: Routine :

One of the main reasons that we lose our enthusiasm in life is because we become ungrateful. We let what was once a miracle become common to us. We get so accustomed to his goodness it becomes a routine-

What is your routine when you prepare for yoga class (or anything really)? Hit the alarm clock and jump out of bed on one foot, whist telling the world you are awake on Insta-Whatever? Whack the snooze button a dozen times or so? Waking, peacefully, to me, is the most important part of the day. Sadly, I have forgotten to honor this time, choosing instead to “practice” in an antiseptic studio that feels anything but right, for me.

I used to take several minutes to notice my breath arriving gently in the morning. Savoring a few, rhythmic deep breaths as my body awakens. My sense of smell, my eyes adjusting to the morning light, the sensation of my body walking slowly across the cold wooden floor in our kitchen, and the morning sounds of the world waking alongside me, as I slide open the patio door Now I find myself searching where I last placed the car keys, and rushing to class.

Daily Meditation:

This is my story, as to why I decided not to practice in a local yoga studio, anymore. My routine has replaced – Mindfulness, and I am not comfortable with this.

CultFit Mindfulness


: Yourself :

Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change-

The first step on this “journey” of mine, was simply getting to know myself once again.

Before I competed in my first Gravel Worlds, I focused on “building strength” and training for the rigors of a 150+ miles gravel ride. A little over three years ago, I was struggling post surgery to get back into my cycling groove, needless to say I felt rather unprepared and woefully out-of-place. The week leading up to the chilly predawn start just outside Lincoln, Nebraska, I tried to imagine all the possible situations and challenges I could, and would encounter, and the associated mindset(s) I needed to adapt to them. I did not realize during the moment, that in doing so, I inadvertently found myself focusing on my true inner weaknesses – on the things that I need to improve, and on the behaviors that have eluded me for so long, that I pushed aside to compete, that did not come naturally to me Anymore. Shortly after an early August rain shower, and two punctures, I quickly realized that I can allow myself to feel confident about my ability to deal with what the road had in store for me, for my life. Albeit not the strengths the stereotypical Lycra clad/carbon fiber cyclist, a little smile here and there, and a deeply rooted sense of humor kept two wheels up and spinning along into the evening.

Daily Meditation:

Quiet simply, being yourself, being authentic – Is pretty inspiring!

CultFit Simplicity


: Surrender :

It’s funny; in this era of e-mail and voice mail and all those things that even I did not grow up with, a plain old paper letter takes on amazing intimacy-

Its amazing what happens when we surrender to our true selves, being present and our breath. Healthy relationships gradually begin to enter our life, and the “things” we have been so diligently working on begin to bear new fruit.

I have been struggling with my breath for quite a while now. I show up to class, go through the motions during my home practice and never truly fall into rhythm during a nice bike ride or the rigors of daily life. Why? My breath has escaped me.

I believe the true cause is largely a matter of personal habit. Our lives, my life, is excessively filled with constant activity and incessant noise and distraction. I have grown accustomed to them, so mush so, that when they come to a halt, I feel uneasy. There’s a startling sense of emptiness, as if I’ve suddenly landed in a deserted corn field after being in the middle of a bustling city.

When I can resist the urge to plunge myself fully into an activity, I soon begin to surrender to solitude, silence and my breath. My agitated mind starts to calm. My thoughts start to slow down, and I feel a sense of re-attuning to myself, I  feel a sense of connection – to my own self, and to the world as a whole.

Daily Meditation:

When I listen to my breath, I begin to find a new balance and harmony in my life.

CultFit Culture

 


Late Summer

Out for a walk tonight,
the dog is throwing all her weight
against the leash, lunging toward
the fat tomcat

licking his black ankles
with a delicious, solemn attention
at the top of the neighbor’s steps.

Because this is what the dog
was made to do.
Because for some lucky animals

the space between the body
and what it wants
is all there is.

– Carrie Fountain

CultFit Summer


: Traitor :

You may plainly perceive the traitor through his mask; he is well-known everywhere in his true colors; his rolling eyes and his honeyed tones impose only on those who do not know him-

Why am I waking up this morning?

The answer is, hopefully, not because I have to or I should, but rather  I have a sense of purpose and direction for this wonderful day.

Daily Meditation:

Being able to adapt well to a myriad of challenges, to be able to bounce back from a period of difficult times, requires me to have a sense of direction in my life and a belief that I am acting in a way that is consistent with my true personal values.

Traitor Cycles

GONG Ride

Single Speed Kansas City


: Optimism :

What day is it? “It’s today,” squeaked Piglet. My favorite day,” said Pooh-

My acts, these posts, are not necessarily random but they are based on kindness and service.

Seva, above all else, has been essential for my transformation, personal growth and for tapping into my creativity (little what’s left of it). At every step of my journey I have felt the need to be sharing in some shape or form with you. I have believed from the very first post that it’s important to see that we are all in this together, it’s not about acquiring more stuff or taking care of what you have, it’s about actively contributing to the whole “thing” I like to call Life.

Life, all the beautiful beings we consciously choose to ignore, the furry cute little creatures, plants and even mother earth, we are all in a symbiotic relationship with one another. When we step outside of our ego driven selves to take time to give, to contribute, to listen, to love, to heal, to teach, to be compassionate in our daily action(s) for all forms of life? We are expressing mindful love through Seva. As we take time each and every day to become more mindful of our thoughts, words and actions we begin to take a breath of unfettered mindfulness. This breath allows us to slow down, to pause, to listen and not react to the little things spinning around us or being trampled under foot.

When we act with mindful love guiding ourselves, we bring the best out of those we interact with on a daily basis. Winnie the Pooh once said “Beings are like honey pots, those that get the most mindful attention yield the sweetest of honey.” Action and reaction -aka- the Law of Karma begins and ends with how we mindfully care and love after our own gardens first <— This is critical, and then learning that through Seva, we can bring forth the best in all the beings we live with.

Some, many folks, try to express mindful love through “pay it forward campaigns” – “social media pats on the back” and a “look at my loving attitude,” self-serving way of living. Seva is as simple as sitting down with a friend after yoga class who is going through a difficult time, cleaning out your cluttered closet and giving what you haven’t worn in five years to a local homeless charity, volunteering at a local animal shelter, or working in a food kitchen for a day. If you don’t have time for this? Then maybe consider donating to a charity or organization that makes you smile and your heart gently glow. The Action and Reaction – The Law of Karma – isn’t as important as the feelings of love and kindness behind it. When the right energy is sent with the most humble of gift(s), the world can simply multiply your actions a million times over.

Daily Meditation:

I encourage each and every one of you taking a moment to read this post, to embrace Seva. May kind, and compassionate thoughts spring forth from your heart this weekend – Take care and be well!

CultFit Daff


The Strangers

After we picked you up at the Omaha airport,
we clamped you into a new car seat
and listened to you yowl
beneath the streetlights of Nebraska.

Our hotel suite was plump with toys,
ready, we hoped, to soothe you into America.
But for a solid hour you watched the door,
shrieking, Umma, the Korean word for mother.

Once or twice you glanced back at us
and, in this netherworld where a door home
had slammed shut forever, your terrified eyes
paced between the past and the future.

Umma, you screamed, Umma!
But your foster mother back in Seoul never appeared.

Your new mother and I lay on the bed,
cooing your birth name,
until, at last, you collapsed into our arms.

In time, even terror must yield to sleep.

Patrick Hicks

CultFit Nebraska


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