Tai Chi Challenge – Week Three

It’s week three of my Tai Chi Challenge – ‘can I become the energised mum in 10 minutes a day?’. Thank you very much for your kind and informative comments.  I have learnt a lot in the last few weeks, thanks to you.

 

If this is your first time on my blog and you would like to know the story of my challenge and what it is about read this post.

 

I find it hard to believe that I have started the challenge only three weeks ago, as it has evolved so much. I truly feel like I am on a journey. I am very happy discovering various ancient methods, which improve our body and mind. I have already felt the benefits of meditation and yoga, and now Tai Chi and Qigong are beginning to show effects.

 

tai chi challenge week three

 

It’s hard to tell whether Qigong has improved my immune system or given me extra energy. I do however appreciate having daily 15 minutes of silence and deep breaths, combined with slow flowing movements. It helps me take a step back from what has happened that day and prepare myself for what’s to come.

 

I have found that I am more conscious of my posture. I tend to hunch when I sit and pull my arms up to my ears. Now I check myself more often and correct my posture. This is a direct effect of learning new moves and focusing on my body’s position.

 

I can also see that I am calmer. For example I’d usually get stressed out instantly when my laptop starts working slowly, but now I feel calm and detached. I’m willing to wait or I just go to get water/tea in the meantime. It’s not worth harming my mind and body with all this bad energy over something so petty!

 

I’m probably expecting too much at this stage, especially that I have missed a couple of days due to a camping trip. It’s like in this old joke:

‘A man prays to god every day to let him win the lottery. One day god gets frustrated and speaks to the man. ”I will let you win the lotter, but for heaven’s sake go and buy a lottery ticket!”.’

I guess I need to do my bit and do the exercises daily to feel real and lasting benefits.

 

Last I have been given some good advice from Susana, who has been following my challenge from the beginning:

‘Don’t eat or drink water right after practice. Wait at least 15 mins, so the energy can chill a bit. When you drink water right after, is like you pour water in the fire. The energy damps.’

 

Day: 13
We are going camping today to the New Forest and I was hoping I’d squeeze in a session before we go, but the packing and preparations took over. No Qigong today.

 

Day: 14
There are no electric hook-ups on the campsite (and no Wi-Fi or network connection of any kind), which is great for switching off, but it also means I can’t practice, as I can’t access You Tube.

Instead we all went for a walk in the forest. And nearly got attacked by a heard of nervous cows! It was relaxing none the less to be surrounded by the greenery and the bird song.

 

Day: 15
Still camping so no Qigong.

We all had a bad night with Little F waking up because of some howling animal. He slept with us for the rest of the night (apart from waking up once again around dawn…). My relaxation session today was a (badly needed) lunchtime nap.

 

Day: 16
I was looking forward to doing Qigong after a few days break, but I’ve done a silly thing of positioning the side table with the laptop in a bad place. I had to adjust it throughout practice to avoid stepping on toys, bumping into chairs or touching the lampshade when lifting my arms. I guess I was a little impatient!

Because of the distractions during the sessions, and having a busy day with a lot of things on my mind, I did not feel the wonderful calming effect.

 

Day: 17
I enjoy the sense of peace slow breathing brings me and Qigong is just the thing for that. The problem I have is that I can’t empty my mid while I’m doing the practice. Because the Challenge is linked to the blog when I am doing my practice I can’t help, but to think about the blog and all the things I need to do or write. If I manage to get my attention away from the blog I end-up thinking about plans for tomorrow, or things I still need to do today.
I need to make a conscious effort to clear my mind!

 

Day: 18

I have set aside some time during Little F’s lunchtime nap to do my practice. As I went to put on my usual Qigong video I noticed another one by Master Faye Yip – Daoyin Yang Sheng Gong 12 Method – Health Qigong – and decided to give it a go. It is a little longer at 14 minutes, but today I can afford the extra 4 minutes.

The movements where a bit more complex this time and there were more postures with twisting the head, which required me to look away from the screen, making it harder to follow. I did enjoy the session though, as focusing on the new moves meant I wasn’t making do-to lists in my head or getting distracted in general.

After the session I have followed Susana’s advice and did not drink for 10-15 minutes, not to quench the fire of energy. I’m not sure this made any difference, but I’ll stick with it.

The session gave me a feeling of calm and serenity, but also of blood, oxygen and energy running through my veins. No fireworks, but a general feeling of being alive.

 

Day: 19

It’s a Saturday and I managed to do the session during Little F’s nap. During the session I felt uplifted and focused. Thoughts just floating through my mind.

After the session I felt like having a nap myself! Unfortunately it’s not to be, as we are going away for 4 days for Bearded Theory festival, and so there’s lots of preparation and blogging to be done before we go.

 

Day: 20

I really felt like doing yoga today, so instead of 12 minutes of Qigong I have done an hour of yoga during Little F’s nap. I felt really calm and oxygenated.

I was hoping I’d manage to do Qigong after Little F goes to bed, but with all the lovely weather he goes to sleep later recently. I wasn’t able to do the session until 8.30 pm and that felt too late. And of course I had lots of blogging things to get on with!

I’m still waiting for Robert Peng’s book to arrive. I’m really anxious to start reading it, so a few days wait seems like a long time. I am curious to know more about principles and practice of Qigong.

 

Next week is my final week of the Tai Chi Challenge. The post will be out on Sunday. Subscribe to make sure you won’t miss it!