Following last week’s introduction to the OmGym, we invited our client Shannon to share her OmGym experience with us. Shannon’s honest approach by sharing her fears and reservations are inspiring. We love reading about Shannon’s OmGym transformation, and hope that you will, too.
It sounded so strange: when Mayra McCullough described the OMGym workout to me, using words like “suspended,” “inverted,” and “cocoon,” I had visions of Cirque du Soleil performers in skimpy costumes; their taut, bendy bodies moving in ways I never could. I have no flexibility, and never have. I have never been in shape. I am usually on the brink of war with my body. Occasionally, it decides to break down when it can’t take any more abuse, and I reluctantly give it a break just long enough to get semi-functional again before I go back to pervasive and destructive habits of high stress levels, lack of exercise, and emotional eating.
The OMGym sounded scary. It sounded like it demanded a certain level of lithe physical fitness and balance. It sounded dangerous. It could not be for someone like me: overweight and out of shape.
It’s not like I’ve never worked out, though I was born with some minor physical issues. I’ve had gym memberships. I’ve even had personal trainers who worked me so hard on several occasions that I threw up. It didn’t matter to which gym I belonged; each one had the same stifling atmosphere of judgment, competition, and negativity. I hated going there, so I didn’t. But I paid my monthly membership dues anyway, to maintain some shred of hope that I would find the motivation to get in shape.
“Just try it,” Mayra urged. “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” I could break my neck, I thought to myself, but I agreed to give it a go because, well, she seemed so happy, like she thoroughly enjoyed her workouts. I’ve never enjoyed exercising, and I didn’t believe I’d enjoy the OMGym either, but I was desperate to change.
Mayra must have sensed my nervousness when I arrived for my private demonstration. She smiled warmly and took me by the hand. “We’re just going to play,” she reassured me.
And play I did, once I let go of fear of failure.
I swung. I hung upside down. I flew like Superman. I laughed. I did exercises I never knew I could do. Maybe I didn’t look it, but I felt like one of those beautiful performers from Cirque du Soleil. Graceful. Strong of body, mind, and spirit. There was no failure; there was only support. And then it hit me: I was enjoying working out.
The OMGym movements are playful and soulful. In some respects, my body had never worked harder. I was sore, but I didn’t hurt. I felt tired, but also rejuvenated. The entire process made me feel gratitude for my body, and the workout was like a peace offering. I started to trust my body, and my body responded in kind. My energy level skyrocketed. I couldn’t wait to do it again.
I’ve been playing ever since.
I know that the OmGym sounds strange. And it is, at first. But then it’s magical and wonderful and uplifting. It becomes something else. I became something else. Or maybe I became myself, finally, for the first time.
At Coach2Edify, our approach to Three-Dimensional (3D) Fitness fosters whole-being wellness. We champion fitness as well as personal transformation. The effects of 3D Fitness transform the body, mind, and spirit and shift your outlook from ordinary to extraordinary.
As part of developing fitness practices and regimens for our clients, we’re always looking to play. We love developing programs that our clients love—why should fitness be routine, redundant, or anything less than pure fun? That’s why we love the OmGym.
After I attended certification training for the OmGym in Baltimore, I knew that I had to integrate the suspension system into the Coach2Edify fitness routine. I built a unique space for OmGym training at our Villa and christened it the OmDome.
So what is the OmGym? Founded with the mission to inspire joy within movement, to offer the most effective, versatile tools for health and fitness, and to create eco-friendly and affordable fitness solutions for all, the OmGym is a versatile suspension training system.
In 2005, OmGym founder Sarah Kellett, ERYT-500, discovered the dynamic art of suspension and realized it to be crucial in her own path of recovery. She had previously spent years exploring rehabilitation methods after a car accident left her with painful compression injuries and spinal misalignment.
Informed by her extensive background in athletic therapy and yoga, she then implemented and built upon the age-old practice of inversion and traction therapy, which reaches all the way back to ancient Greece and Hippocrates, the “father of medicine.” (Hippocrates may have been influenced by an even older tradition. Indian yogis had been using ropes and vines to assist in their exercises for thousands of years). In the modern era, world-famous yoga teacher B.K.S. Iyengar popularized the use of rope and fabric slings to help with inversions and a great variety of suspended and supported yoga poses.
