Welcome to the Group Coaching Call for Week 7 of the Discover Your Zen program. I’m Dr. Venus. and today, I’m going to be sharing with you a routine for progressive muscle relaxation. Ideally, you need to find a comfortable place to lie down. If you prefer to sit; feel free to do that. But I prefer to lie down on a yoga mat so I can relax my entire body. While you get into a comfortable position…
As I do with every group call, I offer this short disclaimer: The information provided is intended to educate you on your personal journey towards optimal health. It is not intended to be medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The use of this information is at your own risk. If you are under the care of any health professionals (or should be), it is strongly encouraged that you discuss modifications in your diet or lifestyle or use of other healing modalities with them prior to making changes, and never discontinue or reduce prescription medications without consulting your doctor or pharmacist. Listening to or using the information presented here does not constitute a doctor-patient relationship.
Hopefully, you’ve now found a comfortable place to lay down. What we’re going to do is slowly move our mind into our muscles. But for now, just try to focus on gently relaxing your body where it is. Find a place where it’s comfortable. Bring your breathing down to nice slow deep steady breaths.
Exhale with a nice big sigh. Let’s do this a couple more times. Inhale. Exhale. Now what we’re going to do is…we’re going to start at the toes. I want you to scrunch your toes together. Squeezing them as hard as you can. And hold that for a couple of counts. Then release and relax. Breathe in deep. Let’s try that again. One more time. Squeezing your toes, maybe even point your toes as your squeeze…and then relax, letting your body go limp. Breathing in nice and deep. And this time I want you to point your toes, but I want you to focus on squeezing your calves, flexing the calves, really making sure they are nice and engaged as hard as you can. Hold that for a moment, then release. Take a nice deep breath. Relaxing your body.
This time I want you to flex your toes up, really squeezing your shins, stretching your calves, maybe you’re even getting a little bit of your quads engaged, hold that for a second then release. Really allow yourself to fall into the ground as you release. Taking a nice big breath here. Now let’s move up to our quads. Flex your quads in any way you can. You might be flexing your whole leg. Squeezing your quads. You might feel your glutes engaging slightly. Hold that for a moment. Really Squeeze it. And release. Take a big breath….
The next movement we’re going to move into is our glutes. Squeezing those glutes really tight, maybe feeling your quads, feeling your core engage. Hold that for a moment, Really getting the glutes nice and tight, then release. Breathe in deep. We’re then going to move into our core. Feeling our core engage. We’re going to squeeze our core maybe crunching a little bit, lifting the hips up, really squeezing as hard as we can, holding it. And then release. Take a big breath…
Take a moment to feel the lower half of your body relaxed and loose.
Now we’re going to wiggle our finger tips. Bring your fingers into a ball. Squeeze that fist as hard as you can. Then release. Breathe. Maybe open those hands a little bit. Open and close them.
Arms resting at your sides. Palms facing up. From here I want you to focus on flexing your wrists up. Engaging the forearm muscles. Squeeze that nice and tight. As if you’re gripping something really heavy and about to lift it up. Feeling those forearm muscles flex, holding it for just a moment. Then release. And breathe…
Next we’re going to flip our palms face down. Focus on cocking your wrists back, lifting your knuckles upward, maybe feeling your arms extend, maybe feeling your shoulders press down. Squeeze those muscles, and release. From here, we’re going to lift our hands, bending our elbows into a biceps curl. Squeeze the biceps, really flex that curl. Squeezing the biceps, maybe pressing those elbows down into the ground. Holding that contraction. Feel it in your core. And then release. Take a breath….
Let’s go ahead now and shrug our shoulders up toward our ears.. Squeezing the traps, pulling our shoulder blades back, pressing the head firmly down into the floor, holding that tension for a moment. Then release. Take a breath.
Relax here for a moment. Now we’re going to take a moment to try to flex every muscle in our body. We just spent some time flexing each individual area. Let’s engage them all right now. So go ahead. Point those toes, squeeze the calves, engage the quadriceps, squeeze the core, press your glutes together, hands balled into fists, shoulders up to the ears, head pushing into the floor, squeeze it all. Hold that for a moment, and then release everything…take a breath…
Feel that blood rush through all of your body parts. And feel your body as it relaxes. Take a moment to breathe here for just a little bit, breathing. Inhaling and exhaling. Filling up your lungs. Feel yourself sink into the floor or your chair. Breathe. Inhale. And exhale.
Hope you’ve enjoyed this relaxation meditation. Focusing on each of your muscles. Becoming aware of the control that you have over your body. To create and feel tension. And to bring about total relaxation.
