#PrincessBootCamp – Ariel Week Fitness Plan

Disney Princess Boot Camp The Little Mermaid Ariel fitness nerd post

One of my first orders of business last week (Cinderella Week) was to clean my parent’s pool and deck to get it ready for Ariel Week. One Princess helping another one out! With Cinderella’s hard work behind me, I was ready to dive in and get my swim on.

Princess Boot Camp Ariel Week Disney Fitness Blog

As a native Floridian, I’m no stranger to swimming. I love swimming, but I’ve never done it as a workout before and boy did it kick my ass!

This week, as I was eating fish and channeling my inner mermaid spirit, you could find me in my parent’s pool in the mornings. And let me tell you, Ariel week was in January…so that pool was frigid. Instead of being off putting, I found it strangely invigorating.

Disney Princess Boot Camp The Little Mermaid Ariel fitness nerd post

Since swimming is the only activity I chose to do for Ariel Week, I had to find ways to create variety in a single activity. I did some research on the different kinds of strokes and styles that swimmers do and tried to a little bit of each stroke every day I was working out (4 days a week.)

Here are the strokes I did:

-Breast stroke

-Back stroke

-Doggy paddle

-Butterfly stroke

-Front Crawl

-Mermaid Stroke (I made this one up)

Each day I swam, I did as many laps as I could of one style till my body started to get sluggish and my pace started to slow, then I’d switch to another stroke or style and on and on till I’d hit around 60 minutes of swimming.

It was slow going at first, but by day 4 I really started to feel stronger. I could go longer with each style and my rhythm and breathing improved. On the weekend, I added a bonus day at the beach so I could try some of the strokes and styles out in the ocean itself (home of all mermaids.) It was much more difficult to do in the freezing January ocean waves, but it was a fun challenge that I had spent the week preparing for and was able to handle.

Swimming is an activity that I decided would make an appearance in future workout schedules because I enjoyed it so much and saw quick results with consistency and that was just one week. Imagine what a month of swimming could accomplish.

New Year, New Word

As you may (or may not, if this is your first visit to my blogosphere) know, I gave up New Year’s Resolutions a few years ago. I decided it was time to stop changing things about myself and start challenging myself to simply be better.

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Each year I choose a word that will become a mantra, a creed, a manifesto to use for the whole of the year.

2016’s word was “Free” and to be honest, it was the opposite of a free-ing year. At times I wanted to be anywhere other than where I was. But in the aftermath of the year that seemed interminable, I can’t help but reflect upon those inalienable rights that I have taken for granted, like…you guessed it, Freedom.

But I don’t want to start this year with the same mistakes as last year. The challenge is to be better. And better is what I intend to be.

With that being said, this year I have chosen the word “Believe” to represent my journey through 2017. Somewhere between New York, California and Florida I stopped believing. I stopped believing in myself, in humanity, and in basic human decency. And while my belief in God never wavered, my trust in Him sure did and my belief in His plan over mine definitely took a hit. God and I have been in a bit of a knock down, drag out for the majority of the year.

But let’s be honest, I was only one doing any fighting in this relationship.

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Believe is one of those airy concepts like “Dream” or “Imagine.” It’s not quite as tangible as other words might be. “Trust” is a word you can sink your teeth into, but Believe…it’s more abstract. There are a lot of ways it can be applied.

That’s exactly what this year is gonna be about. What exactly do I believe? What do I believe about myself? What do I believe about the world? What do I believe are the best practices from a political standpoint? And how does my belief in faith translate to my daily life?

This is a big one, guys. You know how you never pray for patience because if you do God’s gonna throw something or someone at you that will force you to BE patient? This feels like that kind of mine field. Figuring out my core beliefs could take me anywhere.

The Liz of 2016 wasn’t ready for that kind of adventure. The Liz of 2016 wasn’t ready for that kind of challenge. The Liz of 2016 was merely treading water. But no more!

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I hope you’re ready to share in this journey with me. And I hope you choose a word that will represent your year. If you decide to give up on resolving to change, then share your word in the comments below and I will do my best to encourage you this year.

What I’ve learned most from 2016 is that community and encouragement are more important than ever. There are way too many things in this world, in this country that will divide us if we let them. The way we speak, the words we say, the colors of our skin, the religions that we practice. That’s why we have to find common ground. The fact that we are all flawed human beings is a great place to start!!!

Have a Happy New Year and know that I BELIEVE in you!

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Yes…YOU!