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Friday, November 30, 2012

Making time to train on busy work days.

In our fast paced life's we are daily struggling for the want for more time to be able to do things. In all this rat race we often get very involved in our work and daily chores that we end up having very little or at times no time for doing what we like to do. This struggle for personal time gets more of a losing battle especially for those with jobs in the Corporate Sector. I have come across so many students especially working in the IT sector who are over burdened with work and having virtually no time to even think about living. It is like the corporates are converting them into zombies. So much work not only increases their stress levels but am sure over a period of time will also reduce their productivity at work. A senior and wise student of Jukaado calls all IT sector corporate jobs as " Bonded Labour" and seeing the state of many of my students I agree with him. Some of them try their best to get some time out for their lives but their faces show they are exhausted mentally. 

After a long day at work to come home and train may seem out of the question when the body just wants to fall asleep. However a workout will re - energize a stressed out and exhausted mind and body. Finding time to fit in a good workout should not be an option but mandatory just like we need to breathe or drink water. Initially it could be very difficult to do so but over a period of time the benefits of workout will show positive signs on the health of body and mind. If working out after work is not possible then wake up an hour early and go for a run or do any workout you desire to. 

Man started working to meet his daily needs of food, clothing and shelter. However the way things are today man works to reach somewhere hoping to achieve certain materialistic goals which are not necessarily set by them but by the people and society around them. In the end affecting ones FREE WILL.

The last few days have been very busy for me too. With the year coming to an end there is always an increase in personal training clients who wish to get in shape before 31st Dec. Then there are the sports days at schools which need a demonstration in martial arts. All this has made it difficult to find time in the morning to train though I wake up by 3 - 3:30am. However I have been trying to fit in a workout when ever I get some time. 

Today the morning workout was not possible had few hours free in the evening so I did a good workout and it always feels awesome after a really good ( exhausting ) workout.

Today's Workout -   

Did some sets of Okinawan weight training after completing every set I ran down 5 floors and up 5 floors then started the next set of Okinawan weight training. Did 10 such sets and then went for a 1 hour jog with my 10kg sand bag.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Running Wild Barefoot - a review after 2 months of wearing five finger shoes.

It has been a bit over 2 months since I bought my adidas adipure (five finger / toe) shoes. I decided to buy a new pair of shoes after the Half Marathon. Was online one day when I came across a picture of the five finger shoes. They looked unique and comfortable. Researched about them and their benefits on many blogs and websites. Since I did not find any negative reviews I decided to get a pair and try them out. 

The five finger shoes are the best shoes I have ever worn and trained in. There are many websites, blogs and videos online on how to go about allowing a slow transition from cushioned sneakers to barefoot five fingers. I guess it is important to pay attention to them especially if you are not use to training barefoot. In my case I have been training in martial arts barefoot on all sorts of surfaces from mud to gravel, from tiled to asphalt. Have even run on all sorts of surfaces so may be the muscles in my feet and toes were already conditioned and ready for the five finger shoes. For those who have not been training barefoot they should start slowly. I agree getting new shoes creates an excitement to wear them and go for a test run in them immediately. In the case of five fingers go slow. Start with may be walking barefoot at home, after a few days start wearing the five fingers at home and when you go out for small errands. After a few days you could try a jog of about 2 - 3 kms in them. Do not jog long distances in them in the beginning. Increase the jog distance by a few kms every 4 -5 days till you feel totally comfortable without any pains. The slow transition period is required as we have all been walking or running the wrong way , the way our body mechanics were not meant to be used. We have been harming our own bodies and joints walking / running the wrong way. Even I was a believer of always jogging heel to toe but after reading about the five fingers and now having experienced them for 2 months I have changed my views. Our body is meant to move from toe to heel and not heel to toe. If you do not accept what I say just walk around the house or at a park barefoot for 1 hour plus and you will notice that after the initial 15 - 20 minutes body instinct will kick in and you will start walking toe to heel. This is the way we are meant to walk. This is how our bodies are designed. When we jog heel to toe our heels strike the ground hard. The cushioning of the sneakers softens the impact but over a period of time it will start having its impact on the joints like the knees, ankles and surprisingly even the back. I was skeptical myself as to how a cushioned sneaker can harm the back or how the five fingers can improve posture and health of the spine. There is an evident change in my posture now, moreover after a lot of intense training sessions I would sometimes feel a stiffness or strain like feeling in the lower back but that seems to be history now. It feels like a miracle.

