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20 Years of Epic!

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BirdsCloudsThis month marks my 20th year of mountain biking!  I’ll never forget the first time I rode up Palisades Drive on my mountain bike–my former husband was way ahead of me and all I could do in my mind was beat myself up!

“Sure, he’s way ahead of me, his father was a 9 Letterman in high school so he’s got the genes.  My father was a bowler!”  Not that there’s anything wrong with bowlers, it’s just that the sport doesn’t lend itself to huffing and puffing up a hill.

My lungs and my legs were burning–I was sweating profusely and my head felt like it was about to explode!

I did find out that Sean’s legs and lungs were burning too.   He felt pain and humiliation similar to me–his body was not functioning with ease.  It was hard!happy tara on voodoo

The good news is that today I rode up the same hill, instead of beating myself up, I was actually enjoying the ride.  My legs and lungs weren’t burning–it wasn’t easy but it was more of a pleasant ride up the hill, certainly not as bad as that first day 20 years ago!

Everything is a process.  I’ve learned how to just go with the flow and be in the middle of whatever fire may be burning.  I’ve ridden up that hill hundreds of times now and that alone takes the anxiety away.  Anything you do as a beginner, for the first time, can produce anxiety and just feel hugely hard to endure.

I caught the attention of another biker when I rode around the pole that separates  the dirt trail from the road,  “Wow, I saw you maneuver around that pole and I was very impressed,”  he said.  “I’ve been riding for a year now and I’m afraid my pedals will get all caught up and I’ll fall.”

“Ah yes, that pole,” I assured him,   “I was afraid of that pole for a very long time before I actually attempted to make my way around it.  I would get off my bike and walk the bike through and just notice how much room there was as I walked through.  Then, one day I had the guts to give it a try!”

I then shared that this month marks my 20th year riding.  “Wow, 20 years, can you give me any tips?”

I wanted to share more than a couple of tips but I also wanted to get on with my ride–two pieces of advice that worked for me–“keep your eyes on where you are wanting to go, not on the ruts because your bike will tend to follow your eyes.”  That tip works for life too!

The other tip is what one of my fellow racers told me after a race when I asked,  “how do you stay on the bike, I keep crashing?”  She said, “It’s just Time In The Saddle–you just gotta go through it, to get to it.”

I remember, at the time, I didn’t like hearing it.  I wanted to just be great now, be proficient now,  and not have to deal with the growing pains.  Now, 20 years later, I get it.  TIME IN THE SADDLE!

I continued on with my epic ride–after not being on the bike for about a month– I went a bit slower than I would normally pedal up the hills, but I was out there in the middle of all the wonder and the glory!IMG_0144a

I chose a loop that isn’t just up to the top then down, it was up then down and up and down and up some more.  Then the final descent was fast and technical and since it was a Saturday, there were lots of hikers out there, it took even more skill in handling the bike down those hills since my path was narrowed even more by the hikers!

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People have always been supportive as I ride by them UP a hill–they say things like, “wow, you’re strong,”  and their mouths drop open in awe as I fly by them DOWN the hill and there is no time to speak.

Talk about EMPOWERING!  No, I don’t ride to get their approval or their admiration, but it is kind of nice to receive.

Yes, mountain biking is one of the hardest activities I’ve ever tackled.  I remember the first time we saw someone riding up a fire road on a mountain bike, we thought, “this guy is crazy.”  Not long after that, we became crazy!

It is fun reflecting, it is fun feeling a difference from the very first time up that hill.  It is so empowering being out in the day, flying through the air with a skill that took time to develop.

If there’s something you want to take on, go for it.  You’ll be able to look back one day and remember what it took to get to where you are and you’ll feel pride, you’ll feel freedom.  We are a force of energy, we might as well use it to bring us thrill, pleasure, and joy.  Namaste’

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Learning A New Body Language

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If your body could learn a new language that could supersede everything you’ve ever believed about health and all the limits we set up around it, would you want to know about it?

