“For nothing is fixed, forever and forever, it is not fixed; the earth is always shifting, the light is always changing, the sea does not cease to grind down rock. Generations do not cease to be born, and we are responsible to them because we are the only witnesses they have. The sea rises, the light fails, lovers cling to each other and children cling to us. The moment we cease to hold each other, the moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.”  — James Baldwin

Blowin in the Wind

Pack Up Your Sorrows

For Nothing


Stay-At-Home Exercise Moves – May 11

Romanian Dead Lift (for core, back, glutes, hamstrings)

dumbbell_dead-lift.jpg        romainian dead lift_m

Perform wearing flat training shoes or in stocking feet.
(2-legged: use either dumbbells or barbell; any weight you can comfortably hold for all repetitions).

  1. Use an overhand grip to hold the weights at hip level.
  2. Draw your shoulders back and keep your spine straight throughout the exercise.
  3. Push your hips back (hip hinge) as you slowly lower the weight toward the floor and below your knees.
  4. Press your hips forward to come into a standing position with the weights in front of your thighs.
  5. Repeat repetitions (as noted above) with single leg hip hinge (pictured below).
    Note: keep hips level.

(1-legged; improves lower leg & foot strength, stability, and balance).
                       Single-Leg-Romanian-Deadlift-1    1 legged dead lift

  


Stay-At-Home Exercise Moves – April 27

Wall Sit and Stay (for core, back, shoulders, and leg muscles)

Wall Sit 3

Wall sits: Perform 1-3 repetitions of 30 seconds per sit, every day.

  1. Stand with your back pressing against a wall, arms along the sides of your torso with hands flat against the wall. Your feet are about 2-ft away from the wall, legs hip-width apart or a little wider. Toes may be pointed slightly outward.
  2. Slide your back and arms down the wall until your hips and knees are at a 90-degree angle. Your shoulders, upper back, lower back and back of your head should all be flat against the wall. Distribute your weight evenly between both feet.
  3. Engage your abdominals, relax your shoulders and breathe evenly while counting to thirty. Recover for 15-seconds by standing up, shaking legs out, walking around.
    Then, repeat the remaining repetitions.

For progression: Hold arms out in front of your chest. Keep shoulders and lower back pressed against the wall.                 wall sit2


Stay-At-Home Exercise Moves – April 20

Bird Dog Slides (for upper body strength, core stability)Note: Perform Bird Dog Slides on tile, concrete or wood floor surface, use a small towel, rag or other item that will slide across your floor surface. If this exercise is new to you, perform all repetitions by extending one limb at a time (i.e. you will have three points of contact with the floor rather than two).

bird dog slides

Source: RedefiningStrength.com

Bird Dog Slides (in bare or stocking feet); practice your walk out maneuver from last week to get yourself into position. Perform 10 – 15 repetitions, 1-2 sets every other day. Do all repetitions on one side  then switch to the other.

  1. Place a slider (or towel) under the ball of one foot and set up on your hands and knees with your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips.
  2. Drive your foot down into the slider and slide out, extending your leg while reaching your opposite hand toward the wall in front of you. Keep your hips square to the ground and brace your abs as you extend out. Feel your glute working to extend your leg as you drive down into the slider. Then slide back in, bringing your knee back under your hip as you touch your hand down to the ground. Feel your abs working as you bring your knee back in. Then again extend back out.
  3. Really press down into the slider as you extend and tuck. Move slowly and control the movement, bracing your abs and even pausing to feel your glutes when fully extended. Complete all reps on one side before switching.

Alternative exercise: Perform a traditional bird dog maneuver without a slide under your forefoot. From the quadruped position, extend the opposite arm/leg while keeping the hips level. Do all repetions on one side, then switch to lifting/extending the opposite limbs.


Not-Knowing Is Knowing

Rambling thoughts have rattled around in my head today, however, I have to admit I prefer this disposition over the roiling emotions I was experiencing last week. It has been a month of living with the ‘stay at home’ order and there does not yet appear any soon relief from our social separations. Honestly, these days of pandemic provide a full spectrum of emotion for the unsuspecting, home-bound furloughed working person.

And in all of this, I want to know something. Don’t you? I mean I think I really want to know! I want to know WHY? I want to know HOW MANY will live or die? I want to know WHEN will this end? I want to know WHO started this insanity? Most of all it seems we all want to know WHO is TO BLAME? WHO is IN CHARGE? And last but not least, WHO IS GOING TO PAY FOR ALL OF THIS? I think we all feel like naughty children banished to the corner. HOW LONG must we stay in our rooms?

