Category Archives: Yoga

I can feel it in my body, I can feel it in my soul..

Standard

There’s nothing like the feeling of your body absorbing nutrients from a healthy, well-balanced meal.

Last night I prepared some cacao-golden milk before bed (coconut milk, coconut oil, turmeric, black pepper, cacao powder, honey, cinnamon). 

There was some leftover and rather than be greedy (which I am far too often guilty of), I poured it over some gluten-free oats and chia seeds. Then mixed in some nuts I experimented in a dehydrator I’ve been kindly loaned (almond, walnut, hazelnut, pumpkin seed, sunflower seed, leftover pulp from freshly juiced fruit and veg, cinnamon, honey). Tossed in cacao nibs and a couple of dates, then heated this morning with coconut oil, 1/2 a banana and handful of blueberries.
Didn’t take a photo in time and I’m sure it looks gross to most, but my oh my was it absolutely delicious. 

I did an intense Forrest yoga workshop last night, 2 sweaty hardcore hours in 30°c heat and only followed by a bit of fruit and coconut water to refuel (along with the cacao-golden milk).

So this morning my body is welcoming every single beautifully nourishing ingredient.

I’m so grateful for all the amazing things in my life – my health, the abundance of food provided naturally by pachamama, the gorgeous soul tribe who help me along my healing/growing path.

I’m truly blessed.

So yeah – random breakfast, full of goodness to set me up for a great day. In the words of that wonderful native American Indian song – I can feel it in my body, I can feel it in my soul! Heyaho!

Happy Sunday y’all!

Advertisements

1 Week in the Jungle – Definitely Not 1 Weak Heart

Standard

Having recently spent an incredible 7 days at a detox retreat in Costa Rica, I’ve been left feeling pretty much like a ‘new’ person – Self 2.0, we could call it.

Each and every day brought a brand new adventure, and I lived in the moment as much as possible. This, along with the fact there were no clocks anywhere in the retreat centre, really helped slow down time, if not bringing it to a standstill when embracing particular beautiful moments as they happened (and it was certainly filled with an abundance of such moments).

I could talk (or type) for hours on why it was such an amazing, heart-opening, healing, consciousness-expanding, therapeutic, transformational experience. But I’ll leave some to the imagination, and some for individual posts.

For now I’ll keep it simple, and just sum up, some of the things I learned during my time in Costa Rica:

  • Walk gratefully through life, with no expectations. We can expect the best for ourselves (we deserve it), but we shouldn’t expect ‘specific’ outcomes. Have no attachments to the future.
  • Music is medicine. Vibration, tones and hertz matter – a lot.
  • Believe and know that you deserve all the good things coming your way. Know you are a Creator, and can make your dreams come true.
  • Know you are a divine creation, a being of Purity and Light. Your existence is beautiful.
  • Trust others. This one’s particularly important. It really is a powerful practice.
  • Open your heart. Allow love to pour out, and in.
  • Let go of the past.
  • Don’t look at the time too much! Live in the moment, as much as possible.

    I also fell in love, with my Self and with an Other… a feeling I’ve never truly experienced. All by having no expectations, opening my heart, accepting myself and trusting others, I allowed love to flow. And boy did it surprise me, in ways I never would have even imagined.

    I’m so grateful for my life, what this trip has offered and taught me, and for the chance to now integrate it and spread light into mine (and others’) every-day.

    -Love

    -Light

    -Healing

    -Peace

    -Happiness

    -Unity

    !

    Can’t Blog – Busy Fermenting…..

    Standard

    OK, so the title of this post may be a little of a contradiction. Considering a lot of ferments pretty much take care of themselves, it really isn’t a valid excuse for having uploaded zero posts in the past 5 months.

    But it is the truth I’ve been busy… busy making plans, busy ticking stuff off the bucket list, busy fulfilling dreams… regrettably none of the ‘drafts’ I saved got finished (something not unusual for me), but I’m here right now, and that’s all that matters… right? Man, I’ll deal with the guilt of procrastination later. For now I’m here to share with the world my new found love and fascination… the art of fermentation.

