Staying Sane & In-Shape During the Holidays

kiaiWow, another year has flown by, it’s almost Thanksgiving, and then we’re plunged headlong into the joys, stresses and general craziness of THE HOLIDAYS. While these next 6 weeks will be filled with many great occasions and get-togethers, they also bring up challenging times and well-being issues for our LGBTQ community.

This period can be especially difficult on at least 3 major fronts: 1) dietary 2) financial 3) family. From now until the New Year, people tend to eat too much, spend a lot or struggle to cover expenses plus buy gifts, and encounter extra emotional stress from either having or lacking family to be with. Issues of coming out, coming home with our partners and friends, bringing our gay families to churches/synagogues/mosques, or being gay and alone, often complicate this time that is pictured as so joyful, social and heterosexual – yet isn’t necessarily so.

And so at the Bay Times we have a treat for you this season! Together with co-publishers Betty and Jen, I’ve designed a special Holiday Fitness Workshop to help you stay sane, healthy and happy during holiday-time overload. You’re invited to come learn very fun, practical and effective Centering Techniques for personal empowerment, handling conflict, and de-stressing. People will have a chance to talk about their own challenges during the holidays, and plan personal strategies for staying sane and balanced. Getting triggered is inevitable, but getting badly upset isn’t … when you’re prepared!

To keep you in good physical as well as emotional shape, I’ll also be teaching powerful BLISS Body-Mind Fitness exercises. Besides happiness, BLISS means Balance Lengthen Integrate Stretch Strengthen. BLISSwork builds strength, flexibility and co-ordination. It decompresses the spine and is great for injury prevention as well as rehab. It prepares you for peak performance, and helps you to simply feel good fast! Important neuro-muscular pathways develop through focusing the mind in the body and specific movements. I can actually feel my brain and nervous system getting more serotonin instead of stressful cortisol. Plus it’s easy to incorporate the exercises into any warm-up or workout routine, and fun to take ‘BLISS Breaks’ to get centered, relieve tension, clear your mind, and refresh your energy and spirits.

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I discovered BLISSwork in 1996 when I went to San Diego to heal from a combination of chronic injuries and adrenal exhaustion. I felt like an old football player, having separated both my shoulders and suffered neck, ankle, back and hip injuries that made it hard to roll over in bed, much less on the martial arts mat. I was a golf pro who hurt and had to quit after 5 holes, an aikido sensei who couldn’t throw much less take falls so had to stop teaching, and a runner who could barely walk! Clearly, I needed to somehow heal.

Rest, good bodywork and nutrition helped. Above all, I was fortunate to be introduced to Juawayne Kettler, a wellness instructor and ‘anatomy analyst’ who worked wonders through her BLISS Fitness exercise classes. I was honestly amazed as my physical pains started subsiding and disappearing, and function returned. With new core strength, spinal and muscular mobility, and a healthier nervous system, I started feeling and moving better than in decades. For years I’ve felt young again on the mat, and have even played over 200 holes of golf in 12 hours in charity Golf Marathons, with plenty of energy and no pain, which equals pure bliss.

So mark your calendars now for Sunday evening, December 1, 5:45-8pm, at Fitness SF, 2301 Market St. in the Castro. We’ve timed this for recovery from Thanksgiving and preparation for the month of December ahead. It’s a sliding scale: $12-29. Dress comfortably. Just bring yourself – and a friend! Space is limited, so pre-registration is recommended. Email thekiaiway@thekiaiway.com, or call 760-492-4653 to reserve your place. You’re bound to immediately gain effective ways to stay in balance. You’ll come through this holiday season better than ever, ready to start 2014 with high energy and in your finest form!

For more information about Jamie Leno Zimron and her work, please visit www.thekiaiway.com/.