. Rather than being guided by the railings and fences the world puts up to move you as it pleases, let them become obstacles to jump over.
THE WORLD CAN BE YOUR PLAYGROUND
Let those buildings at city hall, not only be a place to pay taxes, but a playground to move, jump, sprint, and adapt to.
Let the park behind your house transform from grass and trees to a sports arena.
Those 30 stairs in front of you. Let that be your gym for box jumps, inclined sprints, or uneven squats.
Park benches. Dips, push ups and elevated planks.
That overhead pipe in your underground. Chin ups, leg lifts, single arm hangs.
Transform your world from a concrete jungle to an endless playground. Allow everything around you become something you can navigate and play with. Limited only by what you can see, let even the simplest things, like cracks in a sidewalk, become a chance to refine your jump skills and co-ordination.
BLUR THE LINES
When you begin to blur those lines, the world around you changes. You realize that with nothing more than creativity and effort, all of those hours spent in the gym can and will go so much further than looking and feeling good. You will begin to adapt to any environment.
My challenge to you is to go to a park or any other public place and look for new ways to practice what we’ve so easily confined to a gym. It doesn’t matter if it’s push ups, squats, crawling, or trying to walk on your hands. Just find some ways to apply your current craft to the environment around you.
Find a park bench and choose three ways to play on it aside from sitting. Figure out three things you can do with a wall besides leaning on it. View your environment through fresh eyes and see what is around for you to play with.
Before you know it, you will begin to see new uses for everything around you. The bland will speak to you differently and the most boring of places will become your playground. The world around you will become your gym. And it is always open.
Written by Julian DeSchutter
Julian is the co-founder of Chasing Sunrise, a community that understands with each sunrise, we are given a choice to make. We can either stay in bed waiting for life to come to us or we can get up and get after it chasing what we want.
An Interview with Jessica Kelly
LA based Jessica Kelly was a late bloomer who didn’t start going to the gym until her early 30’s. Little by little she discovered yoga, which opened up a whole new world of health and fitness. From there she moved to CrossFit and now at 42, is the strongest she has ever been in her life.
I train for a lot of different reasons. It reminds me how strong I am. Even on a bad day, it reminds me who I am. It’s such a mental game for me. Am I going to be able to do it today? If I can’t, am I going to cry? Am I going to give up? What can I pull out of myself today? It’s to prove to myself that I can do things, and to prove to myself when I can’t do them, that I can deal with it and go back in and try it again tomorrow. And that translates to the rest of my life. It’s a different type of courage and confidence and playfulness that I didn’t have before.
"I’ll never be the strongest. I’ll never be the fastest. But I’ll be the one that works the hardest."
On the toughest thing I ever did
Seven years ago, for a variety of personal reasons, I completely started over. I moved to Los Angeles on my own with no savings, no job and no contacts. I left my best friend, my marriage and my family. I was alone. But I never looked back. I started doing yoga twice a day. And discovered that helping people through health and fitness was my true passion.
On struggling with self doubt
I’ve struggled with self doubt and lack of confidence all my life. I think it goes back to not playing sports as a young girl. Only by training have I felt more accepting of my strengths and weaknesses. Where as before, I hadn’t learned how to deal with that. I’m now learning to do things I never thought I could do. So deep down I know I can do anything.
I want to be as healthy and as strong as I can be so I can live life the way I want. I want to be ready for the next adventure!
“For the first time in my life, I had an appreciation for what my body could do, rather than what it looked like.”
On turning 42
I was never really age conscious. But coming to LA when I was 35 has been really interesting. Everyone here is so focused on youth. I want to stay an inspiration. I have people come up to me and say, “You’re 42? I can’t believe that.” Why? Am I supposed to behave like an old person? I don’t know what old is. Am I supposed to look like a bag of bones? Or stop taking care of myself? I’m not training for aesthetics. I’m doing it for achievement. I have people my own age who tell me “I can’t do this stuff anymore”. It’s funny, because I never had done it before so I have nothing to compare it to. So there’s no limitation in my mind. I may take longer to warm up than younger people, but that’s it!
On her tattoo
I have a small tattoo “Amor Fati” on my arm. It’s Latin for “Loving Your Fate”. Not just accepting what happens in life, but really embracing and loving the good, the bad and the ugly – knowing that whatever is happening in the moment is necessary in order experience life and beauty and to move forward. So when something happens that I might not like, I repeat it to myself and helps me see what could come out of that moment. We can’t choose what happens to us. But we can choose how we feel about it. And why wouldn’t we choose to feel anything but good?
"Human greatness is the ability to love your fate"
On being beautiful tough
This phrase changed my life and my notion of myself. There could be a bad connotation to the word tough – stubborn, closed off, unrelenting. But pairing it with beautiful brings all that positivity to the surface. That tough is being courageous and strong. When I finally let go of what I looked like, and focused on being strong, I felt my body change. My clothes fit different. I felt different. Because there’s such beauty in strength. It’s grace and grit in harmony and balance.
On the power of one
Everyday is an opportunity to see what you can do. It’s like beginners mind. It doesn’t matter that you’re doing Downward Dog for the 1000th time. On that day, in that moment, it’s the only one.
Athlete: Jessica Kelly