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  • Philly Irene

Why Tai Chi Maybe Perfect For You

Once upon a time, I had gym memberships (probably for a good 20 years) and was a long distance runner (a good 30 or more years).

I got very good at berating myself up for renewing my gym membership every year only to struggle and eventually give up going to the gym after a few months. As for running, I began doing that at a very young age (8 or 9), not because I loved running, but in my mind I was either the "Black Stallion" (a horse in a book very popular when I was young) or riding the Black Stallion. It morphed into long distance running, but I was no longer imagining myself as that magnificent stallion. I ran because I believed that burning all those calories was the only way I could keep my weight down. Sure, I believed that running was good for you and so was working out in the gym, and I am not saying those activities cannot be beneficial (however, I no longer believe the idea that weight control is done by burning calories through exercise - but that is a whole other blog!).

Even as I continued over the years to beat myself for my lack of discipline when it came to the gym, I developed an obsessive relationship with running. And if I couldn't run for whatever reason, I would worry that I would find it hard to get back into running (and it was) and lose my control over my weight. So I ran when I was sick, when I was injured, when it was pitch black, when it was raining, when the temps were in the 90's. And of course, if I did take a break, my fears came to pass. Running which once a joyous experience, had become a sadistic endeavor. I always had to meet my required mileage - my goal was to be able to run a marathon and of course ... to be thin.

If you can relate, and if this is where you are, there is another way to fitness, but more importantly to becoming a real friend to yourself. One who isn't constantly putting you down, who is excited by the pleasure of an activity, happy to see the observable growth internally and externally, which is not dictated by numbers.

I'll be writing more on this - my path to Tai Chi has not been a straight forward journey and one can come to Tai Chi via many paths, for many reasons.

Even though this blog is about Tai Chi, it is also about Wabi-Sabi/Pro-aging. If you are interested in reading that, check out my previous blogs. In the meantime, wishing you peace, love, and understanding.

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