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admin | reflection of the past meaning | 15.04.2015
Shortened URLContributorChristina Torresis a middle and high school English teacher at University Laboratory School in Honolulu, Hawaii. For all of the runners out there who are also devoted yogis, there’s no doubt that you either do a bit of asana before or after a run—and probably both. When we do listen to the body, breath, and what surrounds us, our mind becomes clearer, and so does our practice and focus.
Know what’s around you, and within you, and that you’re capable of expanding your practice on the running path, just as you are on your mat. Founder of Chesapeake Yoga & Wellness, Julie is a strong believer in the power of yoga to heal the body and the mind.
Join the community and discover yoga together with hundreds of thousands from all over the world. As you change into your running clothes, begin to notice the physical sensations in the body.
As you begin to run, while a keeping a strong awareness of everything that’s going on around you, bring your attention back to the body. If you’re running for fun or simply to keep fit, then it’s helpful to actively encourage an awareness of what’s going on around you. Because you’re more present and more aware, it’s quite likely that the way you think when you run (your mental habits) will also become more apparent.
One of the so-called problems of being more aware is that you become aware of not only the pleasant sensations, but also the unpleasant ones. Whether it’s the shortness of breath, the tightness of the chest, the aching of the thighs or cramping of the calves, all of these seemingly-disruptive experiences can be used as effective supports or objects of focus for your running meditation. Whether you are running for fun or taking it more seriously, you’ll find this exercise far more manageable if you break it down into sections. When you take deep breaths from the abdomen, instead of short shallow breaths in your chest, you inhale more oxygen. Yoga is a form of practicing our mind and body connection—just like running, we rely on listening to the body to keep us moving towards our next goal—and when we don’t, we end up getting hurt. Try monitoring the breath using an even breath count—whether it’s in 2, out 2—try to challenge yourself to keep it consistent—just as if you’re doing a vinyasa, or a moving meditation.
Resist the urge to create a grocery list, or play out the day’s drama, can help you to focus more on your awareness. As a student of yoga since her college years, Julie learned the power of meditation while in college that helped achieve more focus in daily activities. Perhaps the legs feel heavy from a previous run, or the shoulders tight from sitting at the computer. This might be other runners, cars, parks, fields, buildings or anything else you pass along the way.
When you first notice the pain, the instinctive reaction will be to resist it, to get rid of it, which will usually involve either stopping or beginning a long mental battle to try to forcibly overcome it, ignore it, or suppress it in some way. Some people find that stride by stride is the best way to focus, whereas for others it is street by street, or even mile by mile. But whether we’re in a marathon or running down a path by ourselves, it is something that we essentially do alone. Using the principles of yoga to increase performance and endurance can help you develop the witness in each moment. And while there's much to gain from performing the physical activity, there's a lot we're missing out on when we slip into a semi-conscious state when doing the exercise. It’s amazing how often people run exactly the same route every day and yet how little they know about it, how little they actually see. Rather than try to "get away" from physical discomfort, see what happens when you rest your attention with the feeling.


Obviously, you need to be aware of your own physical capabilities to respect your body, and take appropriate action when necessary.
One popular method is to break down the run into every ten strides, or every twenty, or even every hundred.
Sign up for the free Take10 program to get the basics just right with guided audio programs and support to get your Headspace, anytime, anywhere on the Headspace app. I shake my limbs out for a moment, take a breath, then launch myself off the concrete and onto the road. See what happens when you consciously open your chest with shoulders back and your spine straight—does your breath feel any different? While she enjoys many styles of yoga, including Para Yoga and Anusara, she mostly enjoys taking her yoga outdoors. It’s pretty normal for the mind to wander when you’re running, regardless of whether the thoughts are related to the running itself, or something quite separate.
If you have the time and inclination, you can even take a couple of minutes to sit down and allow the mind to rest before you begin. This process isn’t done with any sense of judgment or analysis, you are simply building up an awareness of how you feel. Once you’re running you can return to whatever pattern of breathing feels most natural for you. Try doing it as if you and the pain are not really separate, so less of "me and my pain" and more of the simple, direct experience of "pain." The results might surprise you. However, if you feel you can continue without doing any lasting damage, then try moving even closer to the discomfort, as if you are sinking down into that feeling and experiencing it in a very direct way. My muscles spring back and the shock absorbers of my quads reverberate as I begin to pound pavement.Some days, when I do this, my mind immediately sends a thousand lights across my cortex. As an avid sailor on the Chesapeake Bay, as well as a kayaker, skiier, bicyclist and stand up paddle boarder, Julie likes to blend the mindfulness of yoga with other activities - especially in the outdoors! But the only way to ensure that you’re performing to the very best of your ability, is to leave the thinking behind and allow the body and mind to work together with a combined physical and mental focus. If you do this each time you may start to notice a pattern that will help you to respond more skillfully. So remember that idea of gentle curiosity, not frantically trying to notice everything around you, but being interested in the things that grab your attention. Obviously, the longer the distance you intend to focus on, the more difficult it is to remember these principles, so make a point of building in regular checks to see if you’re present throughout the run. As a certified ACA stand up paddleboard instructor, she brings her knowledge of yoga to the board, and other outdoor activities to teach students how to experience new ways of practicing yoga and mindfulness. So here is a mindfulness exercise from the meditation experts at Headspace to use next time you go for your run.
In moving closer to it, in fully experiencing it and even encouraging it, you'll experience a complete shift in the usual, habitual dynamic and very often the pain is released as a result. I smile as I bounce down the sidewalk.Many days, though, I settle myself in for the feeling that inevitably hits sometime in the first mile.
We differ in that I assign the driver voice in my head to just my better self rather than a god.
If there is, you already know what to do with it -– watch it, observe it, become aware of it. I may call it call it peace, harmony, or unconditional love of self and others, but I too celebrate the benefits of moving meditation. You may well find that in the process of awareness, the tension naturally releases itself anyway. Stop that!” After nearly six years of running, I now know that this feeling will usually go away after three miles, and the run will begin to feel OK.Three miles can feel like a long time, though, and like lots of runners, I used to distract myself by listening to music.


