A Personal Journey Towards 50 – Entry #1 – Can my body handle training and other BIG GOALS

Colleen Gray-Hewett Blog

September, for me, is the true start of the new year (back to everything AND my birthday).  This year I turned 49 which means I’m in my 50th year.  Which I am grateful for.  One – that I’m still in my 40’s, and two – this is the year to see what can be achieved.  So here are some goals and ideas for the year that are written down and in a public space so that accountability becomes more real and, maybe, just maybe, a way to connect with this community.

  1. Ironman Canada.  July 2019.  Following a good IMC race in 2015 and a trip to Kona, a 2014 bike crash and likely a series of mini-events lead to a spondylolithesis (back fracture, slippage of the vertebrae) ousted me from training really until about now.  Back on the bike with WOWTaG big time 2017/2018 which has been going well, showing me that all is not lost, though work to be done.  Intermixing some trail runs into my dog hikes to see how the body responds (each time out is different, really).  And yesterday, a first dip in the pool and an easy 1100m.  So now through December is the time to see if the real training can begin in January.  But that’s the BIG sport-goal along with my WOWTaG Race Team.
  2. Yoga.  Took a summer hiatus (summer was a bit crazy post-Penticton Fondo on July 9th) and my body felt it to the negative!  Back to yoga this week (my pass starts back up now) to move, strengthen, open up and breathe.  A yoga challenge: attending classes multiple days in a row.  Upcoming 14 day challenge at my studio – I will evaluate and see if I can commit to 4 classes per week (not 7…too hard with the family and life).  Yoga whether at home or studio, just breathing or moving is a practice in mindfulness and body acceptance.  It will change your outlook on your life, your community and the world around you if you give it a chance.  It may not change your frustration with traffic though. Ahimsa….(non-violence – including to self)
  3. Writing.  Weekly blog posts on a variety of vegan issues and ideas.
  4. Coaching and Educating.  Plant-based or Vegan food is the ‘hot food trend’ of 2018 and will likely extend into 2019.  Which of course brings much attention to the benefits and deliciousness of thriving on plants but also introduces some not-so-good (tune into a future blog for expansion of this concept)!  The majority of vegans are under age 35.  We 40, 50, 60 +’ers need more information from our own stage of the game and more education on how to actually change long-established food habits and cultures to be able to thrive through to 100+. I plan to meet with more clients, present workshops and provide corporate wellness.  From athletes to chronic disease (treatment and prevention).
  5. Education.  Complete my holistic nutrition program with emphasis on plant-based nutrition, to complement my extensive broad-based knowledge and coaching/training programs.
  6. Descend confidently on my mountain bike.
  7. Strength training weekly
  8. Fermenting – developing a roster of kimchis and krauts and kombuchas and maybe even some water kefirs for personal use and possibly pop-up markets.  My granola is pretty awesome too….
  9. Curate vegan products for the forthcoming Community Vegan online store
  10. Your Resource: for all things vegan.  Its a sometimes confusing or conflicting world out there and to have one person you can query about anything to do with plant-based eating or a vegan lifestyle – ask away!  The website will have more info on my favourite things, my finds, my recommendations.  The blog will highlight longer-form issues.  The social media will be more spontaneous day-to-day life as a 1969 VEGAN
  11. Activism and/or Volunteerism.  This has been a tricky one for me.  Finding the ‘perfect’ outlet within my community and/or the bigger world around us.  I have several ideas and interests from animal welfare to environmental concerns to healthcare and then so many sub-sections within each category.  So this year, I will actively seek.
  12. Minimalism.  Don’t laugh.  If you know me, you know I live in a oxymoronic, holier-than-though world.  I’m acutely aware of this.  But like most of us, there is SERIOUS room for me to cut back.  On spending and/or where our $ is allocated.  On wants.  On space.  On our impact on the environment through our choices (such as driving a gas guzzling vehicle).  We lived for 3 weeks in an RV with basically 4 adults (my kids are teens) and didn’t need much more than food, craft breweries, amazing nature and mountain bike trails.  Yet arrival back in Vancouver as school begins brings endless draining of the Mastercard…its not the real world.  Its not sustainable.  Its a trap. (I hear your laughter!).  But my next 50 years and the planet’s next 5000 years need this!  It has to start with individuals and particularly those who know better and/or can afford to make change fast.

I could keep going here so this is the start.  Gives me direction and some things to report on a regular basis.  So if you enjoy this sort of thing – stay tuned!

I’m getting personal here. This is insight into who I am and what is on my horizon for Sept 2018-Sept 2019.  I look forward to working with you and hearing from you and your thoughts and ideas along the way.  Check out my Instagram (communityvegan) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/communityvegan) pages to follow some of the journey as well.  Links at the top of the page.

Bring on the weekend.

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