Initially they may feel odd to wear and move around in public as you are sure to get a lot of curious eyes staring at the five finger / toe shoes. But the comfort and feel that the shoes provide will make you never want to remove them. I did not require a slow transition period as my body is use to barefoot running / training. I just switched my old sneakers for the five fingers and continued with the same training routine. There was an evident improvement in my body movement, stride and even pace at which I was running in the five fingers. 

There is something that I have not read online and this is my personal opinion based on logic and not science. Once you start the transitioning process I feel one should reduce or stop wearing their well cushioned sneakers. The logic being the five fingers and the sneakers both have different stride patterns as in one propagates toe to heel and the other heel to toe. So when you continue wearing your sneakers while transitioning or even after you have completed the transition to five fingers, you will be causing a constant confusion for the feet and the nervous system with regards on how to walk /run. In view of this logical understanding I recommend reducing or better completely stop wearing sneakers

Today I recommend barefoot running and wearing the five finger shoes to all my students, personal training clients and everyone I know. It is an investment in your health. I seriously recommend that all should move to the five finger shoes. Do not do it because I say so. Look it up online, read about it then decide. The day you do buy and start wearing your five fingers you may never ever buy a normal sneaker ever.  

I ran my 1st timed 10 km run last Sunday in my five fingers and it felt great. Like am an animal on the prowl (LOL).  Five finger's bring out the animal in you. 

I have ordered my second pair of five fingers this time from the company that designed these shoes - Vibram. Have ordered the Vibram KSO's which is a multi purpose five finger shoe. A word of Caution - Vibram does not ship to India at the moment and there are many websites selling fake Vibram's online which look just like the original but are not of the same quality. Only buy from the shops or websites listed on the official Vibram website under the section "store locator".

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Vibram-Five-Fingers-For-India/129365287217522?ref=hl

also check the Vibram website -  www.vibramfivefingers.com

Today's Workout -

Today I decided to only run and run wild with my five fingers. Did get up late in the morning but did go for a wonderful 2.5 hour jog in the cantonment area in the evening. It was just awesome ran on asphalt, mud trails and even a bit of stony incline. 


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Hyderabad 10 Km Run.

Today was the Hyderabad 10 km run and how could Jukaadoka's not be there. Today 5 Jukaadoka's including myself ran the 10 km run. 

As usual I get excited knowing that a good workout lies ahead. This excitement makes it difficult to sleep the night before such run's or races or even before the Jukaado Camp's. Even after attending more than 50 plus martial art camps and conducting over 15 Jukaado Camps even today I get very excited with the 5 days of killer training that lies ahead at the camp. When I say killer training I actually mean it. The Jukaado Camp will test a person in all aspects possible. Words can not explain the intensity of the camp. An experience of the Jukaado Camp is truly a life changing experience. Some prefer it as a once in a life time experience others get addicted to the fun at Camp and just keep coming back again and again.  

Coming back to the 10 km run. I had just taken a small nap of 30 minutes as excitement made sleep elude me a night before the run. Team Jukaado participating in the run assembled at the meeting point and headed to the holding area for the run. It was well organized may be it was because Procam International - an international organization was organizing the run. 

The 10 km run started at 6:50 am and after the initial pushing and jostling the crowd was spread out. It was nice to see so many running today however most of the runners were 30 years plus. We need to inculcate fitness training and a healthy lifestyle to the younger generation. That is the best way to safe guard one's health. A student of Jukaado calls fitness training - " The best and cheapest form of Health Insurance "

I have been jogging for an hour 5 days a week. So the 10 km run was not exhausting for me. Have not received the official timing data of my 10 km run but I have completed the 10 km run between 52 -54 minutes. 
  
                                                 After Completing the 10 km run. 

 
  
                                               Our student Spartan after finishing the 10 km run.


                               The complete Team Jukaado that took part today at the 10 km run.
   from right to left - Rohel Dham ( in track pants ), Kuro Oni aka Shiv ( in grey shorts ), Siddharth Dujari  
   (back row with glasses ) , Spartan aka Prateek Kanodia ( too tall so had to kneel down ) and myself.

Though the 10 km run was well organized in most aspects but there is one aspect which I hope they work on when they organize it next year. The roads were closed for vehicles because of the run. It would be nice if the run organizers would arrange for buses to ferry people from the place the roads are closed to the starting point of the run. In the absence of this facility we had to walk about 5 -6 km after the run to reach our bikes. For Jukaadoka's it is not a matter of concern however we should consider that even people of Veteran and Senior Veteran Category take part and making them walk so much after a run is not right according to me.


           We found this multi coloured moth with very aero dynamic wings near the finishing area.
                                                     Did the moth run ( rather fly ) too ?     
     
On the whole it was a fun filled and wonderful experience. A Sunday well spent I should say. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Playing With Ice. - Ice Makiwara.

Saturday's I do not go for the morning jog and workout to get the much needed rest for the body. However being regular with punching the Makiwara ( which is very hard ) it was just on my mind and was missing the workout with it. 

Was reading a book and suddenly from no where an idea came to me. I went to the kitchen got out an old vessel with a flat base filled it with water up to about 4 - 5 inches and kept it in the freezer. After 30 minutes it was ice but still it had small pockets of water below so kept it in again. After about 1.5 hours in the freezer the water in the vessel was solid and hard ice. 


                                                 Solid  ice in a vessel with salt. 

Brought the ice out sprinkled some salt on it to slow down it's melting process. Placed the vessel on a wooden stool and started to punch it. Initially the fist was slipping as it was a new surface to strike on for me. A few punches later the rhythm set in and I was enjoying striking the hard ice. Ice being very cold and striking it repeatedly made my knuckles red. 

The ice began to crack with the repeated punches that kept landing on it. The salt was really preventing the melting process effectively. 

                                                             Cracks on the ice.

Do not try this unless you have been training in martial arts and have been practicing body conditioning. Always start with a softer object and slowly advance to harder objects. Directly striking hard ice with any prior training could cause a bone to crack. Always consult a qualified instructor before starting any workout. 

Now I have a new makiwara which I can prepare at any time to strike. May be next time will mix the salt in the water it self and then freeze it. 

                                           Knuckles after 5 minutes of punching ice.

I continued punching for about 12minutes or so then the ice just developed lots of cracks and broke. Let it melt a bit and kept it in the freezer again for another round once it hardens.

Today's Workout -  

Besides the 3 sets of  striking the ice for about 12 minutes each set I also did 8 sets today. Tomorrow is the 10km run and am not sure if I will be able to do any sets tomorrow. In 4 days I have completed 76 sets where each set has 570 repetitions. Was aiming for some where between 80 - 100 sets however am happy with 76 sets too. When you have to work then the time one has for training is reduced. Considering the busy days I have 76 sets in 4 days is good. 
                 

Friday, November 23, 2012

An Idea Can Change Your Life!!!!!!!!!!!



It all started when Sravan our student was returning back to his city. Before we bid adieu he suggested that I should look up Spartan Race online. A very dangerous suggestion to a crazy person it was. Saw all the videos on Spartan Race and read as much as I could about the race. I was hooked to obstacle racing. 

At Jukaado we train very hard and try to challenge our body and mind all the time. However the lure of running long distances, over hills with sand bags , through mud and all this while crossing obstacles was difficult to stay away from.
 

 



This brought out the need to train with a different approach. It was not only me but many at Jukaado were excited for the new training challenge. Little did they know that I would trouble them so much. However they are a very tough lot, every time they achieve a level I keep a new target ready for them. Sometimes I feel they are more crazier than me, for I already know the workout in store but they just come to train without knowing what is in store for them.  Am blessed with amazing students who are not only ready to train hard but also ready to meet my levels of insanity. 

