Hello everyone. Today is just me talking about some things that occur to me when riding my bike. I am getting out of my poor me story, approaching a fitness strategy for the next few months, doing a little more homework around my convictions and encouraging young humans not to use the word “uncomfortable” if they are angry. Enjoy.
Listen to the episode here:
- Getting Out of Old Narratives [00:00:10]
- The Importance of Being Informed [00:01:46]
- Self-Care and Training Shift [00:03:06]
- Perspectives and Self-Inquiry [00:08:11]
- A Time of Passion (or Bandwagon?) [00:21:21]
- Uncomfortable [00:24:25]
- The “I” Thinking [00:30:18]
- Takeaways on Microbiome and Immune System [00:32:50]
- An Interview We’re Looking Forward To [00:37:10]
Gabby Reece: Breaking Out of Old Narratives, New Training Approaches & Navigating Injuries
It’s my favorite time. It’s a podcast by myself. A lot of times, when I’m riding my slider up the hill, I have these thoughts. I thought, “Maybe this would be a good time to do a solo podcast.” I talk about navigating positively an injury and also having a new approach to my training for the next few months. Isolating something I want to work on and saying, “I’m going to forego all the things I’m good at and comfortable with and work on this for the next three months.” That was stimulated by a conversation I had with PJ Nestler on a podcast.
I’m continuously working on getting out of very old narratives. It’s amazing how we can hold ourselves at a time that was so short and we could extend it throughout our entire life instead of coming to terms with that it’s over and just looking at my convictions. If I think and believe something, am I getting as informed and educated on these beliefs? Not for argument’s sake but for my own understanding.
If you’re on the debate team, you have to understand the other side’s point of view as well or better than your own. That’s the same with learning. You think this way, you feel that way, or you believe that way. Why? Are you expanding that? Are you looking into one belief and then stopping there? If you’ve got some time, hang out with me. I hope you enjoy.
For two years, we’ve been saying that it’s a crazy time. In fact, it almost seems weirder with gas prices, how combative it is, Roe v Wade, and all of it. It seems like things are winding up even more and more. There are a lot of things. It’s important to be informed. At a certain point, it’s like, “What are the things I can do?” Also, it’s how I react, what I believe, how I treat other people, and if I’m taking care of myself.
I’m going to be the most obvious person to say, “Make sure you’re taking care of your health.” That’s obvious but if that’s one of the things, a tiny little thing that I contribute because that’s my genuine background, that’s what I’ll do. It’s to remind you whether it’s adding a breathing practice, making sure you can make better decisions nutritionally, or not eating out of stress with all this insanity. It’s summer, that’s the other thing. I want to talk about the training because it’s warm right now. It’s important to take advantage of that.
I’ll share with you some of the things maybe you’ve heard or haven’t through some of these podcasts. I have a torn labrum. I was supposed to get surgery. As the universe does conspire for me, in one week, I had a perfect storm of why I didn’t. I got some exercises from a young lady who was also doing some work on me, which I normally don’t do. I’m reluctant to do once-a-week self-care. It’s ridiculous but it’s true.
What happened was, she was suggested by someone I admire. He said that she now lives in California. I started seeing her once a week and she gave me exercises. I saw a gentleman from Colorado who was doing dry needling pretty much almost in the same week. He said, “You might have had this tear for ten years. You just have angry muscles. Why not do some other things and do some other exercises? Imagine that, do something new.”
Simultaneously, there’s a company called ElliptiGO and they had heard about my hip and said, “We’ve helped some people with torn labrums with this ElliptiGO.” It’s good for up pill and I live on a hill. I started incorporating that four days a week, getting worked on once a week, and doing my homework. A six-month issue I’ve had started feeling better almost immediately, 8 or 9 days, or something like that. I’m going to continue to add homework.
