Before beginning a movement program, I find it important to ask why my students want to move their bodies. To me, it’s important to uncover the intention behind their motivation, much like peeling back the curtain to take a peek at the Wizard of Oz.
Once you have discovered your Wizard, your intention, your why behind the why, I invite you to take it one step further.
Add a daily intention to your practice. A daily intention invites you to connect, or disconnect, with how you are feeling and what you are experiencing. Admittedly, I’m a huge advocate for using a movement practice as a means to connect.
Wait…isn’t that yoga then? Perhaps. We’ll save that for another post though. 😉
Is there something wrong with choosing movement as a means of disconnecting? There’s nothing wrong with it, but there may be a more integrative approach to disconnecting. Maybe you’ve just had an argument with your girlfriend and want to lift some heavy stuff in order to avoid feeling the hurt and anger you may be experiencing. Perhaps you’re working a job you despise, are feeling stressed out, and want to tune out that emotional stuff that’s right there in front of you. Maybe you find yourself spending your workout flexing in the mirror and showing your physique off as a means of covering up the feeling of feeling not good enough.
Would you be willing to (wo)man up and admit that to yourself? Would you be willing to make a conscious decision to disconnect? What might that look like?
Rather than blindly going in and using movement to disconnect,
- Notice how you feel and acknowledge your emotions.
- Be honest with yourself and your decision to choose to disconnect. For example, “I feel really pissed off right now and I am choosing to go lift some heavy sh&t because I don’t want to feel what I am feeling.”
- Take action and go disconnect. Give yourself permission to numb out. Notice how numbing out can feel darned good sometimes.
- Invite yourself to reconnect and do it. This is the step many don’t take. Oftentimes, people go through Steps 1-3, then go about the day because they feel better never having really given themselves permission to feel or express their emotions. Sooner or later, that choice often comes back to bite people in the arse.
Have you ever experienced a cavity? Ignore it long enough and it becomes quite sore. You see the dentist who happily gives you some novocaine and you’re feeling much better all numbed out. But, the novocaine wears off, you go home, and two days later you’re experiencing even more pain, a fever, and an abscessed tooth because the dentist didn’t address the underlying problem – he merely numbed it for you – and it got infected.
By consciously choosing to disconnect, we are giving ourselves permission to see the work that our inner dentist is or isn’t doing with us. Is your inner dentist asleep on the job? Is he/she consciously choosing to only partially do his/her job? Would you be willing to invite your inner dentist to roll up his/her sleeves and explore what fully doing his/her job – choosing to move with connection – feels like?
If you would like to begin the process of learning how to consciously disconnect or connect through movement, reach out to me in the comments below or send an email to email@example.com.
What’s in your Water? Part 2
At the end of Monday’s blog, we brought today’s chemical of interest — lead — and how chloramines can increase lead levels in drinking water if the pipes are old and lined with lead. If you missed Monday’s post, you can read it here. I’ll wait.
According to the EPA, “lead is a toxic metal that is harmful if inhaled or swallowed.” Most lead concerns come from inhaling lead paint, dust, or swallowing lead that has leached into drinking water. If lead is inhaled, or if lead in drinking water is above acceptable limits, it can cause physical, mental, and learning delays in children as well as decreased attention span. In adults, it can cause high blood pressure and kidney problems.
The World Health Organization (WHO) states “too much lead can damage various systems of the body including the nervous and reproductive systems and the kidneys, and it can cause high blood pressure and anemia. Lead accumulates in the bones and lead poisoning may be diagnosed from a blue line around the gums. Lead is especially harmful to the developing brains of fetuses and young children and to pregnant women. Lead interferes with the metabolism of calcium and vitamin D.”
How does lead leach into drinking water? When water sits in leaded pipes for more than six hours, it can leach into the water supply.
What can be done about reducing lead in drinking water? There are filters and water purification systems which can help (more about those later this week).
If lead pipes, fittings, and fixtures are in your home but not the street and the lead content is greater than 15 ppb, it is recommended the following be done:
1. For drinking water and cooking with it, let the water run on cold for 1 – 2 minutes if the water has been off and sitting for more than 6 hours.
If the pipe entering your home from the street does contain lead, and the lead content is greater than 15 ppb, the following is recommended:
1. If the water has been turned off and sitting for more than 6 hours, turn high volume tap water (shower/tub) on cold and let it run for at least 5 minutes.
2. Run the tap in the kitchen on cold for 1 – 2 minutes.
3. Cook with only cold water from the tap, not hot as hot water contains increased lead levels.
If the lead content is less the 15 ppb, the EPA and CDC state that it is not necessary to take any additional measures to remove lead from the water.
In January 2014, new lead free requirements were enacted based on the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act. Prior to January 2014, lead pipes, fittings, and fixtures could have a lead content of 8%. The new requirements mandate that all new pipes, fittings, and fixtures contain no more than 0.25% lead.
If you are unsure whether or not your community has header pipes containing lead, or if your home contains lead pipes, you can ask your local Water Quality/Resource Division.
What’s in your Water? Part 1
Yesterday, I posted a couple of pictures of the Water Quality Report, reporting year 2013, from the town I reside in.
As you can see, the majority of the levels listed are within, albeit at the high end, EPA regulations. So, why may that be of concern? When is the water being tested? Where is it being tested? Is it tested immediately after treatment? Or, when the chemicals have dissipated?
The chemical of the day today is chloramines. Oooh, chloramines. What are chloramines? According to the EPA, “chloramines are disinfectants used to treat drinking water. Chloramines are most commonly formed when ammonia is added to chlorine…the most typical purpose of chloramines is to protect water quality as it moves through pipes.” Chloramines are used to decrease the number of potentially harmful disinfectant by-products (DBPs) from chlorine treated water.
What are DBPs? Richardson, et al (2012) states DBPs are “an unintended consequence of using chemical disinfectants to kill harmful pathogens in water. DBPs are formed by the reaction of disinfectants with naturally occurring organic matter, bromide, and iodide, as well as from anthropogenic pollutants.” According to the EPA, “water that contains chloramines and meets EPA regulatory standards is safe to use for drinking, cooking, bathing, and other household uses. ” Within the same pdf, the EPA states, more than once, that chloramines produce less regulated DBPs than chlorine. Regulated. The EPA was very clear on italicizing regulated. What about unregulated DBPs?
Researchers are finding that “several cases of emerging DBPs are increased in formation with the use of alternative disinfectants (e.g., chloramines), including nitrogen-containing DBPs (N-DBPs), which are generally more genotoxic and cytotoxic than those without nitrogen.” There have been a few studies in communities which show an increase in blood lead levels (BLLs) in children with the use of chloramines in drinking water. Miranda, et al (2007), states “introducing chloramines to reduce carcinogenic by-products may increase exposure to lead in drinking water.” But, water that contains chloramines and meets EPA regulatory standards is safe to drink…
Where is the water being tested? Are there lead pipes from the water supply source to your house, from your house to your faucet? Is the water testing division measuring lead levels in resident’s homes, particularly those who own older houses?
Miranda, ML, Kim, D, Hull, AP, Paul, CJ, Overstreet Galeano, MA. 2007. Changes in Blood Lead Levels Associated with Use of Chloramines in Water Treatment Systems. Environmental Health Perspectives 115(2): 221-225.
Richardson, SD and Postigo, C. 2012. Drinking Water Disinfection By-Products. Emerging Organic Contaminants and Human Health: The Handbook of Environmental Chemistry: 93-137.