Ms. Kellett combined the most effective elements of these traditional ideas and expanded upon on them to catalyze her own rehabilitation program. Her rapid healing soon gave way to an even more amazing development: a pain-free recovery with greater strength, flexibility, and success than she’d dreamed of!
What was the secret? The use of variable support allowed her to fearlessly integrate new movement strategies. She was able to use gravity as a means of decompressing spinal impingements, while gently expanding her range of motion, deepening her awareness of her own center of gravity, and rebuilding the stabilizing muscle groups essential to optimal recovery and beyond. She used traditional exercises and yoga poses as a departure point, but later integrated many therapeutic and fitness techniques to evolve this practice.
Inspired to share her new ways of healing with her community, Sarah founded OmGym LLC with the enthusiastic commitment to offer the greatest of healing and personal fitness tools worldwide. The OmGym Suspension System is now the most user-friendly, portable, adjustable, versatile, attractive and eco-friendly multi-gym on the planet.
We offer both OmGym training at our Coach2Edify facilities, and an OmGym package for purchase, delivery, and installation of your own OmGym that includes an introduction and training session with me, Coach2Edify Founder Mayra McCullough. Please contact us for more information, and play your way to Three-Dimensional Fitness!
Read more about the OmGym on their website.
Last week, we gave you some tips for creating a space for home self-care by creating your Self-Optimization Sanctuary (S.O.S.). Your sanctuary is a sacred space to foster a daily fitness and well-being regimen.
Here is an example of what my personal S.O.S. exercise flow looks like. Please note that my objective is not to give you a specific set of exercises; but ideas on how to flow with the needs of your own body.
At Coach2Edify, it is our mission to inspire others to create a sustainable and consistent self-care routine that becomes as second nature as brushing one’s teeth in the morning. Activities such as journaling, meditating, and creative expression are also recommended to integrate in your S.O.S. time. For personalized workouts to do at home, please feel free to contact us for a free consultation.
I love training with my clients on a routine basis, but it’s important that they maintain optimal 3D fitness between our training sessions. The best way to achieve this is to create a Self-Optimization Sanctuary (SOS).
I find that the main obstacle to self-care is lack of time. Driving to the gym, scheduling yoga classes, or rushing to pilates takes time. The best solution to this little problem is to create an SOS gym in your own living space.
Here are some tips on how to create a sacred space that will draw you in and leave you no option but to dive in, care for, and LOVE yourself!
Let’s do a little space make-over here. The Coach2Edify Villa is pictured below.
BEFORE the SOS Makeover
AFTER the SOS Makeover
Here are the simple things you’ll need to create your own SOS and gym:
- Gold’s Gym 6-piece puzzle mat
- Yoga mat
- Yoga blocks
- Yoga straps
- Swiss ball
1. Create an altar with things you love to help you set the mood for SOS time. For me, the magic ingredients are music, zesty aromas, sage, and a journal. I also like to add totems or stones that remind me of positive thoughts, memories, and intentions. The little bottle of water pictured reminds me of clarity, focus, and stillness.
2. Schedule SOS times as if they were sacred appointments with yourself. These appointments will reward you with positive, connected, grounded, and peaceful feelings. Body, mind, and spirit will reward you with the pleasure principle of gratitude to your higher self.
At Coach2Edify, our mission is to create a global movement of sanctuaries to establish a culture of personal care. We facilitate SOS consultations at your home, workout programs to help you get started, and weekly support via phone. Next week, I will post 3D Fitness Flows for use in your own Self-Optimization Sanctuary.
For all those who submit BEFORE and AFTER SOS pictures with your routine of personal self-care by the end of April, you will win a one-on-one training session with me at the Villa!
During Coach2Edify’s first Enchanted Evening almost 3 years ago, my dear college friend from UCLA, Michael Kaliski, encouraged evolutionary human and designer of suspension training system OMGym, Sarah Kellette, to attend our event. Michael Kaliski, I will be eternally grateful for this!