We started running longer distances with sand bags followed by burpees, lifting and throwing rocks, running up hills, and lots more. Initially I had started running with a 5kg sand bag on the shoulder now am very comfortable running with a 10kg sand bag. 

The only thing that is difficult to conquer is FEAR, everything else is a walk in the park.

Just 15 days after being introduced to Spartan race 2 students of Jukaado - Shiv and Prateek and myself took part in the Hyderabad Heritage Half Marathon. We completed it with a pretty decent time of  2hours 18 minutes. I feel it was a good timing because it was our first half marathon and moreover we had less than a week to prepare for it too. 

Little did I know that this was just the beginning of our tryst with racing. Next month there were 8 Jukaadoka's including myself taking part in a Triathlon. Being new to the racing circuit we got information about the Triathlon just 10 days before the race leaving us with not much time to prepare again. Now just 3 months from the day we were introduced to Spartan Race 5 Jukaadoka's including myself are set to run the 10km race coming up this Sunday. It has been 3 months since we were introduced to Spartan Race and we have taken part and completed 3 races.

An idea can truly change your life. At Jukaado we push the levels of our fitness and endurance way too high. We train to endure and sustain grueling training sessions of between 5 - 8 hours without food or water. May be it was this kind of intense training that has provided us with the ability to complete all these races with not much training time in hand. We now have a student dedicated to looking after Team Jukaado's registrations and to keep a track of upcoming races. He has been very helpful in registering all of us and suggesting on the upcoming races. 

This is what I believe is an wholistic approach to fitness. Hardcore martial artists running and competing with people who train to be runners or triathletes. It is not a sight seen often am sure.


Today's Workout - 

Since am on my challenge to complete between 80 - 100 sets within 5days. I followed the set workout today too. Each set has a total of 570 repetitions of various exercises. Today was able to complete 15 such sets. Did not get enough time to complete them in one go so had to break them up in 2 training sessions. 
8 + 7 = 15 sets.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

My Training Partner Returns.

I train on my own as well but nothing beats having a fit training partner by your side. Since the last 4 years Swamibabu a student of Jukaado since 2003 has accompanied me during my morning training workout. He feels a change in his fitness levels by adding the morning workout to his routine and tries his best to be regular in the morning in-spite of his very busy work schedule. Last 2 weeks he could not make it in the morning and when he entered the park today morning I was happy to see my partner back.

A training partner helps in many ways. The basic ways would be to keep the motivation going, make training a bit more competitive, does not make you realize how much time you have trained and lots more. Even if you train daily and are very fit there will be days when your body or mind does not wish to push your self to train or you are just feeling lazy. When you have a training partner you will try your best to keep up with the pace of his workout even if you are feeling lazy on that day. In my case sometimes I just wish to sleep in for some more time rather than run around the park at 5am. However knowing that someone will be waiting to train with you at the park ensures that I get out of bed and put on my running shoes.

Try it out find a training partner who is of your same fitness level and have the same interests in workout. Over a period of time both of you will improve your fitness levels while having fun. Training with a partner will make the intensity of the workout seem lesser and more fun.  


Today's workout -
1 hour jog and then had to rush to school. Had 2 personal training clients today. Jogged for 45 minutes with one of them around KBR Park. That was truly fun! Am sure some of my new personal training clients might be wondering if am there to train them or kill them and have fun doing that. When they start getting results without any injury or bad effects on their health they begin to understand my approach.

Did 12 sets of 570 repetitions each. Could not do them at a stretch as had work. So did them in what ever breaks I had in between. The break up was as follows  - 4 sets + 3 sets + 5sets = 12 sets

Monday, November 19, 2012

Addicted to Adrenaline.

Often I visualize that a company will come forward to sponsor some of my students and myself so that we can devote our full time to training. Even think of contacting some TV channels to start a show of Jukaadoka's training all over the world in different martial arts and other forms of very high intensity training. 

