- Breath in for 4 seconds - Focus on having good posture and getting as much air into your lungs as possible.
- Hold that breath for at least 16 seconds - If you can, try to get to 32 seconds.
- Slowly let that breath out through your mouth for 8 seconds - Empty your lungs, pushing out all of the bad air.
- Repeat 3 or 4 times
I carry stress energy around in my stomach and this breathing technique has helped me move that energy around and get it out of my body. It helps me to relax when I am feeling amped up and need to get a good meditation in. There are tons and tons of breathing exercises out there. Choose one that works for you. As for me, I am going to breathe better today.
2. Meditate - For a long time this was a daily part of my morning routine. It helps me alleviate stress and to either be able to empty my mind or think about my circumstances in a detached way. I am also use my meditation time to imagine conversations with my personal board of directors that mostly includes old and wise dead people. I imagine what they might say or do in challenging situations. Meditation has definitely been a factor in keeping myself calm and relaxed throughout stressful days. To improve my practice of meditation, I just need to get back to being consistent at it.
3. Walk More - The daughter and I walked to church yesterday. It took 10 minutes, but was so much better than driving. When I was in Boise the location of our meetings was three miles away from our hotel. Since Michelle and the kids had come with me, they needed the car and didn't want to get up at 7:45 AM to take me to the meetings. I decided to walk the three miles both mornings. I loved it. I was really invigorated when I got to my meetings and my body felt great. I could walk to the store if we just need to pick up a few things, or I can walk when I am making visits to people in the neighborhood (which honestly, doesn't happen very much. See Saturday's blog post).
4. Drink Plenty of Water - I think that I do OK with this. I just don't like having to go pee all the time.
5. Start Counting Calories - I lost control of my eating last week. I realized it last night when I ate two extra rolls with butte and jam and then snuck some cookie dough while my self control wasn't looking. I've worked super hard to tame my gluttony, and I saw myself losing control again. So, I am going to get back on the calorie counting bandwagon for a little while.
6. Eat More Leafy Greens - I read somewhere that we should be eating a pound of leafy green veggies every day. If there is anyone out there who is doing that, let me know. I would love to hear how you do it.
7. Eat Less Sugar - I love, love, love sugar and the raspberry malt at Moon's Diner in Boise was my downfall last week.
8. Stretch - I tried to pretend to kick someone in the face a few days ago. I couldn't get my leg high enough. I could use some flexibility work.
9. Play More Sports - I used to get my exercise by competing in recreational sports. I could use a few more pick-up basketball games.
10. Get Into the Mountains More - We live right by them. Hiking is great exercise. The mountains are a great place to practice breathing and meditation.
I can't put all of these into practice, but for today, at least, I am going to do the top two... oh yeah, and number 5. What is something that you could do today to improve your physical health?