Saturday, September 29, 2007
I remember the very moment when my life began to turn around. Although I didn't realize it at the time, it was the moment that I began the transformation from crippled arthritic to Ironman.
At that moment I happened to be bent over in pain from my latest arthritic flare-up and I wasn't feeling especially enlightened. I was a student in Chiropractic college and was in to see my student doctor for an adjustment. He dutifully asked me to rate my pain on a scale from 1 to 10. I had always obliged him, but this time I refused. It was time to quit worrying about pain and start focusing on my human potential. At that moment, clouds didn't spontaneously roll back and no beam of light illuminated me from the heavens above. Music didn't play and angels didn't sing. (Well, maybe they did, but I didn't see or hear any of it.) I limped out of the adjusting room in as much pain as when I hobbled in. But an important internal shift had taken place. I had reached a cross roads and chose the path toward light and away from darkness. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I could become an endurance athlete. But here I am, with my first half iron triathlon under my belt, my first marathon two weeks away, and my first full Ironman less than 8 months away. (That's right, fellow triathletes; it's coming up fast!)
Human potential--your human potential--is breathtaking! In this moment, right now, choose to always empower your potential, not your problems. You'll be amazed by what happens in your life.
Friday, September 21, 2007
You aren't an assembly-line product.
You were deliberately planned, specifically gifted, and lovingly positioned on the Earth by the Master Craftsman."
See I’m not the only one saying it. Max Lucado is basically saying that you are a being of beauty and perfection.
Another way of putting it is that you are a uniquely beautiful and perfect expression of the Divine. As you travel your life's path you reveal more and more of that beauty and perfection...to the world and to yourself. Each adventure on your journey brings more of you to light.
The most beautiful person you can be is you, expressing your beauty and perfection, and offering yourself and humanity the divine gifts that have been entrusted to you to share.
Saturday, September 15, 2007
A fellow triathlete I was running with in my race today.
Boy, I am a seriously dedicated blogger! Today I ran my first half ironman-distance triathlon--1.2 mile swim, 57 mile bike (triathletes: no, that's not a typo; it was 57 miles), 13.1 mile run. It was the longest endurance event I've ever run, and let me tell you, it was my spirit that carried my body the last four miles or so. And it's definitely my spirit that has me on the internet posting this blog when all I want to do is curl up and get some sleep. Anything for my readers!
As for the quote--for several miles near the end of the race I was running (well, jogging) with another triathlete. We were both offering each other moral support in the final, most greuling miles. There's not really much I can say to add to what she said. The greatest achievements are the product of a strong and willing spirit. Enough said!
To my tri friends who have competed in the Grand Columbian triathlon, I know you're probably curious about the bike course. There's a huge, brush fire burning out of control near the course so the race director chose to alter the course in the interest of safety. The new course added an extra mile. Yes, we still went up "the big one." The bummer is that we didn't get to ride across the Grand Coulee dam. The other bummer is that we had a very hilly run course. But it was fun; they put on a great race here. Good for the spirit!
Now I hope I can get up from my seat...
Saturday, September 8, 2007
"I've really been slacking on my exercise lately...just can't seem to find the time."
"By the time I'm done at work I'm too tired to go home and cook dinner. I just swing through the drive-through."
"Sorry I haven't made it in for an adjustment for awhile. You know how it is...work...kids..."
"Sleep? Who has time for sleep?"
Make Good Health Part of Your Plan!
Time is a constant juggling act, no doubt about it. The problem for many people is that they just don't plan time for the things they need to do to live a healthy life. Everyone just rolls through the day meeting their obligations to everybody else and then tries to fit healthy activities into whatever time is left over. But there's never any time left over.
We're all busy but with just a little bit of forethought, it's really not that hard to fit good health into your schedule. The key is just to make a plan.
OK, Mark; how do you do it?
Here are some examples:
Today (Saturday) a Toastmasters speech contest and a wedding celebration (congratulations Ethan and Shannon!) made it a particularly eventful day and I knew going in that I wasn't going to be able to go for my usual Saturday run. But tomorrow, the first thing I'm going to do is go for a bike ride--before I get tied up with email, before I mow my shaggy lawn, before I sit down to write the article that's already overdue, before anything. There's a good chance that something will fall by the wayside tomorrow, but it won't be my health!
On Tuesdays I don't open my Cafe of Life until 3 PM. The first half of the day is business time--phone calls, networking, things like that. I also see my Chiropractor at 1:30 every Tuesday. I have meetings every Tuesday at 11:00 and everyone just knows that by 1:15, I'm outta there. Period. Non-negotiable. Same thing at 9:00 Thursday morning. Weekly massage...don't even think of asking me to schedule anything else. After my massage, Thursday becomes my writing day.
And every evening, even when I get home late, I've made the commitment always to take the time to prepare fresh veggies with dinner. It really doesn't take that long--maybe 10 minutes to steam some broccoli--less to lightly saute a bunch of spinach. It would probably take at least that long to detour to a fast food joint.
A little bit of organizing goes a long way toward living a life of vibrant health.
I welcome your comments and recommendations on how to organize your life to succeed at staying healthy...
Saturday, September 1, 2007
Many people flatly reject the idea that they are beings of beauty and perfection. With crossed arms and cocked eyebrows they ask me, “So, if I’m so perfect -- if I have all this life force inside of me, then why do I hurt? Why am I sick?”
In my wellness seminars I use two pinecones to illustrate the concept. One of the pinecones is fresh and new. I marvel aloud at the natural artistry of its color and symmetry. The second pinecone is cracked and faded, and not nearly as attractive as the first. Grasping the top of the fresh cone between my thumb and forefinger, I point out that the gravitational force of the earth is operating at 100%, everywhere, at all times. I then ask, “So if gravity is so perfect, why doesn’t this pinecone fall to the ground?” Well, anyone can answer that; I am holding it up. In other words, my hand is interfering with gravity’s ability to fully express itself on the pinecone and pull it to the ground. When I let go, the pinecone falls. Every single time. The dangling pinecone is a vivid illustration of what can happen with life force. When something interferes with the expression of our life force we get hung up with pain and disease. When we remove the interference we are free.
I continue the pinecone example by explaining that the pinecone is the flower of the tree. As the cone grows on the tree, seeds develop inside of it. When the seeds mature, the pinecone blossoms and the seeds flutter away on the breeze. When a seed falls to the ground it will absorb water, nutrients from the soil and radiant energy from the sun. In time it will germinate and grow into a beautiful, magnificent, vibrant pine tree.
Even as the pinecone fades and becomes brittle, the seeds retain their life force, sometimes for decades to come. In the early pages of her inspiring book, The Sequoia Seed, Karen Wright describes how the largest living being on our planet, the majestic Sequoia tree, begins life “as a tiny seed smaller than a flake of oatmeal.” She goes on to tell us, “Its egg-sized cone can lie undisturbed on the forest floor for fifty years before surrendering its seeds.”
When one of these seeds finally makes its way into the soil, what happens? It will germinate and grow into a majestic Sequoia. As long as a seed has life remaining within it, it has 100% percent of the potential for vibrance that a seed from the newest, freshest pinecone has.
Therein lies the important lesson for us humans:
as the strongest, and has the same potential to enjoy vibrant health.
You are a being of beauty and perfection!