Hi, I’m Christina, a Rhythm instructor at Digme. I started my journey into fitness originally through wanting to keep my body in shape for my career in Musical Theatre and dance. As I grew a little older I noticed what exercising was doing not only for my body, but my mind. Working out and teaching cycle has been the most wonderfully rewarding ‘job’ whilst still being able to perform and fulfil my love of the arts.
So where do I start? What a year! Many of us looked to 2020 as a new decade with a wealth of new opportunities. A fresh start, new ambitions, new goals and hopefully less trouble in the world. Then, 2020 truly got underway. As a global pandemic struck, it quickly became clear that perhaps, this year wasn’t what we had expected when 2019 came to an end. A year that would bring worry, struggles, uncertainty and lots of banana bread!!! (not all bad).
Naturally, theatre and the gyms were two industries that were shot right down when Covid-19 struck and we were all sent into lockdown. ‘Lockdown’ - ‘an emergency situation in which people are not allowed to freely enter, leave, or move around in a building or area because of danger’ says the dictionary. A very scary thought. No work, no money, no education, no loved ones, the list of worries goes on and is something no one could have expected. But the word ‘lockdown’ was soon banned in my house and I realised the only way to get through this would be to try to find some positivity and light and make the best of a bad situation. This was sometimes harder than it sounded in my head and I’m sure like many, I experienced the lows as well as the highs. Lots of those highs being things I now want to bring with me into 2021.
What happened? Well, for a while, none of us really knew what day it was. Without the normal daily routine and its timestamps – waking up and heading off to work or school – and little to distinguish one day from another, we felt lost. But, shamelessly binge watching Carole Baskin on the Tiger King all day or the fact wearing PJ’s to work is no longer frowned upon soon became some of the positives to come of the virus. Everyone is back in the kitchen living their best Masterchef life and long walks in the fresh air have become a true joy. We appreciate nature once again, there is less pollution around the world and animal adoptions have skyrocketed. Are these things we can try to keep up? (maybe not PJ’s in the office).
More deeply, the guilt free ability to just stop. To breathe. To be present and not get lost in a life of pressure or pleasing everyone else but yourself. For me, although it found me in a few dark moments, I learned the importance of really feeling, listening to and understanding those feelings, knowing what my mind and body needs to deal with those. I learned more about the importance of family and friends, how special these relationships are and how sometimes they can be taken for granted. How social media can be a wonderful place to connect but it can also be consuming and make you feel inadequate. We are all on our own paths and so comparing yourself to someone else through a screen will only push you back. These are the things I am grateful that 2020 has truly shown me.
Looking after our mental health suddenly became a number 1 priority, and this year has given us more accessible platforms to do so. A highlight for me was the launch of our online platform ‘Digme at Home’. I have loved teaching and taking classes with you all. Digme at Home has proved to be a real light for many and something very special to be a part of. Having the ability to exercise and stay connected with other like minded people has enabled a safe space to allow time out of a stressful day or a reason to have a break from work and more importantly has kept our endorphins flowing. Exercise and movement are about so much more than just weight loss.
‘Your body can stand almost anything. It’s your mind that you have to convince.’
It suddenly dawned on me as I began writing this blog post and looking desperately and excitedly towards a new year, that actually, I am not as desperate for a new year as what I first thought. Some of my happiest moments of 2020 were times when we were forced to live in the present, through a lack of any hope or certainty of what may lay ahead. I realised that the times I was most low or full of anxiety where the times when I was reliant on announcements and external factors that were out of my control. However, mid lockdowns (when we knew where we stood) or when no rumours were being thrown about, I fully immersed myself into the present and found magic in the smallest of things. If that’s taught me anything, it’s that 2020 was not all negatives, it’s shown me that I always want to be present and to not wish time away. We all get excited for what’s happening in 3 weeks time, the bouji restaurant we’re visiting at the weekend or how we’ll feel after our next ‘health kick’. That’s ok, but I’ve seen that true happiness comes from the small pleasures and moments that sometimes seem so irrelevant.
Maybe you feel like you cannot wait to see the back of the year, you can’t wait to see the 1st of January and you are gutted you couldn’t make last years resolutions happen. Do not beat yourself up for ‘failing’ or feeling like this, you are not the only one, it was inevitable and you probably succeeded in more than you’ll give yourself credit for. Try to spin those thoughts and focus on the little things you HAVE achieved. Instead of seeing it as having to ‘start again’ in the new year, try to remember that at any moment you have the opportunity to get back up, try again and keep pushing. We cannot be sure what the new year holds so try not to be disheartened if not much changes, but remember you are not defined by the things that are uncontrollably thrown your way. Take the small wins and run with them. Keep going with those resolutions, build new goals and dreams (nothing is too big). Keep talking, build up the people you love and listen to what your mind and body really need to be the best version of you. I can’t wait to see you all in the new year, online and in real life, until then, have a wonderful rest of your festive period and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
Catch Christina's Online classes here: