Yesterday was a sound strength training day, and I found myself reflecting on this thought stream from a recent hike, simplified below:
Truth is so effectual, it needs no anger, pride, fear, or weaponized delivery to be heard. It only needs the telling absent those things, and if possible in love and humility, to resound, reverberate, be received, taken to heart, and possibly passed down for generations.”
As I reflected on this, I realized it has great potential for adaptive training, that is, slipping the punches to self and others that come with anger and fear attached to:
(1) the avoidance of some truth about self, or
(2) fearful or vengeful anger at those who are a source of injustices toward others, self, and worst of all, those we love.
How often does truth go untold or told to shut-ears because the mixture of fear and anger allowed to crowd out the simple, powerful, healing, even nucleus-changing truth?
The truth in matters of all sizes may be scorched, burned, or concealed in the fire and smoke of passions that crowd it, from fear to anger to pride to disgust.
And yet, the simple truth, said, in love and humility, will free the teller as much as those who can hear that truth told. And each one of us will be able to hear it when this untarnished, nourishing truth arrives.
Imagine what energy comes from a body, mind, and spirit un-fettered by fear of the truth, embracing the truth, and working truth through the whole being with every footstep, movement, and every labor.
Look at how truth-to-self was able to do the unexpectedly unthinkably powerful:
By writing this post, I am not claiming I could do what these two women did in their grace and forgiveness, in part imparted through many, in both cases from higher places spacious enough to deliver freedom from the intrinsic assault of traumatic injustice.
I don’t claim any foresight in the field of forgiveness, but I do see a simple truth grasped personally by these two women which makes me wonder…
If much simpler truths about self, or what we witness in the misuse of power were not sources of fear, were unburdened by anger, and unpolluted by pride; if simple truth were told in love however love would wisely tell the simple truths, how much harm, hurt, suffering, and injustice could be extinguished, prevented, and instead nourishing relationships and virtues grown instead?
wanna feel cold before your hot chocolate brew?
An hour hike yesterday…
City lights, warmth in the body, and temperate breezes threw off the shackles from sedentary vigils in antiseptic rooms over the break.
Mountains catch light and shadow so subtly and differently from moment to moment, their beauty brings enough surprise to feel transportive. There is a sense of renewal given by myriad conditions.
It is the same way when you hit the road for a walk, run, or cycling. Part of the reason for hitting the road is to put variety in your life. There are so many roads, routes, directions, and orders of taking them that hitting the road will often have reset value for you.
I’m re-blogging Lyle Krahn’s essay and photograph of a ruffled grouse here on Farm Your Training Day because this illustrates to me a person who is highly attuned to his outdoor experience. Of course he is tuned into the nuances and shades of wonder: he’s an outdoor photographer, right? That is exactly why I reblog him here: each of us has the capacity to develop that greater level of attunement for all that is around us each time we are training outdoors, whether spotting natural wonders in the city, rurally, or in the wilds. Such attunement to the natural is a powerful motivator to return to outdoor training opportunities wherever we may be.
Thanks Lyle Krahn at Krahnpix for sharing his attuned perceptions in the blogosphere so we can take it beyond into the three plus dimensional world.
Whether earthen or architectural the Mountain dimension awaits your training life to let it in.
Inclines are everywhere to be found, and in death valley is there not a heat mountain to scale as some try their constitution and thermostat in that crucible of temperatures?
Mountains too, are icons of your goals. Each has a higher purpose than its own summit. Have a look at this pilgrim’s training incline called the Manitou Incline highlighted in Military Times:
From the website of the Army Wellness Center-Fort Carson at Forrest Resiliency Center:
We assist in the facilitation of healthy lifestyle programs for all ARMY component Soldiers and their families, retirees, and civilians. The clientele spans all ages from young adult to retirees. The way ahead involves working directly with units at unit locations as well as with individuals and group classes at the Wellness Center. Expansion of services includes sports medicine care, which will focus attention to readiness and rehabilitation.
To catch up on my periodic journaling of training experiences:
Vancouver, BC. Be it known that I skipped the hotel fitness center in Vancouver BC, and opted for family whale watching, walks in the rain, and bicycling in the sunshine.
On the whale boat I could have sat the entire journey and monitored the Pacific waters for sea life. But I spent some wonderful time holding my child and working on fixing on distant, relatively fixed points to avoid symptoms of motion sickness as we motored over the waves to where the whales were spotted off the coast.
Going up to the boat’s viewing roof, I found that riding those waves in a rain coat afforded me a nice, standing core exercise trying to stay balanced on the boat, minimizing dependence on the rails.
Movement with Forces training came into play staying out in the rainy, windy sea weather and exposing myself to the wet cold for a time. Cold, wet sea weather is a force.
