True independence

All words have a limited purpose, “for now.” “Independence” is that way. It is needed to get free of false supports, or false assumptions that lead to false needs. False needs erode time, health, and treasure. They tend to be sedimentary and inefficient for us.

We are wise to do an Independence Inventory from time to time to identify the ideas, notions, feelings, things, and habits that have settled in around us that are not aligned with the truest, most honorable, most loving, and most righteous (not self-righteous, but righteous by others) person each of us aspires to be. The “Look-Up” YouTube video of my previous post illustrates a thing from which we need independence.

Why try? Because what we aspire to be is what is in our heart.

Adaptive training seeks to adapt mind and body in service to our true heart, to our reason for being here. This means letting go of falseness, wherever found.

Free of false things, we are better prepared for interdependence in a way that will benefit, not harm others. We may “get up and walk.”

Like farming land, this farming of the heart, mind, and body is the purpose of training the mind and body to find harmony with the decisive, innocent spirit which we were given as children.

As I get older, I see that spirit of decisive innocence to clear the way for genuine love. Instantly, reflecting on this, trying to re-establish harmony with that divine spark, it is easy for me to see all my defects brought to light. My selfishness.

It is then I remember I must stand again, find my heart, and work the fields of this earthly testing ground another day.

Now Available on Amazon Kindle

 

Now on Kindle for $7.19

product_thumbnail10 adaptable, customizable principles, and 7 training dimensions / evolutions that provide a broad and deep base for whatever you’re training for, in sport, arts, or work. This is a book that harmonizes training philosophy and practical, very simple takeaways for sustaining a consistent, building, growing training life. Cheers!

updated: why the wise are silent

The wise are silent because they realize what it takes to love as God loves.

The wise are silent because they’re listening within.

Silence listens to love and grace, the sunshine and rain in the fields of being.

We sow, we reap, we harvest, we weed, we nourish, we plow, and so many other efforts.

We also write. Is that wise?

 

Round 3 with the Versatile Round Timer

Three minutes can make a difference, fuel some inner heat, and force better breathing to keep on…

If you do this get cleared by your personal physician for it and get a tutorial on wrapping your hands. Have fun!

Note, the round timer has a clip on the back, suggesting it can accompany and time you at whatever kind of interval training effort you would like, except underwater:

IMG_2126and it says something really important for all of us, now matter who we are or what we’re training for. I took a close-up and made it the Header photo so you could read it!

Winter Training: Light and Heat

Clouds Take on Light and Heat

Clouds Take on Light and Heat

Many times we shrink from cold weather training because, well, it’s cold out there and we feel chilled, or we imagine what discomfort we will encounter in coldness.

However, like clouds, our water rich bodies transfer heat and light energy, even use them to make nutrients.

We generate heat. Movement circulates it, and enlivens us with it.

If I spend a few hours writing and editing on a winter afternoon, I often notice my hands are cool. If I go outside in the freezing temperatures layered-up to train or labor, when I come back in, for a good long while my hands are warm and very comfortable.

Observing Cloud for Training Wisdom

1. Clouds change shape but keep moving, albeit sometimes very slowly. We can too. It is one of the qualities of adaptive training among crazy-busy pressures that would stress us into inactivity.

2. Clouds transport water, a resource to the lives of others. Training our bodies and minds builds physical courage that can support other acts of generous, giving courage.

3. An otherwise bright white cloud can have very dark, very water-dense little clouds nearby (see the banner). Suppose you are in one of those small, dark, water dense clouds. You’re likely to see all grey, all gloom, and feel all wet. Yes, until a beautiful, white sunlit cloud expands and engulfs you and you find that many of your problems were perceived right there within your own tiny individual cloud. You also realized how much water you have to give among others.

4. Clouds get out in the other elements, indeed, bring them together within themselves, contribute to them. So do we when we train, exercise, work, compete, and apply our physical training to something worthwhile.

5. Clouds make their own view by starting out light, rising, gathering, then supplying. A thunderstorm or snow storm is quite an exciting gathering, maybe even a competition, with lightening clashes, the refreshing ozone, and every gathered cloud a part in that great event. Gatherings of clouds bring out the best in each.

6. Clouds have training partners that truly inspire them with their energy, warmth, and mastery at conducting the weather as if it were a symphony orchestra: Mr. Sun and his band the Stars.

7. What shape will your training take today?

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personal genesis

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There is a place deep inside you can go, and through a window is a book, the book of life. There you will see the truth about you and why you are here. When all seems lost, when all appears hopeless and confused, go there to your personal desiderata without words and be renewed. There is no time or entropy there, and no corruption. The center of choice, of freedom is there. Energy beyond all energies, is there. Not destructive, but the Genesis. When the seed coat falls as a gift returned, there the ever future becomes present.