My point of even sharing this is we all have something going on. Surgery is unavoidable. Also, if we’re looking for answers or new input, it’s out there. I have been able to not have surgery and I had to be willing to try something else. I did a podcast with PJ Nestler. I work with PJ and XPT. He’s been training athletes and performance people for a long time. One of the things that we talked about that felt so important to highlight was, let’s say we want to work on resilience. It’s how we’re moving and not always being on a linear plane. We can’t do that with everything else.
Let’s say we want to be stronger, more flexible, or our cardio increased. We can’t do that. What we talked about is something that I’m putting back into focus in my life. In order of importance, in my physical training life, what do I want to work on? For me, it’s going to be, believe it or not, resilience and flexibility.
[bctt tweet=”Taking ownership is liberating.”]
I have a long body. At times, this is the stuff I don’t want to do. I’m not great at it. What encouraged me was that I’m going to take 8 to 12 weeks. This is what the proposition is. Whatever it is that you decide, maybe you want to be stronger or maybe you want to work up your cardio, focus on that as the meat of your training during the week.
You’re going to do a little bit of something else. If you’re doing your cardio, you’re going to lift a little and you’ll probably do some other things. For me, I’m going to work on my functional movement, my resilience, and my flexibility. My flexibility is why I’m always running into injury train. You can always be stronger. I’m decently strong and my cardio is okay. Those are the things that I’m going to have the confidence to put away for a little bit. For the next three months, that’s what I’m doing.
I want to invite you if there’s something that you’ve been thinking about. Let’s say you’re a yogi and you go, “I’d like to be a little stronger.” You just don’t keep doing yoga. For the next 8 or 12 weeks, I’m going to write down a strategy and I’m going to figure out a way to focus on that. That was something out of that show that was a great reminder. We ended up nowhere and then you end up backward from where you were the year before. The other thing is I know that I can’t be younger but I believe that I could be improved. My flexibility could be better in a year than it is now. What am I doing to make that happen?
I want to bring that up and encourage you while it is warm and inspiring out. There’s more energy. There’s the sun. Start now. If you’re not in a regular routine, get going but do it with the strategy. Be thoughtful? It’s hard just to show up. What do you end up doing? You do a little of this and a little of that. What happens? Not much. That’s for everybody, people who know what they’re doing, people who are in great shape, and people who are sitting on the couch. In some ways, it’s not that different.
Why I was inspired to do the podcast is I was listening to Byron Katie. Honestly, I was listening to Loving What Is on the audio going up the hill. I use it as a tune-up. Sometimes, from my perspective, it’s an everyday thing. Some days I wake up, I’m positive, and I’m good. Other days, I question myself and my decisions. We joke that if don’t like anyone in your family, accept whoever’s not living with you at that time. You got to stay on top of it.
I’ll listen to it because sometimes it helps me get to the place where I can do that self-inquiry better and I can also have a laugh at myself at how ridiculous some of my own beliefs are. Katie is always reminding us that suffering comes from confusion and from being in conflict with reality. It’s hard to know, in certain ways, what is reality right now. There are other things that certainly we can look at.
It brought me to a story. She talked about this gentleman who was in the war from the age of 6 to 12 in the book. He had gone through a period of worrying about losing his parents. He was through a series of bombings. He sought refuge inside a building that ended up collapsing and he got a concussion. Overall, he was okay. The bombing lasted for another two weeks after that.
Fast forward to 55 years down the road and he was talking about how this impacted him. She framed very lovingly and delicately because you’re not trying to minimize the impact of something. She asked him and it resonated with me, “How long did the bombing last?” He said, “Two weeks.” She’s like, “You’ve pretty much been being bombed for the last 55 years.”
She asked him about his parents and he said, “I didn’t have them.” She goes, “You believed you couldn’t survive without your mom or your dad. Is that true?” He was like, “I survived.” She was like, “Yes or no. Is it true? Look at how strong that little boy was and here you are.” It brought me to my own story and what I have thought is a reasonable job. When I was two, my parents were not together for long. It was a year and a half or something. My father is from Trinidad and my mother is from Long Island. They met in California.