Training over a period of many years I feel people get addicted to the adrenaline and constantly crave for it. It is this craving I feel that makes people really miss their workout and strive to train for longer hours. There is a constant effort to find ways and balance our life's in such a way that we get our desired hours of training. I am proud to say am addicted to adrenaline. I think it is the healthiest form of addiction one can have.

Today's Workout - 

1 hour jog with 10kg sand bag followed by some stone throwing, 200 push ups and 200 squats and body conditioning for 30 minutes.

Had to go meet a new personal training client. It is always nice to get a new client who is serious about training but deep down the first thought that comes to me is - My training time will reduce damm it!!! 
( LOL) 

Am planning to do something more insane this week. Last week I challenged myself to 10 sets where each set had 10 different exercises and total counts in 1 set = 570 counts. So I completed 5700 repetitions in a day.  Now this week My target is to complete between 80 - 100 of those sets in just a week. It is not possible for me to devote 5.5 hours to complete 10 sets like the other day so it will truly be a challenge to squeeze in as many sets as I can daily to finish 100 sets within just 7 days.

Today I could complete only 5 sets as I had lots of work today. Lets see how many sets I complete by next Sunday. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Fitness - A way of life based on discipline, dedication and commitment

We all live a life that we have. It does not matter what we have or not, WHAT MATTERS IS HOW WE DECIDE TO LIVE IT.

Fitness is truly a way of life. Most people will wonder how can it be a way of life. It is just something I train at the gym for daily or jog or cycle or train in martial arts for. Well then I hope my view on why fitness is a way of life helps open your eyes and make strong your resolve to live this way of life forever.

The 3 most important things needed to keep us on track with any workout or sport are Discipline, Dedication and Commitment. Without these 3 there is a very good chance one will falter and soon wind up his / her workout routine. All the effort they have put in will just be a waste of time and the benefits they had achieved will start  diminishing. However when we keep up with these 3 character traits we will continue to workout and train in a very disciplined, dedicated and committed manner for years to come. Have seen many people who are today in their 70's and have been training all their lives. Even today they live the life of fitness training daily for hours together.

Most think when we start to train to get fit the only achievement is may be some weight loss or a well chiseled body or a natural form of health insurance. Well then you are wrong. If you have been training regularly and seriously for even over a period of 6 months then just look back at your life before you started training and look at it today. There is bound to be a huge difference. When one starts being disciplined, dedicated and committed to living the life of fitness it not only alters them physically but begins to change their heart, mind and way they live too.

It will start slowly like a spider who starts with making a web in a small area and slowly making the web bigger and bigger increasing the area it covers. When we start training we fix a particular time to train. Then it moves to eating healthy and nutritious. Slowly the discipline will bring a change in even those who love to sleep till the sun is high up and shinning bright. Yes given an option I would love to sleep till late too. However thanks to my disciplined lifestyle no matter what I do wake up by 3am daily to meditate and then go for my morning workout. Even on the days I have decided to give the body rest from the morning workout. I will wake up even without the alarm, then it is my decision to get out of bed or take the day of from workout. This happens because my body is set to live by a way of life called FITNESS. Over a period of time the same character traits that you depend on in training will benefit and enrich your life. Now lets see few examples - the discipline in training may affect your discipline with regards to work or the will power that makes you push yourself to train for 5 minutes more when you are totally exhausted will make you more persistent to get some work done which is given to you by your manager or to find a solution or resolve any issue. I can give numerous examples of how gradually fitness will change your complete life. Instead of me giving examples it will be much better to try and live this life for few months and see the changes in your own self.

There will always be excuses. EXCUSES ARE OUR BODIES EFFORT TO RESIST OR HALT CHANGE. I am very old now, this is a more suitable workout for kids, too much running is not meant for me as my family has a history of arthritis, have 2 kids to look after and the list can go on and on. It is our responsibility to find a way out to put all the excuses to rest. Adapting to our surroundings or situations is a very strong Human trait embedded in us right from the stone age. So use it do not let it just sit and rust.

As the well known quote goes " TO BRING CHANGE WE MUST CHANGE FIRST" So are we all ready to strengthen our resolve to change and accept this challenge for the benefit of our own self.


While we are on this topic of Fitness I would like to express my personal opinion on a wholistic approach to fitness. Some only run or cycle long distance, some lift only weights, some train only in a particular style of martial art or play only a specific sport. That is required for professional athletes or sports men who compete professionally. However for the others it is my opinion that the best approach is to try all sorts of workouts.  For example do long runs as well as lift moderate weights as well as play sports as well train in martial arts or yoga etc. By restricting yourself to only one kind of training routine the body never gets a chance to achieve its full potential. In fact in the last 8 -10 years even professional athletes, sportsmen and martial artists have started training in numerous forms of training routines to get better results at the very high competitive levels they need to perform at.  I have always been open to any new training routine or martial art form. There is so much to learn all that is needed is a student who is ready to learn.

If even 1 person reads this and tries to live the way of life called Fitness then I will be happy to have brought some positive change in a fellow human being.


Today's Workout -

Today being a Sunday many sleepy heads avoided coming for our hill run session. Not that Prateek, Shiv and myself did not desire to sleep cozy on this very cold morning. It was very cold and yet I could see the resolve in the 2 students who came for the jog. They did come wearing their jackets though but soon I shall try to strengthen their resistance and make them ready to jog in this really chilly weather wearing only a thin t-shirt and shorts. The best part of jogging in cold weather is once you start sweating and the fire within rises the weather no longer is cold but pleasant. After the 1 hour hill jog and our ritual breakfast we all headed home. Did put in a workout of 1.5 hour in the evening consisting of some conditioning, Okinawan weight training and some techniques.




Friday, November 16, 2012

Jukaado Insane Workout Challenge







I would like to mention and make it clear that this is not a training video which anyone can watch and try to follow. 
DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME AT YOUR GYM OR ANYWHERE.

If you try this workout when your body is not prepared for such an intense workout and if you do succumb to any form of injury or health related issues www.jukaado.com , www.TrainTillYouDrop.jukaado.com  and Farzaan Merchant can not be held responsible. You are attempting this workout at your own risk. Always consult a doctor and a certified and experienced trainer before attempting any form of workout.

This is a very intensive workout that I have completed and if you are not very fit or you do not train at a very high intensity then trying this workout could cause injuries. Have dedicated a lot of years to be able to reach this level. Those who are not very fit can start slowly with half the repetitions per set or may be even lesser and slowly build their fitness levels. With regular training and discipline it is possible to surpass even this challenge and complete a challenge that has double the repetitions this one has.

The morning jog and workout is something am use to doing daily so it was not troublesome. However it's purpose was to tire me so that the next session of this challenge workout gets more difficult.  Ate a light and nutritious breakfast keeping the humongous workout ahead of me in mind. Starting the sets was easy it was keeping up that was a pain. The first few sets felt like a walk in the park. When I was on the 4th set the strains started to come to the surface. Have recorded the 5th set in the video. Every repetition itself began to feel like a whole set. The arms were aching, the abdomen muscles started feeling the strain after the 6th set, the legs too started feeling the strain after the 6th set. Continuing after the 6th set seemed impossible. Just kept on shouting Kiai!!! and coaxing myself to move ahead. Completed the 8th set and had almost decided to give up. Took a break of 10minutes drank some Getorade. Suddenly out of no where I decided to push myself and just do the 9th set. Once I started the 9th set there was no looking back finished the 10th set too. The joy and energy that surged through the body on completing the 10 sets is unexplainable.  

COMPLETING 10 SETS MEANS HAVING DONE 5,700 REPETITIONS TOTALLY OF ALL EXERCISES. NOW THAT IS A RECORD FOR EVEN A CRAZY MARTIAL ARTIST AS MYSELF. 

Reached class by 5:30pm and completed 30 minutes of skipping. Skipping is something again which am use to doing daily however after the intense session during the day I could feel the strain on the legs. Luckily the calfs were not strained by the workout during the day, so it was manageable. I guess today I have stretched myself to a completely new level and am very happy with that.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Going with the FLOW

Life is like a river, the way to live life is to accept what it brings and flow with the river.

