May 30, 2016

Rest & Decompress

Happy Tuesday!

I hope you had a restful weekend, and holiday (if you are in the US).

Paul in IR Sauna 2
I’ve been enjoying my time off after my UK teaching trip. I’ve been enjoying my studies, using my Health Mate infrared sauna, lifting stones, painting, and playing with Mana.

Rest and Decompress

In my video blog today, I share some tips on how decompressing your spine during rest periods and how this will enhance your overall performance and decrease discomfort.

I explain some of the basics of spinal pressure in different positions, such as sitting, standing and laying down.

I also share information on the link between breathing and how the discs of our spine get nourished and have waste removed.

I have had many injuries racing motorcycles, boxing and kickboxing, parachuting, performing stunt lifts, and racing stock cars.

These injuries have all been great teachers that led me to find ways to balance and heal myself, as well as maintain a high level of physical fitness.

I have found lying down between rest periods to be very helpful, as have the many athletes I’ve shared this method with.
MS Ice Rest

Above, you can see Russian Kettlebell star, Mike Salemi using this method I taught him, as well as adding some ice to the mix for more rapid recovery during hard workouts.

I hope you enjoy this video blog and the power of this simple technique.

A Fantastic Laird Hamilton Interview

Laird Hamilton and his wife Gabrielle Reese have been clients of mine since around 1995. They are both amazing representations of high achievers that choose to live a balanced, organic lifestyle.

Laird is a great example for men of all ages; the young aspire to surf like him, and those above 50 aspire to look and feel like he does.

Oprah Winfrey, in one of her Master Classes featured Laird and his presentation was great. If you want to explore the mind and spirituality of one of the world’s greatest athletes, track that segment down on her web site.

In Laird’s fantastic book titled, Laird HamiltonForce Of Nature, he features me as one of the people who have influenced his philosophy of training and living.

Laird was recently interviewed by the LA Times, and again, in this article, you can get a nice look into a man who is the embodiment of the Athlete and Warrior archetypes; you can find the article here:

Deepak Chopra Recommends Reading Jason Pickard Interview!

I recently shared a link to an excellent interview with my client, Jason Pickard. It is a fantastic story of overcoming significant body-mind challenges in route to abundant health and enlightened consciousness.

Deepak promotes Jason Pickard articleAs you can see above, it has even caught Deepak Chopra’s attention. If you didn’t get a chance to read this outstanding interview, you can enjoy it here:

Since Jason started coaching with me six years ago, he’s not only overcome his health challenges, become a great athlete, but has developed a beautiful family with his wife Jacquie.

Jacquie and Anjah 5-29-16

Jason and Manola 5-29-16

Above, you can see the vibrancy so common among CHEK Professionals and their children worldwide.

In the past several years, there seems to be a baby boom among my staff and students, and it has been a real joy for me to see so many healthy babies as the result of holistic living.

A common comment I get from those in the CHEK Tribe having babies is that they are consistently far above average standards for babies when evaluated during regular check-ups by pediatricians.

We have had the same experience with Mana. His cognitive and motor skills, according to published standards, are about 2-3 months ahead of the curve.

He recently shared his first word, which is “Good”. It’s quite fun because now everything is “good, good, good…” So much fun!

Show-N-Tell With Paul

This is my little tribe.

Penny Mana and Maggie 5-28-16
Maggie is very good with Mana, and often nuzzles him and makes sure he’s OK.

Penny is really enjoying Mana, and for a woman that never wanted kids, she’s an amazing mother!

Mana loves to talk to Penny and tell him all about his day. It’s amazing to see him share long sentences of his own special language with Penny.

Mana loves, loves, loves his mommy Angie too; anytime she leaves the room, he’s got an eagle eye on her and watches and waits for her return.

I love to give him massages each night, and take him for walks. He’s a total outdoors-man this guy!

If he gets grumpy, all I have to do is take him outside and he settles right down. There may be great wisdom being shared by him in this regard.

One of the most common requests I get from people worldwide is to share my workouts. Well, this is an easy way to show you what one of my workouts looks like.

5-28-16 Stone Workout

When Jason was last here working with me in person a couple months ago, he and I built an amazing, big stack of my heaviest stones.

It was built like a wedding cake and was a good 12 feet or more tall. I left it up until just the other day when I took it down and created the one you see above, mostly from the same stones.

The stack Jason and I built was incredibly sturdy, and withstood many storms with high winds; we get some very strong winds here at the Heaven House being on the top of a mountain.

To take our previous stack down, and build the one you see above took me a solid 1:50 hours and was a fantastic time in nature and under the sun.

Stone stacking in not only an excellent means of developing athletic ability and artistic self-expression, it taps into our psyche.

For millennia, humans have used stone stacks to mark hunting grounds, tribal territories, and sacred grave and healing sites.

When people with no history of stone stacking see stones piled vertically like this, it often strikes them.

I’ve seen crowds of 50 people or more develop and be constantly taking photos when I’ve built stone stacks on the beaches around the world.