What if you had an energetic intelligence within you that would allow you to transcend all of your physical ailments?  Would you be interested in learning it?

What if I told you that your body already knows it, you just need to tap into it to re-learn it.IMG_0508

Greg Jeter is a licensed NSA practitioner.  Trained first as a Chiropractor, then seeing the magic in this work that can be best described as “energy work”, focuses his entire practice on energy, with an occasional physical adjustment.

Greg is a facilitator, a bridge if you will, to help your body tap into the field of self healing.  “It’s all about finding the tension and the open areas and merging them into an energy that moves and flows into a feeling of ease and perfect health that is connected to all that is.”gregAglow

Dr Oz said on a recent Oprah episode, “As we get better at understanding how little we know about the body, we begin to realize that the next big frontier is energy medicine.”

WE ARE ENERGY!

If that sounds  “other wordly”– I can assure you,  that’s how it feels to receive it.

When I received my first session, I  didn’t want it to end.  I felt a rhythm and a vibration moving through me that is ultimately indescribable.

Some of the comments by long time practice members who receive regular work could make you a bit curious about the seeming magic of this work:

“Loving myself absolutely as I have never loved myself before–felt the omnipotence that babies feel”

“Felt like I had a heart orgasm–had the experience of what it must feel like to be a fish swimming in water”

“absolute joy”

“felt my spine had perfect posture”

“felt as if I was holding the love of the world & the suffering of the world all at the same time”

“felt the VOID of awareness–words really can’t describe what happens but it is like a deep meditative place that connects me to a world that is beyond the material, conscious realm”

You may feel results from the very first session but you will want to continue to regular sessions, since the tension is fuel for transformation.  Once your body learns this language, it will want to speak it and experience it at regular intervals!

Enjoy the process–YOU ARE WORTHY!

To experience the future of medicine, contact Sacred Ground at: (510) 856-0036

Located in the heart of Weed, CA,  the office also offers Massage Therapy, Hypnotherapy and Tattoos!  Weed is one town before Mt. Shasta and a visit to both places would be exhilarating! Sacred Ground is located at 51 Main Street Weed,Ca.
(510) 331-4653

California Dreams–Letting Go!

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I remember my second visit to California, I was 18 years old and loving this place!  Near the end of my trip, I read some graffiti on a freeway overpass, “Tourists GO HOME”! 

I remember feeling really bad when I read it, almost like I had been personally attacked.

I couldn’t understand how someone would want me to go home.  I thought to myself, “gosh if I lived here, I would want to meet all the people that came from all over the world to visit”.  That’s just how I am, I love finding out about people.MeetupPhoto

I’m still the same way all these years later, if I meet somebody new I want to know all about them.  I’ve lived in this state for 23 years now.  I wasn’t born here, but I did live here when I was a baby and I feel as if California is in my bones.  I love this place, it is so magnificent!

Where else can you go to the beach then take a 2 to 5 hour drive and be in the mountains with snow?  Everywhere I go here, I feel at home.

California!  I’ve been up and down the coast and everywhere I go is total bliss.  It really is no wonder that people want to visit here, let alone move here.  If you knew what we had to endure in Michigan, you would have a heart and be okay with us being here.  While it is true, there are lots of people and cars, how can you blame them all?  This a a gorgeous place!

I remember one of the women at the gym complaining about all the cars flooding from the valley to go to the beach.  She said, “vals, go home, we don’t want you here”. 

It’s funny, I thought to myself, she moved here from Ontario Canada–who is she to talk?  Vals are the people who live in the San Fernando Valley.  It is a good 15-25 degrees hotter than on the beach.  Gosh, they deserve to enjoy the beach.  I can see it from both sides, though.  When I spend most of my time up and down the coast because I work in Malibu and live in Brentwood, there can be a huge amount of traffic in the summer months because of everyone flooding to the beach.  It’s all good though, we’re just enjoying where we get to live and play!IMG_0920

I enjoy where I live and play every day.  Today, as I drove the stretch of PCH that takes me to my long time place of work, The Malibu Gym, I marveled at the beauty of Point Dume’ in the distance.