 Most of our troubles, pains, sorrow and anguish comes from our not accepting the changes life brings and drops in our lap. Logically speaking no one can change what has been done however we can react to the situation and prevent any further damage. By sitting in a corner it won't go away. Acceptance is the key to our happiness.

In my personal opinion and my experiences when ever I have tried to prevent change or stop the process of change it only brings more agony and troubles. The best option is to release any inhibitions and invite the change with open arms. This may scare the CHANGE  a bit too ( LOL ). Life is to short to dwell in the past for doing so our present is lost to memories of what has already elapsed. Making us just collect more memories of what we do not desire. Look ahead but not too far just what is visible in front of you. I guess that is called - LIVING IN THE PRESENT. 

Started my day with a wonderful 1.5 hour jog with my 10kg sand bag in the Cantonment area. The pace was a bit slow due to the sand bag. The cold weather is ideal to train in. At the point where I decided to turn back I did 50 Burpees. After doing each Burpees I lifted the 10kg sand bag above my head like a shoulder press then kept it down and did the next Burpees and so on. This was really fun and got quite a lot of curious onlookers. Some were Army Jawans ( soldiers) others were civilians. From their faces both seemed to have  the same thought in their mind - Is this person mad? Why would someone do something like this? Finally 1 jawan ( soldier) came forward and asked if he could check the sand bag after lifting it he was shocked at its weight. However he asked if he could join me and we both completed the remaining Burpees together. 

Today being the Hindu festival of Diwali I decided to go with the flow and just relaxed ate yummy food and loads of sweets. I agree that it is tradition to burst crackers on this day. I myself use to burst loads of them in my school days. However nowadays I feel that the quantity of crackers that each family bursts is not required. As I type this post the complete neighborhood is filled with nonstop blasting of firecracker bombs. So much sound and air pollution and tomorrow all the streets will be littered with paper from these crackers. Diwali is the festival of lights, what we should do is light diya's, take part in pooja's, pray for a good year ahead for all and then burst a few colourful firecrackers not the super noisy and loud bombs. Instead of spending so much money on the firecrackers we could all spend lesser on them and use the remaining money to bring joy in the life of the underprivileged. Anyway this is just my view and am not judging or being judgmental towards those who burst loads and loads of crackers.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Meditation and Introspection

I do meditate daily and it is a wonderful habit to inculcate for all irrespective of age. Over the years I have remained very disciplined with my training as well as my meditation. Martial arts training if followed properly and authentically, does train the body, mind and spirit in the true sense. It brings you closer to spirituality and makes you grow in to better human beings. 

Recently I had an experience or a situation that just came up leaving me with no option than to react to it. I tried my best to stay calm and control the situation. Though the situation was well controlled and diffused by me finally without any serious harm coming to anyone from it, the fact that I had to do something which I as a person do not advocate or support was troubling me internally. I may be hard and tough outside but within am as human as a human being should be. I spoke to few people that I can relate to about what was troubling me within. It helped to some extent but it was still there at the back of my mind. 

Being troubled within is a serious matter. Some Zen masters believe if we do not resolve the troubles within by either accepting them or facing them then the spirit begins to lose its light. Finally on Sunday night I decided to introspect into the complete situation and meditate over it. 

Introspection without honesty is like a body without a heart.  

Whenever you are introspecting any situation or any part of your life be honest with yourself and accept if there has been any wrong committed by you. By trying to cover up one can neither introspect nor can they release what has been troubling them. I believe that every night before we go to bed we should spend some time to introspect in to our day and try to see if we have been good human beings and could we have approached any situation differently.

After a wonderful session of meditation and introspection I came to terms with what was troubling me. I guess it was Karma that this happened. The wheel of karma is something which rolls both ways and balances our deeds well. 

There are numerous ways or forms of meditation. One can try a few ways or forms but finally should follow what they are most comfortable with. Initially it is not easy to meditate and makes many new practitioners leave it in frustration. Give it time and be disciplined with it and the results will come about for sure. 

If everyone meditates regularly am sure this world will have most of its issues resolved more amicably and peacefully.