meditation

Nature, Nurture and Nourish

As many of you will have seen, on the 12th May, I’m running a self-care day in the beautiful Leicestershire countryside around Ulverscroft. It’s a day of activities designed to help you relax, recharge and leave feeling cared for and rejuvenated.

One of the things we’ll be doing is creating lunch and snacks throughout the day. These will be healthy, clean and as organic as possible. They’ll also be delicious!

This is important to me because good nutrition is one of the backbones of a whole-body, holistic approach to health and wellbeing.

But what do I mean by ‘Good Nutrition’?

I’s easy to be confused about nutrition with so much conflicting advice being tossed around in every direction. From the news to celebrities to entrepreneurs peddling their diet devices, it’s something everyone seems to have an opinion on.

Well, for me, a healthy diet is a simple concept; keep it fresh, keep it varied and keep it as simple as possible. And that’s it. Eat foods that are close to their natural state and as unprocessed as possible and pack out your meals with mounds of veggies. If in doubt, aim to get as many different colours on your plate as you can.

But how?

One easy way to get more fresh foods on your plate is to grow your own. While this may sound daunting, it can be really simple, even in small spaces. To demonstrate this, I’ve recently invested in a compact, outdoor container to grow things like salad leaves and herbs in.

This couldn’t be easier and, by starting simple like this, you’ll end up with constant access to beautiful, fresh, flavourful salads and veg. You’ll have a thriving hub of sumptuous, health giving foods right at your fingertips.

What’s more, by growing your own you’ll benefit from the absolute maximum nutritional value of the foods you’re eating. As food travels from farmers field to supermarket to plate it loses a huge amount of goodness as well as taste. Just imagine the sweet taste of fruit or veg picked straight from your garden or planter and eaten right away.

Garden your way to a happier life

Have you ever watched as a seed turns to a seedling and then to a beautiful, blossoming shrub or plant? If not, I promise you are missing out on one of life’s most relaxing and exciting spectacles.

You see, because growing your own food isn’t just good for our bodies, it’s great for our minds too. Nurturing something, caring for it, then allowing it to provide for you is a great way to boost your sense of well-being and focus the mind.

I would recommend a small herb or veg garden for anyone.

Finding balance

One thing I’ve learned from working with people in pain is that it really is the little things that often make the most difference. When you step outside your back door and are instantly faced with a bed full of blossoming, nutrient dense, easy to grow and prepare fruit and veg you not only benefit from the goodness and flavour but also feel uplifted by the process of growing them.

Not everyone has the time or space to lead the full Good Life, and not everyone wants to. But leading a healthful life is a process of finding balance and, if you can find a little place to grow just a little garden, I promise you, you’ll reap the rewards in more ways than one.

natural bare face beauty

Bare Faced Beauty

Natural Bare Faced Beauty & Ready for Summer

March is in full swing and, despite the snow storms brought by the Beast from the East, it’s beginning to look a little like spring. The air is filled with the energy of change as we pass into the Goddess Season herself; the season of new life.

All around us, nature is emerging from it’s winter sleep. Flowers bloom, branches blossom and baby animals enter the world. The sun calls us out from our winter hibernations too and, with the longer evenings and lighter mornings, it’s hard not to feel uplifted and reinvigorated.

However, for women, it can be a difficult time of year. It’s around now that lady’s Magazines and TV ads start promoting their summer body exclusives and diet tips. They tell us what swimwear to buy and the best creams and serums to hide any minor imperfections we may be carrying around. It can be a time of great pressure for women everywhere to feel ashamed of the bodies that house them.

Put your Face on

I’m often struck by the conversations I have with clients about make-up routines. “Oh, I don’t ever go out without my face on” or “I’d hate anyone to see me in the morning before I’m wearing any make-up” they say. Why? I always ask. Why does it feel so exposing to be in the world without it?

The truth is, we come face-to-face every day with images which make us feel self-conscious. We suddenly stop seeing aging as a process of growing and developing our wisdom and instead concentrate on how invisible, how undesirable, women begin to feel as they grow older. We begin to use make-up as a mask to disguise us or to hide behind. We forget that every woman and every man shines with their own natural beauty, a beauty so often dampened when we build ourselves a second skin.

I ask women these questions not to cause shame but because I know some of the best ways to achieve a radiant, glowing complexion include exercise, drinking plenty of water, cutting back on caffeine and alcohol, having a good night’s sleep and spending time bathing your skin in sunshine.

I ask clients how often they expose their bare faces to the sunshine, drinking up the vitamin D and allowing their natural skin pigment to become rosy or freckly. We don’t need a lot of sun but we do need some. I ask them about their diet and how much water they drink, whether they buy food in packets or cook from scratch using wholesome ingredients. We talk about the importance of listening to your body, learning how it communicates and how you can best fulfil its needs.

Feel Empowered

We are living in a world of mass communication, but  we have forgotten how to listen to our bodies. We’re living in a world of ease and leisure but the idea of cooking a meal from scratch is alien to many people. However, we’re also living in a world where we have more freedom of choice and better access to information than ever before. We can buy beautiful foods from around the world and have the option to choose a career and life path that bring us joy.

In short, we’re living at a time where it’s easier than ever to be empowered individuals with the capacity to gather knowledge and the flexibility to act on it.

I challenge you to emerge from Winter’s hibernation and blossom into Spring, oozing delicious femininity and natural beauty. Embrace the chance to turn your bare face to the sun, even if it’s just for a few minutes, and absorb the goodness of wholesome, health giving foods.

