I found that even doing 2-4 hours daily of some combination of walking meditation and taiji and hiking (easy flat terrain and casual pace) daily for many many years, just isn’t enough, and that the force of some jogging (or other intense cardio) and at least 30min of sustained elevated heart rate, deep breathing, sweating is required to start dissolving more of the lower back spine blockage.
If I could go back in time, after decades of meditation, I see now that I could have prevented a lot of energy blockages from forming or getting worse, by doing one simple thing. Making sure I get at least 30min of sustained cardio (more than a brisk walk) in one session in one day, and 30 min of daily resistance weight training. No complicated equipment or space needed. Even if you’re living in a cave in the Himalayas and it’s snowing outside, you can jog in place gently enough so you don’t pound your knees and lower back, but vigorous enough that your heart rate is elevated beyond a brisk walk, your breathing is very full and deep, you are sweating some.
For about 5 years now, I’ve been doing about a single session 10-15min a day of gentle jogging. But the past few months, I’ve been doing 30min in one session, and it makes a big difference. The places in my body where energy channels aren’t opened very well, 15 min wasn’t enough, but 30 min I can feel the blockages are slowly starting to dissolve.
Too much detail to explain quickly, so I’ll add more over time. But I wanted to share this important discovery, I could have saved myself a lot of problems by doing at least 30min in a single session of sustained cardio daily.
Unfortunately people are stupid and lazy, and need the motivation of injury or something severe to change their ways. If you develop the habit early of 30min cardio and 30 min resistive weight training (don’t need a gym or fancy weight machines, just do pushups, pull ups, chores around the house, wiping down floors on your hand and knees will work out whole body very well for example). You’re going to save yourself so many problems when and if you get old.
I knew the importance of diet and exercise and an early age, but the mistake I made was thinking that a couple hours a day of walking, taiji, yoga was enough. It’s not enough, because we are upright walkers, with gravity and lymphatic system biasing our circulation in a way that blood/energy/qi doesn’t get fully circulated in the whole body unless there is sustained vigorous muscular contractions.
Mayo clinic recommended daily cardio and weight training
How much should the average adult exercise every day?
Answers from Edward R. Laskowski, M.D.
For most healthy adults, the Department of Health and Human Services recommends these exercise guidelines:
Aerobic activity. Get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week, or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity. The guidelines suggest that you spread out this exercise during the course of a week.
Strength training. Do strength training exercises for all major muscle groups at least two times a week. Aim to do a single set of each exercise, using a weight or resistance level heavy enough to tire your muscles after about 12 to 15 repetitions.
Moderate aerobic exercise includes activities such as brisk walking, swimming and mowing the lawn. Vigorous aerobic exercise includes activities such as running and aerobic dancing. Strength training can include use of weight machines, your own body weight, resistance tubing, resistance paddles in the water, or activities such as rock climbing.
As a general goal, aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. If you want to lose weight or meet specific fitness goals, you may need to exercise more. Want to aim even higher? You can achieve more health benefits, including increased weight loss, if you ramp up your exercise to 300 minutes a week.
Reducing sitting time is important, too. The more hours you sit each day, the higher your risk of metabolic problems, even if you achieve the recommended amount of daily physical activity.
Short on long chunks of time? Even brief bouts of activity offer benefits. For instance, if you can’t fit in one 30-minute walk, try three 10-minute walks instead. What’s most important is making regular physical activity part of your lifestyle.
ajahn sumedho 60min daily vigorous cardio rowing machine
I remember a time when Ajahn Sumedho was hav-
ing heart problems. He was close to sixty and had been
a monk for thirty years. He was strapped up to a gad-
get so that his heart rate could be recorded for a week
or so. When the doctors reviewed the results of the test,
they noticed a pattern that they found bewildering. At the same time every night, Ajahn Sumedho’s heart rate
went up extremely quickly and stayed fast for about an
hour, before returning to normal. It turned out that he
was getting up at two in the morning to exercise for an
hour on his rowing machine. He then showered and sat in meditation for two hours. This is another wonderful example of Ajahn Sumedho’s commitment to training.