One of the things you have to do if you are going to be present for you life is to take care of your health. As a solo performer with no backup band, I cannot be sick, hoarse, or anything else or my show suffers. Not to mention, if you are going to access the full measure of your gifts you need to be healthy to do that.
I have spoken before about getting ready for a show at least twenty four hours before, but today I want to talk about simple daily maintenance of your vehicle—your body.
First of all, drink plenty of liquids, that keeps things from stagnating in a manner of speaking. I have actually gotten rid of a cold on the road by drinking two gallons of water in one day and just staying in a hotel room, drinking water and whizzing.
Secondly, get plenty of rest. It’s only in fiction novels that people go for days without sleep and still deliver their best. You might be able to do it for a little while, but it takes its toll. Rest.
Third, you need some kind of physical regimen. I try to go to the gym every single day. And yes, I do miss days. With this cold and cough, I’ve missed more days than I’ve made the last two weeks, but generally I try to go every day.
And if you don’t have time to do a full hour of workout, go anyway. Do as much as you can or have time for. If you do that everyday, you begin to build up some psychic currency and commitment that takes on a life of its own.
You realize you’ve gone for say, eighty days in a row and all of a sudden you want to see how many days you can actually do it before you miss one.
And when you are in the gym, do not use the same machines all the time. Break it up because this kind of cross training uses all the muscles in your body as opposed to the same ones all the time.
Further, going to the gym builds up your stamina and that translates into resistance and the strength to pull it off when you didn’t get enough rest or food or water; a physical regimen gives you a psychic bank account that you can draw on.
There is still another benefit of the regimen.
When you work out and keep yourself fit, it’s difficult to be depressed. If yo feel physically good, nothing seems to be as heavy as it does when you are down. Your resistance is down, your stamina is down and you end up with your spirit down too.
Lastly, people tell me that they don’t feel like it or they actually have conversations with themselves as they explain to themselves why they are not going today.
My deal is to go, even while my mind is giving me all these reasons to not go, I let it ramble on while I get into my gym clothes, get in the car and drive to the gym. The whole time there can be some inner dialog going on giving me absolutely solid reasons why I should not go to the gym. I don’t care.
I let it ramble on and I do what needs to be done. Try it…you’ll like it.
A couple of days ago I was in there and who do I see but Roz Larman, founder and standard bearer for Folkscene (www.folkscene.com) here in Los Angeles.
I was amazed. She has had quite a few blind sides these past few years with the loss of her partner and husband, Howard Larman, and an automobile accident that left her not nearly as ambulatory as she once was. And she is also a mature woman so the entire healing process slows down.
And yet there she was, working out, keeping the faith, still caring and doing something about her setbacks. What a hero I thought. She’s an inspiration to us all.
Now go do some pushups.