    When I used to hear the word ‘ferment’, I’d automatically think of bananas that have turned brown and mushy in the fruit bowl, or gone-off milk that’s been sat in the fridge for weeks, or how my teenage brother’s bedroom might smell, if I had a teenage brother.

    When in reality, the process of fermenting food (and drinks) is an age-old practice, utilised by our ancestors as a means of keeping food stored and edible for months on end, especially through winter.

    Not only that, the longer food ferments, the more the ‘good bacteria’ grows… good bacteria which when consumed, can actually work wonders for our guts and digestion. Everything from vegetables, fruit, tea, milk and seeds can be fermented. And let’s not forget those of us who regularly consume yogurt – this is simply cultured (fermented) dairy!

    Fermentation works by natural bacteria feeding on the sugar and starch in the food, which creates lactic acid. This not only preserves the food, but also creates beneficial enzymes, Omega-3 fatty acids, b-vitamins and most importantly, a multitude of probiotics. The process also helps break down the food into a more easily digestible form.

    We’ve probably all heard of ‘probiotics’, and how they can benefit our health. But most store-bought products and probiotic supplements contain substantially less probiotics than home-made versions (not surprisingly).

    Admittedly, I’m really just a noob at all this culturing business. But I’ve been reading a LOT, and have dabbled in a few experiments for the past few months. And I can tell you, I have not been disappointed.

    It all started when my yoga teacher gave me a sip of kombucha to try, and I was instantly hooked. My body knew straight away I was giving it something so nourishing, and it wanted more. I won’t go into it too much here (will pend for another post – no procrastination!), but it’s basically black tea, sugar, bacteria and yeast. Yes, it sounds gross, but the magic happens when they all come together to create a delicious, fizzy, detoxifying beverage. And the benefits are amazing. I call it my elixir of life.

    Similarly, the first time I tried sauerkaut (simply shredded cabbage left to ferment in its own juices), my body heaved a sigh of relief, like it finally found what it had been waiting for in food. I could literally feel my gut grabbing and digesting with delight, like a party going off inside there. And it’s super easy to make! Now I have multiple jars of different sauerkraut, along with things like brocolli, kale, asparagus, beetroot and apple, all stewing in their own juicy goodness (my housemates think I’m a bit mental).

    There’s no going back for me now; fermented foods are part of my healing path. And I urge anybody who feels they need a health boost, wants to cleanse and re-balance their digestive system or just feel (round about) one-hundred times better in themselves to give it a try.

    There’s tons of information out there and I want to reassure you not to feel too overwhelmed by it – it really is a super simple process. Honest – just give it a Google, then give it a go!

    Peace and love friends 🙂

     

    6 reasons I fell in love with yoga

    Standard

    Through daily practice, yoga has become my foundation for a healthy, happy life.

    Just half an hour each morning sets me up with a fresh outlook and good intentions.

    On top of that, my fitness levels and general physique have improved so much. And after a year and a half, I can connect my mind and body, and do things I never imagined I’d be strong enough for!

    20160222_223951.jpg

    So, just because the love has hit a deeper level recently, here are 6 reasons why I’ve fallen madly, head-over-knees in love with yoga:

    1. It clears the mind- if I’m feeling stressed, anxious or just generally down in the dumps, doing a few sun salutations or releasing some residual tension in certain areas of my body (such as the hips, where much of our past angst is stored), really helps clear that stuffy mind-fog. Sometimes, our amazing minds become so entrenched with thoughts (whether positive or negative), that it becomes overbearing and we need to just stop the flow for a while, to reset and regain some clarity.
    2. It tends to the body- physically speaking, yoga is a wonderful way to strengthen, tone and stretch our bodies, without even realising we’re doing it. Because much of the practice is so subtle- focusing on remaining calm, breathing mindfully and flowing through movements gently, it’s easy to forget we’re essentially getting a ‘workout’ the whole time. Then every few days you take a glance in the mirror and see some newly sculpted muscles here and there – awesome surprise!
    3. It reminds me how it feels to Be Alive- This feeling is so easy to forget. Too many times I’ve found myself stagnant, mooching on the sofa or playing video games for days on end, with no real activity. And the longer this goes on, the harder it is to pull yourself back. But once you do, even in that first downward dog of the day, a fire is ignited instantly and the energy flowing through your body reminds you of what it is to feel, what it is to be. And how wonderful it actually feels to be a living, breathing entity on this planet.
    4. You get back what you put in (and then some)- Like any healthy relationship, you reap the benefits when you invest the best part of yourself. Yoga has no expectations- all it asks is that you show up, and just be yourself. And in turn, the path will lead you to beautiful new places, inspiring new people and exciting new experiences.
    5. Anybody can do it- I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Every body is a yoga body. Fat or thin, tall or short, muscular or feeble. We can all reap the benefits of regular practice. Of course, every body is different and every body will adapt and grow in different ways, but the truth is yoga is not exclusive for just already-bendy dancers or skinny fitness freaks. Yoga will embrace you, whoever you are.
    6. It will never leave me…. Sure, I could leave yoga. I could roll up my mat and stop practicing for the next 6 months, become shrivelled and tight. But the philosophy of yoga and the lessons it brings won’t ever go- I’ll always remember to breathe in stressful situations. I’ll always be more aware of how individual muscles and body parts feel at different times. And I’ll always remember the mind-body connection that yoga and I chiselled together through dedication and commitment. We’ll always have that mutual love. And that I adore.

    I’d love to see schools introduce yoga as part of Physical Education or maybe those odd, ‘Social Studies’ classes that encouraged even the nerdiest of kids to skive. This in turn would create the space and opportunity to learn mindfulness and stress-relief, throughout their education, which they then take with them to use later in life.

    In fact, I’d just love to see everybody try it, period. Sure, some won’t be as taken as I was, and that’s fine. But just to experience it would create a newfound outlook, everybody can benefit from.

    Maybe I’m being biased towards my love. But I believe in it so much, I’m even willing to share it with the world! Now that’s commitment.

    Peace and love all.

    Yoga and Life Lesson: remember to breathe!

    Standard

    I’ve ‘suffered’ with a few ‘ailments’ over the past six months or so; such as hip pain/tightness and bruised knees, and as such forced to decrease the amount of exercise I do, including yoga.

    Though I still practice yoga pretty much everyday (though with less intensity), I’ve missed classes etc, in order to not overdo anything. Now more recently, I’ve managed to bruise my left rib/breast bone quite badly, and have minimised even more the amount I’ve been practising.

    But of course, there’s always a lesson in these things. And here I learned, I must try harder to breathe. All the time. I must be more mindful of how deep each breath is. Cos each stifling pain cutting through my swollen rib with even half a ‘real’ breath, reminds me every time that I never breathe properly. 

    And here I am, 9 days later and the pain is far more bearable. I’m just trying my best not to forget how much it hurt.. so that every inhale is full and each exhale is finished, lungs depleted completely.

    Each breathe should be felt. And then peace can pour through.

    Since I began my yoga practise, I’ve known real breathing is the part I need to spend the most time on. Only now the universe has become bored of repeating itself, and instead chose to give me the lesson through physical pain. Well waydago universe, it’s working.

    But it is kind of crazy, the way the body utilises breath; supplying the sacred heart with power to pump oxygen and life preserving/building nutrients around the body. 

    Now time to embrace it, one inhale at a time, one exhale at a time…

    Finding ‘blog balance’ between my 2 favourite things

    Standard

    Lately I’ve been wondering why I share more food moments than yoga moments on my blog.

    Like both are my main loves in life, but I guess the balance of ‘want’ and ‘need’ between the two is quite rocky at times.

    Most of my days lately have been spent in the kitchen. I mean literally, if I have just an hour free time I’m back in there, looking to throw something together that will help me to get me through another day.

    Yoga is a deeper experience, executed mostly by, and with, myself, in a sacred space I have devoted to the practice.

    Don’t get me wrong- I still practice every single day. And to a degree this is because it’s something I ‘need’.. but it is also merely a ‘want’, from my body and mind.

    Whereas food is comparatively a huge ‘need’, as clearly it’s needed for survival. Even more so now being vegan, I need to make sure I’m always a step ahead of the eating game, and that meals and snacks are prepared and on hand as and when they’re needed.

    I suppose with yoga being somewhat of a ‘private’ practice (aside from when I attend classes), I’m less inclined to ‘share’ my experiences on my blog.

