Tag Archives: yoga

A Lot of Firsts: Finding the Joy Around Me

17 Oct

Wow! That was another long stretch!

I’ve been enjoying the fall weather and time is flying by! Since I posted last, David and I have been exploring our lives finding joy in what we can and focusing on being happy with the today. Hockey season is back in full swing again, keeping us plenty busy!

We got Gizmo a bike basket for him to ride in - he's loving it!

We got Gizmo a bike basket for him to ride in – he’s loving it!

A month or so ago, there was an opportunity to try stand up paddle boarding for free from a local SUP business. I was so excited when the time ended up working for us to give it a shot and David was open to going with me. It was awesome! We went on a pond but I could just imagine how amazing it’d be if you had clear water under that board….hopefully when we go on our trip we’ll be able to get an opportunity to try it again!

Me + SUP

Me + SUP

Speaking of trying new things, I’ve attended 2 studio yoga classes now. I have been really getting into yoga at home because it’s just so good for my mind, heart, and body right now. I feel at peace afterwards as well as continuing to be challenged physically each time. There was another FREE opportunity to do a yoga+art class which was yoga in an old warehouse where they have an art studio. The instructor had us move our mats around the gallery and while in the poses, she would talk about the artwork and then we’d do a few yoga flows and move to another area. I’ve been to a lot of art galleries in the past and this was by far my favorite way to experience the artwork!

IMG_20130915_134147_208

 

IMG_20130915_134616_461

After that yoga class, I was hooked on the studio setting – it made me try harder and push myself further but also helped me to appreciate the people in the class with me and their love for yoga; very inspiring. One Saturday morning I was planning on checking out our Farmer’s Market and decided to hit up a yoga class that was near the Market. It was in a small older building, by small I mean the studio was literally 3 by 3 yoga mats long and wide. There were about 5 of us in the class. By the end of the session, my legs were literally shaking like jello. I was pretty sore for a few days afterwards.

IMG_20130928_100317

In September, for our Anniversary we rented out a house for the weekend on Lake Michigan, it was kind of rainy and really foggy so most of the time we were there we could barely see the Lake but it was nice to relax and feel rested and refreshed. I’m looking forward to going back there again but in, hopefully, nicer weather!

Spiced Pumpkin Tea is my fall favorite!

Spiced Pumpkin Tea is my fall favorite!

So that’s what I’ve been up to…enjoying my yoga practice, hockey, and loving all of the nice fall walks and bike rides.

IMG_20131010_170936_214

My New Pink Rug

27 Feb

Ok, it’s not a rug…it’s a yoga mat! I finally went out and purchased one. It was really cheap, only $7 on clearance at Walmart – that store kind of makes me cringe a little…but regardless, super cheap deal! After a crummy day I decided I needed to lift up my mood, get centered, and let go some of the tension I was feeling. I have given yoga a try in the past and after having trained myself to enjoy sweat for so long, I had the toughest time finding enjoyment out of the lower impact, slower paced workout.

mat

I am not flexible by any means. This was one thing I’ve never been good at and mostly because I’m not the best stretcher. With doing more pilates and Blogilates, I have realized how it’s not really a matter of flexibility, it’s a matter of stretching daily and building muscle. I’ve felt more and more loosened up and can stretch a lot further already!

20120830_061832

So I thought I’d give yoga another shot a few days ago. Bad news was that I was having a hard time staying in one spot. I don’t know if it was because I wasn’t mentally focusing enough, or I was sliding around so much on our carpet, or if it was because I didn’t have a fun, happy, pink colored mat to look down at; I agree, I think I needed to try a mat!

I grabbed David some apples for the week on Sunday at the store and yesterday got a text saying how awful they were. Homemade applesauce anyone? So I thought perfect reason to stop by Walmart and check out their workout apparel and yoga accessories; and grab some ‘crisp’ apples.

