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Thursday, December 31st, 2009

In Shape And Being Healthy

There’s a big difference between being in shape and being healthy. You can be healthy but not be in shape, and you can be in shape but not be in good health. When I was training for the circus I was in great shape. I was a lean 165 pounds, ripped to the core, training 8 to 10 hours a day. I’d start the morning with handstands and finish the day doing chin ups. Three times a week I would train MMA style at the local fighter’s gym and teach self-defense at night. This went on for four years.alvintam-plank

But I was not healthy, despite my fit appearance, acrobatic agility, and intense physical lifestyle. I’d start the morning with a chocolate muffin and milk and finish the day eating instant Ramen noodles. Most of the week I was in pain – a rotating kind – where each day the suffering would migrate to a new part of the body. I had severe back issues for most of my second year in training, sprained ankles for most of my third, and uncountable cuts, bruises, bumps, and scars for the entire duration. I fought the flu at least 2 to 3 times a year. I ate randomly, whenever I wanted, and almost always the food contained sugar and white flour. I slept late, woke early, trained hard, and slept late again.

The outside projected pristine health – the glowing physical prowess of an athlete in training, full of youth, well-oiled body parts, and a fully revved engine. I was hitting red line RPMs with a smile on my face and eagerness in my heart. The totality of training was a way of being extreme, young, and fully alive.

I was definitely in shape but not healthy. Slowly, my body was falling apart. This youthful race car was starting to hiccup and limp to the finish line. By the time I completed my training I was strong, skilled – and injured. My grand denouement or final act at the circus school was a pulled rib cartilage that rendered me incapable of even sitting up on my own. I was condemned to four weeks of shallow breathing, slow walking, and much time to reflect.

There was a gradual dawning that although I could make the packaging look good, the contents inside were rotting. I needed to invest in better foods, wiser training habits, and more sleep. Health was an elusive benefit that not even a professional acrobat was privy too. You had to work for health too.

Although today I may not be doing the same number of flips, jumps, and spins as I did during my training, I consider my current state as one of the healthiest ever. I am mostly without pain, with the exception of the occasional intense workout. I eat well and allow myself to be indulgent when I want to be. When I’ve had enough of Thanksgiving turkey, apple pie, and cider beer, my body tells me and I naturally bounce back to eating fresh, organic foods again. My body knows health, and is attracted to it.

I’m not at my performance weight but not far from it. I train when my body feels like moving – which is almost every day, but not always. I sit and watch Friends reruns and then get up and hike in the desert. The definition of health has changed for me over the years and it is by far the healthiest yet.

I used to never drink, fast for days, do week long herbal cleanses, and exercise religiously. It was a regiment of to do’s to align myself with what I thought was true health. I felt great for a while, but in the end, lost the rhythm of the cleanse, changed exercise programs, and gravitated to a new type of fast. It wasn’t consistent.

My current understanding of true health is the ability to carefully listen to the needs of your body and act upon them. Over-training is as dangerous as not moving at all. Severe diets, cleanses, and fasts can be as detrimental as junk food for breakfast everyday. There is only one book that can give you the recipe for greater health, and that book is written by you.

alvintam2-headshotTo drink in consciousness, to eat ice cream in consciousness, and to watch football in consciousness is a greater sign of health than exercising because a sheet of paper, handed to you by your trainer, tells you to do so. Developing consciousness is the greatest catalyst for developing sustainable and natural health, because you already know what you need. All you have to do is listen for it, and then act upon it.

 

Alvin Tam is a Human Touch Health & Wellness council member and enjoys relaxing in his HT-7450 Zero-Gravity massage chair.

 

“I notice that using the massage chair has helped to radically reduce tension in my neck from all the computer work I have to do. I also have an overall sense of well-being by not having any back tension at all during the day.” – Alvin Tam

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

IMG_0017 without logoI just love it when a visitor to our showroom (and previously my clinic) sits on a massage chair for the first time. The sighs and groans of pleasure give me a sense of satisfaction knowing that folks are enjoying their therapy so much.

But what I really get a kick out of is when that client/patient gets up and says; “Wow, I couldn’t turn my neck before I sat in that chair,” or “My headache is gone,” or one participant in a golf tournament actually sought me out at the next tournament where we had our massage chairs, just to tell me that he went to the bathroom to do his business after the massage chair experience and, for the first time in his adult life, did not have any low back pain…which, he said, typically made his bathroom rendezvous’ very uncomfortable. Sounds funny and perhaps a tad off-color, but to that golfer it meant the world to him…so much so that he actually sought me out at the next tournament to tell me! What a hoot.

That is the most fun part of being in the massage chair business. Just like in the clinical setting, it is so rewarding to hear of these types of therapeutic success stories. And, who knew and massage chair could do so much. I must confess that a number of my patients who purchased massage chairs for their home therapy did not come back to the clinic nearly as much as they did before they owned a massage chair. When questioned why, they attributed pain relief to the massage chairs and said they didn’t need the manual therapy as much as they did before.