Honestly, I don’t think there has been one day in the 23 years I’ve been driving that coast that I haven’t been in awe of the sight of it when I see it. IMG_0785

I do wonder, how is it possible to love a place so much?

The month of June, 2014 marks 23 years of living in California.  From the age of 10, I spent 20 years dreaming of living in California.onewiththetrailtara

Some might say it became everything I focused upon.

The DJ in the college cafeteria only had to see me and know that it was time to play my song, “California Dreamin”.  Class after class of teaching, I always ended in the relaxed visualizing mode and saw myself here, happy and vibrant!  Then, after years of postponing my move either because of school or a job or a boyfriend,  I made it happen.  I had dreamed and visualized and listened and dreamed some more and then I moved to California.

I had no car, no job, no place to live–I just had to be here once and for all.

So many dreams came true for me.  I live the lifestyle I lived when I lived in Michigan.  I lived it in my own little world there because my environment didn’t really support it.

Today, I am surrounded by health food stores, healthy restaurants,  nature abounding everywhere I turn, near perfect weather, people I adore and so much more!

I love the life I’ve created.  I ride my bike, I hike the trails, practice yoga at my choice of a plethora of studios.  I live in a neighborhood that simply must be one of the prettiest in the country. fuscia flowersAbundance surrounds me in every direction I turn.  I am worthy of it all because I brought it to life with my visions and my strong desire.

Now, after 23 years of fully embracing and loving this place, I had the thought of letting it go.

Let it go and move onto something different.  I am open to that.  Montana seems to be pulsing in my radar these days.  Colorado is another place calling to me although the thought of the Winter months don’t really appeal to me.   Hawaii could work for me.  Wyoming is a mystery to me still. Or, I could stay here and just keep living it in the blissful fashion I’ve carved out for myself.

The feeling I had, though, when I let go of the need to be here and the need to stay here was so freeing.  pacific palisades hike

By letting go, we simply surrender to either something better or keeping that which we have.  It was obvious I had been clinging to being here.  I could feel such a total sense of freedom when I just let go.

Who knows what tomorrow will bring? “I am open to everything and attached to nothing”.  That sounds like a good plan.  I heard Dr. Wayne Dyer say it many years ago and until you experience it in one area of life, you won’t really know how good it feels.

I am feeling this way in several areas of life and it feels like a dream–as  good as the California dream I had all those years ago!purple passion point dume

Get A Glimpse– No Ego In Sight!

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I am a woman and  sometimes when I look in the mirror I notice a little too much of what’s wrong–all the flaws.  Sometimes I see too much fat, too many flaws in my skin, blah blah blah!  Sad, but true.   Most of the time, though,  I am just in a state of BEING and enjoying life and feeling good.  

Every now and then though, I focus in on what’s wrong.  We can all be way too physically focused. When we live in our heads, the ego rules the game.

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The ego is always concerned with holding you down, keeping you stuck and safe. It likes to compare you with others and compare you with yourself when you were better. And, if you’re a young gorgeous thing, if puffs you up and helps you feel superior physically.

Either way, the ego is not a loving force, it is competitive and judgmental.

When we are living in the present moment and really living life, there are no thoughts about our physicality and how it isn’t measuring up anymore. The present moment is simple, feel good bliss. Lately I’ve been getting glimpses of an unconditional love for my physical self. It’s definitely different than what I’m accustomed to when I look in the mirror. The more time I spend with me, the more I’m starting to really be okay with me.

Not just okay, but really loving me!

Then my ego kicks in and chatters, “you’re only letting go of the physical thoughts of yourself because you’re losing them–you’re becoming unattractive and old-looking so why not learn to let it go”.  Thank you for sharing EGO–as Dr. Wayne Dyer says, “Edging God Out”.

