There is so much in life that draws us away from our primary purpose. When I find a resource in any category that draws me straight to mine, I cling to it. As a Catholic, that primary purpose is always Jesus Christ... and if a thing doesn't draw me closer to Him, it probably doesn't belong in my life.
This is where the meeting of the secular and the sacred often causes confusion... because it isn't always clear cut. Excellent homeschooling materials (for example) don't always have to explicitly mention the name of Our Lord in order to help a person develop in His service. But boy, when you stumble upon a really excellent and thoroughly Catholic resource... it's a lot like winning the lottery.
I have always been committed to fitness in my life (body, mind, soul) and yet this year is much bigger for me as I focus (like a laser beam) on what it is that I need to do to be well. Healing from chronic illness and immune dysfunction can be a long road. 2016 is my time to Rise to Joy in service of my God and my vocation. And I'm sharing all of it publicly as a way to stay accountable and help others. So...
I want to introduce you to a challenging and beautiful Catholic fitness series called SoulCore. It's not yoga but it uses some of the same principles of movement that people find so effective... "a combination of core-strengthening exercises and isometric exercises, stretching and overall strengthening of the entire body." The biggest difference is...
Overt, joyful, focused, prayerful, physical and mental movement toward the Savior of the World. The SoulCore project is consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus. That's really the core of who we are. Beautiful.
The exercises are set to a full rosary so it's a two-for-one if you're crunched for time. But there are greater benefits to that method:
1. The prayers are the counting method. You move and pray. As a Catholic, I know the Hail Mary so well that it's like breathing. In this workout, I find myself easily entering into that prayer... sometimes less focused if I'm struggling with an exercise (but I know the prayer well enough to keep it on my lips) and sometimes more focused as my body and soul are both oriented toward work and heaven. Ora et labora indeed.
2. This is not just work and prayer but work as prayer. Our bodies are designed to serve the Lord. And the real gift with taking care of them with right purpose is that the care becomes a service to Him as well. It is not just a way to strengthen us for vocation but is actually a part of our vocation. SoulCore draws the mind to this reality directly.
As I said before, the exercises can be challenging even for those who are accustomed to working out. But they are also easy to adapt; lighter weights, fewer reps, knee push ups. My pregnant belly forces me to make some of those modifications but the workout is still wholly accessible to me.
The Sorrowful and Joyful Mystery DVD workouts are currently available and the Glorious Mysteries will be in the shop soon. Digital downloads for all are also available. The website is full of inspirational material, accessories, local class info, and the inspiring story of the mission of the founders.
The SoulCore team very generously sent me a Sorrowful Mysteries DVD to review (I bought two more DVD's after loving my review copy!) ...
...and also sent TWO copies to give away to my readers.
Enter below through the Rafflecopter. I hope you win! If not, I hope you get the opportunity to experience this wonderful workout series another way!