Off the couch, Off the cushion

I’ve been away for a little while… my apologies for the gap in between postings here.

My travels on the “spiritual path” over the past 5, almost 6, years led me to a place I was getting very uncomfortable with. I needed to make some decisions and choose what was most important to me. My life, due to an inadequate amount of energy, ambition and motivation had become stagnant.

For to long I had neglected not only my close relationships, but neglected my health.  Sitting around all day on the couch, tapping away at this computer was not any sort of rigorous activity. Seated upon my zafu, while good for my mind, was doing nothing for me but bringing me closer to a state of contentment. I was ok with just being! Sorry to all the great teachers and masters that say “just be”, it is not that easy, nor does it just make sense.

To “just be” indicates a level of complacency, it means being ok with what and where you are in life. It also means, there is no change, that things just are what they are. To that I stick my middle finger high in the air, I am not ok with it at all! Change is not something that happens, shit happens.

Change is something that is strived for, something we work at. You can’t expect it to happen without putting in a little work, without getting up and doing something about it. It goes for any area of our lives, we need to do something.

I made the decisions I wanted, and needed, to make. I got my ass off the couch, off the cushion and started making changes. I rededicated myself to those I love, not only with my heart and soul, but with my health.

Over the years my cholesterol level has been building and I never knew it, until a recent check up. My doctor, who is a fantastic doctor, recommended we stay away from medicines unless we really needed to use them. The one’s she was mentioning didn’t sound like anything I wanted to take anyway, based on the side effects she was talking about. So she recommended changing my diet, which was easy enough to do and to start exercising.

My wife and I thought bike riding would be a great idea to start with, so we went out and bought some cost effective mountain bikes. The bikes though, weren’t going to do the complete job, I started running. At first I could only run about 1/2 mile at a whack. I started building that up 1/2 mile by 1/2 mile. I worked up my running distances to the point that this past 9/11/11 I ran my first 5k. I was able to complete it in 31 minutes, which is not to bad for a guy who only a couple months ago had the ambition and motivation of a tree sloth. We started doing the P90X workouts. So far, so good. 12-24 hours after each workout the muscles are hurting, which is a good thing, it means we worked out and didn’t just drag ass.

Things are in no way perfect, nor will they ever be, but the direction here is key. Forward and onward, not backward. I refuse to fall back into a trap, I will resist the temptation to “just be”.

Needless to say, with this post I am re-opening the door, stepping back onto the path in a way. This time round, it will be simple, effective. It will be little by little, in an effective manner that is beneficial to all. I have a bunch of catching up to do. I’ve read numerous books during this hiatus, I’ve sampled some food products that were sent over, etc. The posts may still be a bit sporadic, but I will do my best.

I’ve missed posting, I’ve missed the interaction with you all. A good amount of you I count as friends, and many of you have been there for me through this, so I say thanks to you.


  1. Hey Nate, welcome back! I have been in the same situation (evil evil computer job) and never ever want to miss the energy an active lifestyle gives me now. I also see how it balances my life and connects me more with the world around me (I go climbing / hiking and running so thats an extra dose of nature!).

    I wish you all the best on your path. Keep it up!

  2. Happy to see you. I stepped away quite a while ago…needed to get some things in order. I’ve been wanting to tell you I feel like we’re in the same boat, in a lot of ways.

    Kudos for your efforts!!! ^_^

  3. Hey Nate, good to see you! My blog has turned into a monthly thing, and I think that’s ok for right now. We’ll see where it goes. Glad that you are turning your attention to taking care of yourself and your family. We all benefit from that!

  4. Remember that we are the aggregates of mind and body. That the mind cannot work without the body and vice versa. To care for your body is part of the spiritual path. As a house-holder (lay person) your family is also part of you. While monastics have to worry about five aggregates, a husband has to worry about ten, a father has to worry about five more for every child. This is the challenge and the joys of lay life.

    Keep healthy, Brother Nate. If you get a chance watch “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead.” It has inspired me to start juicing. I will post to you my results (and if the program works).

    Rev. Sumitta

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