That’s truly what the difference feels like to me, when I’m in the present moment bliss I am in God and God is in me.IMG_0508

When I’m in the comparing, critical mode, I am Edging God Out!  

The first step toward spending more time in GOD mode instead of EGO mode is simple– AWARENESS.  As soon as you are aware, you are on your way to having far more freedom than you have ever imagined.

So go ahead and get a Glimpse!  It all starts with a Glimpse!

Dig Deep–I Am That

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We stood above a waterfall on the trail. Huge boulders were nuggets in a stream. A tree stuck out among the rocks–its roots looked as if they were going into the rock but they simply went beyond the boulder and into the ground. Another tree had huge thick roots that stuck out above the stream.

All you need to do is stop and look around in nature, nature leaves clues. Everything really does always work out for us!

Nature abounds with continuous proof of abundance!

Tree roots never give up, they always seek to grow. It doesn’t matter if they have to force their way through boulders and rocks, they dig deep and get connected.
If there’s no more room to dig deep, they puff up above the surface and grow that way. Whichever way they can, they’re growing. Trees really do amaze us. Some of them have been around for hundreds of years and have seen and heard so much. Imagine…

I guess they set an example for us humans. How are you growing? Are you growing? Reaching? Digging deep? Sometimes contentment and complacency set in and we no longer strive. To strive and be a bit out of balance is where the thrill of life shakes us up and thrusts us forward. Those trees inspired me today, I will reach higher and deeper than I have before. Life is calling me out into it–I just need to trust it and reach!

Your Body–Built To Move!

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As I’ve been recovering from straining some ligaments in my foot, I haven’t been exercising very much at all.  My yoga practice is not happening because that involves lots of foot work.  I haven’t been huffing and puffing up the hiking trails and the biking I’ve done is pretty tame.  I’ve just really wanted to heal completely so I thought I’d give my body some serious time off.pacific palisades hike

While it has been good for healing my foot, the rest of me is really feeling a difference.  

I actually feel as if I’m aging–my muscles are tighter and achier than ever.

This goes along with a trend I see as a massage therapist.  Most of the people who complain about chronic pain are those who have NOT been exercising.

Today, I got on my mountain bike and could feel my legs burning.

They were gasping for more Oxygen! One of the ratings of an athlete’s ability to utilize oxygen is the VO2max test. When you are fit and efficient, it is high. This means your body has the ability to utilize MORE oxygen. This is so key.

When you keep the capillaries and veins pumping and working and exchanging healthy oxygenated blood on a regular basis, you create a smooth running system–more pathways.

Our bodies are BUILT TO MOVE and when they don’t, they get  dry and stiff and uninspired because there is no good stuff rushing through them!

Without the activities that increase the oxygen, we feel stiff, achey, irritable, and less than youthful.  In the same way, the synovial fluid in our joints needs to be stimulated to stay lubricated and flexible.

Currently my mom is in a nursing home, getting some therapy to get her body moving again. Several months ago when her back and knees hurt too much, she just started lying in her bed all day. She could only sit for 10 minutes at a time. Her back hurt just to sit and her legs hurt along with it.

After assessing her current condition, she is now being told she has the muscle tone of a newborn baby!

She has a long way to go to get to feeling good again.

Let this example urge you forth into your life with a desire to move your body.

Keep it moving and enjoy it moving and it will continue to serve you as long as you live and love it fully!

We need to use our bodies in a way that challenges them.  When we just walk through life with no vigorous movement, our bodies feel the lack of life and vitality. Your body deserves to move.

Simply, oxygen is life and a lack of it is a gasping for breath!

Oh–and the good news is my foot has healed completely and I am back to moving my body with vigor!

Enjoy your body, use it every way you can–don’t be afraid of it or what other people think about it, it is the greatest instrument you will ever own!