Dr. Alan Weidner

www.massage-chair-relief.com

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

Do we have to work hard for it all to balance out?

by Jaime Tam

Monkey bars, dance shows and tumbling all around the living room…. at 5 years old my parents knew I needed some safe instruction and sent me off to gymnastics. My dad brought me to a good school where the coaches there soon encouraged me to become a competitive team member. Cartwheels with no hands, backbends and big swings, high on the uneven bars opened the door for many fascinating physical feats and possibilities for me at young age. I started competing at age 7 and my passion for becoming a gymnast and learning these new disciplines is what fueled my every waking day. With lots of spinach and an eager heart, my ability to excel had continued to grow. I remember the days when I could hardly wait til the bell rang at the end of a school day simply to chalk up and try something new in the big gym. With time, tenacity and dedication I explored greatness within my little flexible form. There was actually a time I could never imagine not being a gymnast, as I ate, breathed and adored my practice. Time as we know it, brings about lots of changes and sinuous curves in our ever so transformative trail that we walk in life.

I ended up with a few ankle and wrist injuries, broken parts that healed well with time. Yet the front tumbling pass that launched me a little to high and left me coiled in a painful space at the gym floor, showed me an injury at my right ankle that may not recover so quickly. I was 14 and this bad break, fixed up with some painful realignment, metal pins and a cast with cruches for almost 3 months, told me it may be time to seek a new path to explore. Funny how injuries usually grant us the unique time to reflect deeply, listen and learn a new aspect of self, that we normally do not acknowledge at any other moment. It is much like being left alone with a book of our own inner wisdom and not a single distraction to pull you away. The story becomes sensationally personal and more poignant than ever before.

jaimetam-treeposeAhh, and then there comes the message, the why, the how, the reason to it all. For me at this time I became aware that I was due to shift gears…yes, become an Artist. It was my body and mind’s way of balancing out the amount of exertion and energy I had been channeling into merely one place. When we neglect the creative capacities of the mind by predominantly depending on the physical strength of the body, then the mind tends to become neglected. The same goes for when the mind is flooded with obstacles and mental challenges and there lies no form of physical release to express emotion, detox, sweat and move the body into a state of freedom. With this bit of insight, I continued with my path as an Artist. I carried my creative vision to college, upstate New York at Suny New Paltz and then to JCU, Queensland Australia, where my physical health and mental health intertwined quite naturally. I became very involved with a West African dance troupe and later a flying trapeze company that taught me how to fly high in the sky. It was like my muscle memory as a gymnast never went away. The trapeze was like gymnastics in pure open space while, landing on my 2 feet was supplemented for falling onto my spine with an open heart in a lofty net. I began to adapt very well with the nature of movement of my body and the academic capacities of my mind. It seemed as though my right brain and left brain actually became good friends and the nature of expression and mindfulness were like that of a Libra, in good harmony and at peace. That esssence of balance is often discovered, appreciated and honored when we find it. It also inevitably becomes lost and found again, like a walk on a tight rope, wavering from side to side. Fortunately, I have listened to my mind and body and found that in doing so I can gage my edge, my limits and also become my own healer by applying preventative medicine, rest, recharge and positive thought to my every transition and shifting of gears. This is something we all do and can do, by simply taking the sacred time to check in and find it. I have found that practicing yoga has served me a bright and healthy means of bathing in the balance of the mental and physical aspects of my temple. Although I’ve learned all things practiced in moderation, even a yoga practice! Achieving the balance can be quite difficult as we live in a time when there is a high demand to conquer, complete, embrace, solve and find, all that we are here to do on the planet. So the question is, do we have to work so hard to see it all balance out? Sometimes we think that it is necessary to work out in a physical way more than 2x a day. Some work out sessions can run a few hours long or longer and leave the exerter exhausted. The same goes goes for taking on too many tasks, agenda and weight in the mind. Is there such a thing as small doses and keeping it light? Less is more, this is certainly true. As for a physical practice, I have adapted to doing what I love, expressing myself, releasing endorphins through yoga, dancing, hiking and biking. Yet I choose to not overdue like I have done in the past. I have found that little bits done consistently go a long way. 3 enjoyable practices of movement a week or 20 minutes a day beats an extreme training once every 3 weeks. The same goes for a big hearty meal at the end of a long day, opposed to grazing, eating green and passing fluids through the body all day long. Little bits of nutrition taken all throughout the day is very invigorating to our body’s digestive system. Keeping it active, not overworked!

Although, Thanksgiving turkey dinner may be a rare exception! Staying true to your own sense of balance jaimetam2-headshotwith the needs and requests of your mind and body is really the only way. Only you know your limits and your edge more than anyone else, just as You are the one who can heal from within. My blog today suggests that we avoid overexhertion, do less and know that acting small and consistent can really bring big results. Afterall, I can still do cartwheels, and fit in my highschool jeans.