1) If you already completed the Week 3 Workout Plan, then you are doing the Week 4 plan this week. Log in to the Fitness App on your COMPUTER – https://doctorvenus.com/app-login/ – to access the Week 4 Workout Plan. Note that this week, the recommended number of cardio workout days increases to 4 days. In the Fitness App, if you click on the “notes” icon next to each “Day #” heading, you’ll see a detailed description of this:
“Warm-up prior to every workout. See Sample Warm-Up attachment. Do Weight training 4 days this week. Do Cardio training 4 days this week. Cardio should consist of 20 minutes (moderate intensity exercise such as recumbent bicycle, elliptical machine, walking at about 4 miles per hour, etc). If you choose to do Cardio training on the same day as Weight training, then do Cardio after Weight training. Recommend no more than 2 Weight training workout days in a row (i.e. take a day of rest after 2 straight days of Weight training).”
2) You should be exercising according to your planned routine. (You can use the workout plan I provided, if it works for you.) If you’re not ready to go FULL OUT with the workout plan yet…that’s OK. If you’ve been trying out my suggestion of creating a habit, then you may want to add on another step if you haven’t done so yet. Read through the Week 4 – Day 2 module if you’re not sure how to create this “habit chain.”
So…every time you wake up, or finish washing your dishes after dinner, or whatever that regular activity is that you choose as the one to trigger your workouts…put on your workout shoes. (That’s the first link in the chain.)
Then do the next step you’ve been practicing. If your chosen workout is taking a walk after dinner each night, maybe you are heading to the front door and grabbing a jacket. If you want to do a home workout from the exercise plan I’m giving you, then maybe you’re putting on some workout clothes – a top and a bottom. (That’s the second link in the chain.)
NOW, do the next step. (That’s the third link in the chain.) If you plan to go for a walk, just step outside your front door and stand on your porch…and celebrate! If you’ll be doing a home workout, then grab your mobile phone (to access the Fitness App) and stand in your home exercise area…then celebrate! Whatever that next step is just do that. Every day. Every time you put on your workout shoes…AFTER every time you do that trigger activity (washing dishes, waking up in the morning, etc). Remember to celebrate every time you get to the end of this “habit chain.”
If you need a little more time to reinforce those first 2 links in the “habit chain” (e.g. putting on your workout shoes, then putting on some workout clothes), that’s fine. Just keep doing that and don’t worry about adding on right now.
3) If you’ve been receiving the meal plans, the Week 5 (and 6) Meal Plan has been uploaded to your Fitness App. You should be going through the Week 5 Meal Plan right now. (The Week 6 Meal Plan is the same as Week 5; so if you haven’t done so yet, you can begin planning, shopping, and preparing for Week 6 because it will start next Monday.)
4) Continue to meditate for at least 5 minutes each day. As I suggested in Module 6, you can now have a goal for your meditation; for example, you can aim to make this goal a better awareness of yourself (by using mindfulness) or you can aim to quiet your mind and learn to block out stressful thoughts (by using transcendental meditation).
5) Show up for the group coaching call today, at 8:15pm ET (5:15pm PT). A replay will be made available for those who can’t make the call.
6) If you haven’t completed yesterday’s task…pick a day or two this week to jot down the time you spend in thoughts, activities, and conversations. Determine which are your “time wasters” so you can try to avoid them next week.
7) If you have any questions about anything…let me know in the Facebook group – https://www.facebook.com/groups/discoveryourzen/
(Not a complete list, but some important highlights.)
1) Log in to the Fitness App on your COMPUTER – https://doctorvenus.com/app-login/ – and go to the FORMS tab. If you haven’t completed the Client Agreement form and the PAR-Q form from Day 1’s ACTION STEPS, do that today and sign them. Be sure to click SAVE when you’re done. (You can not receive the meal plan and workout plan when they are released until we have those completed forms on file.)
2) If you haven’t done so yet, send an email to team@DoctorVenus.com and state whether you want a vegetarian or non-vegetarian meal plan. It will be sent to your Fitness App by the next day.
3) If you haven’t done so yet, send an email to team@DoctorVenus.com and let me know whether you want an exercise plan for weight loss (focused on burning calories) or for building/maintaining your mass. So you just need to indicate whether you want a BURN or BUILD program. It will be sent to your Fitness App by the next day.
4) Download the Set Your Goals Checklist and complete it. CLICK HERE to download.
5) Download the Program Planner that you can start using, if you wish. CLICK HERE to download.
6) Download the Kitchen Clean Out handout and use it to guide the clean out of your kitchen BEFORE you start your meal plan. CLICK HERE to download.