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The courage to be honest with confidence | PilotingPaperAirplanes.com

Hi!

This will be a bit of a rambler post – apologies in advance. I’ve been musing on this for a while and haven’t quite found the flow to write about it… so I think I’m trying too hard. Here are my thoughts in all their un-finessed glory.

I was first challenged by this post titled “I’m not pregnant. It’s just my belly.”

I can relate in that I have a body type that fits some “beauty standards” (hourglass figure and a full bra size); for the most part I’ve always been happy with my shape. I’ve also always carried some extra pounds. The confidence in my curvy figure or honesty about my health have varied over the years. Still, I’m generally pretty comfortable in my skin.

But even on a good day, I don’t think I could manage her final thought:

“After some time and a few breaths, I smiled and unwrapped my jacket from my waist. I decided to let my little belly be. I wasn’t confident the whole time, but I was honest. And if you ask me, honesty is damn sexy.”

My response to the article had me confused. I wanted to be all “body confidence, yay! I dress for myself not anyone else. One person’s dumb comment doesn’t need to ruin my day. *quietly repeats calming mantra to refrain from poking out eyeballs*.” In the moment, I think that’s exactly how I would have responded.

But because I lived the story in private through another’s writing, the immediate impulse to put on a brave face didn’t happen. Instead I wanted to cry. I mentally tied that jacket around myself and hid.

My reaction confused me because it was honest. Raw. Vulnerable. Even weak. The list of people who see this part of me is short and I don’t open up easily. The post served as a mirror and what it showed me was uncomfortable.

Maybe it has hit me stronger because I’m particularly aware of my body lately. It is spring, after all. The tank tops and skirts are coming out while the magazines urge me to slim down for summer. It’s probably the hardest time of year (because once the summer heat and humidity hit, I don’t care so much how I look and just about staying cool).

This thought process is showing me that personal confidence and courage are not the same thing, and most importantly, that honestly trumps both.

If you made it through my rambling, high five!

*

How are you feeling this spring?
Confident, courageous or honest?

This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

This is me, friends. A woman who lives by a to-do list, but isn’t afraid to ignore it when needed. Even the blog calendar. I haven’t felt this happy to write a post in a long time as I do right now. It’s been a crazy few weeks and I’ve missed it! Getting up this morning, sitting down with my tea and signing in to PPA felt refreshing and oh-so-perfectly normal. Life is settling down again.

Fitness

Moving counts, right? There are 37 stairs round trip and a parking lot between old apartment and new apartment. I walked those 37 steps a lot. I counted the hours total we spent working, then averaged how much of that I was walking back and forth to be about 10 hours over moving weekend. Seeing as everything hurt for the next week, I’m counting those hours.

That equals about 37 hours of activity for the month of March. Only 15 days of actual workouts, as I took nearly a full week off post move. Best news is I am tracking my measurements and weight for monthly check-ins with my accountability partner – I’m consistently dropping inches and while the weight is slower, the number is moving.

What I learned this month: 

• Stairs are the enemy. I have never liked stair workouts and I hate them even more right now. So I need you to do me a favor:

Tell me that a good stair running workout works in less time. Tell me the heart rate and VO2 max training results are better than anything else. Tell me it’ll make my ass look amazing. Please and thanks for the motivation.

Fun

Um, we moved! But really. I found I was in the mood for something new and fresh. Call it spring cleaning or something. This move just felt really good. We purged some more stuff, reorganized and have a much prettier balcony view now.

Sure, I’m convinced my new building is built over a sinkhole given the dramatic waves in the floor. And btw, sinkholes are f*** terrifying, so I most definitely had a moment of freaking out and “hells NO Jon, I can’t live here!” It passed.

Now my brother Matthew is our new housemate. My kitchen is stocked with Lucky Charms, Cocoa Puffs and Pop Tarts. Jon and I are boring adults I think.

In other fun news, IT’S SPRING. I enjoyed morning tea on my balcony for the first time this weekend, I wore sandals last week, I painted my toe nails for the first time this season AND it’s Cherry Blossom season so we took Sky Squid out for the Blossom Kite Festival (even though it was actually not spring that day, but almost miserably cold). Now I have a few online shopping carts of spring and summer tops that I can’t buy right now but absolutely need. You understand.