When I was two, I was in Mexico City with my mother, who was training dolphins. I got whooping cough and everyone agreed that it would probably be better for me to live with my aunt and uncle Joe. When I was two, I was brought to them in Long Island, New York. They were neighborhood friends with my mother. They raised me for five years. They were tough but loving. When someone puts your hair up for school and walks you to the bus stop or meets you at the bus stop, things are pretty good.
They took me in. Now, having had my own children, I was very precocious, which is a nice way of saying I was probably a little bit bratty, for sure. I’m not even their biological kid and they take me in, love me, and put up with my crap. When my mom certainly felt more prepared and she was getting remarried to my stepfather, who was quite lovely, I moved back in with her.
It wasn’t easy for me, I’ll be honest. We’re very different people, my mother and me. It’s that expression, “Someone has done the best they can.”After re-listening to Katie’s book, it reminded me, because I’ve worked on trying to release this narrative, “My mom shouldn’t have left me.” Is that true? Maybe it worked out great for me.
Also, my father passed away during that time when I was five in a plane crash. I don’t mean this coldly but he certainly got off the hook as a hero. I didn’t have some weird examples. Male, bad example. My uncle Joe was a guy with very few words and loving. He taught me to ride a bike. My dad dies so he gets to be a hero. I went into adult life with a clean slate or a blank slate of what, in my case, a male partner would be. It worked out.
Why I’m bringing this up is I know that all of us have some narrative, unless you’ve either done the work or your EQ is off the chart and it comes easy for you to be like, “It’s all okay.” It’s our thoughts and our beliefs that are torturing us. It is not the actual event, even when it’s awful. Obviously, people have gone through much worse than something like what I went through. I fully acknowledged that. For each of us, our pain is our pain. There’s something so beautiful about the opportunity to not only let it go.
There are usually so many amazing things that come out of these difficult times that we’re missing or we’re not living in because we’re so caught up in our thoughts about what happened and it holds us back. I used to think that. I felt frustrated for seventeen years and then I moved out at 17. I went on to play college volleyball. I had an incredible coach. I got to work in fashion, live in New York, and travel around. It was pretty good.
I was like, “A couple of bumpy years for an overall fun adulthood with an imperfect relationship that reflects me, I’ll take it.” Instead of always living in those old ideas, it’s strange. I probably was raised, as a reaction to the situation, with a scarcity mentality. Sometimes I’m rigid about certain things for absolutely no reason. There’s no proof nor has there been for so many years.
I want to invite you, whatever those things are in your life. She shares very good examples for our children too like kids on drugs or suicidal children. Our thoughts about the thing and then how we react to those thoughts don’t make the situation better. It doesn’t make us able to be present when it is good. I thought it was a helpful tool. I wanted to share that with you because it’s exhausting. There’s a freer and better way that is consistent with reality and that’s where I want to live to the best of my ability.
Laird and I don’t fight that much. For whatever reason, we’ve been together a long time. Both of us are not bickering types of people. It’s like, “Is there an issue? Let’s talk about it.” I don’t mean it’s better or worse. It seems to be the way it is. We’ve been together a lot. A lot of couples have been together more often. That has always its own dynamics. Laird is frustrated. There’s no surf. He wants to foil and foil only. There are not a lot of opportunities for that.
For example, there’s a big swell coming to Tahiti but he’s like, “I’ve done that. I’m looking for new adventures and new things to learn or do.” It got me thinking too when we compare ourselves to the outside world. For example, we have a young gentleman, Luca, who lives with us. He’s like a son. He’s a godsend because he’s young and gung ho.
He’ll play go train and play and do things with Laird. He’s at a different place on the arc. At his age, going to Tahiti to surf is exciting. He went to Fiji. For Laird, being biologically a lot older, he’s done a lot of that. He’s pissed that somehow it’s still fun and interesting for Luca. It’s like, “How come I can’t get that feeling?” I slept in Birdie’s room. The Tempur-Pedic mattress was very soft. You just need space.
