Yoga is a vast health care system that originated in India and is practiced all over the world.
It's so effective that millions of people turn to this system to relieve stress, improve their mood, enhance focus, and take care of their body.
The practice encompasses mind, body, heart, and Soul. When you think of yoga today, your mind naturally pictures the physical aspect of yoga.
You see someone doing yoga, moving their body through different poses known as asanas and you probably think of it as a way of getting into shape and exercising.
And, you're right. But, yoga, unlike other types of exercise, is about calming your mind, deepening your breath, and connecting with your Self. It's about being in the here and now and taking good care of your health.
Right now, we're in the midst of a pandemic. We've been sheltered in place and working from home for over 2 months. It's a stressful and uncertain time. Yoga can help.
I'm not a weight loss coach and I believe in loving yourself and your body, right now, exactly as you are.
So why am I writing a blog post about weight loss?
Because, when I truly started loving my body with nourishing food, yoga, and exercise, I came into balance; losing 12 pounds was a big part of my journey.
My students began asking me how I dropped the extra weight and got such nice sculpted arms!
I'm not gonna lie, I love those compliments but even more than that, I have so much more energy and I feel great.
I found myself telling my students the exact steps I took to get my body back and those conversations led to the creation of my upcoming free training, 3 Steps to Your Strong, Flexible, Vibrant Body
This is the yoga we don't have time to teach in a yoga class.
Yoga is the study of balance, it's the union of body, mind, heart, and Soul. Eating a balanced diet and getting exercise is yoga. Meditation is yoga.
So, yep, I'm writing about...
Last weekend after teaching my Saturday morning yoga class, I went to an ecstatic dance class. I hadn't been to dance in a long time.
It was great! I was swirling around the dance floor connecting with friends and strangers through our shared love of movement.
I had moments of pausing, resting, and catching my breath. At one point, I wrapped my arms around my friend, felt my utter exhaustion, and said, "I am so-o-o tired!"
I felt rung out and I felt sad about it because I could dance for hours and not be as tired as I was in that moment. Is this life after 50?
Is this the peri-menopausal crap I'd been hearing about and now it was happening to me?
I didn't know, but I needed to eat and I needed to rest. I got home, made a nice breakfast of eggs, avocado, and spinach and refueled. I had the entire day ahead of me. I had things to do, places to go, people to see. Or so I thought...
My body had another agenda. She wanted to lie...
Changing habits is no easy task, especially when it comes to diet and exercise.
It can be so challenging, that many people stop before they even get started, missing out on the great pleasure that comes from being fit and healthy.
I've found, for myself and my clients, that with these 3 C's change is not only more likely, it's likely to last.
The first C is COMMITMENT, which brings to mind my favorite quote on the subject,
"Commitment is doing what you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has left you." ~Anonymous
Commitment is the glue that bonds you to your goals. It's a pledge to yourself, it's a vow. Commitment ignites your fire! In yoga, fire is the element of the 3rd chakra, located at the solar plexus, the power center.
If you want to change your lifestyle and be healthy, vibrant, and fit, you've got to light the fire of your power chakra!
So, how do you get committed?
Paint a vivid picture, in your mind's eye,...
Have you ever noticed that when it comes to changing your diet saying "NO" is like a workout?
Saying "No", when you're craving chocolaty cookies, crispy chips, or a smooth glass of wine, is an exercise.
Saying "NO" is like lifting weights.
Think about it, when you first get start lifting weights, the weights are awkward and unfamiliar.
You've got to figure out the correct weight, learn the proper technique, and do several repetitions, a few times a week, a few weeks in a row, before weight lifting feels natural to you.
The same is true of flexing your "No!"
This week, I challenge you to build your "NO" muscles and get stronger! With consistent reps, making healthy choices will become the norm for you. It will feel natural.
There might be times when you just don't feel strong enough to lift the "NO," and you go off the rails, give in, and eat a cinnamon roll! So be it!
Let it go and move on.
Today, on the New Moon in Pisces, I went outside, as suggested by my Moon Goddess, Dana Gerhardt.
She said to go outside and take in everything, the sky, the weather, the sounds, the temperature, the animals, all of it and just notice where your energy is drawn.
I noticed the bare trees, how they look dead yet they're simply in their winter season. My eyes take in the half-alive half-dead lemon tree that grows right outside of our front window.
When we first moved here, this lemon tree was lush and bountiful producing hundreds of lemons nearly throughout the entire year.
Then came the year when the children, with their sticks and imagined worlds, unknowing of the harm they would cause Miss Lemon, struck her branches and broke her bark, soon stripping it from her body.
I remember telling the kids not to do that to Miss Lemon. That it would hurt her an she would struggle to live.
Those children have long since moved away. And the little lemon tree struggles to live...
If you want to reap the hundreds of health benefits of cardiovascular exercise and yoga, then YES!
You might be thinking, “I get to my yoga mat 3 times a week, why do I need cardio?”
What does cardio offer that yoga doesn’t?
I’m going to share the top 5 benefits that come from pumping up the cardio but first let me tell you about my personal experience.
I’ve been practicing yoga for over 22 years and teaching for 18 years. In my younger days, I worked out at the gym, went running, hiking, and walking.
I got so into yoga that it became my main physical activity. As a teacher, I practiced a lot but it wasn’t the same as my cardio workouts. In fact, unless the room was warm, I wouldn’t break a sweat.
And even if the room was warm, the sweat was triggered more from the external heat then my practice.
I felt good but I wasn’t as fit as I was when I was doing...
I read this beautiful passage, in my yoga class, from Thich Nhat Hahn’s little book, HOW TO SIT.
Take a few moments to gather your energy by taking a couple of conscious breaths, and ponder Thich’s teachings on “Habit Energy.”
"When you sit, you may feeling something pushing you to get up and do something else.
That’s the energy inside each of use called habit energy.
Habit Energy is energy that is fueled by an old pattern, situation, or habit.
It isn’t based on our real needs and our real situaition in the present.
Habit energy is always pushing.
We have the habit of thinking that happiness isn’t possible in the here and now
that we have to go look for it somewhere else or in the future.
That’s why we keep running. Our parents ran too. They transmitted the habit of running to us, and they received it from their ancestors.
It’s a longstanding habit.
We deeply believe that in the future we may have more conditions for...
You might be surprised when I tell you it starts with loving the body you have! The word yoga translates to yoke or unite.
This did not come easily for me back in the days before I found yoga. In fact, in my early 20’s I hated my body. I was always an active fit kid even into my teens, but by the time I was a junior in high-school, I started gaining weight. In college my weight became a constant source of frustration. It didn’t help that my best girlfriend was fit-as-a-fiddle with beautiful, lean, tan legs and mine were fat and full of cellulite! I hated my legs!
Apparently, so did my boyfriend.
I’ll never forget the night we were walking on the beach when he dropped a truth-bomb on me. He looked me in the eyes and said, “You have the most beautiful face but your legs are fat and that is a real turn-off for me.”
I was devastated! I couldn’t believe he said...