Abby Lacey


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Yoga and Me

​For those of you have been following me over the last year, you’ll know that apart from my family and friends, my two great loves are cycling and yoga.

I have written about cycling quite a lot; training and scrounging for the London to Brighton in June, but I have yet to talk about my yoga journey.

Almost two years ago, I embarked on my first yoga class. Not knowing much about the practice, I sheepishly entered the class, proceeded to take a mat as so many others were doing and plonk myself down – in the wrong place, facing completely the wrong way. After my initial embarrassment and repositioning of my mat, the class started and my love of yoga began.

Until then, I had only found ‘sweaty exercise’ to be rewarding and  was shocked to find that the practice really did something for me! I’d practised meditation and mindfulness before but combining it with the concentrated movements it helped not only stretch me, but also slowed me down, made me focus and helped my anxiety.

As well as weekly classes, I have taken part in a hot yoga class (which actually did nothing for me apart from making me feel a bit faint and self-concious!),  partner yoga with my amazing teacher, Katie Winterton, got into online yoga with Erin Motz, Bad Yogi, met the awesome Goldie and even got 7-year old Dylan (AKA #OneLittleYogi) into it. I’m still a novice, but working on it!

 


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My Happiness Experiment

Last week a friend sent me an article: A Happiness Experiment: Can You Make Every Day Feel Like Saturday?

With great excitement I read that apparently we are most happy on a Saturday at 7.26pm and obviously I wanted to put this to the test – so I did my own Happiness Experiment.

As per the article, over 10 days I tracked:

  • What I ate and drank
  • How many hours I slept
  • Any major events (i.e. parties, dinners with friends, etc…)
  • How much exercise I’d done
  • A short summary of how I felt at the end of the day
  • A 1-10 rating for the day (10 being a perfect day)

I didn’t go into as much details in my results as Mikael Cho did, but I found the following:

I paid more attention to what I ate and drank. When I was out, for example on a Friday night with friends, I didn’t count my drinks, but did pay attention to what I was eating.

I sleep way more than I thought I did at weekends, peaking at a whopping 9.5-10 hours, but less than I thought during the week, averaging of 7.5 hours per night.sleep

I exercise for an average of 1 whole hour a day – not including my lunchtime walks at work.

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Plus I am not much more happy at the weekend than I am during the week!happy

The conclusion I drew from this experiment is that whilst sleep and exercise don’t have a huge affect on my happiness (although I don’t really think 10 days is long enough to show a true result, plus it was a good week for exercising), my job, a great group of friends and a wonderful family, do!

I found the experiment really interesting and whilst we can all make small changes, life really is pretty good!

Bad Habits

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They have a nasty little knack of sneaking back in, those bad habits. Whether it’s like the naughty monkey here picking his nose despite his Mum and Dad constantly telling him not to, or like me, worrying!

I had a small cause to worry this week, which of course turned into a MASSIVE cause for worry and ended up ruining a perfectly good day, with work colleagues and friends! No matter what I did, I couldn’t focus on anything other than this problem.

This is where my two friends, Mr Mindfulness and Ms Exercise came in and sorted me out! Mr Mindfulness told me to, “Sit down, breathe, think about it. Not embellish it. Just think about what the worst outcome could be. NOW, stop. Leave it there (stick a pin in it, let the balloon go, etc.) and move on.”

Ms Exercise then popped up adding her two-penneth in and told me to get some fresh air and go for a bike ride – which I did. I can’t seem to ‘over-think’ on a bike ride – possibly because I’m tearing down country lanes, avoiding potholes and cars determined to fling me off, so I have to be mindful/’in the moment’ or I could come a cropper!

I’m not saying that these two will sort out all your bad habits, but they certainly help mine!