Home Practice #4 Strength


Before 21 day fix training
Everything in my life right now is demanding more of one thing, strength.
All of them; physical, emotional, spiritual, mental, magical strengths. My heart, my loves, my yoga, my surf, my health, my bank and my future all require a stronger foundation on which to resume building. This is how I'm gonna get it and pay it forward.
In one word, plyometrics. In two words, soul fire.

"Plyometrics are one of the most effective forms of workout as they force the body to move against gravity which helps burn fat faster" says lifestyle & fitness coach Amy Silverman

If Iyengar is right, health comes first and everything else comes after. The new coach in my life says the same, "Whatever you want, if you build a foundation of wellness you can have it! Success starts on your insides (in all areas) and when you nourish yourself properly, your outsides start to reflect what's happening inside!" Amy Silverman

Like heart and mind team up so do strength and muscle.
Do you feel we can free our body & minds by getting shredded with muscle?
I do.
The shredding will involve all of the strengths mentioned above (physical, emotional, spiritual, mental and magical.) 

How I'm gonna get it from the comforts of my own home (pending official training schedule)

Start Date: June 15, 2015 
End Date: July 5, 2015 

-signed up with fitness coach Amy Silverman 
-21 Day Fix Extreme 30 minute daily plyo press play, at home
-listen to my heart
-Sauna yoga Detox meditation
-Shakeology
-Vega Sport Performance for after work outs (Beach Body is putting out a product like this also, which I'm pumped to try out)
-personal development w/ a team & support (I see this making a difference)
-dark chocolate for cravings (you know who you are)
-Reading, "You are a Badass" by Jen Sincero
-Paleo, zilcho sugar, zilcho alcohol &portion control
-nature adventures & hiking /swimming 
-Floating & Earthing
-Kimmy doing it too!


Do it Yourself

"knowledge alone does not suffice; it has no heart. Peaceful Warrior

 Even if it’s a flowing tidal wave, hold on tight and maybe grab a board, but go with it.

While getting healed, healing myself and learning what may facilitate the healing of others I saw the power to heal ourselves rests in our own hands. Each of us has what it takes to save our own lives and no one can help us do that part. Once we know how to save our own naturally we become a vessel which nature happens to blow through to save others, but this is not an effort, or conscious action- it just happens if we allow it. If we add thought to matter it changes form. Let's keep simple what we were all born to do.

Those of you close to me witnessed my life face a sort of vortex, a Bermuda triangle, a cyclone. It picked me up, spun me around and somehow landed me right back where I started. Don’t you love when that happens? The blood flow puts a glow on your face and curl in your hair that can't be bought or sold. My head is still spinning a little and if you were in close enough range during this time likely so is yours. This fire storm, tornado, earthquake, tidal wave, tsunami, spoke to me as loud as the sun burns bright. So don’t look at it directly for too long. It said, “What we do, and from which place in our bodies we do it from, will determine whether we live or die, whether we generate life or not, whether we feel joy or pain. Trust in that force you feel pulling you. It is very real. Don't run from it or chase it, love it and hold on tight."

You know that cliché, “listen to your heart”? I learned to actually do just that, literally the organ, feel it beating and stay there quietly, patiently and go with that feeling. Trust that instinct. Do everything from that place and believe in what you hear from those chambers. Ask it questions. “Is this real or is it not? Is it this or is it that? Should I go here, or there, Sam I am?"

That should be the first and last thing we learn in school. The rest possibly could be summed up in another cliché, “go with the flow.” Even if it’s a flowing tidal wave, hold on tight and maybe grab a board, but go with it.

Many foundations to our existence and how to keep existing, while not a secret are not always acknowledged, or acted on, implemented or prescribed. I’m not sure if that will ever change, but I know we all have the freedom and choice to make that change if we just listen and believe what we feel to be true. 

Final cliché for today, there really is wonderful magic that happens when your heart has been "cracked open." Flying free from here on out as open as can be. 

Bee Bosnak often speaks of this type of idea in her, "Heal Yourself" work, http://www.beebosnak.com/ 
Here my heart was cracking open. You can see my shoulders trying to soothe the pain. Nothing worked until I surrendered and listened.

what is research?

"Research-Warner-Highsmith" by Artist is Olin Levi Warner (1844–1896). Photographed in 2007 by Carol Highsmith (1946–), who explicitly placed the photograph in the public domain. - Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, LC-DIG-highsm-03153 (original digital file), uncompressed archival TIFF version (92 MB), cropped and converted to JPEG with the GIMP 2.2.13, image quality 88.. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

What is research? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Research

Home Practice #3

January 2015 

The tools we gather in our youth and innocence are more valuable to us now than ever before


#snowyoga2015
Photo by Lulu (Lezele A. Chrispin)

It really is all in our minds. 
If it weren't for my thoughts I could get into a full split right now. 
My mind believes I have limitations I do not. 
Sense the tight spots resisting and release them with breath. 
  
