Everything you need for your yoga journey

My new favorite yoga cd

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My new favorite yoga cd

I just got the piano guys album! This will be perfect for my classes and home practice!


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Yamas and Niyamas Review

I recently started re-reading one of my favorite yoga books: The Yamas and Niyamas by Deborah Adele. I first read this book when I was going through my yoga teacher training and it was by far one of the most meaningful books I have ever read. The way that she explains the yamas and niyamas is so accessible and clear. I reread the first chapter on Ahimsa, which means nonviolence, and that is such an important concept. I really take the idea of not being violent to yourself to heart. I think it is easy to beat yourself up over the way you look or your weight or whatever is on your mind but we need to be kind to ourselves. She makes the point that you treat others the way feel about yourself and that is so true.

Lately I have been working on truthfulness. Her idea of ‘doing it right the first time’ is something I have been practicing. At work and in my life I try to cut corners to get as many things done as I can but really when I don’t do it right the first time I end up going back and spending more time fixing it than if I just did it right the first time. She also has a quote that I love. “What is so scary about the truth?” This really speaks to me. I have also been trying to stop being dishonest with myself. Even with little things I lie to myself.

The most important part of the yamas and niyamas is the remember that you practice them. This means that you mat not do well on your yamas and niyamas today but tomorrow you start all over. Each moment is an opportunity to practice yoga in any form. At times we can think of yoga as only the asanas, or poses, but really living our lives according to the yamas and niyamas is yoga.

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Yoga Sculpt Playlist

Music and yoga has been a big issue for many people. Some believe that you should always have music some believe it distracts from the mindfulness of the practice. I have always been a believer in music during a yoga class. A lot of time if I am doing more of a vinyasa flow class or a relax and restore class I will use soft, peaceful, traditional music but when I teach a sculpt class I like to make it a little more of a yoga party. I feel that if people are there for my sculpt class they are looking more for a workout and the mindfulness of the practice is secondary. So I like to use more contemporary music with (gasp!) words! So I thought I would share my current yoga sculpt playlist. This is also the current playlist I have been using for my home practice.

1. Stubborn Love- The Lumineers

2. Feel Again- OneRepublic

3. Home- Phillip Phillips

4. Ho Hey- Lumineers

5. Shake It Out (Glee Version)- Glee Cast

6. Daydreamer- Adele

7. Keep Breathing- Ingrid Michaelson

8. Crazy For You- Adele

9. The Long Day Is Over- Norah Jones

10. Hometown Glory- Adele

11. Come Away With Me- Norah Jones

12. You’ve Got the Love- Florence + The Machine

13. Let The Rain- Sara Bareilles

14. Breathe Again- Sara Bareilles

15. Everything Has Changed- Taylor Swift fest Ed Sheeran

16. Be OK- Ingrid Michaelson

17. Teenage Dream (Glee Version)- Glee Cast

18. I Gave You All- Mumford & Sons

19. Charlie Boy- The Lumineers

20. Only Love- Ben Howard

I usually just put these songs on shuffle during my practice. I have found doing a strength/workout focused practice is quite fun when you do it with contemporary music.

What do you think about music in yoga classes?

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This Christmas I got a juicer! I was so excited because I have been wanting one and it was even better because it was a complete surprise when I unwrapped it and there it was! I also got this book with 600 juice recipes. So since Christmas I have been experimenting with different juices and seeing how they effect me mood and energy level and over all health. Basically, I don’t know how I lived before I had this juicer! Almost every day I am making a juice that gives me several servings of fruits and vegetables and it makes me feel energized and healthy. I can almost (but not quite) replace my green juice with my morning coffee. I probably could swap them in terms of the energy boost I get from my juice but I REALLY like coffee especially in the morning so I don’t think I could ever give that up. 

Since I started juicing there have been a few combinations of fruits and vegetables that I have found to be the best tasting and the most energizing.

Green Juice:

1/2-1 bunch organic kale

1 granny smith apple

1 orange (any variety)

1 tablespoon fresh ginger

juice of 1/2 lime

Sometimes I add 1 cup carrots and maybe 1-2 cups spinach just depending on what I have in the fridge. This juice may sound gross but it is so good! Run all of the ingredients through the juice except for the lime. Squeeze that into the juice last. This juice has a lot of benefits.

1. Kale- high in vitamin A and C which boost immunity, kale is also high in fiber and antioxidants. It is also a vegetable so you are getting 1-2 servings of vegetables right away in the morning

2. Granny smith apple- I always felt like these were the healthiest apples because they were green. They are high in potassium as well as fiber and low in sugar

3. Orange- This gives the juice a nice citrus kick and it also adds a lot of vitamin C for glowing skin and a strong immune system

4. Ginger- Aids in digestion and is also a natural anti-inflammatory (kale is as well.) Since I started adding fresh ginger to my juice I have noticed that my muscles are not getting as sore after I workout

5. Lime juice- helps to mask the taste of the vegetables (especially when you add carrots) and it also adds some more vitamin C which is a strong antioxidant. 

This morning I also made a variation on green juice where I added 1/2 of a raw beet. I drank it out of a straw because it came out very red and it was staining my fingers and I didn’t want pink teeth. I have heard that beets are very healthy for your heart and blood and it also has detoxifying properties. It was pretty yummy tasting but I added the juice of a lemon instead of a lime. I really felt detoxed after I drank this juice.

So overall this juicer is amazing! The only downside is that it takes a while to take it apart and clean it after I use it. However, the benefits absolutely outweigh the pain of cleaning the machine. If you don’t have a juice I would recommend getting one! It will change your life!

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Cooked lentil recipe

So recently I have started incorporating more lentils into my diet and I found a really good (and yummy) way to do that. All I did was take the left over veggies in the fridge, chop them up and add them to 1/2 cup boiled lentils. I also added some spices and it was a really good, healthy, and filling meal. So this is what I did..

1/2c lentils and boiled them in 2 cups water for about 45 minutes until the lentils were soft but not mushy and all of the water had been absorbed. Then after about 20 minutes I added some chopped kale, bell pepper, onion, and broccoli. I added 3 cloves garlic and a sprinkle of chili powder and cumin. And that was it! I was really happy with how it turned out. It was a very cleansing food.