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In the lyrics of this piece, I see translated in a few words what the above says.

Adaptive Strategies: Boost Your Immune System & Solving the Paradox of Success

The change of seasons puts the micro-bugs into overdrive. Are our immune systems ready?

For those who have undertaken the training life, this is an important, if confusing question.

It has to do with the Paradox of Success. When we feel fit and well, we become susceptible to undermining the behaviors we lived to get there: exercising, eating right, sleeping well, and feeding relationships (filling buckets).

Success invites a temporary sense of immortality mania. In this state, we tend to over-extend ourselves at the expense of sleep, rest, exercise, downtime, relationships, and soon, wellness. Then we get sick.

If we can early-detect our sense of mania after successes, this is our first sign of coming under a spell of over-extension. So it is with our successes.

Here are some WebMD pages on positive immune system boosting routines — followed by some counter-intuitive surveys of findings about immune boosting — as linked-to below:

Immune System Busters & Boosters

Super Foods for Optimal Health

How to Keep Your Immune System Healthy

Guide to Ginseng as Immunity Booster

Can Exercise Reduce Your Risk of Catching a Cold?

Ten Surprising Health Benefits of Sex

Exercise After Chemo Helps Patients Ward Off Future Cancer

Yet when you consider that inflammation and upper-respiratory mucous generation (mostly against nasal passage infecting viruses) are immune system responses, some survey reviews of a few years ago suggest that bolstering the immune system will only increase inflammatory, super-charged immune systems. Is that bad, or good? More research is needed, but consider the following perspectives:

How Not To Fight Colds

Why everything you thought about colds is wrong! Scientists have finally separated fact from fiction about those sniffles

Our Immune Systems Were Built for More Challenges Than They Get

Given the above contra-pieces, here is a summary of useful takeaways:

1. Let go of unnecessary stressors and poor stress response habits, then burn-off, let loose, and heal from inevitable stress with the following;

2. Bolstering human relationships;

3. Consistent exercise;

4. Healthy, nutritional, natural eating and drinking with little or no refined, processed sugars, MSG, etc.;

5. Put our children’s well being first. (for parents, and for those without children, someone else’s needs).

There is more to this topic than a blog post can touch. Researching and reading up on the latest using article alerts from trusted sources, and weighing, comparing, and testing them is sane way to continue navigating.

Water

There are times you may not consciously realize that you need or want to renew your relationship to water in your training life.

Yet water and its properties are forces of nature that are part of your physical, mental, and if you will, spiritual being.

My Denver Half Marathon Half Rainbow

follow the path of movement

Take time to recover

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IMG_9549 download

Lake in a snowstorm

IMG_8277 IMG_8278 IMG_9048 cropped-img_0265.jpg IMG_0822 IMG_7101 icey lake

Adaptive Saturday: Three-100-Flood Labor-Mayweather

I did not expect the unexpected on Saturday. That’s good or else it wouldn’t be called unexpected. Expectations did not fail, they changed. However, adapting prevailed.

I’d planned a 5-7 mile run depending on how my foot felt. My friend and neighbor (who has been very busy lately) happened to be running at the same time. It was good to catch up, and to have someone else to share a cadence with on the road. We didn’t say much, just our feet. My friend’s ankle limits his running, a result of pounding from basketball. After a brief talk about that, and some talk about Eastern medicine approaches, I ran his run with him for three miles. I could run again later, and do a double. It was no problem for me. Waving him off and running further would have risked discouraging future runs together, so I ran in with him. My neighbor invited me to the Mayweather-Alvarez fight later in the evening. I said yes, and we parted ways.

I went inside, and focused on the heaviest kettle bells for 100 slow, near continuous movements (squat / dead lifts / rows / shrugs / incline presses).

After the run I had intended to spend the morning working on my current writing project, study my NSCA strength conditioning materials, and watch the thunderheads build over Colorado. Then I thought of my brother-in-law’s brother, whose basement had been flooded in the foothill community he lives in.

I put in a call. He was tearing soaked carpet out of a walkout basement. Nice. As I spoke to him I watched a huge thunderhead building over the mountains in his direction.  Phoning a person whose basement has been flooded to say, “Hey, how’s it going, let’s get together sometime,” is shallow to someone in deeper waters, so it was not long before I was driving down a rural country road toward the mountains, toting water remediation stuff I got from Lowes and my garage. It was an opportunity to listen to a U2 CD I got at a garage sale and drive new roads.