When Sarah came to the event, we felt right at home with one another. When she showed me a postcard with the OMGym contraption, it was love at first sight! One year later, I attended her first OMGym Trainer Certification in Baltimore, Maryland. When she mentioned that I was the first Certified Trainer in Southern California, I knew that it was time to make the move to go independent from my 5-year-plus tenure at Equinox Fitness.
A few months later, we are running 11 classes of semi-private training in 3D Fitness using the OMGym as one of our key tools to activate energy systems. The OMGym has also been a very special way to introduce students to meditation through our signature Cocoon of Light Guided Meditations. These meditations use the OMGym’s womb-like hammock.
A few quotes from our students using the cocoon: “This is surreal,” “I don’t want to ever leave this place,” and “I’ve never ever felt anything like this before!”
Here are a few videos to show how the OMGym is used for various objectives, such as developing strength, cardiovascular endurance and flexibility. If you own a suspension training device and would like to learn new tricks, please feel free to e-mail me what kind of exercises you need to do in your system, and I’ll post some ideas! The OMGym is the only fitness-oriented suspension system of its kind in the marketplace with a tangible, scientific educational system and certification program administered by inventor Sarah Kellett herself.
OMGym Strength: Mayra shows 2 exercises which target whole body strength development
OMGym Cardiovascular Endurance: Mayra shows simple exercises targeting cardiovascular endurance
OMGym Flexibility: Mayra demonstrates flexibility-focused exercises integrating whole-body fitness and muscle endurance
Throughout all of my years as a physical trainer, I’ve found that the main obstacle for people to become self-sufficient in their personal care of body, mind, and spirit is a lack of TIME. The greatest cause for this lack of time is WORK.
In reality, these obstacles are set by our CHOICES. We often choose to make everything else more important than taking care of ourselves. At C2E, our mission is to create a new paradigm of self-care. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, the bottom line is that we need to MAKE TIME for our survival, sanity, health, joy, and to create a sense of fullness in life.
I believe that as we evolve, solutions to our WORK-TIME issues will take place. Solutions are already being implemented by cutting-edge corporations offering work-life balance programs, and by individuals like Timothy Ferriss, author of the Four-Hour Workweek. In the meantime, here are some simple steps to bring self-care into your work environment.
1) USE MOTIVATIONAL QUOTES.
Motivational quotes have become huge on social media outlets, and what a great trend this has been. It has made my Facebook wall a truly restorative place! Reading what inspires us is a very important exercise, but the most important element here is to use that inspiration when necessary. Choose quotes that motivate you to take care of yourself, print them out, and post them in your work area. Set your calendar with the time you have an appointment with yourself to optimize your performance. The rest is about having integrity to follow through. We tend to be faithful in keeping appointments with others, but when it comes to US we tend to be flaky, procrastinate, and eventually let things fall through the cracks. Far from excellent, right?! Whether it is Nike’s “JUST DO IT!” or the math that says that a one-hour workout is 4% of your day, just take what inspires you and make a commitment to have integrity with YOUR truth. What inspires us is our TRUTH. Become dedicated to this truth, and you will be stepping into a fully optimized lifestyle! Here are some of my favorite quotes:
If you use Pinterest, here is a fabulous collection of my favorite QUOTES.
2) MAKE THE LUNCH HOUR YOUR SELF-OPTIMIZATION SANCTUARY (S.O.S.)
Yes, eating lunch is important! But it really doesn’t have to take a full hour. Time yourself and see how long it takes for you to eat. I bet you that it’s not more than 15 minutes! A good workout doesn’t have to be more than 30 minutes, so you can also have time to transition back into work. At C2E, we have a 3D Fitness Express Package were we offer a one-on-one training session to come up with your SOS workout, weekly support through a one-on-one phone check-in, a weekly, 30-minute guided meditation by phone, and a consultation to create a S.O.S. in your workplace. For those who respond to this blog, you will receive a 30% discount on this package priced at $160 monthly.
In the meantime, here are some simple exercises you can start integrating into S.O.S. Workouts on Pinterest.
