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Owner, "MAP Wellness" - a culinary nutrition and wellness company. Writer. Passionate cook, raw food chef, reiki practitioner, yoga teacher, and LIVE WELL educator. ​do yoga. enjoy good food. run. plant food. cook. savour wine. read books. buy good food. love. grow your energy. find peace. enjoy food. have passion. skip. eat food. do yoga. listen to jazz. have presence. be present. bike. read. see. hear. be. live. love.

Friday, July 6, 2012

6 hours of YOGA

Hello all!  Just an update here:  I have decided NOT to continue on my social media free month after all.  Yes, I only lasted 6 days.  But I am choosing to go back online because I can. I am a consenting adult and have the power to make that decision.  After writing the below posting about yoga and extremes, I realized that I was again acting out in my particular way - with my all or nothing mentality - and it had gotten the better of me.  So I have concluded that I need not withdrawal completely online to prove to myself that I can tame my addiction there; all I need to do is cope differently.  So that is what I plan to do.  Limits, time frames, checkpoints and all.  So there.

When you think yoga, you don't usually associate it with the word challenge. At least I don't - anymore.  There was a time that yes, I truly fought against myself on the mat, pushed myself too far, drove my limbs to do things that they sometimes just didn't want to do.  I went so far as to injure my knee so badly that I had to take a break not only from class, but also from my daily run.  That is serious. Granted, even though I was putting my body under a ton of undue stress, it still was very healing for me in many ways.  I turned to Bikram yoga at a time in my life that I needed not only a distraction, but also an avenue to exert excess stresses, work out my body, and have some time just for me.  And I am grateful for all it gave me then.  It was only when I found myself becoming obsessive about those 26 postures; when I was starting to go beyond the parameters of regular practice; did I realize that I needed to ease off of my 43 degree "torture chamber" (Bikram's words, not mine) addiction.  And so I did.  Now, I feel much more at peace with my practice, and choose more variety in my yogic classes to include everything from standard hatha, to restorative, Yin, Vinyasa, and the odd hot one.

This is why, when I discovered that the ALS society was developing its first annual ALS Yoga Challenge, I was a tad hesitant to sign up.  But after reading the websites introductory sentence yet again, I had to put my name on the roster:

Most people diagnosed with ALS lose the ability to use their arms and legs in the first two years of the disease. What would you do, while you still could?

So I am doing it.  On August 18, 2012 myself and hundreds of others will attend a fun-filled day of yoga as we move our bodies for those who no longer can.

I am doing it for my father, an athlete who was active in sport into his late fifties and early sixties; slow-pitch, volleyball, golf and hockey his activities of choice.  He was a runner, a biker, and a dancer, with a regular bedside routine of push-ups and crunches every morning.  He revelled in his body's strength, honoured all his muscles could do for him, and never took advantage.

Go figure it would be a debilitating disease like ALS that would eventually steal his life, after quickly rendering many of his muscles virtually useless.  Had it not been for my fathers paralleling fight with FTD (frontotemporal dementia) I am sure he would have been frustratingly distraught over his quickly atrophying limbs.  The transition from him walking, to walker, to wheelchair happened in a blink of an eye.

And so I will bend and sway in memory of him, to show my love for him, and in the hope that one day there may be a cure for the disease that took my daddy away far too soon. 

If you would like to sponsor me in my day of yoga, you can do so here:

ALS yoga Challenge!


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