Fave Reads Friday #15 – Devoured

Things I write about from time to time are the food that I eat and the books that I read and occasionally books about about food. Back in March and April when I was traveling a ton for NETA I was able to get some serious reading done. One book I completely destroyed in a single weekend was Devoured: How What We Eat Defines Who We Are by Sophie Egan.

 

Continue reading “Fave Reads Friday #15 – Devoured”

Hannah’s Total Body Sync – Guest Post

Last fall was the semester of the Hannahs for me. I had a Hannah in almost every class I taught. Each Hannah was unique in her own way and I enjoyed learning about each of their own personalities. This Hannah was quiet in voice, but expressive in many other ways. I was always delighted when it all came together for her. Here is another great student guest post:

I took this yoga course to start being more in tune with my body. I have struggled with my health most of my life and I have been told yoga would help me live a more healthy and full lifestyle, physically and mentally. In this course I hoped to learn how to better understand and be in tune with my body. I also hoped to learn how to use yoga as a de-stress-er and to decrease anxiety.

 During the first lesson we learned how to regulate and control breathing. We controlled where the air flowed into our bodies and became aware of aspects we do not often acknowledge. In our second lesson we worked with awakening poses, which I have learned help back pain throughout the day and help me focus before work. I have also started to be aware of what I fuel my body with. Fitness yoga was hard at first and would hurt for days after, but I would feel better after class; as if my body was completely in sync.

 After a semester of yoga I am starting to live a healthier lifestyle. I pay attention to how my body feels and understanding that every feeling has a reason and trying to fix the bad feelings in a healthy manner. I took a class at Salty Dog Yoga with my boyfriend and we both wish to continue exploring yoga and improving our well being. Yoga is more than physical, it is also spiritual.

 

Thank you Hannah and I hope you’re still exploring!

Have a yoga story you’d like to share?

Contact me to do a Guest Post of your own.

Intentionality – Guest Post

Here is another great student guest post!

Fall semester 2018 was the single most progressive few months of my entire life in terms of personal growth. I enrolled in the 9am Monday morning yoga class because I have always loved practicing yoga and I thought it would be a great start to my week. The semester began calmly and was wholly unsuspecting to the entire upturn my life was going to take starting in September. The practice of yoga, mindfulness, and meditation helped me cope with losing my house, my belongings, my relationship, my car, and coming to terms with some unexpected medical diagnoses all within 4 weeks. Not only was I able to take away at least 2 hours of required self-care a week, I learned valuable skills that helped me take my practice with me back home.

I have, since beginning that class, practiced yoga at least twice a week every week and I even branched out to the yoga studio next to where I work and found a perfect fit in a twice-weekly class that I absolutely adore. My goal at the beginning of the semester was to become more flexible, and although I’m not sure if I’ve noticeably achieved that yet, I have gained back upper body strength that I haven’t had since before I had cancer. I can do push-ups now! Thanks to sun salutations! And one of the biggest personal growths I’ve experienced is practicing intentionality. If I haven’t been mindful of taking initiative and being proactive this semester I would have had to move back in with my parents 4 hours away and recovery after Florence etc. would not have been possible. I genuinely adored this class and every time I had to be absent was really devastating to me. I truly look forward to continuing my practice for the rest of my life taking with me with the knowledge I’ve gained in how and why we practice.

Thank you for your strength and wisdom!

Have a yoga story you’d like to share?

Contact me to do a Guest Post of your own.