Yoga–ya gotta begin to win

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I’ve been meeting many people who really want to develop a yoga practice.  Their first couple of experiences, though, have been challenging.

When I hear this, I always ask them, “how bad do you want to practice yoga, what are you willing to go through, are you up for being annoyed, how about feeling frustrated?”

  In yoga, like many things in life, you have to be willing to be  “not so good” for awhile before you can be good.

I was assuring a potential new student today that the journey to having her very own yoga practice would not be easy.  She was describing one of her first classes–feeling tight,  awkward, annoyed and not doing the poses correctly.  “Get used to feeling that way for at least a little while”, I said.

Yoga, if you really want it, will be a journey.  The journey will be worth the gold but you will pay with many different emotions and many of them are not pleasant.

For me, I can still vividly recall the first class I went to–it was an Ashtanga Mysore class.  The class was advertised as “all levels welcome” (beginners/intermediate/advanced).

It was one of those rare 90 degree days in Santa Monica and I was sweating profusely.

I didn’t know any of the postures, it was literally my first class.  There wasn’t a teacher in front of the room leading the class because in that style of Ashtanga, the teacher walks around assisting each person in “their own” individual practices.  I had no practice so my eyes were wandering around looking to see what to do next.

What I saw was so intimidating…standing splits, legs around their heads, arms and legs wrapping around like pretzels, etc.  It was amazing.  I was definitely not in the right place!

It was one of the most frustrating experiences to look around the room at advanced practitioners and be so elementary as to not know any of the poses.  I made it through the 2 hour class and had a big decision to make.

Would I quit or would I start at the level 1 classes and learn everything I could?

I am so thankful that I chose to start from the beginning and progress.  I took my time, I learned the poses and I am still learning new poses 17 years later.

I can remember those beginning days of yoga, just getting to the class was a big deal.

I would get into the room before the class even started and feel thrilled that I was there.  At least I was there, now I just needed to endure all the growing pains it took to learn and develop as a practitioner.

Some of my male friends joke about wanting to take yoga simply to be in a class full of women– I always laugh silently to myself because I know it will take so much more than that to keep on getting themselves in that classroom.

Yoga is a path that will look different to each and every person, but one thing is identical for all–yoga is an inside job.  There will be a bit of a struggle inside while your body struggles with the outside poses.

You will feel so many different emotions–anxiety, frustration, and humiliation are a few of them. 

Then, your ego will find ways to celebrate how great you are.  Those don’t feel as bad, but still, that’s not part of the yogi’s path.  Your ego will be struggling every step of the way, whether it is chatter that makes you feel good or chatter that makes you feel bad.

Yoga, the best of it, is about letting your ego go and just being present with your breath.

Practicing yoga is all yours.  There will be times that you feel proud and accomplished and there will be times you feel deflated and disillusioned.  You will seriously consider quitting, but if you are committed, you will endure.

When you get to the other side of the uneasiness, you will have something so worthy and tangible.  You can depend on it like when you first learned how to ride a bike.  You can always hop on the bike and ride–the same is true with yoga.

You can take your yoga practice with you anywhere you go and it will always serve you.

I urge and encourage you–if you are wanting to develop a physical practice that will serve your mind and body year after year, practice yoga and keep practicing.  Don’t let your ego convince you to quit.

Yoga has been a miracle for many people and helped them heal physical ailments that seemed otherwise incurable.

I don’t have any miraculous stories, but it did make my knees stronger and I became a runner.  Yoga took me further and further away from the sometimes obsessive/compulsive chatter in my head and into the present moment.  I learned to let go and go with the flow.

I learned to just breath and know that I could get through anything.  Come to think of it, those are miraculous!

Oh what I have overcome.  As Michael Beckwith said this morning, “hear what my words cannot convey”.

The words I choose cannot convey the prize that awaits you.

Only you can find it within yourself to step into the unknown and cultivate a practice that will continue to unfold.  Take the first step and you just may find your prize!

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