Another force encountered was the motion of moving in circles on my feet on the top deck relative to the boat’s forward, swell-riding motion. The circling was to scan the ocean’s surface for whales and other sea animals, while keeping balance, orientation, and trying to mitigate motion symptoms. This was a unique experience. I might have slogged through it, jetting along with the experience incidentally, and trying to avoid the elements as sources of discomfort instead of sources of mind-body training.
Instead I decided to consciously engage the ride as a crossing of training dimensions, and I thoroughly enjoyed it while witnessing the stunning beauty of the NW coasts and isles. Along with others I got to share ocean air and space with killer whales, humpbacks, sea lions, porpoises, and varied seabirds. The salt on the air, the relaxing of the boat’s fellow riders, and the graciousness of the husband-wife captain-naturalist team really enhanced our day.
Our walks in the rainy city gave us many chances to negotiate the architectural inclines, hilly city blocks, and wall tops as we used our feet to move through the concrete, glass, and steel mountains. The sea air blowing between them was a bonus. After much cool weather walking about, you can imagine that fish and chips, coffee, and hot chocolate called out to us a time or two. Let me also recommend the practice for parents of safely holding hands with your child in the city, and swinging him over the lines, manhole covers, sidewalk designs, and props found along the city course. I think switching sides and getting both arms in on the child swing is a good practice. Teaching city safety and enjoyment awareness at the same time is a bonus. During these walks, sudden footraces are known to break out, too. Race you to that monument — to that hydrant — to that vent – to that tree…
Our bicycle outing was just plain fun in the sunshine viewing the mountains we hadn’t been able to see for the clouds for three days straight. And walking some sandy, shelly, mossy, and very clean inner beaches came with the cycling trip through Stanley Park.
We had no time to hit all the most advertised destinations, but we saved a list for another time if it comes available.
To counter the experience of sitting on planes, trains, and automobiles, I used the symmetrical carrying and lifting of luggage, treating it as if I were carrying kettlebells, and keeping the exercises with it closer-in and less conspicuous so as not to embarrass family too much. This included lunging it, squatting to lift it, shrugging it, variable one and two armed rows, curling it, shouldering it, and the like. Same with the carry on back pack. Luggage that I carry is often between 35 and 40 pounds, and serves nicely as a clunky kettle bell by the top handle. I also kick it up with my foot when putting it on wheels and pulling the handle out to pull it. Sitting in airport seats I am able to do wrist curls with my luggage, propping wrists on knees and grasping the top handle.
Trips can afford more than in my laziness I took advantage of.
What a privilege to sit down and talk with Federal Executive Institute alumni and friends last night. These professionals brought up a host of great topics. We talked gluten freedom, how eating, drinking, and sleeping are self-trainable behaviors, and how intelligent attunement can benefit us in every dimension of physical action as well as perception. These civilian and military public servants, technical, and knowledge workers spoke in ways revealing their high accomplishment, and by their intelligence had found the many packaged fitness offerings in the marketplace unfulfilling or unsustainable. We also discussed the texture of real life: traumas, shadows, and challenges in daily life. Being with intelligent people can be a good time, but being with intelligent, feeling people is the best of times, and that is what last night’s gathering was like.
We talked nuts and bolts: Muscle, Mileage, Mobility, Midsection/Core, Mountains’ Meaning, and more. Everyone in attendance had been athletic in their lives whether they considered themselves so or not, and I made sure to point this out first of all. We must be clear about our identities, that we are among other wonderful truths, mind-body entities capable of athleticism in physical sport, art, and work. Yes, the basic adaptive physical training pathways can expand to intellectual and for some, spiritual athleticism.
On the sheer material side, a la Steve Martin in The Jerk, needing to hold onto some possessions on an anniversary date when I had once felt I’d lost everything, I brought some self-comforting props for my presentation. Rip’s Fire Engine 2 (TM) Plant Strong cereal (my strength), and Toblerone (TM) swiss chocolate (my weakness). They seemed like the props to bring at the time.
Along with a box of books and a gym bag with all I needed, I walked into Breckenridge Craft Colorado, home to craft beers and LoDo Denver venue-name dropping. You may remember our former mayor and now Governor Hickenlooper owned a restaurant in LoDo (Lower Downtown), where rough-hewn, red-brick mellow-looking pubs and brewers fill old warehouse buildings near lofts where nearly everyone walking around down there looks like they do Pilates during breakfast, Yoga during lunch, and feed intravenously through a liquid food bladder while running long distances through dinner.