Must we go on in this dungeon of not-knowing? I want to KNOW why…why must we? Must we, ALL OF US, EACH AND EVERY ONE OF US…go through this great disturbance? And then I wonder, would knowing those things I don’t know really help me right now? My next thought is this: Could I actually handle knowing the truth(s) of my recent, mad-raving questionings? Could any of us handle such knowing? Because when I think about this for any amount of minutes, it seems that once we gain a knowledge of what we don’t know, the unveiling truth becomes like a death to us. Our innocence dies; our peace of mind dies; our hope dies…everything we think we have a right to know about something, anything really, actually brings us to a point of living death.

Examine these thoughts, because they are fears about outcomes. But this worry is based on your need to know. Break the cycle of those thoughts by being aware of the now. Savor the quest, not the finish. The Cool Impossible ~ Christopher McDougall and Eric Orton

There are only a few certainties in this life, namely, we are born, we live, we die…of these things we may all agree upon…we all know these three to be truth. So how does knowing these things help us or make the hard things of not-knowing easier? Is it better to know or not know? Do we want to know to ease our discomfort? Or should we consider our not-knowing is given for the purpose of expanding our character and humanity.

We cannot feel good about an imaginary future when we are busy feeling bad about an actual present. When we try to overlook, ignore, or set aside our current gloomy state and make a forecast about how we will feel tomorrow, we find that it’s a lot like trying to imagine the taste of marshmallow while chewing liver. Daniel Gilbert – Stumbling on Happiness

Perhaps we might do ourselves a favor and acquiesce our need-to-know so we may apprehend how to exist meaningfully…in what each moment reality reveals to us. Perhaps then we might grasp the real reason we have been given a life to live…perhaps our being and doing is for the sole purpose of living from Source…which is LOVE!

Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.
~ Eckhart Tolle ~

Lest you think me daft, may I remind you these thoughts of mine are simply the rambling, house-bound webs of perception which have rattled around in my head today. Thank you for reading them…I hope you may find some comfort from my sharing them with you. It does seem, especially in these days, that life is pure mystery, and yet I am okay believing that for truth. Really, I do believe that reality, life as we know and experience it, is actually very kind to us. When I consider how I may live comfortably with not-knowing, I make peace with what IS. Yes, the need to know is the beginning of death.

Cast your cares for stones they are,
Cast away, cast away, near and far,
Throw away, far away, small or large,
Worry not to see where stones land, for
The power of casting comes from the hand;
So cast away, cast away, cast away all,
Throw stones hard, throw stones fast,
Watch feet trample over stones cast; now
Trod across, trod across, yes, trod across brave,
Across the stone path trusting heart has paved.
Brave heart, true heart, pure heart behold,
Yes! Mystery perceive, embrace, and imbue,
Life lived not-knowing is knowing life true.
~DEBreen


The Space Between

Think...Feel...Be....BodyWise!

As I sit here this morning in quiet contemplation, I wonder what it is that the Lord would have me know and do today; I am thinking several things at once. First, today is Friday and it lays open and bare without the structure of work or requirement of appointments. That at first puts me at some dis-ease as I am so used to having my days booked and scheduled to the full. The other strand that is floating by my awareness is that I should be heading out the door for my morning run. But it’s still a little too cool for my liking, and truth be told, I feel less than motivated to go out when I have no ‘race’ on my calendar.

There are no idle thoughts. All thinking produces form at some level.
~A Course in Miracles~

So I am sitting here tapping away on my keyboard trying to be quiet and not…

View original post 266 more words


Stay-At-Home Exercise Moves – April 13

Walk Out to Beast Plank (for upper body strength and core mobility, hip, knee, ankle flexibility). Note: If the walk out is a new maneuver for you, perform and perfect by walking your hands on the floor a short distance away from your body and then walk them back and shift (push) your lower body backwards to finish the movement with your standing posture. Bending your knees throughout the walk out will make this move easier.

Walk out (in bare or stocking feet) to Beast Plank
Perform 3 – 5 repetitions, holding each beast plank for 5-30 seconds. Repeat 1-2 sets every other day.

  1. Stand tall, reach for the ceiling, then bend at the hips to touch fingertips to the floor. Continue walking hands out in front of your body until your hands are underneath your shoulders.
  2. If your knees are not yet bent, bend them now, and hover them an inch or two above the ground. Your back should be flat, and your hips and knees form 90-degree angles. Your feet are flexed (a nice stretch)!
  3. Hold this posture, core engaged, neck neutral for 5 to 30 seconds. Then shift your body weight behind you by walking your hands back toward your feet. Stand up. You have completed one repetition.

