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  • Writer's pictureSarah

running is not dancing

I'll just start this with life is weird right now for everyone. Okay? Okay! I don't really post a lot here, because other formats are better for quick updates -- occasionally there's some thoughts that weigh on me enough to write more here.

Things here in Montana started changing our lives in late March, with an extended spring break that pretty much just turned into "we'll see you in the fall!" And we've done a pretty damn good job of handling it. One of my friends said it weirded her out how okay I was being at home and out of routine for so long. I keep thinking this maybe means I'm really an introvert?! But I like people?! This confuses me more than pandemic craziness! There's other things to unpack there but not for this post!

So we've been okay, Maybe it was the time of year? We had things to focus on -- birthdays (even without parties), knitting, learning what we could from home but not stressing, sewing, more knitting, a beautiful summer of travel that involved A LOT of camping and being mindful in who we could see and when. Patiently waiting for plans of returning to school, deciding to go and forfeiting other activities.

One of those things I have had to temporarily give up is teaching OULA classes. It was around this time 4 years ago that I started going and did my instructor training not long after. It's been a constant thing in my life 3-5 times a week since then - between teaching and attending as a participant. At first it was because gyms were closed. No big deal. We pivot. I tried teaching a class via zoom but I'm not tech savvy enough to really have that be something I felt was fulfilling for myself or people attending. OULA is so much about connection and community and trying to cultivate that through a screen is tough. Back to gyms partially re-opening (IE, no group classes!) and surveying participants interest attending when it's an option again. This all really made my brain hurt :/ Though it's something I really want to be able to continue doing, taking it off the table as an option for me (for a variety of reasons) right now helps keep myself and family evenly keeled.

I don't know if I'm writing this in an order that makes sense, but we'll keep going?

Music is something that's always apart of my day. It's playing. I'm humming. I'm tapping on something. It's something my body craves. Usually what's playing is something I can listen to around the kids ... Mumford and Sons, the Lumineers .... they even have requests and I've grown to really like the latest Jonas Brothers album thanks to my daughter.

Yesterday I was scrolling around my music and went with switching things up. I found myself with Jason Derulo CRANKED UP on the stereo and had my own dance party while I picked up the house. It really made me miss OULA. (Side note --- OULA is not all about shaking your hips but it's a safe place to feel empowered by doing it .... go read this older post I wrote about it)

So what are my options??? A gym membership is out. And exercising at home does not sound like me. Running? Alright, let's try running! I can do an hour of cardio no problem, right?? HAHAHA ... yeah, no.... Here's how it went. Started with making a running playlist. I'm gonna follow how OULA (well, workouts in general) works and ease my way into a warm up and transition into the rest of my run. It's the first real crisp fall morning with leaves and colors. Let's really take it all in, right!? But running is not dancing. Maybe it's because it's been so long that I've done something physical with exercise as the intent? Breathing is different when I'm not using my voice for cueing choreography or yelling lyrics of a song! Anyways, my body did not like this warming up to running crap. My mind did not want to shut off and let go like it does with dancing.

About halfway through my playlist, things click into what I was wanting to feel and get out of my run, I found a stride that felt good and I stopped thinking about keeping one foot going in front of the other. I could have just run to the same song on repeat and been happy for the rest of my route.

I guess I'm gonna do this like I did with dancing and just jump in. Day 1 done. I learned that I think running sucks but doing it anyways wasn't the worst. Maybe I'll like it? Today wasn't enough to answer that so we'll maybe adjust the playlist and run again tomorrow and get lost in some more music.

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