intentional movement

What’s your intention?

What’s your intention when you begin your day?
Do your work?  Move your body?  Show your love?

What’s your intention when you drive your car?
Do your dishes?  Buy your food?  Eat each meal?

Do you have one?

Intention:  (noun) 1)  an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result.
3a)  purpose or attitude toward the effect of one’s actions or conduct

Setting an intention before you move, makes the movement (whatever it is) more powerful.
It’s like focusing all of your super powers into your actions, in to your every day.
Without intention, actions can be random.  Haphazard.  Movement without direction.
Intentions focus you.  Keep you in the present, with an eye on what’s possible.
Every desire – every goal you have, grows from the seed of an intention.

Use your power mindfully.  Move with intention every day.
It doesn’t have to be hard, and you can’t get it wrong.

Going for a run: intend to flow.
Doing the dishes: intend to follow your breath.
Showing love: intend for another to feel your soul.
As you rise in the morning:  intend to have fun.
As you enter work:  intend to be of service.

Set your intention.  Focus your power.  Infuse it with love.

How healthy are you?

How healthy are you??

Health ~ (noun) soundness of body or mind; freedom from disease or ailment

The instigation this week is to consider your health, and perhaps join me in the Moving Evolution program.  When you think of health, where does your mind go?  Diet?  Exercise??  What if there’s more to it than that??  And, what if improving your health is as easy as learning to listen to your body?

Here’s the thing: I believe that most of us live life from the shoulders up, ignoring or pushing down the cues that the body is constantly giving. We ignore pain, and then walk and move in ways that cause injury. We ignore hunger cues, and diet or fuel our bodies with junk – and expect excellence. We have destructive thought patterns running rampant and assume that we have no choice in how we feel or how we think. We tell ourselves “it’s fine – I’m fine” and push through all kinds of pain.

I pushed through pain for years.  Years.  Trying to lose that last ten pounds (yet never succeeding no matter how little I ate, or how much I exercised).  Unexplained knee pain.  Tightness is my body.  Eating and drinking past the point of full.  Not paying attention – to my body or the world around me. There’s a better way ~ and this program is the culmination of everything I’ve learned thus far ~ of everything that I try to teach and live by.

Moving Evolution is a nine week program designed to develop a mindful mind/body practice. No diets, special gear to buy, or gimmicks. Simply learning to let your body guide you. Learning to listen, and catch yourself before injury, before a full-blown stress attack, before you unconsciously eat that pint of ice cream.  And what better time than summer to make the connection?

For the next week, Moving Evolution is open for registration. This is the best time to join, as the cost is only $65. I’ve made a ton of updates, and once you’re in, you’re in for life.  The price will go up in the fall…so now’s the time.  Go here for more details, and if you have questions feel free to hit reply.

Regardless of whether you join, I hope you consider your health.  How can you improve it today?

let your body be your guide.

Three easy ways to move with intention.

Do you move with intention?
If you’re thinking, “What in the hell is that?”, you’re not alone.

Intention (noun) ~ the end or object intended; purpose.

Moving with intention is essentially the same as moving with purpose.
Do you move with purpose?
I believe that the answer to that question, more often than not, is no.
Most of us live life from the shoulders up.  Ignoring our bodies and using distraction to get through.
Putting the ear buds in and tuning out, rather than in.

Why not try something new, and move with intention?  Here are three easy ways to begin:

1) Move. Our society makes it incredibly easy to move very little throughout the day – so much so, that we spend hundreds of dollars every year on exercise. While I love mixing up my exercise routine and I’m not against the gym, it’s as simple as moving your body. Park further away. Take the stairs. Return the shopping cart to the store. Walk down the hall, instead of sending that email.  Let it be easy. Intend to move.

2) Unplug. Unplug for two reasons. The first being that when you’re “plugged in” – you lose a sense (or two). Listening to music/chatting on the phone impairs your ability to hear other things. It also can impair your ability to see – or at least be present. You’re not truly engaged with your surroundings. You can’t hear that bike coming up behind you, or see the cross walk sign.  And, you miss some of the joy of movement in your lack of presence.  The second reason is that your body will fall in line to the cadence of whatever you’re listening to. Slow songs = slow cadence (think longer time on each foot) and faster songs = faster cadence (think less time on each foot, thus less chance for injury).
You don’t have to unplug all of the time, but the more aware of your movement and your surroundings, the better.

