Your Body Is a Work of Art

                      

Yesterday during a grueling workout with my personal fitness coach, Mark of Physicalsculpting@wordpress.com, he said something very interesting that caught my attention. He said, “The body is a work of art”. So is taking care of your body and to do that you need to create a healthy, exercise driven, spiritually balanced life.

That got me to thinking about our bodies and how much time we all spend critiquing our bodies, good and bad. Ultimately, we can’t really change our faces, (although I guess with the advent of botox there is some room for creativity), but we can alter the shape and tone of our bodies through consistent and diverse workouts.

Like creating a great work of art, our bodies need conditioning, commitment and diligence to achieve the best body of art, (pun intended), that we can. Like our creative processes it is the daily grind when no one is looking where the small victories lie. We persevere and are persistent in creating our craft and our bodies are no exception.

So thanks to Mark for reminding me and inspiring me to look at my body as a work of art, in motion and frankly, in transition.  When Mark is training me he is creating my routines and I am working in harmony with him to create my best body for health, aesthetics, and longevity. In the world of creativity, this too is art.

The Creative Process

I discovered that being disconnected from my heart and soul also meant I was disconnected from my ability to create, respect or even appreciate art. I had lost my way and I had buried my head in the sand and fear became the voice that drowned out my brave creative spirit.

The catalyst that jolted me from my self-imposed numbness was my father’s illness and subsequent death a couple of years ago. During a rare moment of total honesty he told me, “Fear will destroy you inside and out. It will cause your life to shrink until you are barely existing or living at all.”

I couldn’t say exactly what I was afraid of but I did know that I couldn’t be creative or even happy when I was so afraid to be me. I thought of my sons who lived life fearlessly and without censoring or judging each experience as a success or a failure. They didn’t ponder creativity or where it came from they just leapt into life trying first one thing then another, sometimes just to have the experience and then letting it go. How could I be more like them, fearless?

It is funny to discover that behind the wall of fear was my creative self waiting to be reborn and all I had to do was stop, listen and step out on faith. The thing I knew I needed to do was tap back into the me who loves art, music, writing, dancing, photography, etc. in other words I needed to begin creating not only art but the life I wanted to live, free of fear.  To create art of any sort I would need to rediscover the joy and the process of getting lost in creating art.

Creativity is a process, not a destination. Having your name in lights or people applauding your brilliance is the end result of your creative process; it’s letting go of fear and other people’s expectations that allow us to create our art, to be brave, fearless and bold. No one teaches us about the process, the blood, sweat and tears that are required to tap into your heart and create something once invisible and make it visible for others to see.  

No one creates a masterpiece the first time out of the block. There are drafts and ideas that don’t come to fruition but the process of discovering your voice and your niche drive you again and again to create. It is in the sacred place of process, creation, and faith that you begin to hear your own voice again and you find out who you really are and what moves you.

 I need the creative process to nurture my soul and I need to let go of the end product and any judgments that aren’t mine. People will like it or not, but I will still create because that feeds my soul. I continue to challenge myself to live a fear-free life and leaping and having the net appear has restored my faith.

Getting Fit

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Earlier I spoke about being “jarred back to life” and how I had become overweight and unhealthy and that was just what was visible from the outside. I fear it was a bit darker on the inside so I started to run, physically and metaphorically to get in shape. I hadn’t really done any really taxing workouts in many years, though I did do Jazzercise in Acton for a few years, I wasn’t pushing myself hard enough.

When winter came last year I needed to start running inside so I joined a gym and got on the treadmill and began to run two or so miles a day and that was really good. I was impressed  and kept my promise to myself  to workout for a whole year, no excuses and to focus on getting healthy first and not a particular size or number.

I knew I needed to expand my repertoire as I turned my focus to toning and shaping, Mark, the personal trainer at the gym, offered to help me reshape my body in  three months, with his fitness philosophy as he tried to build his own Physical Sculpting personal fitness business. I know very little about personal trainers, still I agreed and it was the best decision I’ve made in a while.

If left to my own devices when working out, I would have stopped pushing myself each day. Mark focused first on what I could do but soon he was encouraging me to dig deep down and challenge myself just a tiny bit more each workout. He devised an ever-changing routine that includes cardio, weights, and abdomen work and I never have to do anything other than show up and put in the time. He creates, and adapts the workouts to my specific needs and abilities, always adding more weights or more reps, but pushing me farther than I would have gone on my own. I saw changes in my body right away and in half the time I was spending working out solo.

Mark’s passion about personal fitness changed how I approached working out and helped me discard bad habits that I had picked up about fitness and especially about weight training. He has indeed helped me reshape my body and I swear by his workouts, passion and creativity.

His approach is about a life style change of drinking lots of water, organic eating to nurture and sustain your body since the workouts he devises require that eating properly and having small protein based meals will infuse the body with the necessary strength and calories to workout hard. It’s boot camp for the mind and the body.

I’ve learned a lot about health, fitness, and weight training from Mark, and the many misconceptions that I had about personal trainers, weight lifting bulking you up, and his  intense thirty minute workouts and nutrition. It is his passion, his challenges, his ability to know what I can do before I do, and his commitment to good health that has literally changed my life for the better.

I invite you to tune in as I showcase a few of Mark’s signature moves and the dos and don’t of weight lifting and working out, in the coming weeks.