Balance

Happy Friday everyone! Today I wanted to talk about something I’ve struggled with the past couple of years. Balance. Balance in life, between mind and body and finding what being healthy is for me. First of all I absolutely love food which basically means I’m not super skinny. Second, the last couple of years I’ve found the physical activity that I love, group fitness, and therefore I’m in pretty good shape. So, it might seem like I have some kind of balance… My body has not changed in size that much but I have a different shape since I have more muscles now. Overall I think I have a good body, I do a lot of cardio so I have a strong heart and the strength work I do is fairly evenly spread to all muscle groups. I could probably use a little more functional and mobility training but hey, you can’t have everything right? I guess you could say my body is in balance but I don’t think my mind is, or at least not all the time. On one hand I love my body, it does everything I ask of it but on the other hand there is always that pressure from society that I can do more, do better. And even if I know my worth and that it has nothing to do with my appearance it is very easy to forget it. My lesson, that I’d like to share with you is that balance is not a steady state that you reach and then just stay in. You have to work constantly to keep yourself there but also remember that it’s okay if you can’t always do that. Do things you like, surround yourself with people you love and balance will be much easier to find, and keep. Love yourself, accept your flaws and celebrate your strengths. Easier said than done but it is definitely worth it to try and work for it. Well that’s all my thoughts and advice for today. Have a nice weekend and talk soon!

Positivity

Good morning! I was looking at the morning news and they said Stockholm would have a nice sunny day today. I looked out my window and saw that it was nowhere near nice. That got me thinking about Swedes, weather and positivity. If you know anything about Swedes, you know that we’re obsessed with weather, probably because we’re always hoping for sun but most often get some gray-cloudy-sadness thing. So today when I expected sun but got clouds I realized how most conversations are going to go today… “it’s so sad”, “I’m so tired”, “the weather is horrible today isn’t it?” and on and on it goes. I agree that it’s not so fun with this type of weather but I also think it is perfect study weather, awesome weather for training inside and it makes me want to drink tea, which I don’t do often enough. However, it is very unlikely that someone will tell me these things when I talk to them, we tend to focus on the negative aspects of life and therefore my mind wandered to positivity and our own power to control how we feel.

positivity
noun | the quality or state of being positive

A friend of mine taught me about this and how we control our own happiness. Happiness does not come from something we have, it comes from within. It is a state of mind, you decide to be happy. Now either you think I might be on to something or you probably think this sound like complete rubbish. But I’ve found, again and again, that this really is true. From the simple thing like not letting the weather get you down to the big problems we face from time to time that makes us feel worthless. I’m not saying this is always easy but if you truly believe you can turn things around for yourself then in the end you will be able to.  Choose what you want your life to be about, and try to make decisions that will get you there. If you do that then everything will workout, maybe not right away but when you start seeing good things then suddenly they’re all around you. Before you know it, you will be that annoying person across the street who is just walking around, smiling for no apparent reason. That is not only going to make you happy but everyone else you meet will also catch some of your happiness. This is how I try to live, with positivity and the belief in myself and that I control my mind. I hope this gave you something to think about. That’s all for now! See you soon.

Towards the Nobel Prize

Today there was a welcome reception for all new students at the Stockholm City Hall. It was very nice with classical music, some choir and inspirational speakers. The City Hall is where the Nobel dinner is held so it was pretty cool to see the inside for real, and not just on tv. One of the speakers was actually from the new Nobel museum and he held a very profound speech about how ‘the future Nobel laureates were sitting in this hall right now’. No pressure.  I actually always said I would get the Nobel prize, of course I believed I would have it when I was 23… better speed it up because by my own estimations I should get it this year and I still haven’t made any brilliant contribution to the world of science. Oh well, I think I might have to disappoint my ten year old self but I can live with that. I’m sure I’ll get it next year anyway. All right, no more jokes (I’ll get it it in two years, tops), okay now I’m done. Let’s take it down to a more realistic level. Tomorrow I start lectures, 10-15… a pretty long day for someone who’s had summer vacation for the past 2,5 months. But I’m excited to start, it’s always nice when you get to know what you’re supposed to do for the next couple of months. I’ve got both my new classes tomorrow, Firm and Industry Dynamics and Microeconomics. I hope everything will go smoothly!

