The Art of Competing with Myself.

Via on Jan 14, 2013

Supta Kurmasana

The first time I went to a yoga class, I was looking for one more way to perfect my body.

Oh vanity…

But what I found was so much more than that. Unlike many other things I had tried, this was not about perfection or competition. This was about showing up, being present and allowing my body and mind to change a little more every day. I learned that it was much more about allowing than striving.

But then, the ego is still there.

Lately, I find that I’m competing with myself a bit. Can I hold this pose longer? Can I go deeper? It isn’t necessarily a bad thing, of course, but I believe there is a fine line there. There is a line between wanting growth and feeding our egos. There is a line between the natural unfolding and improving of one’s practice and becoming a control freak overly competitive. There is a line between joyfully desiring to see physical and spiritual progress in my practice and being frustrated or beating up on myself if it isn’t happening as quickly as I’d like.

That line is called intention.

If my intention is continued growth in my practice, it will be a joy to see myself improve, not a frustration or a constant trying to “measure up.”

Today, I got up to practice much earlier than normal. “Farm chores” early. “So early it’s actually just really late” early. Before five early. I had been finding myself scrambling during the day to get everything done with the longer daily practice, so up earlier it is.

For me, getting up almost two hours earlier than normal is growth in my practice. My feet don’t want to stay behind my head? I can live with that. I’ll get there. Or not. I’ll keep at it.

And in honor of Dwight Schrute up above:

beet smoothie

Un-beet-able Smoothie

Beets are awesome. They are great blood builders, cleansing for the liver, full of antioxidants and iron—and they are yummy.

(serves one)

Two small beets (I like to get the prepared beets in the produce section if I’m using them this way. There’s nothing added, but they are much easier to deal with)

1/2 cup frozen raspberries

1/2 cup frozen tart cherries

juice of one lemon

some additional water (or coconut water if you need some extra calories and electrolytes)

Throw it in the blender. Yum.

*This is extremely tart and I like it like that. If you’d like something milder, up the amount of water and/or add a little stevia.


What was your practice like today? Are you doing #yogaeverydamnday this month? Check back for my updates and follow along on Twitter @kate_bartolotta and Pinterest.


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About Kate Bartolotta

Kate Bartolotta is the strongest girl in the world. She is the love child of a pirate and a roller derby queen. She hails from the second star to the right. She doesn't know how to behave with all the apples and ibexes. She doesn't suffer from her eight million freckles, she loves them! Like a rolling stone, Kate gathers no moss. Kate loves kale, being barefoot, Dr. Seuss, singing too loudly, gallivanting, palindromes, blackberries and has far too many books for her own good. When she's not writing, you can find her practicing yoga, running in the woods, playing with her kids, devouring a book, planting dandelions, changing the world and doing her dishes. Kate does not play the accordion. She is a massage therapist, writer and a compassionate friend to all. This year Kate aspires to finally give up on learning to knit and will instead spend that time putting a little bit more of her heart on the page. Connect with Kate on Facebook and Twitter


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6 Responses to “The Art of Competing with Myself.”

  1. Aaron Hill says:

    Glad to see you enjoyed my Ashtanga Meme! And I can totally relate to that struggle between drive and ego…

  2. [...] (Really, there is no rationale to where my mind will take me when it comes to saying no; needless to say, I am a work-in-progress.) [...]

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  4. [...] I tend to be a little headstrong regardless of the moon phase, so since today is Saturday and the full moon, it was probably wise to heed tradition and take the day off. The point of having a practice isn’t to have flawless alignment, to never miss a day or to be better than someone. [...]

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