By Cheryl Hansen
If I were a scientist—and fortunately for the scientific community, I’m not—but if I were, I would be compelled to test any theory to ensure its efficacy (that’s fancy science-speak for effectiveness). This past week, without even knowing I was doing it, I tested my latest theory.
I feel, function and behave better with yoga, daily walks, a little meditation and no sugar.
Once I’m getting into the groove with yoga, lots of walking, simple breathing and no sugar—see what happens if I skip those behaviors for a few days.
In short, I proved my theory in about four days.
My week started in Dowdy Lake aka Bliss. The weather was beautiful. We were outside, without screens, phones or Dairy Queen. We took the paddleboard out on the lake, watched our puppy take her first “strokes” at the shoreline (then roll around in the sand) and hiked in, around and on top of the massive, beautiful boulders. As the puppy’s pace picked up around said boulders, I—since I was the one holding her leash—had to follow suit and felt lighter on my feet than I have in years.
Then came the return home and the mad dash toward the first day of school, including, but not limited to: haircuts, sweat-inducing school-supply shopping, last-minute letter-writing practice and summer math assignments (for real?), measuring rapidly growing feet and buying far too many shoes, plotting and stocking nut-free school snacks and lunches, trekking to swimming lessons, school open house and playdates. And this all had to be accomplished while working full time and making a meal or two daily (their need for food is SO frustrating). With the kids out of camp and my husband working overtime to make up for his time off at Dowdy, I didn’t make it to yoga all week, I didn’t take ANY walks and I found myself grabbing whatever was handy to “nourish” my hangry bod. Breathing? Barely. By Saturday morning, I’d lost all perspective and had an out-of-body experience listening to myself berate my 9-year-old for misplacing his karate belt AGAIN: he didn’t respect karate, me or the planet Earth. He held back tears for the duration of his karate class because, well, me. Yep. I’m that mom.
I went to yoga Sunday and have taken three walks in two days. I misplaced the sugar and lost the headache. It’s either a miracle or just scientific evidence that I’m on the right path—or back on the right path, anyway.