Superstars!

Today I was at the Les Mills Superstar auditions/semifinals in Stockholm. It was an amazing day and I think I watched or participated in almost all performances. We have some awesome instructors for sure! I wish I would be brave enough to audition too but I get nervous just by watching the others compete. I realize it would be a great experience and there is so much you can take with you but I have this feeling that I don’t know what the jury is looking for. I mean today I really didn’t agree with the 3 people they chose to send to the finals in Copenhagen. Don’t get me wrong, they were really great but they where not my top 3 picks. So, how do you approach a challenge when you’re not sure what you need to do or how to tackle it? I guess I’ll have to think about these things if I ever want to try the competition myself. Overall, I’m really happy about the day and I’m glad I got to be a part of it!

Now I need some sleep for my very exhausted body. Tomorrow is a new day with new possibilities. See you then!

First Day

First day of school is done! Today was only registration and information but I find that those days can be the toughest. It’s so many new impressions and I’m always nervous on the first day so there’s a lot of extra tension too. Overall I like first days, I mean there are endless possibilities on a first day right? You just don’t know til you get there and I find that exciting! And the people! That’s probably the best and the scariest thing. These are the people you’re going to spend (in my case) the next two years with.  I always try to be open and put my best foot forward. The first impression isn’t everything but you definitely shouldn’t ignore it either.  And since you’re gonna spend a lot of time with these people they will get to know you eventually so you can’t just fake it the first day. I think you have to be as transparent as you can and really let yourself shine through, and that’s not necessarily an easy thing to do. Let’s hope I’ve done everything I’ve just said because now the fun (and hard) part begins. First class is on Monday…

Now I’ve changed to something comfy (read reebok) and will go visit my dad. It will be a Friday night well spent!

Overtraining

I came across this article from Les Mills on fb about overtraining.  I can really relate to it so I thought I’d tell you my relation to overtraining and how I’ve avoided it despite being close to it a couple of times.  I’m definitely not a fitness professional, training is my hobby and it’s what I do in my spare time. I call myself a workout enthusiast so these words really hit home…

“These ‘exercise addicts’ identify their favorite types of training and then just go and go and go – they don’t stop! And they have a tendency to add to their regime [rather than replace] when something new comes along.”  – Bryce Hastings

This is exactly how I would describe myself. Right now I don’t workout as much as I used to but a couple of years ago when I really got into Les Mills I started to workout purely because it was so fun. This led to a lot of classes and mostly high intensity ones.  I could tell the results where coming slower and my performance during every class was not as good as before but I didn’t workout for the results anymore so why did it matter? I never got to the level of true overtraining but I could feel the onset, one part was the performance decline and also after doing lots of similar classes I would feel some pain in my knees and feet.  See, when you love something it’s easy to forget the pain because often it doesn’t hurt while you do it, it comes afterwards.

So what stopped me from basically breaking my body by doing something I love? For me it’s all about being honest with yourself and humble to your body. I could push through a Grit class with my favorite instructor, knowing it wouldn’t feel great afterwards but I would do it because I knew eventually I would take my time to rest. Because lets face it, your body is amazing… it will do almost anything you ask of it and handle it with grace, whether its eating something that’s not very good for it or exercising too much.  That is why I always took that rest, even if it was a couple of days too late to be optimal, because my body works for me so I have to work for my body. I think you can call that my “secret”. When all I wanted to do was to workout, I had to remind myself to take a step back so that I would be able to keep training and not get any injuries. It’s all about realizing that if you want to keep going you have to accept that the body needs some rest every once in a while. 

My advice is to try to stay humble, I promise it will be easier to find balance then. It’s okay not to stay within the lines all the time because your body will tell you when something is wrong. Listening to your body is not that hard, it will tell you loud and clear if you workout too much or eat too much ice cream (yes I’m a sucker for ice cream) and all you got to do is accept what it’s telling you and do something different the next day. That doesn’t mean you have to decrease your training drastically but a little variety in your workout routine can go a long way for a tired body.