It also became a physical labor opportunity for conditioning. Here were some movements one doesn’t get to do every day. Squeegy work, water vacuuming, more carpet removal, baseboard prying, movement of irregular, heavy items, fan assembly, including a Precor treadmill, box hauling, and dumping water vac containers. After 3 hours of that, I realized that opportunities for exercise will arise under many circumstances helping people with physical burdens.

Later it was Pho Vietnamese soup with my family, and we all puzzled over the question of MSG, what had the least of it, and how to avoid it in the future when we wanted to go out.

The Mayweather fight was excellent as was the good company and conversation at my neighbor’s house. Observing Mayweather’s boxing mastery was a beautiful thing to behold. His humor came out a couple of times too. Without destroying his opponent physically, he mastered the fight in every way. His defense was subtle, swift, and sapped his opponent’s energy. His jab was a granite blur. His combinations were carefully timed, highly accurate, and powerful. His larger and younger opponent had not trained as hard or as long to be a master of the sweet science. Mayweather had, and it showed. On the other had, Mayweather’s team had forced a catch-weight regulation on Alvarez that had Alvarez dropping and gaining weight again swiftly before the fight. It may have affected Alvarez adversely to undergo such a fluctuation. Asked about it, Mayweather’s team chalked it up to the art of war.

An interesting fact: Mayweather was accompanied to the ring by rapper Lil Wayne and singer Justin Bieber. Psychological warfare, no doubt, meant to distract, or maybe feign excessive preoccupation with fame. If so, Mayweather’s training was definitely not distracted by fame.

Don’t Give Up

Paula Cole and Peter Gabriel put this message to song so beautifully:

For all who train, race, compete, and more importantly, love.

Don’t give up is just another way of saying “I love you,” and love is life’s truth and meaning.

 

For more of Paula Cole’s heart reviving music, see:

http://paulacole.com/home

For Peter Gabriel:

http://petergabriel.com/

 

Updated: Remembering September Eleventh

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On September 11, 2001 a relatively small band of traveling criminals pushed history toward evil times. That so small a number could do this should inspire us that historic change in the positive can also take place because of the good works of a small number.

It is the truth. In this truth I believe many may find the purpose of their adaptive fitness lives. To prepare their bodies and minds for what they know, and for what they cannot predict, and so be ready to put in a sound response to the challenge of any given day.

It could be any ordinary day, to set in motion extraordinary change, or, to avert negative changes. Adaptive training goes beyond fitness to excellence in functional capability for the many who would improve their service to others wherever and however they serve the good of humankind.

Adaptive fitness expands the definition of athleticism to go beyond sports, games, and races and into whatever challenge may come.

Movement with Forces: Vehicle Training (2:53)

Movement with Forces (inertia, velocity, momentum, gravity, etc.) training is one of 7 dimensions of training set out in my adaptive fitness book “Farm Your Training Day: An American Dream of Sustainable Personal Fitness.”

Here, vehicle training is a form of Movement with Forces training. The purpose of this training is a functional encounter with one or more physical and energetic forces at once, not mere weight lifting primarily engaging gravity by loading joints from above. With vehicle training you can train as with a blocking sled on the football field, emphasize pushing the vehicle with calves; emphasize lunging the vehicle; emphasize a hack squat / backward walk by engaging the bumper with the lower back, grasping it from beneath and walking backward, pushing it. You can pull it from the tow hook as well as shown in the clip. Just be certain to stay clear of wheels and use a flat area in which the vehicle cannot roll away. You can also execute various levels of presses with the upper body. These exercises should be slow going. Let up after feeling a significant new challenge. Train muscle gradually over time.

With vehicle training, physical forces and properties undertaken include inertia, gravity, isometrics, friction, momentum, and velocity among others. The benefits of vehicle training include engagement of major muscle groups, affordability, accessibility, natural Vitamin D, and multiple force training of the body.

When you overcome the stationary resting force of the vehicle, and train your body with inertia / gravity. Momentum/Velocity: You cause the vehicle to have velocity, and momentum when you move it. Then, to stop it, you must overcome the vehicle’s Momentum/Velocity, returning it to its resting, inertial state. There is a point within your stopping the vehicle’s momentum that you meet with yielding isometric forces since the vehicle acts as a fixed object, i.e. you push on it but it is not moving with your force. Its momentum / velocity is clashing with your personal force, slowing the vehicle and reducing its velocity / momentum. When getting it going again from a stationary position, there is a moment of fixed isometric force your body feels.

