Finding 11 : The Body can be used to leash the mind.
My late father gifted me his genes and in that cocktail also came a high risk of heart attacks.
I have always had a higher than normal level of cholesterol, the bad one more than the good one. I have made feeble attempts in the past to regulate my diet and spend time running but I was not getting significant improvements.
I came across this new idea in early 2019 in Calisthenics hosted by Chrishria on Youtube.
What impressed me about this workout was how easy it looked and yet how hard it was to sustain.
And more importantly I did not need a gym for them.
I could do them anywhere in the world and therefore my mind could not make any excuses. It had exercises for every body part that I wanted to improve or repair. And the best proof of the result was a racing heart and a body like Chris’s to aim for.
(You can follow him on @thenx on Instagram and OfficialThenx on YouTube)
If you don’t believe me go try Chris’s workout routine on his channels. It looks so easy to do but very hard to hold after a few reps.
I sifted through his workouts and chose my favourite exercises that I wanted to perfect and practice. I started a regime almost a year ago that I practice to this day.
I started doing 50 push ups daily. And then I extended it to 100 a day. And then I added stomach crunches and sit ups. I now exercise for an hour at least / 5 days a week.
Calisthenics has become a habit for me now. I look forward to practicing them in the day and I recently got my blood works checked and my doctor was impressed to see that for the first time in years my cholesterol ratios have come back into the normal range. I definitely attribute some of this change to my exercise regime that I am on.
In addition I found another great healer in something simple but powerful-
The habit of Long Walks.
I have a high store of energy in my body which when left to its own devices causes a lot of unnecessary destructive burn inside me. In the first few months of being home I found that the only way I could process my thoughts and my anxiety was with movement. I live in a city that has a magnificent beach 3 kms from our house. Until 2019 I had almost forgotten I had a beach next door.
I decided to start walking to the beach. Everyday.
The road is quiet and leafy and very calm. So I plug my head phones on and do this walk. Once I reach the beach which is enormous. (The beach stretches for 5 kms on either side) I walk another 1.5 kms to the lighthouse and then walk back to a shack called The Fat Mermaid where I chill with a beer/glass of wine. Then I take the tram back.
On some days if I see the tram is taking too long I just walk back.
So there are days I have walked 9 kms in a day. So on average I was walking 6kms a day / across 5 days in a week . That is 30Kms a week. That is 120Kms a month. And Its safe to say that I have done this for at least 20 months now.
That means I have walked 2400 kms already. This is almost equal to walking from Amsterdam to Berlin and back .Twice!
Now this is impressive for my mind which tends to never easily get impressed with endurance stats — specially when it comes to my effort. (A good example of my relationship with my old self)
So the consistency is one side of the beauty of the practice.
The other side of the beauty of the walk is also in its detail.
If you pay attention you start to get in touch with your present moment and the eternal presence that surrounds us. I have loved watching the tips of the shrubs blush red with anticipation at the warm touch of spring.
I have swayed in ecstasy with the tall wild flowers in full bloom oblivious that they grow by the tram tracks.
I have discovered the grandeur and creativity of Nature and felt kinship with that power inside me. If only a whisper at the start.It has grown with each step I took on my walks to the beach.
The walk along the ocean is the next phase of the delight. When you arrive it always looks a different shade of blue and green and grey. You can never predict how she looks . Some days she is calm and pensive. Far away and distant and reclusive. On another day she rages like a dancer possessed. The wind is her constant consort fanning her restless ruminations.
The walk on the freshly salted sands always slows my racing mind.
I can watch the unleashed freedom of dogs living their original wild nature. I can pay my respect to the love between young and the old as they walk hand in hand. I can smile at the racing hearts of kids running away from the frothy wave monster.
In this slowness I can notice the beauty of the universe spread out in every grain of shell littered all around. Every shell is unique. Every groove a slightly different shade even if they all look like a family of grey shells.
I am always amazed and filled with curiosity at the duality in nature of being unique and universal in the same instant. It’s another paradox of life. It kinda mirrors the theory of Super Symmetry in Particle Physics.
All Particles of matter coexist with their mirror Sparticle to make up the total mass of the Universe.
The Universe in its natural state is in a permanent state of balance and bliss.
A kind of eternal super bliss only visible to the human eye — sometimes…like the flowering of a plant to signal its transcendence. Nature is in a permanent state of bliss. I know that. They may feel pain but they never suffer. They know the difference and they try to let us humans feel it when we pass them.
They are so kind and so humble and yet so confident and proud. Living a full life of no regrets.
We need to grow back into our nature to emulate this ability.