Favorite Instagram photos:

This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com} This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com} This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}
This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com} This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com} This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}
This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com} This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com} This is me March review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

Food

Confession time. The no sugar thing continuing through Lent didn’t really happen. I gave up pretty quickly. I’d already done it for a month! I’d paid my sugar dues. What did happen was much more mindfulness of said sugar intake. I’m quite proud of myself actually. *pat on the back* My February sugar detox was successful in that it caused me to be more aware how much sweets I was consuming and change accordingly.

My other success is my water intake. I’m averaging 7-11 glass per day. My goal is at least 100 ounces, preferably closer to 150. And yes, I track it daily in my work planner. I feel amazing you guys! Funny how you don’t realize you felt bad until you feel great. I’m less fatigued, snack less (hunger vs. dehydration) and my skin feels a lot better.

Reminders:

• >sugar + <water = great!

• I power up in the sun. Man I feel so much better when it’s bright in the morning. Remind me of this when it’s 90° and sunny.

Happy April!

How was your March?
How was your Easter weekend?

4 ways to be a morning person {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}
4 ways to be a morning person {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

My mornings were out of control. I had become a regular snoozer, threw together clothes in a rush, some days didn’t have time for breakfast and put off making my lunch until 10 minutes before I ran out the door. I got to work frazzled and getting in a morning workout was out of the question.

I wasn’t always like this. I was a morning person. In fact, with rare exceptions, I never snoozed my alarm and enjoyed my peaceful mornings. In December I decided enough was enough.

• I committed to getting up at 6 am, an hour+ earlier than before.
• I committed to going to bed on time – meaning by 11 pm AT THE LATEST.
• I committed to a 30:00 morning workout.

Eight weeks in, my new habits have me feeling myself again. I’m more focused at work, especially in the morning; my routine eliminates excuses like “just one more episode before bed;” my sleep is more consistent, deep and restful; and I’m keeping a regular workout schedule.

4 ways to be a morning person:

1. Go to bed at the same time.
Clearly, getting up begins with laying down. This is so simple… so why do we find it so hard? Turn a hard eye to your evening habits. How late are you eating? Are you on electronic devices until right before bed? Do you avoid the bed or bedroom because it’s a mess? Do you watch TV too late? Are you frantically finishing today’s to-do list or stressing about tomorrow’s? Do you get sleepy at some point and then get more energy later?

Try “closing” the kitchen and turning off electronics after a certain time. Take 10 minutes after dinner to pick up the bedroom to make it more inviting when you’re ready to sleep. Set a limit on number of episodes per evening. Keep a notebook by your bed to jot down reminders for tomorrow, getting it off your mind tonight. Lay down with a book when you’re tired so the later energy boost won’t keep you up.

2. Prep the night before.
Start an evening routine. Make your lunch when you make dinner. When you get home and change out of work clothes, lay out clothes for tomorrow. Have your workout clothes prepped and the workout planned before you go to bed.

Then try pampering yourself! Reward yourself for the extra prep. I love lighting a candle and doing an easy foot massage right before bed. Some nights I’ll do a yoga nidra breathing practice. I like retiring early with my kindle (one of the only electronics we allow in bed) as long as it’s not a nail-biter book that will keep me up all night. Allow some “me time” after a busy day and evening.

3. Get up at the same time.
I used to get up at 7 am except on Friday’s when I open the yoga studio at 6:45 am. The earlier-than-normal morning was brutal. Now I’m up at 6 am every day and I’m not dragging on Fridays as I greet students. It’s such a routine now that my alarm rarely actually goes off. Most often I wake up before and turn it off. That natural wake up is so much more refreshing than the alarm!

In the last eight weeks I have only slept in past 6 am once. Even on mornings that I’m tired or too sore for a full workout, I’ve gotten up for a light yoga flow. I don’t want to break the morning rhythm my body is now conditioned for. (That said, if I really need the extra sleep or am not feeling well, that additional hour of z’s is much appreciated).

4. Plan time for something you enjoy in the morning.
Give yourself something to look forward to. It might be your workout, or making a good breakfast before kids are up or 20 minutes of distraction-free reading. I workout for 30 minutes Monday — Thursday. I keep this strict, too! I do not workout for 35 or 40 minutes. Afterward, I often turn on some instrumental piano music and sit for breakfast with my latest magazine or book. It creates a little zen space before getting ready for the day. This period is valuable enough to me that I will cut a workout short.

I would suggest leaving emails unread here. For me, this is a small window of morning time sans work or lists or expectations. It’s “me time” before other obligations. Mental zen.

 That’s it! Thanks for reading!

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Do you have other tips for better mornings?