On Improving My Most Important Relationship

Cadence’s 8-week challenge wrapped up a few weeks ago, but I intentionally waited awhile before writing my final update. I needed to give myself time to soak in the experience and reflect on what I took away from pushing my body a little further than I usually do.

Doing a challenge of any sort is a big commitment. Prior to starting my classes at Cadence, I was going to the gym two or three times per week. By the end, I was exercising five, sometimes six days a week and feeling it. I actually had to invest in the occasional sports massage because my muscles were so sore. Having previously dreaded going to spin classes of any sort, I absolutely adore the variety at Cadence. My favourite classes are called “More Than Just Cycling” because you’re off the bike just as much as you’re riding. Even when I tell myself I’m going to take it easy, slacking off is impossible. The classes are designed to push you to the limit and I always leave feeling accomplished.

In terms of numbers, I didn’t lose much weight. I stayed the same, but gained a bit more muscle and a lot more confidence. When I started the challenge, my anxiety levels were the highest they’d ever been. I was always on edge and self-care simply wasn’t a priority. What I’ve noticed over the past few months is a shift in attitude, not just towards my body, but towards my abilities in other areas. I’ve also prioritised my mental health and listening to my body. The challenge wasn’t about fitting in as many classes as I possibly could, it was about knowing when to take a day off and rest. We forget that sometimes.

Fittingly, Cadence is now offering another eight-week challenge that focuses on self-love. Their Self-Love series involves three classes per week (cycling, circuits, yoga and pilates) and a seminar with Body Love‘s Courtney Durr. For me, that’s what exercise is all about: learning to love our bodies and ourselves. Visit the Cadence website to learn how you can take part.

This post was written in partnership with Cadence, but all opinions are my own. 

VanessaandNick-AnaGallowayPhotography-35

Photography by Ana Galloway

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