Finding Moments of Flow

mind The bell rings, and my training partner and I fist bump to start the round. We circle, both of us in a fighting stance, right foot forward, bent over slightly. I fake grabbing his collar with my left hand, only to grab it with my right immediately. I switch my left grip to the …

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When You Can’t Think Straight, Move Your Body

A few days ago, I was attempting to write an article, and my brain just wasn’t working. I sat staring at the screen for a good hour, repeatedly tweaking two sentences and liking neither until I finally declared my efforts were pointless and slammed my laptop shut. I grabbed my jump rope and boxing gloves, …

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Seven Things I’ve Learned After Seven Months Training Jiu-Jitsu

I attended my first Brazilian jiu-jitsu class a little over seven months ago. If you don’t know much about it, jiu-jitsu is a martial art based on ground fighting and is one of the fastest-growing combat sports in the world. Jiu-jitsu attracts a passionate and dedicated community, which is one of the reasons I first …

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It’s supposed to be hard (+ a calisthenics workout)

Happy Monday, Last Thursday, I had what I can only call a bad day. Everything that day felt hard. My writing, my training, my personal life — in all of it, I felt lost, frustrated, and unsure of what to do next. After struggling through one thing after another, I began to wonder if I was …

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Rest is part of the work (+ a 5-exercise calisthenics workout)

Happy Monday, I have a mixed relationship with the holidays. I love what I do, and I don’t look forward to taking time off. I feel the most alive when I’m writing, training, or working toward goals I care about. I pretty much live by this quote by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, one of my favorite psychologists …

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Learning to Be Flexible With Your Goals (+ a Cat-Friendly Workout)

Happy Monday, If we’ve learned anything from the last few years, it’s that things don’t always go according to plan. And, unsurprisingly, this same lesson applies to our fitness journeys. Plans and goals are incredibly useful tools — they help us focus our attention and give us priorities to organize our lives around. Making a …

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Weights Vs. Bodyweight Training

Happy Monday, One of the things I get asked about the most is whether I train with weights. The answer is: kind of. I’ve been training using mostly my own bodyweight for over a decade now. I like bodyweight training for several reasons: It’s portable! I love the fact that I can work out anywhere, …

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Trying Vs. Regrets: Part Two of My First Jiu-Jitsu Competition

“Welcome to the women’s jiu-jitsu rollathon,” Pete, the owner of the MMA gym announces, instructing us to line up by the wall by rank. Six months into training, I’m still a total newbie in the sport, so I head toward the back of the line. There are about fifteen of us — more women than …

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Reframing Plateaus (+ a Tiny Hotel Room Workout)

Happy Monday, Logically, most of us know that any time we’re trying to get better at something, whether it’s fitness-related, learning a new language, or picking up a new musical instrument, our progress won’t be linear. Non-linear progress means we should expect brief spurts of improvement followed by long periods where we seem to be …

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