I’ve spent a hair over a year rehabbing a compressed disc in my lower back through chiropractic and holistic healing methods. I am moved to tears to report that I am nearly 100% healthy. I am not 100% but NEAR 100% and through the ordeal I have learned to give myself a break. Over the past year, my body was no longer capable of enduring the pain of a serious physical workout which led to weight gain and muscle loss and some depression. My mind was still attached to the desire to be physically active and fit but my body said “no, not now” and I had no other choice but to listen and comply but I couldn’t sit idly by waiting for my healing to come. One thing I knew was that I had to take an active role in my body healing itself and that meant that I had to stop interfering with its natural ability to heal itself and I had to change my activities. Notice I didn’t say stop my activities. I said I had to change my activities. No matter how much pain and no matter how long it took me to roll out of bed each morning, I could NOT stop moving. AND I didn’t.
On the other side of that frustrating year, I am now easing back into rigorous physical activities. Yesterday, I did an hour and a half long cardio and strength training routine in which the end left me totally spent. As I was cleaning up my living room (slash workout room), I noted that I left a puddle of sweat on the hardwoods where I had completed the cool down phase of the workout. “Yuck!” I said out loud and then that quiet sweet inner voice immediately reprimanded me and I allowed her voice to settle in and enlighten me.
That voice showed me that the puddle of sweat lying on the floor was so very symbolic of many things that I should be proud of. First, I had just labored through a tough exercise in which my body and my health applaud me for and there was the puddle to prove my efforts. Second, exercise is mentally challenging and therapeutic. I’ve learned to release my anxieties and worries during my workouts. Lastly, I had accomplished an exhausting activity in which my back did not break; ache it did but it lasted and endured which was something totally impossible this time last year.
After I sat a minute in sweet physical tiredness, I wiped up that puddle with a smile on my face and on my heart. With each swipe of the rag, I mentally recalled the days of previous physical frustrations that I no longer dealt with. I thought of the countless problems that life hands out and cause me concern and I wiped them up off the floor on the next swipe. On the floor is exactly where I needed to leave all the toxicity that creeps into my life and on the floor is exactly where I left it. I could hardly contain my enthusiasm at getting to today’s workout as I was contemplating all the things I was going to leave on the floor.
Are there things you need to leave on the floor? If you drop them there, you can purposefully dance over them, stomping a little harder and happier in certain places, while you are exercising to a better body and better mind but first you must make the choice to get on the floor. Bring your heart, your mind, and a clean up rag.