Happy Sunday, March 1, 2020
Sunday greetings and happy March 1st! Here we are, already two months into 2020. I hope you are all doing well and enjoying life. I try my best not to dwell on the past or get strung out on what the future may or may not bring. I do my best to live each day in the present. I focus on the important parts of life and love. I have been discovering great benefits from my weekly writing. I hope you find useful words or thoughts in my posts. Your comments, thoughts and interaction is always appreciated. I am not a one-man band and definitely don’t have all the answers by any means. We are all here together, living life daily. Healthy and happy are key ingredients to making our lives the best they can be.
I want to talk about another piece of the healthy lifestyle puzzle. It is called movement. A couple of months ago I wrote about exercise. I find it quite remarkable how a single word can make some feel uneasy and absolutely terrify others. I realize that not everyone enjoys strenuous physical activities; like running, biking, weight lifting, etc. Fitness has been a part of my life since I started running in junior high school. I always found benefits in discovering more ways to build my physical strength, work off stress and maintain my mental health too. Branching out into other movement oriented regimes, such as yoga, walking and hiking has been a blessing in disguise. If you are not feeling the exercise bug, then let me suggest just moving your body in natural ways daily. Don’t just sit there! Get up and just move! There are amazing health benefits with something so simple.
I have been on the move my entire life. My generation, and those that came before mine, always seemed to be doing something that involved movement. Our lives today differ in many respects from years past regarding movement. Starting at a young age, I walked to school. Participation in physical education was mandatory, so I was on the go at school too. I played sports and spent plenty of time outside. Typically, during the week as a kid, time I spent in the house was to complete homework, read or stay inside due to inclement weather. Growing up in the suburbs of Los Angeles meant those rainy days were few and far between. Time allowed to watch television was very limited. There were no remote controls, so getting up to change channels or adjust volume was done by hand. There were no food deliveries. Shopping meant going to the store. The grocery store was close by, so walking was often involved.
The lives of kids, teens and adults start off very differently today. I did not have the benefit of all the electronic devices of the modern age. All this technology seems to have overrun our lives, with the use of cell phones, lap tops and other things that make life simpler. We have to move very little to garner what we need or require during the day. Everything is literally at our finger tips. Food, services and material goods can be delivered to our door step at the touch of a button. Ultimately, life today keeps us seated far more than anything else. So instead of natural physical movement to obtain things, we spend much more of our time in a sedentary life style. All of this lounging around promotes poor health, both mentally and physically.
The work force has changed and evolved over the years too. It seems there are many jobs or careers that involve sitting or in static positions these days. That translates into lots of office work or confined to a work space. This all means much less daily natural movement. I was lucky that my career allowed for lots of movement. When I promoted to lieutenant, later in my career, I found myself sitting in front of a computer much more often. It definitely wasn’t by choice, but I always found ways to get out of the office. Getting out of the office to work with the people I supervised or just leaving my desk to walk around outside every hour or so helped keep me grounded and sane. All this movement during the day helps keep our muscle, joints, internal organs and entire body functioning at a healthy level.
Movement plays a significant role in how we feel and our overall health. It does not necessarily have to be an exercise based activity to obtain these benefits. There are so many variations that can be fun hobbies; like walking, hiking, surfing, skating, yoga, tai chi and many others. Try walking as much as possible. Take the stairs for something a bit more challenging. Get outside in nature and combine that into your movement. The basic premise is to just move your body more often in natural ways during the course of the day. Try not to rely on the convenience of modern technology to do things you can do yourself with a little more bodily movement.
Strength, endurance, flexibility and balance are all key components to our health. Movement is a fabulous way to assist in maintaining them. My suggestion, get outside. This can be a fantastic new beginning. Anytime you have the opportunity to incorporate any of this with nature, it is a win situation. Go walk among the trees. They radiate tremendous energy. A tree covered park or forest can bring amazing benefits. Forest bathing has long been popular with many cultures. It is a practice to incorporate all your senses for natural healing, stress reduction and calming of the mind and body. Walking in the sand on the beach or in a grass covered area brings similar earth energy benefits. A restaurant I visited in Bali, had 2 x 2 foot small pads of grass you could bring to your table. You could relax with your toes in the grass while enjoying your meal. An amazing and simple concept to get some grounding, but much better done on the move.
Sleep quality and length are important aspects of restoration after movement and exercise. Realizing the benefits of anything we do is very reliant to our sleep. Our bodies require sufficient rest and down time to rejuvenate, replenish and rebuild. We all know how we feel physically and mentally when we are sleep deprived. We may feel sluggish, slow and foggy. When proper sleep is achieved, we are stronger, vibrant, with sharp and clear thought process. Great sleep can have the potential to change our entire day and mood.
I worked the graveyard shift (or morning watch) for a few years. Sleeping during the day was never easy or natural. If I had to be in court during the day, it made the days and nights that much more difficult. I spent the majority of my career working afternoon shift (or night watch). Although I often got home late, it provided enough time to sleep. That was true unless court appearances were involved. Then all bets were off! Sleep plays a significant role in how our mind and body handles the stress and strains of each new day. The best quality slumber in deep sleep is a necessity to keep our minds and bodies happy and healthy.
There are many components to the healthy lifestyle puzzle. The best part, it’s all up to you how you achieve it. This is your body and your life. I just want you live it happier and healthier. Keep your mind, body and spirit strong, calm and connected to the energy of the earth. So what do you do to maintain movement?
Please tune in and join me again next Sunday for more! The healthy life puzzle is always in rotation. Let’s be healthy and strong mentally, physically and spiritually!
Thanks for your love and support! Embrace Life! Be sure to get outside and enjoy nature!