Overcoming Obstacles

When we stand at the base of our mountain we often see only the magnitude of the entire entity instead of what is directly in front of us.  In perfect timing my very first blog is brought to you somewhere at the bottom of my current obstacle. The beauty of our life experiences both good and bad exist for purpose and discovering that meaning is not only healing but instrumental on placing the next foot forward.

Creativity resides in these phases of life so I’ve decided to share what normally was exposed in my classes into written word since prior expression has been suppressed during the past few months.

As many of you know I am recovering from a very scary surgery that could have been much more difficult and life changing than it thankfully turned out but during the soul searching and physical portion of this event I’ve realized it made me pause.  How wonderful! I am not running up this new mountain to the peak but instead slowing down and looking around a little bit.  How often do we see an obstacle or a goal and rush toward the outcome instead of absorbing the mini messages and life along the way? When we arrive at the so-called peak we can find ourselves physically and mentally fatigued and unable to enjoy our new view and often times we can’t even recall how we got there.

Absorbing the present in each step along the way is optimal but not always achieved.  As I say in my classes, “time to feel the sand in between my toes.” I am slowly beginning to ease back into teaching but have had a few set backs the past couple of days.  Here it is again…one of those moments that disguises itself but if I pause to clean the lens what reveals is a yellow or even red light. I think I’m listening.

Although my body might not be ready I hope to inspire and share insights through my new page.  As a fitness instructor for over 30 years physical limitations were not often exposed and created a scar on your reputation.  Back in the aerobic dance days it was kick your leg a million times over your head and repeat until you fell down.  Thankfully over those years I have witnessed the growth of the industry that now includes safe heart rate ranges, contraindications and since yoga has found its way mainstream incorporating meditation and spirituality is a necessity to a well rounded class. This new way of thinking although ancient in it’s origin has made our physical limitations an asset and have produced stronger, wiser and more connected teachers and students.

In this first blog I have added one aspect of what I love about teaching; sharing personal experiences played therapeutically through my interpretation of similar themed songs.  Although this message is in the form of a Spinning® profile it can be easily adjusted to your location and wherever you are listening to music; while working out, cleaning the house, at your job, driving your car or laying on the couch. Use it to heal, inspire and bring you present.  Music speaks to each of us and although this list might not be your taste use it as a guide to create your own.  We can only hear in the present moment.  Use sound to slow you down.

Please feel free to read through the notes even if you are not a teacher as I used these words to help heal myself while listening to the corresponding songs.

Although I have many profiles that incorporate this theme here are two of my most recent:

Spinning - Overcoming ObstaclesCues and Notes on Overcoming Obstacles #1

you can click onto the picture to see the songs/artists.
Note for instructors:  I am only giving you an outline how I rode these profiles.  I am focusing on the spiritual cueing of the playlists only. Incorporate your own movements/drills. Both are set in the same format: Strength Ride broken into 3 Hills each representing a different theme.

The Verdict – (long warm up) Sun beginning to rise across a landscape of rolling hills and mountains. Riding toward the base of our first mountain/obstacle, see only what lies directly under your front tire. The terrain is an off road flat trail and is where you draw your energy from.  The small rippled indents and bumps of stones on the path creates a vibration that enters into the balls of your feet and radiates through your legs.  Let that vibration hum through out all channels of the physical body creating a natural cadence and rhythm to not only your pedal stroke but to the small relaxed movements of your upper body.  Remove any emotions or mental images that prematurely bring you further down the road.

Echoes – Begins our first Hill and represents its theme of FAITH.  Cherish the dawn of a brand new day as a blessing.  Unwrap the base of the mountain and the small shift of gear and terrain that eases you a little bit further back in the saddle and mind landscape. Pause and gaze at the sun rise over the peaks and valley as the hues of orange, red and gold melt across blue skies while white clouds begin to borrow the blending of the same colors.  Imagine you standing on that terrain with arms held high in gratitude.  Thankful for the strength you have in this very moment.

No Hell – Maintaining that strength as you remove your awareness away from the physical body and begin to climb with your soul and spirit….where it takes you higher than you could ever achieve on the physical level.  Begin to release any physical challenges felt in the body visually.  You will slowly begin to feel lighter as resistance increases.  Moving your momentum away from gravity creates a sense of riding with less effort.  When we are stripped emotionally we allow “a bigger heart to grow back.  The best things we learn, we learn from the wreck.  No use running unless you run like heck.”

Oohs & Ahhs – Last portion of our first hill.  Integrate both the physical and spiritual aspect of where you are.  We are flashes of light working in unison to reach a new view.  I used a seated to breakaway approach to the top.  If you reach the top extend a hand down to help the next one up. Verbalize the oohs and ahhs to bring you sanely in the moment.