 


Stay-At-Home Exercise Moves – April 6

Reverse Lunge (for balance, posture, glute/hamstring/calf strength and flexibility, core stability) Note: If the reverse lunge is a new move for you, perform this exercise without adding weight. For balance, have a chair nearby or hold a wood dowel or walking stick. If you are an advanced exerciser, add weights by holding kettlebells, dumbbells, or a medicine ball to increase exercise intensity.

reverselunge-e1586183602768.jpg

Reverse Lunge (in bare or stocking feet)
Perform 10 – 15 repetitions, 1-2 sets every other day. Repetitions can be completed all on one leg then switch to the other; or alternate legs for each reverse lunge.

  1. Stand as tall as you can with your feet spread shoulder-width apart. Look straight ahead and keep your torso (and chest) as upright as possible for the entire exercise maintaining a natural arch in your lower back.
  2. Keeping your abs engaged, take a step backward about 2-3 feet straight behind you. Raise your back heel to be on your toes while making sure your weight is on the front heel.
  3. Lower your body by bending your back knee until your front thigh is parallel to the floor. Return to the starting position and either perform all repetitions on one side or alternate backward lunge steps.

Tips:
(1) Your front knee should not pass your toes.
(2) Back knee should be close to a 90-degree angle.

 


Stay-At-Home Exercise Moves – March 30

3-Way Leg Swings (for balance, joint mobility, range of motion, core stability, single leg strength) Note: In the beginning, perform smaller swings to maintain balance. The whole point of this exercise flow is to improve your mind-body connection and enhance muscle activation to improve your balance.

3 way leg swings

Source: RedefiningStrength.com

3-Way Leg Swings (in bare or stocking feet); Perform 10 – 20 repetitions, 1-2 sets daily.
NOTE: In the beginning, do each swinging leg exercise (i.e. forward/back) on one leg, then the other. As your single leg strength increases, attempt to do all repetitions for the 3-way swings first on the right leg, then on the left.

How to perform: Begin by standing on one foot. Feel your foot gripping the ground and engage the glute of the standing leg to help you balance. Brace your abs and stand up nice and tall. Stand near a chair or wall for balance as needed.

Keeping both legs fairly straight, but not locked out, begin to swing the other leg forward and backward. Start with smaller swings, then increase range of motion. Swing from the hip, don’t just bend your knee and kick your lower leg. The bigger your swings are, the more your standing leg will have to work to balance.

To warm up the joint, perform smaller swings during the initial repetitions and/or tap your foot down as needed to reset and stabilize. When holding onto a chair or wall, you will have removed the balance component of this exercise, however, you may now focus on hip mobility by engaging in larger swings.

Complete all reps of the forward/backward swing then, switch to the lateral swings. For the lateral swings, swing the leg up to the right and then to the left in front of your standing leg. You may even feel the outside of that glute working to raise the leg up as you swing it. The bigger your swing, the more you will open up your hip and force your standing leg to work hard to balance.

Next, perform the rotational swings by bending the knee of the moving leg to 90 degrees.  then bring the bent knee in front of you and open it out to the side. Bring the knee back forward, keeping the leg bent the entire time. Really focus on opening from the hip with this move. You should really feel the glute of the standing leg working as you rotate. The more your rotate, the harder the move will be, but also the more you will open your hips and get your glutes activated.  You will know you are doing this move correctly, as you will feel your foot, calf and even your shin muscles working to balance. You will also feel your glute and core engaging as you swing your leg to open your hip.


Shine the Light!

Click to listen: SHINE THE LIGHT~CHOIR

Your eyes are windows into your body.
If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light.
If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar.
If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have!
Matthew 67:22-23 The Message

What is the meaning of this?
Why do words fail to assist in comprehending?
While emotions spew panoptic across the course of heart and soul.
Why then, during these days of troubling pandemic,
Why then, do tell, am I feeling so keenly alive?

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

The body too, informs of these psychic extremes,
It buzzes with edgy, wired, bursts of manic synchronicity.
The physicality of these days is really over the top,
Red-alert, fight or flight, move over, take cover.
Why then during these days of troubling pandemic,
Why then, do tell, am I feeling so keenly alive?

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

These days of COVID-19…days foreboding, otherworldly, connoting;
These days of solitude and distance between us looming,
Reminiscent, these days, of shadow lands walking;
These days, they bring dark clouds of aprehension,
Why then during these days of troubling pandemic,
Why then, do tell, am I feeling so keenly alive?

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

Are these pains we currently notice, the pangs of labor pushing?
Pushing us from our dark tombs of unknowing?
What else should we think now, surmise or predict now? for,
Change is our air now; our breath and our death now.

Shine the Light, for all the world to See!

Yes, of course, this must be the reason;
The times are ripe and in due season,
The cosmos has spoken; the shift has awoken,
All nations, and peoples, and nature is broken;
For these are the days of troubling pandemic,
No time to waste our living…asleep, apathetic.

Shine YOUR Light, for all the world to See!