I stumbled on this newsletter I wrote exactly one year ago and it hit me now like it did back then. I thought with the Christmas season here, this would be a good reminder for us all. Enjoy!
I have a habit in our house where, instead of yelling STOP! when our little guys are doing something that could be dangerous, I yell PAUSE! I’m not really sure when it started, but some reason, the word stop seems to flow every-so-gently in one ear and out the other (anyone relate?!) 🙂 but the word pause actually causes them to cease their movement or action. It forces them to take a moment, assess their surroundings (danger: a car is coming!), be present to what is really going on around them, and act accordingly.
“Practicing the pause” has so many implications when it comes to LIFE, particularly a life of good health and fitness.
Pausing during lifting movements allows you to do a mental check to see if your body position and lifting mechanics are optimal. As such, pausing is a great learning tool to master technique. We’ll often prescribe a tempo where there is a slight 2-second or more pause at the bottom, top, or middle of the lift. Used strategically like this, a pause forces you to use more muscle activity, strengthens any weak links in your movement, and reassess your positioning so you’re kept safe and strong.
Our nutrition program emphases the importance of pausing during eating. Eating slooooowly, setting your fork down between bites, taking a moment to (really) taste, to get a feel for what you’re actually sensing. One of our nutrition members once shared how “practicing the pause” when she walked by the jar of chocolates at work helped the afternoon cravings calm, so she could enjoy one when she wanted to, but wasn’t obsessed with them or mindlessly eating them, either. While cravings have deep roots and causes that should be acknowledged, it’s helpful to pause, notice, and name what we’re feeling. Doing so can help us understand the choices we make, take a moment, and, if need be, choose a different path.
Isn’t this quote great? How would our conversations be more empathetic, our homes be more peaceful, and our selves better cared for if we paused before talking/acting/worrying? Take a moment to pause today and redirect your thoughts and actions to one that is less reactionary, more intentional.
How might you practice the pause and increase your mindfulness this week in the gym? In what you choose to eat tomorrow? How about during this whole holiday season?
Cheers to looking up, to being present, to taking a moment.
Jess + Team Valeo
Mobility & Functional Stretching Workshop
We had another fantastic session last week with Meg Frens, MS, AT, ATC of AIRE ATC, LLC identifying patterns of tightness and pain and learning tools to release tension and muscle/fascia dysfunction.
As coaches, we love incorporating these mobility and stability techniques into every exercise session to help you truly look, move, and feel (even) more awesome. Plus, it helps you do actually do them!
Thank you, Meg, for sharing your expertise with the community once again! You rock.
Need a few Gift Ideas?
Peanut Mobility Tool
Meal Prep Containers