What you, werking wit?

As a recent joiner of the #sweatlife movement, I have been exposed to a variety of different types of movements, exercises and modalities of training. However, my earliest memory of any sort of physical discipline was when I was about 10 yrs old and my dad had enrolled him, myself and both my brothers at Yoon’s Martial Arts School. This was a defining moment in my life and led up to 8 solid years of HapKiDo training; a huge part of where my love of movement stems from.

When I finally achieved my blackbelt in HapKiDo, I was just graduating high school. University life brought many new experiences and interests and is actually where I first found rugby. What started as a fun thing to do with U of C Dino’s Rugby Club became a bit more competitive with UBC Women’s Jr. Varsity team and later as a Saint. As this was my first foray into competitive team sports, I absolutely fell in love with the feeling of physical performance not as an individual, but rather as a member of a whole. The memories I made with those badass babes will last a lifetime.

Fast forward to Japan, circa 2007.

As part of my degree I spent one year in Japan as a co-op student developing a biological screening system for olfactory receptors in murine cell lines for Kao Laboratories. Yes, it is as nerdy as it sounds, but at the time I was all about the science.

One day, one of my co-workers asked if I wanted to try yoga. I remember my first class vividly, my Japanese at the time wasn’t the best so I followed along by watching those around me. I immediately connected to this form of movement. It was an interesting process going from not understanding much of the language to being able to have a conversation with my teacher in Japanese by the time I was to return back to Canada.

Yoga has stayed with me until this day, and has helped me through the darkest, saddest days of my life. Although I haven’t developed a consistent practice until this year after training under Ana Forrest, it is something that I have always gone back to.

Fast forward to Calgary, present day.

From yoga to spin to boxing and crossfit, my training and coaching has evolved over the past few years to encompass a bit of all things that I love. Although I can only dedicate about 25% of my time to fitness, it has become as passion that fuels me daily.

The fitness industry has shown me ups and downs, but I am still so excited to pursue this thang, and to see where I will eventually end up.

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Photo by: Jonathon Smith

“There is no formula greater than consistency. It is the most insistent way on telling the world and universe that you are intentional about where you are going.”

 

 

 

 

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It’s about the Music, and much more

One of the things that I have learned through my journey as a spin instructor is the power of music to move people. More and more I find myself deeper in appreciation of music, and the artists that create it. There is nothing quite like that feeling on your bike when the energy, your body, and the entire room is on the same wavelength.

Also, as a person who enjoys dancing on occasion, finding music that moves me off, as well as on the bike is important. I think the later part of this year will find me delving deeper into dance as a form of self expression. For now, here is my playlist via spotify from last week for your listening pleasure.

 

For me, spin is much more than a group fitness class. It is an opportunity to connect and inspire people on other levels. Last week, I chose to speak on John Legend’s Marching Into the Dark.

Legend explains the song briefly in the Los Angeles Times:

“The idea of struggle and the idea of putting your life on the line for an important cause, the metaphor we use is that they’re chasing a fading star into the dark. They’re struggling for an end they may never see. Everything I talk about – improving our schools, prison reform, making sure everyone has an equal opportunity – I don’t know if we’ll ever get there, frankly, I’m pessimistic. But I’m optimistic enough to know that even the little wins count. So the struggle is worth it.”

In my class, I used the metaphor of marching into the dark to reflect on moments in life where you don’t know exactly where you are going, the outcomes are unknown, but you believe in what you are doing so you keep going, you keep marching.

For everyone facing adversity in the moment, keep marching. The light is near at the of the tunnel.

Blessup.