Once in Mexico, I not only had a huge crowd, by the third day I was there, there were newspaper reporters watching me and taking photos.

That particular stack was a huge one I built in the blistering heat. I took my time and some of the stones were so big, it took me 30-40 minutes to get a single stone placed.

Many of the stones were 300 or more pounds, so when people saw several of them stacked, they naturally wondered, “how did this happen?”

A year later, I got an email from the landlord of the house I stayed in with my son, Paul Chek Jr. While we were there (Paul built several nice stacks too!) informing me that my stack had, miraculously, made it through the monsoon season and was still up!

Loads of fun!

Beginners at stonework should start out small and easy. Stacking stones requires tremendous balance and total-body strength. The terrain is often very uneven and the ground can be covered with sharp objects; I’ve had stone shards go right through my foot like an arrowhead.

There are also many creatures that bite and that are poisonous that make stones and the areas around and beneath them their homes.

One must be very careful to look around stones, rock them, and smack them with another stone to alert the creatures to evacuate before blindly sticking fingers under to grab one.

Not too long ago, I was lifting stones in my stone circle, and even though I’d looked at all the stones carefully before I started, I reached down to grab a big one and felt something “fleshy” on my fingertips.

I reflexively pulled my hand away quickly, and it was a good thing too, it was a rattlesnake sleeping along the very bottom edge of the stone! It was so well camouflaged that it looked exactly like the stone and soil.

It is also important to be respectful to the land. Many tromp around without any respect for the fact that they are destroying the homes of many little beings.

I always try to be the least invasive I can be. If I lift a stone and there is a colony of bugs living under it, I’ll just leave their home intact and find another stone.

When I offer “Zen In The Garden” workshops, where I teach stonework as outdoor art and exercise, I like all my students bare handed and barefooted.

As paradoxical as that may sound, I’ve found that “being naked breeds respect”. When an individual is exposed to the face of the land with bare skin, there is much less unconscious willingness to be destructive and an acute sense of the danger of being reckless.

I find this approach is far more important for males with too much testosterone for their own safety and that of the land; a little blood seems to be medicinal in some such cases.

In all fairness though, I too had to learn to manage my power-drive the hard way.

Stonework, in my experience, mirrors your personality and self-management style back to you live and in color.

For example, one of the power driven males referred to above can get away with all sorts of things in a gym that will result in pain and injury in a natural stonework setting. Not to mention that fact that lifting stones is many magnitudes more complex than lifting perfectly machined bars and handles!

Throw in a few different thorns, some poisonous insects and a rattle snake here and there, and the gym would still be easier than lifting odd shaped, jagged, dirty stones whose center of gravity is often off center relative to the shape of the object.

When I return to the gym after lifting stones for a while, I can lift weights with ease that were previously challenging for me. It is as though my whole body and nervous system have been super-tuned.

Holding an Olympic bar is like child’s play compared to big stones, which are heavier and slippery when wet too.

So, like I suggested above, start small and safe. Grow from there.

For you young guys, make sure you wise up before you man up out there! No one is impressed with how strong or tough you are when you are laying in a hospital bed.

Stones not only fall, they bounce. I’ve seen huge stones fall and bounce three feet in the air, and landing with thunderous impact.

Be sure to never lift too close to anyone else; if their stack can fall and land within 4 feet of you, you are too close.

Painting Meditation

PC Working Archetypes 5-30-16 copy
I started this painting just before leaving to the UK for my recent teaching tour. It came to me as a vision while meditating and represents my 4 working archetypes at this time in my life.

The top figure represents the Father archetype, the figure at the bottom represents the Mystic archetype. The figure on the west side of the cross represents the Teacher archetype, and the figure to the east, my Hermit archetype.

I’m not quite done with this piece, but nearly. It is fun to just let it guide me.

Prior to my son, Mana being born on 2-22-16, my Teacher archetype was dominant, and therefore, in the north position.

Through a lot of life experience as a father and therapist, I’ve learned that work is never more important that our responsibility to parent effectively. No amount of success, money, fame or power is worth the pain and damage to the children neglected for these aims.

OSHO says, “Children are born God, and the parents beat it out of them.” That is painfully true in the general sense.

If you want to educate yourself on just how often this “beating of God” takes place, I highly recommend reading/listening to, The Body Keeps The Score: Brain, Mind and Body In The Healing Of Trauma, by Basil van der Klok, M.D.

He shares shocking statistics on how frequent physical, mental, emotional, and sexual abuse occurs in children at the hands of parents and family. Very sad indeed. This is based on solid scientific investigations as well.

When you hear how much drugs kids are being put on, frequently without any skilled assessment of the child’s actual needs, it is gut wrenching. Our modern way of living has created an unconscious Dragon.

From my studies on such issues, it seems we best become conscious together and tame this dragon before it kills everything we thought we live for, largely in the name of money, power, position, and control; none of which I’ve ever seen create lasting happiness for those that acquire it unless they have become human beings in the process of climbing ladders.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my blog today.

I look forward to sharing more next week.

Love and chi,
Paul Chek