Exercising Mindfulness

Yesterday morning I changed my perspective on my workout time. I decided to leave my phone in the car, just as I do when I attend worship. My exercise transformed into a period of mindfulness. I am fully in the moment and alone with my physical body and with God. Breathe in, breathe out. As I bend over to stretch to the floor I am not preoccupied with my phone falling out of my pocket; I am focused on the satisfying extension of my poor rusty muscles. As I bring my arms slowly above my head, I close my eyes briefly and exhale–it feels so good to finally move. I’ve been so out of touch with my physicality that it’s now almost a brand new experience, this reconnect. It’s a holy place of learning now to worship with my human-ness instead of solely with my eternal self. My body is shy and hesitant at this new attention. I am trying to be gently encouraging instead of falling into the easier and more familiar route of self-condemnation and self-loathing. As I go around from machine to machine, as I step on the treadmill, as I grasp a weight in my hand, my practice in being present comes to bear in the moment. It is allowing all worries and outside troubles to fall away as my attention instead focuses on feeling my body move. I do not distract myself or dilute the experience by wearing ear buds and drowning the silence in music. It is enough to simply be here with myself.pexels-photo-221247.jpeg

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