If you’re excited by this idea and want to join me and others on a nourishing journey, why not come along to our Nurture event on May 12th. You can find out more by following this link: bodylogiq/nurture

Poor posture

What is good posture and why do we want it?

Good posture is all to do with gravity and forces through your body, not just a sexy hip hike.

Let’s start with the spine.

Poor posture

poor alignment

The spine is the lynch pin around which the bones and soft tissue are assembled. It should have natural curves, front to back but not side to side. The spine is a shock absorber and the curves help to reduce any impact and protect the brain. Sideways curves are ok if it’s intentional, such as a side bend, but if muscles have tightened in an unnatural pattern then postural compensation problems set in and the spine no longer acts as an effective shock absorber.

 

balanced posture

balanced posture

 

 

 

The goal is to have even weight distribution throughout the body. Children do this naturally when they learn to stand. Roughly speaking, the ear, shoulder, hip, knee and ankle should be aligned. When this is achieved we have the capacity to stand for longer periods of time as our bodies are in balance.

 

 

 

Centre of Gravity & Body Systems

Centre of Gravity is the point on a body or system, where, if pressure equal to the weight of the object is applied, forces acting on the object will be in equilibrium. The point around which the mass is centred and the location of centre of gravity in an adult human, in the anatomic position, is just in front of the second sacral vertebra. http://medical-dictionary.   This means that a vertical line just in front of your tail bone is where the centre of gravity lies.

 

Integrity is the essence of everything successful.”

R. Buckminster Fuller

tensegrity in balance

tensegrity in balance

The tensegrity model is an example of equally balanced parts. The word ‘tensegrity’ was coined by Buckminster Fuller, it combines ‘tensional integrity’. The elastic bands need to have equal tension throughout the structure, in order to keep the wooden sticks in position.

tensegrity out of balance

tensegrity out of balance

 

Tighten one band, as in the second image, and the whole structural shape changes to accommodate the new tensioned alignment.

 

 

There’s a also combination of bodily systems that work harmoniously together to create perfect posture. Visual, vestibular (hearing), muscular, proprioception (3D spacial awareness) and pressure receptors throughout the body. These all contribute to creating balance, fine tuning balance and maintaining posture.

The next time someone asks you to “sit up” or tells you “not to slouch”, think about the tensegrity model. If there is tension elsewhere in the body it may be impossible to maintain the new position for long periods of time.

Why do we need good posture?

Perfect posture helps us to move more effectively, safely, reduces the risk of injury and keeps us pain free.

What next?

Book in for a quick body check to find out about your posture, 07917 410770.

 

 

What does your posture say about you?

computer-posture

We all do it…. every now and again, we change our posture and slouch. When we feel anxious and want to retreat from the world, when we’re concentrating in front of a computer, or when we slide into that extra-large comfy sofa to relax after a hard day to read the latest magazine or book.

“A good stance and posture reflect a proper state of mind” Morihei Ueshiba

 

But what does your posture really say about you?

 

Here are a few examples of postures we adopt

Always rushing – if your chin is jutting forward you may be rushing around. It’s not always a good idea to be first; sometimes it pays to slow down, regain composure, then move forward. As your head weights approximately 5kg (11lbs) you can imagine the strain that must be exerting on the neck and upper back. The muscles at the front of the neck shorten, keeping the head forward. This causes the head to tilt up and the back of the neck compresses. This may pinch nerves causing headache and neck or shoulder pain.

Texting neck – the latest technology is causing people to slump the upper body forward then lift their head in order to see the phone. The back of the neck compresses. Ouch!

Weighted down – the next part to move maybe the shoulders. If you constantly carry heavy weights on one side, such as a brief case or handback, the shoulder can either drop from over stretching or lift due to excessive use of those particular muscles in an attempt to keep the bag in place. It also used to occur in telephonists when they hold a phone to their ears using the shoulder. This can be surprisingly painful!

Teenage grumpy slump – we now have the teenage ‘slump’. This has been prevalent for an eternity. The shoulders roll forward and the upper back curves. When seated and supported by a chair, this posture isn’t too bad, but when this posture is maintained it puts huge pressure on the neck and back. The chest muscles contract into a shortened position and the back muscles stretch in an attempt to balance the body. This can happen to people sitting at a desk without stabilizing their shoulders in position.  It encourages shallow breathing and reduces the ability to breath effectively.

Tubby tummy & wine waist – excess weight on the stomach can destabilise the hips and lower back. The hips tilt forward which shortens muscles at the top of the hips and lower back. The size of the stomach may prevent correction until the weight is lost and a normal size is restored.

Bow legs – this is created by a nutrition deficiency, playing football and, more recently, wearing trousers below the hips. The buttocks clench and knees flare out in an attempt to keep the trousers up. This fashion statement is likely to create problems in later life.

Killer heels – as gorgeous as they look, they can wreak havoc on posture. Calf muscles tighten, shin muscles become longer, hips are thrown out of alignment and the shape of the foot may adapt to fit the shoe. Some shoes can create bunions by pushing the big toe inwards. This painful condition is usually corrected by an operation.

Do any of these apply to you?

If so, and you’d like to change, book yourself in for a free initial consultation or join me on my next Body Breath & Balance Workshop.

Let’s talk to find out how I may be able to help you.  Call 07917 410770

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