Wellness Wednesday #5 – Food for Thought

Last week I was only able to crank out a Wellness Wednesday post on the topic of Sensing. I had hoped to also sneak in a Meditation Monday post and a Fave Reads Friday about a book I’m reading….and then I didn’t even write a travel post about my time in Sheboygan! Isn’t that just fun to say? Sheboygan. Try it. Anyway…..Six inches of snow and below freezing temps and now, here we are again at Wednesday and it’s time to talk about EATING…. Continue reading “Wellness Wednesday #5 – Food for Thought”

2019 Wellness Wednesday Reset

I’m not making 2019 a year of anything right now. I am just trying to let life flow, but I feel like a blog still needs structure and a predictable format. So, I want to still do Wellness Wednesdays (and eventually alternate them with Workout Wednesdays). In 2018 I tried really hard to focus on my wellness and I did a great job of learning more about myself and standing up for things that made me well from time to time. This year I’m continuing that trend and stacking my wellness bit by bit. My body may not be a bank account, but I am definitely investing in my wellness.

So far I have been consistent in working out for the past 7 days. I had started a new routine before Christmas and quickly put it on hold that day. Why? Because I chose not to stress about my physical wellness at that time. Wellness means so many things that I needed to make sure that I was giving the correct balance to the areas that needed it during that time. I took Christmas Day off and then drove to Iowa the following days and spent time with family and drove back after the New Year. Then, the day after I returned….I started back up again.

Another area of wellness that I am working on this year is being more financially well. I have stopped using my credit card for anything that’s not A- work related for which I will be reimbursed or B- a serious emergency that I can’t cover at the moment. Knock on wood, but B hasn’t happened in a LONG time. Unfortunately, A hasn’t been happening as much lately either. Stopping credit card spending isn’t the only area I’m venturing into in this category, but I’ll write more about my attempts at #adulting as I go along.

My mental wellness is an area that was in major turmoil from about September 2017 until just recently. Mental wellness encompasses so many of the dimensions of wellness that it’s hard to define just one way of making yourself well. For me, as a fitness professional, it also has a lot to do with my physical fitness and my intellectual stimulation. If I’m not moving and not learning new things, then I suffer.

In the coming weeks I begin teaching Wellness Lectures again. I hope to keep pushing forward past just the posts on Moving, Self-Love, and Breathing that I’ve already written and to watch my wellness continue to grow this year.

Which parts of your wellness will you invest in this year?

2019

I haven’t written on the blog since October 20, 2018, but that doesn’t mean that I have lost my love for writing or my intention to keep this going. With each new year I learn a little more about myself and I learned A LOT last year. This year will be different (as each one also is) and I decided to wait until today to write. I am not making resolutions this year or setting outright goals. I am trying to be as “yogic” as I can and kind of just let life be. If anything, I am hoping to be more well-rounded this year. I hope to find more time for everything that I want to do and to stop doing the things that I don’t. So, while I still had 19 minutes until my planned run for the day….I wrote to you.

And, in usual OGB fashion, I will leave you with a question:

What will 2019 be for you?

Modeling

Well, it’s Thursday and I still haven’t finished How We Live Our Yoga, but I did start to find some anecdotes that spoke to me. Maybe the back portion of the book is meant to be the best so that if you actually stick with it it will be worth the time?

There was one passage by Judith Hanson Lasater in which she talks about how her yoga changes over the years and about being a “Swami Mommy” As my youngest is starting Kindergarten on Monday and I move into the next phase of my own life, I realize why my kids need me to do my yoga just as much as I need it. They need me to be patient and ever evolving along with them. My life is changing and so is theirs. They also need a mom who is flexible both mentally, emotionally, and physically. I need to grow and change and listen and able to keep up. Continue reading “Modeling”

Meditation Monday #51 – Impromptu Meditations

Last Thursday my youngest didn’t want to go to school….it’s preschool and to some people that doesn’t “really” matter. However, I have to go to work on the days that he goes to school. I specifically scheduled work while he was in school so that I don’t have to have childcare any more. I also pay for his preschool and it’s not cheap. At preschool he’s learning A LOT of important lessons and by making him go to school (even when he doesn’t want to), I’m trying to teach him another lesson: sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to do.