Garland of Letters in Philadelphia a place with a pulse has become a refuge. 
Something about this space helps me clear through the mud and come out a lotus. 
A gentle, yet firey spirited white bearded yogi and nurtured therapist wander throughout. 
Garland is an oasis filled with a world of cultures, healers, educators, beauty and so many sacred in-describe-ables
Recently they sent me home with the antidote for a dense San Francisco-like fog that began to hover around my yoga practice. Sandalwood suggested by Kevin Starbard, "what it smells like in India's Temple's" and attending the Hatha classes held with Dr. Pratap were my prescriptions. 

I lit the incense like a torch in my yoga corner where I breathe like a dragon, focus and hug myself into a playful, thoughtless, fearless state.
The billowing clouds of smoke seemed to chase away the fog and penetrate the air with something new."Sarah, there you are" I said. It opened me right up, again
I was like a new born baby in no time (a dab of Dr. Green's green honey also helped.)

I'm freer, happier, younger and closer to my origins everyday.
It doesn't have to make sense.
I can feel it working.


"This is something we all can create and master it's been around since the human spirit" Kino MacGregor on Yoga, stillness and inner peace. 

Quite a lengthy timeline to tackle.
The academic and scholarly portion of this study is extensive and seems to constantly expand, while it blows my mind. The history and lineage in discussion predates Christ. The Bhagavad Gita, The Sutras, Sanskrit, Goddesses, Diety's, Ayurveda, Lands, Ancient texts, teachers of teachers, Guru's and treasured secrets that light the path during the battle for self-mastery.

*The list goes on and on spurring questions like, "Ashtanga" shouldn't it really be called "Korunta" which started it all? (Korunta, the ancient text by Vamana Rishi, teacher of Rama Mohan Brahmachari who then taught Krishnamacharya in Tibet who then taught Guruji or Sri K Pattabhi Jois who studied the Korunta and brought the Ashtanga Yoga system, which means eight limbed yoga described as disciplines by Patanjali: restraints, observances, posture, breathing, sense withdrawal, concentration, meditation, unification of subject and object.) 

Patanjali , the great Sage who wrote the Sutras I believe it's unclear if Patanjali was a she, he or even an actual being- the philosophy seems to be accessed through practicing the asana's.
Ashtanga Guru Pattabhi Jois  says, "...99% is practice..." 


That's where the real learning happens it's there in the posture itself
Hence, I'm crawling out from under the piles of book, dusting off my limbs and exploring my own timeline. "I'm practicing," says Kate Ryan Maring.

Sense the tight spots resisting and release them with breath. 
Practice being like an infant alive with instinct, sucking on your toes (Ella inspired) without hesitation, fear, or apology.
Find the focus point. Breathe. Relax. Soften. Surrender. Repeat.
*each posture has a specific gaze: nose, belly button, sky...
and 
*the method that makes it work, like pressing forward on the sacrum after stabilizing your pelvis and internally rotating the thighs to get into an easy Ustrasana relaxing the neck and using the natural form of the cervical spine
I have to really pay attention to the looking points (drishti/focus points) or I can easily drift away and topple over. Intellectuals fall victim to this particularly in headstands"wait where am I...?" Timber!
It's mystifying sometimes when I fall. I may not see it coming because I'm looking inward, you know? I'm really deep inside of myself I have disconnected from senses and don't feel a damn thing!
But, once you learn how to fall you fear it less.
Guruji said to Kino when she was struggling, "Asana(postures), Pranayama(Breathe), Drishti(focus withdrawing from the senses) Do this for many, many years and you will find peace."

Talk to your body with not one thought of anyone or anything else in existence.
It's on the cells of the body the secrets of the universe live.
It's where the lessons are learned and downfalls are revealed. 
Struggles overcome.
Battles won.
Diseases cured.
It's where you will get to play hopscotch with your genuine self, roll down grassy hills with reckless abandon.

"... It's like psychotherapy without the 'why' just experience it." Kino MacGregor says on practicing. 
Among what I am drawn to in the Ashtanga method is the way it exhausts me to relax me; still your mind which is the real body part we are alchemizing. Everything else follows.
It's a stoking the fire method I realized recently when the cold rolled in and I was pulled to build more heat in and around my body (hence the smokey incense which I haven't used in years, fire ignites. Moxa is great for this also.)