We talked about when I don’t compare what I’m going for to the outside world. For example, at my age, I wouldn’t recognize that I was middle-aged or older if there weren’t young people in a certain way if that makes sense. Laird wouldn’t be frustrated as much. He’s still always waiting for conditions about that he can’t surf the way he wants to or where he wants to or on what he wants to if he didn’t have the comparison like, “That group in Australia is doing this. That group over there in Tahiti is doing that.”
[bctt tweet=”If there’s something you’ve been wanting to work on, to gain, what’s stopping you?”]
It’s that thing of, how do we pull out using what’s going on around us to dictate how we’re responding to what we’re experiencing? For me, quite frankly, I’m pretty good. If I can keep seeing people I love and have a good dynamic with my family and learn new things, I don’t know that I need to go out in the world and kill it. You want to because it creates more options if that makes sense, especially creatively. It creates more options when you have momentum that you could be like, “I want to talk to that person. I want to go see this thing.”
It interests me for that reason because I love the idea of having options for my life. As far as like, “I’m number one,” more zeros, or whatever, that doesn’t interest me so much, especially when I can tune out what the world is telling me. Think about somebody who went to the Olympics a couple of times. There are those people and it’s fun for them. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist. In a way, at a certain point, don’t you think once you did it or did it a couple of times, you’d be like, “I’m good.”
Instead, we get this thing where we’re like, “I’ve got to go show them I can still do it. I’ve got to show them I’m still the best.” Versus asking yourself what you want to do, “If it is that great but if it’s something new, that also takes time and energy to start something new, maybe I should begin that.” It could be being a CEO. It could be in athletics. It can be in music. It could be whatever. Who are we continuing to do it for?
That’s shown up for me lately, which is to be clear or to at least be honest with myself, whatever that is. Even if it’s like, “I want to do this because I want attention.” No problem. At least it stays clear and honest. “I want to get this because it makes a lot of money.” Fine. It has its own set of responsibilities. That’s what we’re doing. We’re all down here learning. That’s how we learn. We go through it.
I’ve been thinking about a lot with the news. I spend a lot of time reading and trying to study things. I wouldn’t say I don’t watch conventional news, so to speak. I’ll listen to Barry Weiss, Krystal and Saagar have Breaking Points, things where maybe there are different multiple points of view even different than mine. There seems to be an effort in finding some semblance of what is happening, even though that can be hard.
I would say that we live in a time where people respond pretty strongly to headlines and if it was possible to say, “If you think you’re having a feeling about something, it’s great.” I appreciate passion. I happen to live with a person who, every topic, they’re passionate about. I wish I was more like that. Laird is fired up to be informed. I’m starting to feel this way or think this way. I’m going to pay attention to all of the things below the headlines and not just the headlines.
We’re moving into a time where everyone’s jumping on every bandwagon, their own or others. It would feel more powerful or genuine if people had a real point of view and information about what they were either protesting or lobbying. We do live in an unusual time where there’s a lot of yelling. If you scratched below the surface, a lot of people wouldn’t understand what they were yelling about. By all means, let’s all stay involved. Let’s also try to understand and keep understanding, keep learning, and keep growing.
Also, we could believe something and, by learning, we might continue to adapt our point of view. That’s pretty great when we can keep that flexibility and playability. That’s been loud. It was interesting to me when Biden was on the prompter, read the lines on the prompter, repeat the line, and what have you. The White House tries to come out and say, “Let me repeat the line.” If we can practice in our personal life, “I blew it. I made a mistake.” It’s not hard to do it. We’re human. We’d be teaching everyone else that too. I know that yelling and being aggravated is not the answer but taking ownership is pretty liberating. We’re not teaching ourselves that.
An interesting interaction I had with a young high school volleyball player was good, kind, nice, diligent, and tough. I’m sure this is a person who could take constructive criticism and is like a soldier. We were talking and she was curious why her coach had put her with this partner. She wanted to play with this girl and the other girl wants to play with her as well. They’ve been partners in the past.
