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The Truth About Building Strength (Elliott Hulse’s version)

Posted on 19. Jul, 2011 by in Diet / Nutrition, Injuries / Rehab, Mental Strength & Life, Motivation, Physiology, Strength & Power

The Truth About Building Strength (Elliott Hulse’s Version)

If you’ve learned anything from reading my blogs or watching my videos you’ve learned that being the strongest version of yourself is more than how much you bench or deadlift.  Physical or muscular strength is an outward expression of becoming truly strong.  The strength I’m talking about is one that emanates from your deepest core outward.  Yes, it has to do with the kind of person you are but even that is an outward manifestation, a by product if you will, of what I’m talking about.

In this sense, strength is more synonymous with health or vitality, but these words don’t have the power that strength does.  Becoming the strongest version of yourself involves a completeness that encompasses all of you.  On a physical level that means all of your parts are solid and work in concert.  Your core is stable and the power emanated from your arms and legs can base off of that solid foundation of core strength.  In order for your muscles to be sound, your organs must be sound, which means your diet must be sound.  Your organs and muscles are connected to your brain through the central nervous system.  That connection must be sound and the source of all of your input into the body, the mind, must be sound as well.  That means your thoughts have to be right, too.  Do you see the world as a positive or negative place?  How you think about the world and your life affects how you are inside it and has a direct impact on the outcome of how you interact within it.

The phrase “strength comes from the inside” is incredibly accurate.  See, strength is a function of the nervous system, which is something our brothers and sisters from the East have understood for a very long time.  Aryuvedic medicine, which comes from India, is thousand of years old.  It centers around a concept called the chakra system.

In Western medicine the chakras correspond to the nerve ganglia that occur along the spine.  These ganglia are clusters or nerve bundles that correspond to certain areas of the body.  Each cluster enervates the muscles and organs of its particular region and serves as the basis of communication between the body and the mind and the mind and the body.

The chakras or nerve clusters, also known as vortexes, each correspond to a different zone or area of the body.  Each of these zones has a corresponding emotion or mental state.  As we study these zones we can begin to see how the body is reflected in the mental/emotional state and the mental/emotional is reflected in the body.

Zone 1 is found at the base of the spine.  The nerve plexus is the lumbar and coccygeal plexus.  Physically it deals with the hips, legs and feet.  From a psycho-emotional stand point this area deals with a sense of safety and stability.  Zone 1 has to do with our connection to the earth.  The nerves themselves resemble roots reaching down and seeking to connect with the ground.  One can easily see how weakness or instability in this area can lead to an emotional instability as our sense of mobility and hence safety become compromised.

Zone 2 involves the lumbar plexus.  It deals with sex and procreation and thus involves the sex organs, as well as elimination and water regulation through the colon.  Zone 2 also deals with emotional balance.

Zone 3 is the solar plexus.  It covers your sense of personal power and self will and handles the physical functions of digestion and assimilation.

Zone 4 is referred to as the heart chakra.  It is ruled by the cardiac plexus and handles the heart and blood pressure and the immune system.  Emotionally this is the center that deals with giving and receiving and love.

Zone 5 is the throat or pharyngeal plexus.  Physically it governs the metabolism and involves the thyroid and parathyroid glands.  Emotionally it handles communication and the ability to both hear and be heard.

Zone 6 covers the brain.  It is ruled by the carotid plexus and involves both the pineal and pituitary glands.  It governs hormonal regulation and also intuition, wisdom and creative intelligence.

Zone 7 is actually outside the body and exhibits where Eastern medicine diverges greatly from its Western counterpart.  Zone seven or the crown chakra deals with our spiritual connection to God.  It is by no mere coincidence that many ancient cultures recognize the special nature of the top of the head.  Jews and Muslims take special steps to cover the head in a show of respect to God.  The Chinese view the top of the head as a very personal space and consider touching that part casually to be very rude and disrespectful.

Given this paradigm we can began to see our bodies as a kind of energetic tree.  The roots of our legs and the first chakra reach down seeking to connect us with the earth and our surroundings.  The energy of the crown chakra reaches up toward the heavens seeking to connect us more fully with the universal energy that is God and Nature.

The strength that emanates from this structure is dependent on the health and vitality of each link along the chain.  Interestingly enough the West has come to some similar conclusions, albeit in a slightly different fashion.  Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs looks very similar to the chakra chart and as we move up the body each issue is reflected in Maslow’s understanding of how we evolve spiritually.

Dysfunction in each of the zones can be sensed as an under or over expression of each zone.  Weakness in Zone 2 might manifest itself as impotence;.overstimulation of that area might mean hyper sexuality.  Weakness in Zone 5 might manifest itself in a quiet, reserved personality, the meek, mouse of a person who is often overlooked and over run.  Too much expression of Zone 5 is the braggart loudmouth who runs people off because he just won’t shut up.

These dysfunctions take on a physical and a non-physical aspect.  We come to see that dysfunctions of posture, digestion, sexuality and or strength are more than just the physical processes themselves.  There is a much larger dynamic at play and unless that totality is addressed our attempts to repair that dysfunction will be mediocre at best.

Given this paradigm we can see how important having all of parts “lined up and straight” is toward becoming the strongest version of ourselves.  “We are only as strong as our weakest link” takes a much deeper dimension when we take into account all our internal processes and see them linked to how we move, act and feel.

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