It went like this, 
 I ran out of excuses, It was raining, 30 degrees and dark, I felt the wind give me a push and so I ran anyway (I have a history with braving the elements.)
In moments it was Bikram 105 degrees hot.
Agni (fire) was ripping through my bullshit and dripping down my back.
I ran all the way home like a fucking Viking and I'm so happy I did
(See results on Strava Run titled, "Winter Fairy. Blink Green.")
This took my practice higher just when I felt like caving in. 
When I stopped running, I got into my first headstand.
I was alive and bending like a baby, again.
It took months, but on 1-6-15 I got onto my forearms in headstand and can completely flatten my hands onto the ground when bending down to touch my toes without much bend in my knees, or injury to those around me.

It dawned on me while being nibbled on by cold winds roaring over the bridge exiting Penn's campus. 
It's me I'm bending into, rushing into my splits to get to me, falling on my mat while Liana tries to show me how to slow down, to get to me.
I'm in there, I can see the real me, and I want to play with her.

"Subtle Truth: you are what you love" Rumi.

It doesn't all have to make sense.
I can feel it working.
Keep practicing. 


References: 
The Bhagavad Gita Translated by Eknath Easwaran.
The Power of Ashtanga Yoga: Developing a Practice by Kino MacGregor. 
Liana Cameris, Yoga Goddess Instructor, Spirit Dancer, Light and Guider West Coast USA.
Caroline Ashurst, Acupuncture Practitioner and Yogini at heart in Philadelphia PA
Garage Yoga with Ashtangi Liza DiGaetano in SanDiego

Garland of Letters Book Store with Kevin Starbard Thai Massage Therapist Philadelphia, PA.
Yoga Research Society and The Sky Foundation with Dr. Vijayendra Pratap, Ph.D., D.Y.P.

Coming up:

A blog titled, "In Between Evidence based medicine and evidence based practice." 

A series called, "Mentors" where I will talk about  my time spent with the world inspiring, Dr. Pratap in Yoga Medicine, Kevin Starbard in Thai Massage, Kino MacGregor in Ashtanga Yoga, and Practitioner Bill Harvey in BioDynamic Craniosacral Therapy.

Thanks for reading.

Sarah

Fate (novel clips-fiction)

Klimt
It hurt to look at her.
The pain oozed from her like blood from a war wound.
She couldn't prevent her own death, but she remained with the living.
It's too dark for her to see.
The light burns her skin so she hides.
Pieces shattered around her like remains 

Would Morgan face the same fate?



Wiertz

ADD - Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder.


Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder.

This is how it manifests:

I decide to water my garden.
As I turn on the hose in the driveway,
I look over at my car and decide it needs washing.

As I start toward the garage,
I notice mail on the porch table that
I brought up from the mail box earlier.

I decide to go through the mail before I wash the car.
I lay my car keys on the table,
put the junk mail in the garbage can under the table,
and notice that the can is full.

So I decide to put the bills back on the table & take out the garbage first.
But then I think, since I'm going to be near the mailbox
when I take out the garbage anyway,
I may as well pay the bills first.

I take my check book off the table,
and see that there is only one check left.
My extra checks are in my desk in the study,
so I go inside the house to my desk where
I find the can of Pepsi I'd been drinking.

I'm going to look for my checks,
but first I need to push the Pepsi aside
so that I don't accidentally knock it over..
The Pepsi is getting warm.


I decide to put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold..
As I head toward the kitchen with the Pepsi,
a vase of flowers on the counter catches my eye..
They need water.
I put the Pepsi on the counter and
discover my reading glasses that
I've been searching for all morning.

I decide I better put them back on my desk,
but first I'm going to water the flowers.
I set the glasses back down on the counter,
fill a container with water and suddenly spot the TV remote
someone had left it on the kitchen table.

I realize that tonight when we go to watch TV,
I'll be looking for the remote,
but I won't remember that it's on the kitchen table,
so I decide to put it back in the den where it belongs.
But first I'll water the flowers.
I pour some water in the flowers.
Quite a bit of it spills on the floor.
So, I set the remote back on the table,
get some towels and wipe up the spill.

Then I head down the hall trying to remember what I was planning to do.

At the end of the day:
the car isn't washed
the bills aren't paid
there is a warm can of
Pepsi sitting on the counter
the flowers don't have enough water,
there is still only 1 check in my check book,
I can't find the remote,
I can't find my glasses,
and I don't remember what I did with the car keys.

Then, when I try to figure out why nothing got done,
I'm really baffled because I know I was busy all damn day,
and I'm really tired.

I realize this is a serious problem,
and I'll try to get some help for it, but first I'll check my e-mail.....

Do me a favor.
Forward this message to everyone you know,
because I don't remember who the hell I've sent it to.

Don't laugh -- if this isn't you yet, your day is coming!!