Namaste’ Dear Balanced Souls!
Over the past couple of months I have started to express mySelf physically in a totally new way: exercise. For the past 10 years of my life, I have not exercised: I have Done Yoga (ooooh, aaaaaah….) and it has built me a wonderful, strong, lean body. Lately, though, the Transition Energy that personal journey has been engulfed in has required something more, shall we say, aggressive, than yoga. I needed impact. I needed sore muscles. I needed a way to track progress and feel Mighty, and Beautiful, and Powerful.
So I started to do Pilates. And interval training. And running around and up mountains. Oh my Goodness…bodies are capable of amazing things!
I was in denial for a few weeks, to the idea of Exercise. To me, it has always meant gym-time, an attitude of punishment and making yourSelf hurt, of forcing yourSelf beyond your limits. The word Exercise, for so long in my world, was as negatively charged as the word Holocaust. I called my morning ritual (yes, I deemed it a ritual: glass of water, find a video to follow, unroll the mat, and move my a$$, give thanks for a strong body, and move on to the green-drink ritual) Sacred Movement.
Sacred Movement felt like something I was working WITH my body to achieve. I felt like I had power to NOT compete, to not push if I didn’t want to (and yes, I know that all of those attachments to Exercise were made up, in my own head), to make it a part of my Spiritual Connection Process.
Then, after telling my sister how I felt after experiencing Burpees for the first time (if you don’t know what they are, let’s just call them a fresh sort of hell for a little while), and hearing her response (“Ain’t nothing sacred about that”), I started to admit NOT ONLY was I Exercising, every day, BUT ALSO: that I really really LIKED it.
How shocking! I was the girl, the woman, who, when asked if I wanted to go for a run, looked at the person in utter bewilderment: “Why would I ever run for fun?” (I still don’t go for runs…I…do sprints while hiking.)
SO….the Inquiry I offer you today, is, if you don’t use your body physically, or challenge yourSelf, why not? I mean REALLY: why not? Time? Fear? Insecurity? Haven’t found the right thing yet? Hate gyms? Not the right shoes?
Let me share with you the benefits I have noticed from being active from 10-30 minutes a day (yes, some days, it’s 10 minutes and that’s it; it ALL counts and helps). My metabolism is better: I use and crave good food more efficiently and my digestion has improved (not that I really had issues before…it’s just better now!).
My energy level is more steady throughout the day. I find that my late afternoon crash isn’t as significant when I work out consistently.
I feel STRONG and GOOD about my body and what it’s capable of. I feel like I am improving, at my own rate, as a beautiful expression of All That Is. I notice different parts of my body that I had previously not sensed before (which is really saying something, as a yoga instructor: I have been sore in A LOT of places over the years).
Ultimately: as I move and challenge myself in different ways, I know that I am honoring the Innate Intelligence which creates, organizes and destroys all that I am, at any given moment. Expanding the capabilities of this physical body IS sacred: because it is honoring the body for what it is MADE TO DO: We are made to MOVE BEAUTIFULLY!!!
And so, in hopes that you will be inspired to start your own journey into How to Feel MORE of your Divine Physical Self, I offer you a few resources:
Blogilates.com is the first thing I found: the videos are whole body, or target specific areas. She has a youtube channel. It’s fun, and tough, and you feel like “how on earth could your leg possibly weigh so much?” frequently. It is both pilates, and some cardio work (which is good for me, since I can just choose a couple of videos and be done with it all in 20 minutes). You do as much as you can, and make modifications. And, Cassey is bubbly and funny (even when she doesn’t mean to be) and I get a kick out of her in general. Oh, and she doesn’t yell at you.
There are also dance cardio workouts that are really fun, and make you feel silly, and a little klutzy, which is perfect for me. You can find long ones and short ones, and you can stop when you want to, and remember to breathe!
And of course, there are spots like Yoga Journal that have awesome sequences you can do at home, and modify for your needs as you see fit. I do, of course, suggest that going to classes at the beginning of your yoga exploration, is hugely helpful. Understanding alignment, how to feel your way into poses, and more about yoga itself, cannot come from online sources.
So there you have it. Over the coming weeks and months, I will be adding specific videos and routines to help spice up your practice and motivate you :) I REALLY think that seeing what you can do is a powerful,fun, amazing way to practice.
Blessings, Ease, and extra Deep Breathing
- How am I going to use my energy? (concretemoomin.wordpress.com)
- Sacred Movement (thebalancedsoul.wordpress.com)
- How Pilates Can Help You Tone (goldenrule.com)
- A Natural Anti-Anxiety Drug? (angerandrelationships.wordpress.com)
- 10 Reasons Why More Guys Should Do Yoga. (elephantjournal.com)
- Positivity Challenge Week 21: Try Yoga (persephonemagazine.com)
- June Yoga Challenge Recap Week 2 (foodexercisehappiness.wordpress.com)
- How to Make Pilates an Effective Workout (sheerbalance.com)