On Thursdays I usually workout after I am done teaching. Sun salutations or swimming are the norm, but this Thursday I had another matter to deal with: parking ticket. I went to the parking office and appealed my ticket. I won. It was a good day. This left me some extra time before the little guy was done with school. Because he hadn’t wanted to go in the first place I had promised I would pick him up early. Once I arrived at his school I thought about the importance of two things: keeping my promise and his need to be in school the full time. I opted to pick him up only slightly early (I’m usually one of the last parents to arrive for pick-up) to meet both.

So, I took a seat on the bench outside the school. It was a nice day and no one was around. I sat in Sukhasana (easy pose), closed my eyes, turned my face up to the sun, and started an impromptu meditation. I haven’t spent enough time meditating lately. I’ve done a lot of journal writing, which has been good for my soul, but is not the same thing as meditating. I decided that day that I needed to just listen to the world around me and within me.

In general I recommend that you have a focus for meditation before beginning. However, I know the need for impromptu meditation is strong; especially in the world we live in today. So, I encourage you to take the time today to be in the moment. Give yourself the present of impromptu meditation…..maybe even this minute. Sit comfortably, close your eyes, and listen. Listen to the sounds around you (or lack there of) and be aware of your present surroundings. Listen to the voices in your head (don’t think about them, but hear them passing through). Listen to your body and all the things you ignore that are both good and bad. And, if like me, allow yourself to smile or cry or both.

Life is tough for me these days….hence the reason I stepped away from the blog mostly. However, life is also life and being alive is good. Impromptu meditation reminded me that warm sun, the sound of garbage trucks/traffic flowing by, and the ability to breathe freely are all great things in life because it’s life itself.

Happy Monday! You’re alive!

Please feel free to share your impromptu meditation moments or any other thoughts in the comments section below.

A Week Unhinged

It’s Thursday again and this week has been a little up and down. I missed yesterday’s Workout Wednesday post because I ran out of time to write and load. The video is all done and ready to go, but it will have to wait until next week.

As I’ve been writing about my schedule I notice a few things that I need to work on:

  1. Timing
  2. Fluidity
  3. Fun

Let’s start with Timing. I mentioned recently that I probably should have gotten a calendar with time slots in it because I need to start ordering when I am doing things. Timing also means knowing how much time an activity will take. This blends into Fluidity. When planning my activities I need to figure out what I can do when to make things flow. So, I don’t want to be out and then need to come home before I go back out again. I used to be much better at this when my kids were smaller and had certain nap/feeding times. It was easier to map out what needed to be done when and to pack accordingly. Now, I feel like I run here and there and am constantly shuffling things to the next day.

Fluidity and Timing have had a big impact on Fun. My word of the week is PLAY and that was almost like bad permission to throw the schedule out the window….

On Tuesday I taught a pumpkin workout with medicine balls. Because I had to carry them all over the place and did 62 Sun Salutations, I skipped weight training. (permission to play and not to work out) Yesterday I ran with T and then she and the kids stayed over to play which pushed back the time I went grocery shopping and therefore made me skip posting and….because my arms were dead from Tuesday….I also skipped Sun Salutations. (too much permission to play) Today I am still feeling DOMS from Tuesday, but will be conquering my 64 Sun Salutations as soon as this post goes up. I skipped my swim today to come home to a “sick” kid (just reflux) and now I will not hit 108 SS on Thanksgiving Day.

Fluidity to me also means going with the flow of things. So, a goal has been missed, but that doesn’t mean that I’m dropping it. Part of the Sun Salutation Challenge is part of me forming the habit of a more regular yoga practice. I feel like I need to renew my commitment to yoga now that I’m not currently teaching it.

So, a few things have thrown me for a loop this week and my timing is off, but it’s only one week.

One final thing to announce…..I had applied for that full-time position and found out on Monday that I was no longer in the running. This is a good and a bad thing for me, but I’m not quite ready to talk about it in full this post. It’s probably what set me off track this week.

Tomorrow I have a few more notes on habits in the Fave Reads Friday post…all I can say for now is IRONY!

What do you do with off weeks?

How do you maintain commitment?

A special Thank You to Amanda for the TOLT space to share.