3) Use pain as an indicator. Most people feel pain and they do one of two things: stop or push it away/ignore it. Pain is simply an indication: you’re doing something wrong. Adjust. Now, obviously, if it’s acute and severe pain, stop. But if your knee starts to hurt, or your foot is cramping – adjust. Shorten your stride. Wiggle your toes. If you back hurts, get up and walk around.  See if you can make the pain go away. Pain ignored becomes some sort of “~itis” (plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, etc.) or if it’s pushed away for long enough, some sort of surgery. Don’t go that far. Use pain as an indication to adjust.

You’ve moved mindlessly for long enough – it’s time to tune in.  How do you move, or sit still?
Move with intention.

…and what else?

Just when you think you’ve got the answer, one more question: and what else?

know your plan for the day?…workout?….meals?…play?
what to do next?
got the solution?
what’s your body telling you to do?
what’s the easiest thing to do?…the hardest?
what could we do next?  
what do you want to do?

….and what else?  What else could we do here?  Where else could we go?  How else can I move today (other than run)?  What else can I eat?

Invite curiosity in to your routines (work, movement, fuel, etc).
….and what else?
Take a step back, and do something a bit out of the ordinary.
Innovate your every day.

The possibilities are endless.
simply open the door.

What’s holding you back?

What’s holding you back?
I’d be willing to bet, most of the time it’s you.
You hold yourself back.  

I know that I do.
I sometimes hold back on what I think, for fear of what other’s might say.  Or fear of hurting another person.  Or perhaps, fear of being wrong.  (sin of all sins!)
I don’t make the call.  Instead I send an email, for that is much safer.
I don’t run as fast as I could, for fear that I’ll be tired later?  That I might injure myself?  That I might get all sweaty and I don’t have time to shower?  I don’t want to re-do my non-existent makeup.
In writing it, it doesn’t make a whole lotta sense.  
Seriously, why hold back???  
But in the moment it’s far easier to let the brain take over with its excuses and play small.
To remain quiet.  To go slow.  To keep fear at bay.

How do you hold yourself back?  How do you play small?  
And what if you unleashed? What if you let your power out to play.
On the run, the bike, the court or at the gym.  
In the classroom, the boardroom or the bedroom.
What if you let it loose – said what you thought, pushed as hard as you could, dreamed as big as you could go.  No limits, no boundaries, no bullshit.  
No holding back.

let’s make it rain out here.

Pause.

Take a moment.  Press pause, and reflect.

Pause ~ (noun) a temporary stop or rest, especially in speech or action
Reflect ~ (verb) to think, ponder or meditate.

Pause, to honor how far you’ve come.
We’re almost five months in to 2014.  How is this year shaping up for you?
Reflect on the past 4-ish months (or more) and take stock.
What have you accomplished?  What have you learned?
Stop, and appreciate what’s fun, unexpected and oh so amazing.
Along with that, appreciate what’s challenging and demands more of you.
How can you be grateful?

Take a moment, and savor that.  Take a walk.  Sit in silence.  Do a dance.  Breathe deep.  Get outside.  Do whatever works for you to give yourself some space.

Fully reflected?  Good.
Now, looking forward.  We’ve got seven (or so) more months this year.
What do you want to say by year’s end?
Any routines you can shake up?  New people to connect with?
Course corrections to be made?  New habits to cultivate?

For myself, I notice that I’m getting a bit bored with the status quo.
Time to shake things up a bit.
I’m going to try out a new running group.
Perhaps I’ll take a class.  Experiment with teaching in different venues.
One thing’s for sure – it’s time to take a risk.
Get outside my comfort zone and stretch.
What will you do?

moving forward.
one step at a time.

The battle.

How do you meet your resistance?
Just before you exercise? On the way to the gym?
As you dial the phone?
Before you sit down to write?
As you’re beginning a project?
When you try to eat healthy?

Mine shows up every morning at 5:45am.
That just happens to be when my alarm goes off.
Perhaps it’s there earlier, just waiting….watching me sleep….
The alarm rings, and the resistance begins.

Thoughts spin in my head….
The bed is soo warm.
It’s cold outside.
Oh wait, was that a rain drop?
Is the wind blowing?
I’ll go later.  (right)
How many times did I wake last night?
I’m soooo tired.