Who knows? The coach could have been many reasons which are excellent. It’s like, “I’m going to maybe put you with someone you’re not as comfortable with to make you better so that your tool belt is getting filled out.” That’s what happens. Sometimes you can work with somebody who, if they’re not as capable or competent, gets you to rise to the occasion. This is how we gain experience and what have you.
However, this young lady wanted the information. She approached the coach and the coach was not even going to entertain the conversation. This is a young lady who is going to approach incredibly respectfully. All young people and all of us should be able to question authority respectfully. Unless there’s a fire and the guy is saying, “Get on the ladder now.”
In those types of scenarios, we should be able to respectfully say, “A greater understanding of your thinking of this decision, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.” Teach it to young people. It doesn’t have to get that they feel like they do have to be at a ten to finally say something but they can go oh, “This, I was questioning.” Especially when you’re working that hard. The coach didn’t entertain it.
When I was talking to the young lady about it, something interesting popped out. She said to me that when the adult coach walked away, it made her uncomfortable. I was like, “It made you uncomfortable?” She was like, “Yes.” She’s a senior in high school. I was like, “It didn’t make you angry? It didn’t make you pissed off? It didn’t make you upset? It didn’t make you confused? Something else made you uncomfortable.”
I’m fascinated by how this word has become this thing that we can also back out of. If she had said to the coach, “This makes me uncomfortable,” the coach could then confront her and said, “What do you mean?” I’m saying I’m uncomfortable. It’s like a here nor there in a lot of ways. I don’t want young people to use that as a universal word. That they’re saying it but they’re not saying it but they can back out of it.
Sometimes, quite frankly, it gets thrown around too easily. You go, “Can you pass me the salt?” “I’m uncomfortable the way they that you asked me.” It’s like, “Are you serious?” I’m saying it from both sides. They throw it out there, “I’m uncomfortable.” Conversely, this young lady is trying hard to show up in her life as a conscious person. She’s working hard. She treats people well. She deserves that space. She has earned that space, especially in this dynamic with the coach.
She said to me, “Yes, I’m uncomfortable.” It’s important that if you have somebody young in your life, you identify this. You call this out when you see it and encourage them either way. Encourage them to say, “Tell me how you feel.” That’s how we develop the skills. We practice. We blow it. We try a new way. We learn. That’s what communication is.
They say, “You made me uncomfortable when you said that.” The other side is to teach them also that sometimes we have to be able to roll with things and not react because things are coming at us all the time. Life is great and hard. It seems right now we’re all getting squeezed a little more whether it’s financially, emotionally, spiritually, or culturally. Our togetherness is being compromised. We have to teach young people and continuous adults, hopefully, to be good examples. The other side of it is it’s on us also to be good examples.
The people we have out there that are leading and that are supposed to be some of the examples, they’re not being particularly honorable. You’re the example in your everyday life. If you have somebody that works with you or it’s your kid or a young person you’re around, maybe point that out because they should be allowed.
It would be scary to have an opinion right now. Everybody has all the opinions online but then when you say it out in the world, you could get it by saying, “This is how I feel.” We can’t lose that. That authenticity is imperative. How are we going to understand each other and make improvements if we can’t have a respectful disagreement, which doesn’t come from, “I’m uncomfortable.” It’s like a slow death.
I don’t know if you all have been thinking about this at all or seeing it. There’s an interesting thing that goes on too, this phenomenon, especially because of social media and you have people in pockets where they have a lot of followers or whatever. It’s this huge self-importance. There’s a verse in the Bible I like. This is by no means a religious point of view. God knows every hair on everyone’s head. For me, it screams we’re all so precious and valuable.
[bctt tweet=”All young people, all of us, should be able to question authority respectfully.”]