535704_10151464949810797_1783877197_n

Photo credit: David’s Instgram

I not only got a mat but I got a few shirts ($5 for a decently cute top!), a pair of running shorts, and an active razorback tank. Working out in clothes that are meant to be worked out in is so much more fun than working out in an old t-shirt and shorts. I swear it made me feel stronger and more energized!!

When I got home, I rolled out my new pink mat and looked on the YouTube channel we now have on our Wii to find a video to do. I did 3 yoga videos and it felt so good! I will master those moves that I could barely attempt last night…my mat won’t let me down!

I think it will also come in handy when I do pilates, Blogilates, and any core work as it really does help keep me in place and when in planks or pushups or downward dog; my hands and feet stick to the mat so that I can focus on my form and not how my body is sliding in all directions.

Yoga gets a bad rap because it’s not seen as hard as a lot of other workouts and even I didn’t give it credit because if sweat wasn’t dripping from my forehead and I wasn’t laying on the ground exhausted, it wasn’t worth my time but moving from one static strength yoga move to another with grace and flexibility, while really breathing deeply and focused, really challenged me last night and my shoulders, back, arms, and legs are already feeling sore today. There are lots of different types of yoga; some focusing on breathing and relaxation and others focusing on core and total body strength. All very good workouts and worth giving a chance – just make sure you have enough grip underneath you because it really does help!

yogasolution

I love the Yoga Solution workouts from Livestrong Women. Tara Stiles is so good about telling you what she’s doing and reminding you to “breath a lot” and do your best.

Have you ever tried yoga? Do you have a yoga mat?

Are apples hard for you to buy too? David likes a different kind of apple than I do and I swear I never remember what ones he liked the last time…

Getting my fitness back on

3 Jan

With the Holidays and all of the sharing of New Year’s Resolutions, as well as over abundance of food and treats, I have been slowly reincorporating some fitness back into my life over the past month or so.

This past weekend, I went for my first run in a long time. My mom and I ventured down to the ice arena where you can do laps around the top. We walked a few miles and I decided to run 2.5. It felt great! I paid for it the next day though, my legs definitely felt it and were thanking me for working them again. But while I ran, I thought about all of my progress this past year and instead of thinking “you can go further, fight through it” I was thinking “this feels great, now that’s enough for now, you’ve come too far.”

I’m not planning to go full in again, but after the Dr. reassured me that my weight was healthy and exercising again was OK as long as I did it in moderation and made sure I was refueling properly. After this past year and my struggle with Hypothalamic Amenorrhea and now my choice to try fertility treatments this month, I want to make sure I don’t reverse any progress I have made.

I don’t have a fitness ‘plan’ in place because I am just trying to take it day by day and not get wrapped up into many goals or personal bests. I want to listen to my body. If I need a full out rest day because I am sore from the day before (or even the day before that) I don’t want to push it and will take that rest day to let my muscles recover and grow stronger. I would like to get a few days of 30 minutes of cardio in a week whether it’s on the elliptical, walking, or running a few laps around the ice arena. I also have been pulling out some Jillian videos to challenge my muscles again as well as Cassey’s Blogilates.

20120830_061355

Last night I did Level 2 of Jillian’s Yoga Meltdown. I reviewed Level 1 and I liked Level 2 even more. It is a nice balance between low-intensity strength moves, flexibility, and balance. Afterwards I wasn’t exhausted and drained, instead I felt reenergized and overall healthy.

IMG_20130102_170957

It’s all about balance in life. Balance is key. If there is one thing I have learned from the past 2 years is the importance of balance in all areas of life. Whether it’s fitness, nutrition, a career, school, etc.; balance will pull you through to be the best you can be overall.

I don’t plan on going out and working my fitness back to where it use to be. I don’t plan on losing even a single pound. I plan on eating what I want, getting my heart rate up to retain my health, and moving forward with 2013 with a great focus on balance in all areas of my life. This year, I don’t have a New Year’s Resolution except to be a normal, healthy person inside and out.