And I face a choice: get out of bed and run or snuggle in and sleep.
Mostly, sleep wins.
It has been my goal this past year to rise early.  On occasion I do, mostly I don’t.
However. However.
Last week, I had one glorious morning when my boy woke me at 4:55am.  As I tucked him back into bed, I decided to stay awake. I did all kinds of things. I meditated. Checked my email. Got four miles in. Rinsed off. Made lunches. Put on make up. I dressed – and not even in exercise gear. It was fabulous.
And my day rocked because of it.

My intention: to recreate that every morning. Now I know, that every morning is not going to be that great. Yet, I also know that I’m a much better mama/wife/nicer person in general when I’ve had a little time to myself. And what better way to start the day?

So my new wake time is going to be 5am.
You read that right – 5:15am (WTF???) Who does that???
I do…now.  Anyone with me?  You don’t even have to run.

I fully expect resistance to show up every morning, and more often than not I’m going to win.
I’m curious though – how do you handle resistance?
What’s your battle, and how will you win?

When Less is More.

Over the past several months I’ve been playing with my running form (and anyone that allows me to monkey with theirs). The questions I ask are: how can you relax more, and go faster? or go further? How can you put in less effort, yet get more out? How can you be more efficient?

Some days, it’s easy. Others, not so much.
The thing is, we often get in our own way.
We make things more complicated than they need to be.
We over think things, or “try harder” or push more when relaxing into it or slowing down or simply taking a deep breath would be easier and faster.

Recently, I’ve started to apply this principle to life in general.
How can I do less, yet get more done?
How can I relax into this – whatever this may be?
How can I be more efficient?

As a culture, we tend to push and multi-task and stay busy.
We resist slowing down. Go. Go. GO.
Let’s chuck that out the window for a moment.

 The challenge: do less, and get more done.

Only have 15 minutes to exercise? Run, Dance, Jump, Move…. your ass off. As fast as you can. Do some stairs. Jump in place. Or go for a quiet walk, and let your mind wander (you never know what’ll show up).

Kids screaming at you or misbehaving? Relax. Do a monkey dance. Beat your chest. Laugh. Let the tension fade naturally.

Have a to-do list a mile long? FOCUS. One thing at a time – no multi-tasking, no web, no smart phone or email. Focus. Get one thing done completely and then move on. Go slow, to go fast.

How can you do less and get more done?
How can you be more efficient? In movement? In work? In life?
How can this be easier?
Ask yourself these questions as often as you can.
To a life less complicated.

How will you participate?

Participate ~ (verb) to take or have a part or share in.

The other day I took a yoga class, and as the teacher roamed the room she suggested that yoga invites us to participate in our own well-being.  WHOA.
It was early, and that was deep (or maybe not so deep, but again – it was early) – and that was awesome. 
Yoga invites us to participate in our own well-being.

I know that yoga specifically does, as you are meant to focus on your breath and the flow of your body.
However, I think you can do this with anything.
Walking.  Running.  Lifting weights.  Dancing.  Eating.  Sitting at your desk.  Working…..whatever.

How will you participate in your own well-being?
Not some diet, or new fangled resolution, but really take a part in your own health.
In what feels good for you – with your body, breath, the food you eat and the presence you bring.
The beauty of it is, you can change from moment to moment.
Something doesn’t feel good – stop.  Don’t do it.  Begin something else.
Find your flow.  Follow your breath.
Participate.

wishing you a year filled with love, laughter, health, joy, movement and meaning!

MoveMeant.

MoveMeant.
As in yeah, I meant to do that.

How often do you do that?
Exercise or go for a walk or just get outside, and instead of tuning out, you tune in.
You pay attention to how you’re moving.  How your feet land.  How you’re breathing.
How it all feels.
Now that may sound all new-agey, but it’s good practice.
As a runner, I have tuned out.
I spent years with the music blaring, ignoring pain and pushing through.
Pain is weakness leaving the body, right??  NO.

It’s time for another approach.
MoveMeant.
Move like you mean it (and perhaps you’ll begin to live that way too….)
A few reminders to get you started:  MoveMeant

Join Cline Coaching for the MoveMeant Challenge, starting January 1.
Register and get more information here.