Simultaneously, when we can get rid of that I thinking because that’s where a lot of the suffering does come in. I can loop that back to Katie’s book, Loving What Is. When we are associating with the I, there’s so much limitation. with social media, we’ve got a world full of famous people and there’s a level of self-importance. Conversely, how do we change these gears? What is for the collective good? Also, how do we care enough about ourselves that we are important in that way?
It’s like sliding in and out of those gears quickly. Now we’re all in the I a little bit more and that’s part of why there’s craziness. Anytime we hear something different than what we think or believe, we’re so offended and we can’t handle it. How do we focus on the places and spaces that we all share? What can we do about those places like school and work and medical care?
What do people want to do in their private lives? How do they want to eat? What’s the name of their God? Who do they want to have sex with? Why can’t we just leave that alone? They’ve got the I, “My opinion is important. What I think and believe is important.” It isn’t and it isn’t. I’ve seen how that volume has been turned up a little bit more. It’s an observation.
I did an interview with Dr. Jeffrey Bland. One of the takeaways is the microbiome. How many times can we talk about it? However, if over 60% of your immune system is in your microbiome, it seems pretty important. One of the things he talked about was the things that can support the immune system and Omega-3 came up. If you’re vegan, there are good alternatives now. That’s exciting. There is the importance of Omega-3. Hopefully, you guys are still on the basic protocol of vitamin D, zinc, magnesium, and quercetin.
After interviewing about this, Dr. Perlmutter takes 1,000. Dealing with uric acid and others. I want to bring that up as a reminder because I know we’ve been at it now for years. It’s important. These strains are more contagious. I don’t feel particularly afraid of getting them but if they are more contagious, then we have to stay diligent in reinforcing our immune system.
At this time, it does feel very chaotic. I don’t mean it, like, “It’s so chaotic.” There’s an extra amount of chaos that I could invite you to find the ways that center you. Everyone is different. Some people like going full throttle and scaring themselves and be like, “I got it out,” and then they’re calm. Other people are like, “I center myself. I meditate. I have a breathing exercise. I’ll go take a walk in nature. I’ll spend time with animals.” Whatever it is, how are we doing that right now?
I encourage you to continue to take care of yourself. If you come across somebody that you can get into hassle with, ask yourself, “Is it worth it?” It probably isn’t. The more all of us can be practicing that and love each other. What we’re being blasted, I don’t think is what most of us feel. We have to keep at it and keep showing up. I joke a lot that I use aggressive manners. When I see people, I’m like, “Good morning.” I’m making everybody say hello to me and connect with me when I go to the store. We have each other. If you have family, friends, and your health, you’re in bonus rounds. We also have strangers. We’re all connected. I want to put that in your ear a little bit.
I’m committing to my new practice. The biking and such, I’ve been doing for about three weeks. I’d rather lift cement blocks. I’m going to be doing more for the next 8 to 12 weeks. I won’t lie. I have a Pilates table by Lagree Fitness. They have at-home units. That’s helping me do it. If there’s something you’ve been wanting to work on, to gain, what’s stopping you? What can you do to add it? If there is a story that you’re holding on to, is there a way? Can you do the self-inquiry? The book that has helped me is Loving What Is. It’s making sure you’re doing your nutrition.
Finally, I’m doing an interview with Arthur C. Brooks. I had read his book called From Strength to Strength. It’s an excellent read. If you’re at all in a transition professionally, let’s say you’ve done one thing already pretty good or maybe you’ve been doing something for a while and you were good at it and now maybe it’s becoming harder, this could be an interesting read for you.
It’s called From Strength to Strength. It’s a great book talking about fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence. That’s all I have except to say that we’re here now. If you’re reading this, you’re here right now. Everything’s probably pretty good. I send my best to each of you. If you are navigating challenges, which we all are, hopefully, you don’t feel alone in that. Thanks for hanging out with me.
That wraps it up for this episode. Make sure to follow us on Spotify for free episodes and subscribe to The Gabby Reece Show on Apple, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcast. You can follow me, @GabbyReece, on Instagram and Twitter. Aloha
Subscribe to The Gabby Reece Show