Less is More, Consistency is Key!

Heal and Inspire!

Jaime

Jaime Tam is a talented artist, ethnic-fusion dancer and a spiritual yoga instructor. She performs in various venues specializing in middle-eastern dance, tribal-trance dance, Polynesian fire dance and a vivid, live canvas painting performance. When Jaime is not performing at special events she is teaching her Expressive Yoga-Dance classes here in Las Vegas and worldwide! Jaime is a member of the Human Touch Health and Wellness Council and enjoys relaxing in her Human Touch Zero-Gravity Massage Chair everyday.

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

“Will My Flex Account, Medical Insurance, or HSA Account Pay For My Massage Chair?” http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/blog/general/will-my-flex-account-medical-insurance-or-hsa-account-pay-for-my-massage-chair 

A question we get asked all the time…especially at this time of the year. Honestly, there is no one answer for this one. It really depends on the plan you are a part of and whether they will allow the expense of a massage chair through their plan. True, it is your money and you should be able to spend it on whatever health expense you want, but the plain and simple fact is that you have to check with your plan to make sure it is an allowable expense. Just pick up the phone and give your insurance company or account administrators or Human Resource director a call and ask them what is covered. It may even be laid out in your policy somewhere in your filing cabinet. I do know that many of the plans do cover the massage chair. It is, after all, considered a medical and therapeutic therapy…more than just a lovely piece of furniture. Logically, you would think that this simple fact qualifies the massage chair as a covered health care expense (of course, as you all know, “logic” doesn’t always play into insurance companies rules of engagement!)

IMG_0017 without logoIt is nearing the end of the year and many of you need to use up your flex money so that you don’t end of January 1, 2010 cursing the fact that you just lost it all. A massage chair sure sounds great doesn’t it? Well, more than likely you will have one come Christmas if you look into it now and get your order in right away. It truly is a wonderful holiday gift…for you! You probably have a flex spending credit card of some sort that you can just use as a regular credit card to make the transaction smoothly. Feel free to call us if you have any questions about it.

But, be sure to check with your administrators to make sure it is a qualified purchase for your plan.

Dr. Alan Weidner

http://www.massage-chair-relief.com

Friday, December 18th, 2009

Hello!

Today I am going to share with you the many benefit of diffusing the Young Living essential oils in your home on a daily basis

It has been said that when essential oils are diffused in the home, they have the ability to increase the atmospheric oxygenating molecules into the air. Oils increase ozone and negative ions in the home, which inhibit bacteria growth. This prevents and destroys existing odors from mold, cigarettes, animals, etc.

Essential oils are non-toxic to the body and do not accumulate. Scientists in European countries have found that essential oils will bond to metallics and chemicals and carry them out of the body, working as natural chelators, inhibiting these toxic substances from staying in the tissues.

Essential oils also remove dust particles out of the air and are excellent for digesting mold. When diffused in the home, they can be the greatest air filtration system. I love to diffuse my oils when I sit in my Human Touch massage chair. Not only am I getting a phenomenal relaxation treatment but my brain and cells are being highly oxygenated as well. The two together are a perfect combination!

When diffusing the oils, they reach directly to the brain by means of the olfactory system. The olfactory membranes have about 800 million nerve endings that receive micro-fine, vaporized oil particles. They enter through the sinuses into the olfactory neurons and into the olfactory bulb. The impulses are then transported to the limbic system and the olfactory sensory center at the base of the brain. Then they pass between the pituitary and pineal gland and move to the amygdala gland – the memory center where all of our emotions we have ever experienced are stored and released from. This gland is only stimulated by smell. So as we breathe the oils in as they are diffused, they can have a profound effect on our emotional bodies.

Heat destroys many of the therapeutic properties of a true essential oil so it best to forgo using the candle burner type. The best system of diffusing oils is either in a water vapor diffuser or one with a glass nebulizer. You really only need to diffuse for 15-20 minutes at a time a couple times a day or more is fine too.

One of my favorite oils to diffuse is the Thieves oil. It is a blend made by Gary Young, founder of Young Living oils.

Packed with powerful, germ-killing essential oils, the Thieves oil can help eliminate airborne bacteria and boost the immune system. Thieves oil offers protection during cold and flu season of the winter months. But this blend is best utilized day-by-day.

It offer’s a safe but flexible and powerful multi approach in the battle against germs, bacteria, fungi, and viruses—all year long.

If one person in your household gets a cold or flu and is coughing and sneezing, the germs are now in the air of the home. This is the very reason that it is passed on to the rest of your family members. And this is why a whole classroom of school kids can become ill. This is why it is so powerful to diffuse the Thieves oils in your home everyday. It can help eliminate these viruses and bacteria’s in the air.

Julie_ChertowOk its time for me to go sit in my Human Touch massage chair and breathe my precious oils in!

If any of you would like to order the Thieves oil and a diffuser feel free to contact me at ok2rlax@yahoo.com

www.juliechertow.com