I had a playlist of anything that I could focus on until I got near the end of the run and could think, Hey, I ran and I barely even remember it!The author about to embark on the Spartan Race in Hawaii. What could be more sensual than paying exquisite attention to your own body?"Oh, that sounds nice, I thought to myself. And with little fanfare, I decided to see if I could begin to run silently.At first, it was torture. My shoulders were so tense my biceps would cramp — something I had noticed before, but had never really paid attention to. I am a relatively new runner (just picked it up in the last decade) and have always preferred to run without music for many of the reasons you articulated.
Hunched over and wearing a sour expression, I hobbled my way through runs like an angry troll on the worst mission ever.After a few more runs, though, I began to focus my thoughts on something other than my frustration. When I can focus and quiet the monkey-mind, I find God in the sounds and sights and smells along the trail. I considered the quotation that had inspired me to do this in the first place and sought the “cradle-rocking rhythm” McDougall described. And I marvel at the sheer miracle of the fact that my body will do exactly what I want it to.
I also found that the feeling whilst doing any lengthy exercise is the same as in meditation.
At the start of the exercise there is a phase where I get mentally adjusted to the fact that I'm exercising and then I move into the phase when I'm within myself watching my breath and the performance of the body. How did my back feel?Eventually, the “sensual” contemplation of the physical became a contemplation of the spiritual. I also have some music playing, but have found that it ends up totally being ignored whilst I contemplate. I've even changed the music to Krishna Das (chanting) which has added a completely differently dimension when I find myself chanting along with him.
I would get distracted by my phone, or bugs, or the wind, or how thirsty I was or how hot I was or a million other things.
I have been practicing this same moving meditation for over 20 years, although it wasn't until a few years ago I realized that was what it was.replyBeautiful piece, Christina. With my feet pounding and arms pumping, how was I finding inner calm?Then, I realized God had been meeting me with moving meditation for years.The author completing the Kauai Marathon in Kauai, Hawaii. The new guy I am seeing loves Batman, and so I recently re-watched Batman Begins.After getting hit by a car while running two years ago, I'm still astounded that I can run even a mile. If you’re going to run that slow, why are you running at all?I hate that voice, but have lived with it for years. We scale back or up the pace at which we are trying to fly, based on the speed that a careful calculation has told us we should match.During this springtime run, though, my left hip began to throb. It wasn't exactly the angel Gabriel speaking to Mary, but I suddenly heard the oft-quoted Alfred line:"Why do we fall? I was running because pounding my feet into the pavement was the only way to hammer myself back together. God moves outside the dim candlelight I have resigned our relationship to for years, and weaves His way into the moments of physical sensuality when we are most aware of ourselves, or the lowest moments when we desperately seek refuge.God lives in the pumping of my arms and pounding of my feet. The question is if I will stop distracting myself from what is there — pains, aches, and all — and hear His voice in return.



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  1. Ubicha_666 — 15.04.2015 at 17:59:33 Swami (2007) Om Yoga: Its Concept and Observe In-depth sustainable residing.
  2. JUSTICE — 15.04.2015 at 17:17:48 A bodhisattva is running meditation moving meditation an unusual person who throughout circumstances in your life or worrying concerning the resilience of the Whole Drive.