Old Scars – Simulates the downhill terrain.  Do not allow that bright light to dim no matter what stands in your way. Replace scars with even brighter energy.  Celebrate your life in all its glory.

2nd Hill begins and represents the help and support you had along the way. Have this mountain be a goal you recently achieved or an experience that you went through where someone aided you or where you supported them.

Superman – Dedicated to the unsung heroes.  Giving fully of yourself to help someone else.  What is inside of you is stronger than you give yourself credit.  Honor the special things inside of you.  What are the favorite parts of you?

Kryptonite – Finding love through any type of struggle.

Come Home – Facing our fears head on even if our physical body weakens.  There is a deeper strength that takes over.

Banadi – Long rolling down.  Inhaling a strength you may need, exhaling a strength you can share.  Exchange of energies supports us into the final hill.

The Final Hill represents The Fight.  Often the push to complete or accomplish the final aspect of a goal can be the most challenging both physically and mentally.  The messages in the songs speak for themselves.  Use the lyrics as motivation to finish what you started.

The Boxer –

Fight Song –

You Gotta Fight For Your Right –

Til’ I Collapse –

Home, We’ll Go – Cool down

When We Were Young – Stretch


Spinning - Overcoming Obstacles 2


Cues and Notes on Overcoming Obstacles #2

you can click onto the picture to see the songs/artists.

(same as above)







The Profile is once again broken into 3 hills:

1st = The Obstacle or Goal

2nd = Finding Faith

3rd = Embracing all aspects of you

Renegade – Quick warm up.  Run away and find a visual that symbolizes an oasis.  Where is it?  What are you doing?  Create your own flat terrain.

Mountain At My Gates- Begins the first hill.  Take it slowly since the warm up was quick.  The mountain represents either an obstacle or a goal.  Embrace it.  Find your foothold, chip away and climb.

The Enchanter – Let universal energy flow through you in all directions.  Balancing our sides.  Cue an awareness meditation by describing the left and right sides of the body.  As the pedal stroke begins to slow with increased resistance focus on the left side of the body that relates to feminine and creative qualities, governed by the moon and guided with the heart.  The mental thoughts will slow while strength is found in the heart center.  Let them find their own rhythm and quiet time before moving to the other side. Transfer that energy from the left side through the heart center into the masculine right side of the body.  Receive strength from the sun and use a physical power but be clear not to lead with the dominate leg.  If the right side is your stronger side pull back slightly to gain a balanced power.  Become primitive and allow the music to move through you.  We only hear in the present.  Listen and feel the vibration spread evenly throughout the full physical form.  The mountains are circles we begin and end in continuum.

Various Storms – Sometimes we stumble. Where there is vulnerability strength is born.  Listen to your heart; it leads the way.

Yin Yang – Fast resistance building flat down the other side.  Catch the wind and ride the train.  You are beautiful riding the wind at your back and with the sun against your neck.  Express it through your safe and consistent pedal stroke.

Too Sick to Pray – Get out of your own way.  You have the legs to run the race.

Tunnel – In any obstacle or goal we can find ourselves in quicksand.  Create the visual of a tunnel.  Begin the tunnel describing the smell, terrain and emotions tied to it.  I use a rocky terrain with water flowing under the large stones and creeping around and from within the walls.  Coach them through as the light at the end of the tunnel gets bigger and brighter.

No Church in the Wild – Putting ourselves in another’s shoes to gain understanding and witness our ourselves from a distance.

Difference Maker – We have the power to make a difference no matter how small we might perceive it.  A simple smile to a stranger can truly change someone’s thoughts.  Imagine an eagle flying overhead and take your spirit upon his back.  Look down upon yourself, shift your habitual thoughts and create a difference on what you see.

Don’t Drag Me Down – We are loving caring beings and can carry another’s suitcase for a moment but there comes a time you must give their junk back.  Try not to carry the load of another, you have enough in your own.  While you are flying down this mountainside open your own suitcase and empty it’s contents all over the ground.  Leave it behind you. Return lighter with an empty suitcase and renewed energy to conquer the last portion of the ride.

Winter – Begins the last hill.  We are parts of all our generations before us.  Remember a time when you were a child, a time when your tiny hand fit inside your father’s hand.  Hold is hand fully. Imagine his touch. Feel that protection, that love and embrace your full lineage.

Mona Lisa –

Footsteps – Take this song to aim and go even higher!

Meet Me Where You’re Going – cool down

To Be Alone – Stretch

If you use these playlists publicly in full or part as a teacher please give credit to it’s source.  If you are a fellow teacher you understand the time it takes to originate and form your outlines.  It is very difficult to hold our classes as “our own” since we draw inspiration from each other and from all different avenues however my profiles can take weeks sometimes months to create and I simply ask you to be true.  Thank you.

Sweaty hug from me to you!!

In Health & Happiness,


yoga 2




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