3) REWARD YOURSELF.
Set a reward you will give yourself when you practice integrity for a full week. If you have an intention of doing S.O.S. workouts in your work space every other day this week and follow through, treat yourself to a massage, buy an item you’ve been wanting, or take yourself to see a movie. The bottom line is that we need to parent ourselves, and rewards always work!
4) REPEAT 1-3.
5) REPEAT 1-3 over and over and over again until you have morphed your lunch hour into a S.O.S. hour for life!
Our mission at Coach2Edify is to foster whole-being wellness through various modalities to arrive at balance in body, mind, and spirit. While we help our clients find wellness, it’s also integral that we find our own wellness as health practitioners. And that involves discipline.
As part of this process, today I’m starting a disciplined approach to blogging. Each week, I’ll share information about topics related to wellness, modalities of movement, and fitness routines, and health tips, among others.
Discipline is such an important part of growth. Discipline, a controlled behavior resulting from training, is the building block of transformation. In order to create adaptability to an outcome we want, we must have a consistent practice.
Today I would like to write about a modality of movement that is a beautiful illustration of how discipline has helped me feel like an athletic teenager in my 47-year-old body. Animal Flow was created by Mike Fitch, Founder and President of Global Bodyweight Training. I was certified to teach this modality of movement last year by Mike himself.
On our first day of training, it was hard to imagine that I was going to be able to pull it off, but today I must say that Animal Flow has become fun and playful bodyweight training that has transformed my cardiovascular endurance, strength, power, and whole body integration abilities. At first, I couldn’t do more than a 45-second flow.
[Animal Flow] is based around animal movements, which are just like they sound – movements and forms that mimic or resemble different animals, or that are just inspired by the rhythm or nuance of an animal. -GlobalBodyweightTraining.com
Animal Flow integrates elements of Parkour, break dancing, and gymnastics in a freestyle flow. During my first attempt at the practice, I felt heavy while managing my body on the ground. Animal Flow has an edge that requires great cardiovascular endurance, kick-butt strength, balance, and coordination; combined with power and whole body integration. With a disciplined practice of Animal Flow a few hours each week, I slowly but surely assimilated movements that grounded me to the earth, helped me integrate a full range of motion, and increased my agility, vitality, and conditioning.
From beast to crab, from crab to scorpion, from scorpion to ape, the collection of moves becomes a dance of power fitness fun! Check out the below video on Animal Flow. To explore the modality with us, MAKE A RESERVATION for our Free Flow Fridays demo from 11 AM to 12 noon at C2E.
-Mayra McCullough, Coach2Edify Founder and President
Yesterday I lived one of the most glorious days I’ve had in a long time…as I realized that I was actually living my dream. Nothing glamorous….but all beautiful, beautifully purposed to help us connect with our higher selves, to live heaven on earth, and enjoy supernatural production. By Friday I was very aware that I might have overbooked my day on Saturday. And as it happens so often now because of our vow to NOT DO STRESS, I just took deep breaths along the way, did whatever I could do to open windows of efficiency in the process, and just trusted that it was all going to flow with the GO! One thing I’ve been making sure I do: eat very clean, get a lot of sleep, and keep my 30 minute SOS workouts per day on track (which includes about 10 minutes of journaling/and or meditation). No matter how I wanted to just keep working, I just kept telling myself: ‘I’m sorry love, but this is definitely more important.’ Saturday came with a glorious inspiration to be up by 5am, when after getting my cup of tea, I had the best focused time to prepare for my workshop and big C2E Tribe Meeting. I was able to write lesson plans and meeting’s agenda, get resources and print all materials by 9am, after this I was going with half hour breaks through 9pm. Yes, lately always trying to catch up with myself, but in a very fun, and playful way. Being ok with dropping a few balls here and there, and most importantly, staying present, so present. My day was so complex, yet it felt so simple, and effortless, there was not one issue that couldn’t be solved or that it didn’t flow with ease. I call this Supernatural Production: having no idea how I’m going to pull something off, but allowing confidence to help me trust that the Universe that it has my back.
Here is a touch of our Play Day where the magic never ceased for a moment….