Secret to Staying Limber over 40

Yesterday I logged about 12-hours of work. I wasn’t just typing on a keyboard (like I am now), but lifting heavy things in the hot sun and generally abusing my body. How do I keep on going after 17 farm seasons? I’ll give you my secret in a bit, but let me first set the stage by sharing a list of yesterday’s accomplishments:

  • Hoisted pig feeder on trailer and moved to new pasture
  • Harvested and cleaned garlic, onions, beans, and broccoli
  • Weeded onions by hand
  • Stocked farm stand a couple times
  • Hoed peppers
  • Trellised tomatoes
  • Set up fence for pigs in new pastures
  • Fixed raccoon fence with weed whip
  • Flail mowed
  • Prepared bed with wheel hoe and rake and planted lettuces
  • Set new irrigation by dragging around a few hundred feet of hose
  • Other things…?

Typical stuff on a vegetable farm. Commercial vegetable production is not so much a business as a really large time management experiment. All told, however, it’s a lot of manual tasks with a bunch of walking in between each job.

The magic I’ve come across that keeps me in the groove and fit enough to routinely slug out 12 and 14-hour days is yoga. My past apprentice Kelsey would just chalk it up to my total hippy-ness, but a morning of about 30 minutes of yoga followed by two cups of coffee, a smoothie, and some vitamins (magnesium and multivitamin) seems to be the secret sauce to conquer the world.

Especially since I do all this physical effort, yoga asana has a huge impact, not only because it strengthens my body to do the effort, but also in yoga we practice holding an effort. Whether I need to push a wheel hoe up and down a field multiple times or carry a heavy crate a long distance, it’s the same in my mind as holding a yoga pose. It’s pretty easy after practicing every single morning (I’ve skipped maybe 20 days in the past two years). In addition, it’s by far the most effective stress reduction practice and certainly keeps me limber. There are few days that I wake up sore, no matter the hours or efforts logged the day before.

Unlimited free yoga on youtube here – give it a whirl…it might change your life. To give you an entry point, I started with this 30 Days of Yoga in 2016 and haven’t stopped since.

In the box:

I think we’ve officially hit high season with this box…welcome corn, tomatoes, and beans!

  • Broccoli: Please look for cabbage loopers (ugly green worms). We soaked these heads a few hours to drown them out, but some always escape. You can soak in saltwater and a little vinegar more as per these instructions before use.
  • Green Cabbage
  • Fresh Fennel: This is a rare crop that a few adore and most are confused by. Let me assure you that this is more versatile than you’d think…great in salads, great with chicken, and a lot of mediterranean food like french braises and Italian sauces. Lot of ideas at https://www.seriouseats.com/2016/09/fennel-recipes.html
  • Fresh Thyme: Little fragrant bunch with a red band.
  • Provider Green Beans
  • Cherry Tomato Mix
  • A Couple Cucumbers
  • Sugar Buns Yellow Sweet Corn: Small ears, but this is consistently an early variety and still very young. I was able to find 4 ears for everybody that was getting to size, but there will be more coming in the near future.
  • Green Garlic: This is uncured, fresh garlic, so the outside wrapper isn’t dried down yet. The garlic is a little more pungent, but you’d use the same way. If you aren’t ready to use fresh, just leave in a dry sunny location and it’ll cure in your house.
  • Alisa Craig Sweet Onion 

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