That my story of overtraining, even though I never actually where overtraining. But stay humble and as we say in Sweden “lagom är bäst” which roughly translate to “just the right amount is the best”. That’s true about almost anything in life.  Thanks for reading!

Love Ellie

New beginnings

On Friday it’s finally time, I start school again! I know so many people who are tired of school and who didn’t enjoy high school even though everyone told them that “they would miss it afterwards” and “life will never be this easy again”. I have never been one of those people, I’ve (almost) always enjoyed school.  Studying at a higher level has been even more fun! Everything you learn ties together,  you choose the subject and you get to decide how you want to spend your time.  I think that is why studying comes so easy for me… while other people study to get a dream job, I just want to stay in school as long as I can because really, in my mind it’s so much nicer to study than to work.

I think that’s the challenge for everyone, to find something that they really enjoy doing. It’s not that every second of it has to be rainbows and unicorns but if you feel like you are where you want to be then it wont be that hard to wake up early in the morning. I’ve also found that I rarely can relate to all the “weekend memes”, you know like “why is Monday so far from Friday and Friday so close to Monday”  because even though I love the weekend, I certainly don’t hate the regular weekdays. However, like I said, I think it’s a challenge. It’s not an easy task to get there but if you’re being honest with yourself I believe it’s much more likely you will make decisions that lead you in the direction you want to go.

So, in two days I will start my program in the Economics of Innovation and Growth. I’m crossing all the fingers I have that this will be a good fit for me! As I mentioned earlier, the past year I’ve been studying at SU and, well, it was not what I expected.  I could really use a year that turned out a bit better that the last one so let’s hope this is a step in the right direction!

All the best!

Lazy vs Ambitious

I’ve been thinking… This week it’s back to school for me again. This year I am starting a new master program at KTH in Stockholm. I say new because last fall I started a master at SU and well, I can only describe that as a fiasco. This year I am doing a program in the Economics of Innovation and Growth and yeah, it probably is as nerdy as it sounds.  Good thing I am a nerd and very excited. I even looked up the literature list for my first courses and started reading in advance.

So, whats the problem? Well, the problem is that I somehow have the ability to be thoroughly lazy and incredible ambitious at the same time.  As a result, I got the book but it is so hard for me to actually sit down and read it. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve read about a third but my ambitious self expected the whole book to be done by now. It really bothers me that I have the ability to, completely guilt free, do absolutely nothing for hours and at the same time want to excel at a Hermione Granger level.

I think for me it’s about mental preparation. I can’t just decide to do something and then focus on that task until it’s done, I don’t have that kind of self discipline. I need to take time to convince myself of why I should do something and why it will be worth it in the end.

Right, so now I will try to take my own advice and convince myself to sit down and read for a while. I might be excited to know everything about Advanced Microeconomic Theory, but it is quite a tedious read as you can imagine. Wish me luck!

The BODYCOMBAT life

For the past two and a half years I’ve been a Les Mills BODYCOMBAT instructor. It is truly the best thing I’ve ever done! When you find something in your life that always, without exception, makes you smile you don’t let it go!
 

So it’s safe to say most of my day somehow revolves around bodycombat. There’s a lot of work behind the one hour class… looking at the masterclass, reading choreo notes, listening to the music, scripting (I mostly script in my head… oups) and practice, practice, practice. But when you love it, all that time is worth it. In fact it’s what you live for!

I guess this is my way of saying there’s going to be lots of workout related posts! I hope you’re up for it!

See you soon!

The coolest cup ever

So, when I was at the west coast this summer I bought the coolest cup ever. You know when you find some small little shop that looks super cute and you just see something magical   literally – and just have to have it? Well, that happened to me this time… and let me just add that I’m the biggest Harry Potter fan ever

Right? RIGHT? Best thing I got all summer! And that’s true even though Reebok released the new Les Mills collection. I’m just sayin’

Alright, so I guess you can call this my welcome back post! It’s actually the third time around that I’m restarting this blog, but, third time’s a charm right? I hid all my old posts because hello!? who was I even back then? We’ll see how long I can keep it up this time.

See you soon!