I was in a yoga class on Saturday, standing on my left leg while my right leg hovered in front on me, when I noticed the sensation of work in my left calf. It was a vaguely familiar feeling, one which I haven’t experienced in a long time. It reminded me how easy it is to fall back into old habits without conscious effort.
According to science type authorities, every cell in the skeleton is replaced every seven years. (Interesting side note- we completely regenerate our own skin every seven days). This is kind of a strange thought- in a week’s time, your outermost physical self will be different than it is right now. We are constantly in a state of change, and the way we move and hold ourselves tomorrow might be a little bit different than it is today. Sometimes, we fall into consistent patterns that result in moving in ways that limit our movement strategies. This can be hard to change because it takes awareness of what we are doing. Sometimes, even if we have made a more permanent change, we can still revert back to the old way of doing things. This is what happened to me on Saturday. Even though it has been two and a half years since I made a permanent change in the way I stabilize myself, I reverted back to an old way of doing things. Maybe it was because I was physically tired from a hard training week, maybe it was because I was fighting off a cold, or maybe it was because it hasn’t been seven years since I originally made the change. Whatever the reason, I caught myself doing it, promptly activated my left abs and glutes, and felt the left calf sensation disappear. While we don’t have control over how fast our cells turnover, we have the ability to consciously alter our movement strategies and change what we are doing in the moment. And maybe in seven year’s time my change will be more permanent, but only if I focus and pay attention.