WARNING: YOU MAY NOT BE READY FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING OF THIS KIND. IT REQUIRES COMMON SENSE PRECAUTION AFTER CONSULTATION WITH YOUR PHYSICIANS OR TRAINERS. DOING SUCH EXERCISES COULD CAUSE INJURY OR DEATH. IF NOT WILLING TO UNDERTAKE SUCH RISK, DO NOT DO ANY EXERCISES DEPICTED ON THIS CHANNEL. CLEAR ALL PLANNED PHYSICAL TRAINING WITH YOUR HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS, PERSONAL PHYSICIAN, AND / OR SPORTS PHYSICIANS / COACHES / TRAINERS. DO VEHICLE TRAINING WITH 2 SPOTTERS, one to help you and the other to keep the vehicle path clear and the scene safe. IN A FLAT AREA WITH NO CHANCE THE VEHICLE WILL ROLL AWAY, AND STAY CLEAR OF WHEELS WHILE ENGAGING, PUSHING, AND PULLING THE VEHICLE. IF YOU FEEL THE VEHICLE’S TIRE CONTACT A FIXED OBJECT LIKE A CURB, LET OFF YOUR PUSHING FORCE TO AVOID BLOWING A JOINT. CLEAR THE WAY FOR THE WHEELS TO ROLL SMOOTHLY BEFORE PROCEEDING.

Breathing

Breathing works from the inside out, radiating gentle forces outward from within the body, expanding the musculature, then easing, expanding, then easing-up; all the while nourishing cells, over and over like the ocean waves. So basic, yet so beneficial.

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The Reset

Let the Reset happen. Your mind lets go of the intractables, puts them back into your heart, where the mysterious storms, the lightening, the oceanic forces of the Source break them up and produce a path forward for you.

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When a Run is Not a Run, But an Encounter with Physical and Energetic Forces and Conditions

Force of Heat

Force of Heat

Yesterday I did not hydrate to prepare for a run.

Yesterday I did not eat much at all.

Yesterday was not a running training day. And although I ran, I did not run.

At the height of the late day heat in the 90’s, in full sun, underfed for the day, and poorly hydrated, I strapped on a hydration system, downed a Gu (Trademarked name) and took off running. I had no distance or pace in mind. It wound up at 4.21 miles.

My sole goal was to encounter heat and full sun while feeling unprepared for my run. I had planned with the Gu shot, and the hydration system, for my own safety net after the halfway point. The Gu shot would kick in after about 20-30 minutes, and I would feel lousy for over half the exercise period.

During the run I purposely ran on several different surfaces, regular and irregular, to do something against my expectations. I ran on river rock, broken granite, asphalt, dirt, deep grass, groomed grass, concrete, and on a few mulch areas. The route was mostly flat with some subtle rises, but it was all in the open sun with no shade until the end stretch.

In the first 30 minutes of this run, I felt very hot. My skin felt hot, my head felt hot, the air felt hot, I was thirsty, and there was very little or no breeze. When I felt a little lightheaded at one point, I recognized it coinciding with that hollowed-out feeling of stomach emptiness during exertion without blood sugar. I slowed down to adapt to the energy drain, reduce heat build-up, yet still keep running by a purely technical definition, no matter how slowly. I began sipping water when I felt lightheaded to make this a training interval, not self-immolation.

When the Gu finally found my bloodstream I felt the boost and picked up my pace. My stomach emptiness eased, and I  found some tree cover for the last half-mile of my encounter with the heat and my own deprivation. I could have become a treehugger for shade.

Did I train? By someone else’s definition, perhaps not. But the definitions I set had to do with addressing obstacles I have run into before in my training life, not adopting someone else’s focus, but my own, in the present moment. By encountering and adapting to:

Heat

Hunger

Thirst

Finishing determination

and

my thoughts and feelings about it all…

..the goal was to train my mind to adapt to all factors and conditions to continue, not quit, and not fall to a heat injury. You see, long ago, I did reach dangerous temperatures while running hills in a 100 degrees-plus, humid, still forests of Virginia wearing pack, boots, helmet, and carrying a rifle. My temperature was 106.4 degrees Fahrenheit before a pugnacious young Staff Sergeant from San Diego pulled me down, and started pouring gallons of water over my head. He saved my life and I’ll always be indebted.

I do not recommend anyone else do this particular heat / hunger / thirst forces session. Perhaps you would never feel the need. I recommend training on full hydration; after adequate nutrition; being judicious about training times and types given your own personal, physical history, profile, needs, and objectives. In other words, a run is a run, a training run is a training run, but your intention in training, your focus can change the interval into something else.

