Heavy Lifting

When I retired my goal was to take charge of my health. That would be my new job. To eat a healthy diet, to exercise, meditate, join a yoga class, journal everyday, join social support groups (e.g. writers, artists etc) and do everything right.

It has gone well.

Fifty percent of the time.

The whole food/plant based diet has lots of research to support the health benefits. I believe it is good research and accurate. Fifty percent of the time I can follow it like a religion. One of my friends laughed at me. “You can’t be fifty percent vegan.”

Yoga increases strength and flexibility, and prevents physical problems as well as improving emotional state. Yoga classes are very early in the morning. Very early. Too early for a retired mind set.

Meditation gets easier and becomes a habit that is useful during times of stress if you practice every day. Unless you have the ultimate monkey mind. Thoughts scampering around the trees and only settling down for ten seconds at a time before they jabber and swing from limb to limb.

Aside: 5Rhythms Dance, which is a moving mediation, has been a godsend for me. I can exercise and meditate and my mind actually does clear while I dance.

Exercise gets easier if you do it every day, build up your muscles, train your state of mind. The truth is I have exercised nearly every day for five years and I am soooooo sore some mornings I can barely make it out of bed. I have to warm up my creaky joints, massage my aching muscles, perhaps even slip some Motrin in with my daily steel cut oat breakfast.

Years ago, after a visit to a dairy my mother presented this question: If you adopted a calf as a small baby and lifted it every single day, shouldn’t you be able to lift the full grown bull?

So I keep it all up. I try to lift the calf every day. But I fear that I have missed some days and now the calf is thirty-six hours heavier instead of a simple twenty-four.

And the load is very, very heavy.