One of the things that I had to wrap my mind around was that exercise, as the words music and meditation, are general terms for many different subtypes. Furthermore, these categories have a wide range of types, which allows for unique individual preferences. For example, you may not like Jazz or Classical music but may enjoy Hip Hop or Rap. You may not like running, but you may enjoy dancing. It's all about finding the correct type of movement that you enjoy and that works for your body. For me, that has been powerlifting.
As I've shifted away from the idea that exercise and movement are solely to lose weight and "look better," I've seen how conscious movement can have a positive impact. I've learned to embrace a different side of exercise that has allowed me to see this from another, more magical point of view.
Exercise is a fantastic method of moving energy throughout the body. Conscious movement allows the body to shift both physically and energetically. If we have blockages within our energy body, we often feel tired, sluggish, or even physical pain-type symptoms near the blockage. While any form of movement will help move energy, there are specific forms of exercise, such as yoga, tai chi, and qi gong, that are designed for moving energy and opening up blockages.
This is an opportunity to come back down into your body and check in with your energy. How does your body feel? What is going on? Are there any aches, pains, or stiffness? Take some time to feel your body, even if it's uncomfortable. As a good friend once explained, "the motion is the lotion," or that movement, even when initially painful, can help internally lubricate the space by bringing blow flow to the area. I have found that incredibly grounding exercises may include connecting with your body, either with your hands or an object touching your body. For example, I find the barbell on my shoulders incredibly grounding.
Even though this is an ongoing journey for me, exercise has helped me learn to love and appreciate what my body has done and continues to do. It's easier to love on yourself when you see what you're truly capable of doing and don't feel worthless or inadequate. Powerlifting has given me a sense of gratitude for my body that I didn't know I could have for her.
Sometimes, we need to get out of our heads to find the clarity we seek. As an intuitive, my brain is always on and constantly receiving information of sorts. So when exercising, I have to focus on what I am doing in the present moment and am fully in my body. Meditative activities aim to be present at the moment, not thinking about the past, the future, or anything but the present moment in time. Meditative exercise can look different for everyone but may look like walking outside and soaking up nature, dancing and getting caught up in the energy, or playing soccer and not noticing anything else but the game.
Sweat is sacred. The sweat that we release when we exercise is one of the ways that the body releases what no longer serves us. Sweat is also the only thing that actually removes impurities from the body. Detoxes, drinks, teas, and cleanses are ineffective and can even damage the body. You don't have to be pouring in sweat to reap the benefits; even a little movement helps. The one thing that people most often forget to do while releasing is to fill back up! It is essential to replenish yourself when sweating to avoid throwing off your body's systems. Sweat contains water and electrolytes, so I like to drink water with a pinch of pink Himalayan sea salt or a hydration booster like Liquid IV.
You know all those things you thought you could never do but always wanted to try? One of the magical takeaways from exercise is that I have learned to do so many more things than I thought I could do. I have trusted myself, my body, and my instincts even more since I began my powerlifting journey. You have to learn to trust yourself when picking up weights. I know that I can do hard things. I know that I can do anything I put my mind to do with hard work.
Exercise can also help rebuild trust in others if you participate in a group sport. For example, learning to work cohesively playing team sports is much different from working together in the workplace or childhood sports. In addition, group activities have become much more exciting with games like dodgeball and kickball.
There is so much more to exercise than diet culture wants us to believe. Exercise can be a potent agent in change, which we all know is just alchemy in action.
In what ways have you noticed your magical practices enhanced with exercise magic? I would love to hear about it in the comments below!
Arielle is a best-selling author, holistic life coach and intuitive energy healer.