Well, that may be an exaggeration but I’ll tell you what is not: most people living in downtown lofts are single, young, career starters enjoying urban life to the fullest, and throwing their pliable youthful bodies into one or two training modalities, sometimes not really bothering with long range thinking. They live close to their white collar work. They’re busy on various levels, but many don’t yet know the change that comes with rising in the ranks of responsibility, having a family, and having more and more people they are responsible for (at which time they often move out of the lofts). That doesn’t make them lesser or lazy, they just fill more of their time focusing on self-development than other-development because of their phase in life. Logic says juggling a one bean bag business is easier than juggling and adapting to three or more bean bags’ businesses…
Leading me to the course of our discussions last night: How do those with hairy schedules at work and home, extra-curriculars in the community, and little time to themselves make changes that temper for them a sound, powerful training life with consistency, excellence, and purpose? How do they overcome the crushing, conflicting, Hoi Polloi of Expectation-a-Legal living and not become unhealthy?
That is what Farm Your Training Day was written to begin answering. It contains many specific guidances on HOW, not just statements and restatements of a vague vision. I couldn’t convey all of it in one sitting and standing. What I could convey are some of the broad brush adaptive training principles and dimensions, and suggest that the fullness of these is in the book. This includes illustrations, guidances, sources, stories, and some visualizable details over 276 pages and 17 chapters without pictures.
All I can say is, after reading the book, which is not a Polly-Anna Manifesto by any stretch, and which takes a look at the mundane and dramatic obstacles to a consistent training life that would wear us down and make us unhealthy, I think people find not only bedrock to stand on within themselves, but a process of remolding their bedrock again and again from the interior life. Their training lives spring out of this aquifer of intelligent, planned and unplanned energy and movement within that connects with the world around them. The book maps forward, not ‘out.’ I say forward, because every reader is invited to be the pioneer who adds to this map, innovates, and improves the book by going into other principles and dimensions of adaptive training.
I know something of what there is and wrote a book about it, yet part of that is seeing that I do not know the limits of what is possible.
via Understanding Obesity at A Handbook for Fitness & Wellness Professionals by Laura Kennett.
A strong, strong summary that helps create a pathway to healing and change through understanding, empathy, and seeing the hurting person. Wisdom helps us withdraw judgment and make pathways to connection and friendship for those suffering from the afflictions that are obesity.
Friday and Saturday yielded wonderful company on back to back afternoon family hikes above 10,000 feet. The trail was Herman Gulch trail. This trail starts at 10,332 feet and gains 1,655 feet in 3.25 miles to a high cirque lake at about 12,000 feet elevation. Friday we went about half way and back, totaling a little over 3 miles at the late hour. The steepest gain is in the first mile.
Saturday our family hike went further, about 3/4 way, with me running intervals, sprint intervals, and incline sprints then hiking back to the family and repeating. That is the way to work in more arduous speed-endurance when you have a crowd with mixed stamina levels along. I was able to sprint ahead, hike back down to my betters, then run back up again in repeat heats. It was humbling for me, and someone special got inspired and started joining in, taking the lead higher up! I was stoked by that I have to tell you. What a gem.
Whatever cold bug of seasons’ change we’d picked up during the week hit us after the exertion of Saturday’s hike, and for me, the trail running intervals. The running intervals were on a 40 degree slope and were at maximum sprint speed until I couldn’t do it anymore. Hiked the rest.
Photos share the vistas along the way. The Fall colors are fast emerging in the September Rockies, even in the mushrooms! Soon, I’ll have my Canon serviced and I’ll stop pushing these phone photos on you!
A few more photos and videos coming soon.
Loneliness does not discriminate. Probably everyone knows what kind of life events, states of being, and physical burdens correlate with it. Whatever isolation and loneliness comes from, those who suffer from it know why solitary confinement is one of the worst punishments prisons dole out.
A training life can move you out of the lonely place into a new life.
Growing your own training life from the ground up will lead you into short, manageable social interactions that begin slowly and gently to drain away the loneliness with each outing. You’ll have time to think, to hold problems up to the sun in your mind and heart, and to subject them to the light that dawns as you move.
The sunshine can boost you up some more.
Start simple: a walk or hike. Go to a nearby running track, a trail you know, or a park with long sidewalk pathways along a lake or river. Or just make the city blocks in a familiar area your training scape.
It is training, and retraining your brain, nerves, muscles, and body chemistry simply to get out and move in the outdoors. So much happens when you do this, there is an automatic element to outdoor outings.
Dress in what’s comfortable, do what you need to do to feel comfortable to get out the door. Then soak up the world’s outdoor riches as you journey.
The YouTube clip is from the top of the East, some say South Tower of The Citadel. Some call it Snoopy because of rock outcropping that looks like Charlie Brown’s dog. Will update with photos of different kinds from this beautiful 13,294 foot twin peak ascent. I climbed it last in 2007, and again today. It is a beautiful, soaring twin tower with some “technical” effort once reaching each of the two towers. Today I only climbed up one and down one stretch and was able to scramble, step, and hike the rest.
More photos and videos to come from this trip, and some reflections.