For me, this was voluntarily facing a convergence of forces to train to adapt to them despite having fallen to them in the past. The purpose? To gradually increase capacity to deal should unexpectedly arduous conditions be imposed on me at some future time. Next time, I’ll go slightly further, and so on under similar conditions. This also trains mind and body to appreciate and stay aware of hydration, nutrition, and preparation. It also helps train my mind to adapt and function when those elements are lacking — to push the envelope back and retrain my body’s capacity to adapt, endure, and do so functionally.

Had I wanted to enjoy the feelings of a “run in the heat” I would have prepared properly for it and billed it as a run. A run it was not. A forces training day it was. So if you are a runner, always prepare. Always adapt with as much preparation as possible. You will train longer, with fewer interruptions, and less wear and tear on the body with excellent preparation.

Think of the many times you have said or read about someone having a “bad day” training. A low energy day. Preparation would likely solve a healthy percentage of those days. Adaptation, a survival and enhancement skill, is the follow-up to preparation when unpredictable things happen.

Train prepared friends!

Mother Teresa: Personal Trainer

What? This:

By internal and external silence, we may bypass barriers, snags, and diversions from purer, more efficient training, study, and accomplishment.

How often does inner or outer chatter delay movement, and this delay, like gum on our shoes seems to swallow time.

I take this inspiration from my a current book in my reading list, entitled, “No Greater Love,” by the late Mother Teresa, a saint.

 

She also wrote that you can’t learn humility by reading about humility. Only by undergoing humiliations (which are guaranteed throughout our lives) do we learn humility. I wonder if typos are included?!

Inner Runner, Inner Forgiver

There are reasons to run, and there is running for a reason. This breezy summer night the air was fresh of mountain and field, bracing and pure under the smile of a half moon’s glow. This was running for a reason.

The running surface was mostly asphalt, some road bed rock at the side, an occasional weedy dodge of a car, and a couple of rigid sidewalks. All in all 7.6 miles.

Running and allowing the gravity and other forces of the planet, solar system, galaxy, universe, the cosmos, and beyond, to act on me, to breathe in from the greatest wonders of all that is interrelated to the tiniest cellular worlds inside reminded me of a truth.

Running like this on country roads at night allows me to find peace enough to watch my thoughts emanate outward and reveal themselves, my memories, and my legends of others and self. My hubris under the glory of starlight is laughable. I turn and see the Big Dipper is a sign that I can be the biggest dip in the road.

What do I see? I see the truth, the truth that I am a sinner and that this truth, told honestly brings forgiveness from within my heart, tapping internally the light from the Beginning, the creative light that creates love and life from forgiveness. If I forgive concealing my wrongs, I stand in the yard of my being, shutting the inner light inside, squelching true light within closed doors. Worse, perhaps I then judge others to keep the diversion externally directed away from me and call it forgiveness, adding lie to lie.

Forgiveness from the front yard brings nothing from inside the home. Internal forgiveness brings truth and goodness from within as a gift and sacrifice, as a pearl to give to the forgiven one from the heart, or maybe a song of light, heard by the heart of the forgiven.

As I ran tonight, I realized that repentant heartbeats, sighs, and breathing are given to all of us to use to join the light within with the lights up on high, the warming around us, and the grand, glorious eternity of now, as universal gifts of forgiveness to all and to one. I would say it strongly: the purpose of repentance is to lead us to a greater forgiveness of others, to open the door opening the heart’s inner chamber for Light to become an endless river of peace.

For how is it we can fear one whom we love with the love of forgiveness from a heart that has known the gift of being forgiven that began with truthfulness about self?

The Replacement

When I kick a habit I kick it now;

Unless I replace it with decision,

The kicking is for show.

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Today, Now…

img_2945.jpgAs the night cools the path of the spartan sun, a hot day’s light drifts into space as I contemplate sleep.

Now is the best time to reach beyond the solar system of my small life and share a few observations from this week.

Health, wellness, and functional strength are like a land grant to each person to farm.

There is no guarantee the farm will not be beset by pests, drought, or fire, yet we farm what we have.

And yet a farm is a foundation for living. What is the purpose of living?

The good purpose of our lives is so simple, so central, so much who we are, it is easiest to miss for being right in front of us.

Today, now, I simplify, letting go of my ambition, letting go of the wants I have dressed as needs, and I want to gaze wordlessly into my own heart to weed this given field; to make it fertile; and to grow all I can to hold with soft hands and distribute whatever I may be given to give. Truth told to self is a calmer of all faculties before sleep.

As I descend, I trust sleep. Sleep is rain, dew, cool, and recovery. Sleep is part of training. The heat and pace of the day will return tomorrow in which I will work my field. Peace.