    But I love to inspire, and I want as many people as possible to experience this wonderful practice. So I will try to incorporate more yoga posts.

    Cooking has been one of my main ‘exercises’ of late, and I do want to inspire healthy eating too. Yet again we return to that issue of balance… something I am also working on👌.

    Peace and love yogis, chefs and fellow humans. I love you all, unconditionally.

    Avacado Green Smoothie for Extra Protein & Fibre

    Standard

    image

    What I love about smoothies is how experimental one can be with them. You can literally research the ingredients corresponding to the kind of health benefits you’re looking to achieve, throw them all into a blender and reap the good stuff.

    This particular smoothie just came together through my need for extra fibre and protein. Avacados were of course my natural choice, being delicious and packed full of both of these; a medium sized avacado on average contains 17g of fibre and 7g of protein. Boom!

    Romaine lettuce is also an excellent source of fibre (and somewhat underrated, being so cheap). Throw in some banana for added potassium and fibre, blueberries for extra antioxidants and radish (very random, but I also suffer with nasal congestion and they’re a perfect decongestant).

    Finish it off with some spinach, which is great for iron, vitamins A, B2, C and K, and of course extra protein. And you’re left with a delicious, very powerful concoction. A real Warrior smoothie!

    image

    Ingredients (makes approx 3-4 servings):

    1-2 Avacados
    2 handfuls spinach
    1 head romaine lettuce
    3 handfuls blueberries
    2 bananas
    8 radishes
    Small glass fruit juice of your choice to sweeten (I used apple & pear) – not from concentrate
    Juice of half a lime (stops the avacado turning brown)
    Water

    I of course always encourage experimentation.. these servings are a rough guide, and you can substitute any of the ingredients with something more suited to your own taste/ needs. This one actually turned out surprisingly sweet.

    Good luck warriors, and may your body and mind be blessed with health!

    Yo..

    Standard

    image

    Since beginning my yoga journey some twelve+ months ago, I’ve experienced a whole new level of Self. My inner being feels cleansed, I’m more aligned, and I have a much deeper sense of Oneness.

    Every posture, from the simple yet delightful up-dog, to the muscle-tingling baby grasshopper (I’m yet to find my way to the more hardcore version; the daddy Grasshopper) takes me on a journey through the mind and body.

    Becoming and being aware of one’s own physical structure, discovering the sensation of each muscle maybe for the first time, feeling the body, brings with it new self-inquiry, and a deeper understanding of what lies beyond. Whether warming up for the day, playing around after work to wind down, or just passing time, it seems there’s always something new to be had from practising yoga.

    It also gives a wonderful head-start to a meditation session, placing you nicely into a relaxed and calm state, especially after a well-earned savasana. I’ve found myself in many a ‘surprise’ meditation right after yoga, where my body and mind fall right into place.

    Aside from the spiritual side, there’s also the health benefits that are complimentary with a dedicated yoga regime; more energy, self-satisfaction, balanced chakras, reduced stress, increased happiness,  a strong physique. And I’m sure there are many more fellow practitioners/yogis  could claim.

    image

    I personally recommend anybody who hasn’t, to give yoga a try. Don’t let age, weight or flexibility get in the way of your will – yoga is for every body, and after discovering it, everybody is for yoga 🙂

    Peace and love.

    Namaste.

    Hi-gha, God

    Standard

    Why do we look up when we address God?

    Neck craned, spine poised,

    Gazing up to the ceiling.. even into the sky

    Is it because God is a, nay, THE ‘higher’ power?

     

    [But God is within Us?]

     

    Gaze into the sky again

    Stare past the stars

    Deep through the u-niverse

    Into yourself. Look within.

     

    [Pray with true intent]

    [[Even in-a tent]]

     

    Hands together, liberated harmony

    Drawn close to our hearts

    Feel the particles of love beaten

    God truly never departs

     

     

     

    Healthy Randdige

    Standard

    This random porridge is a brilliant way to start a new day!

    image

    This morning I was nourished by this delicious, random porridge concoction. I’m running low on a lot of food items so I threw in bits of what I had:

    Porridge oats
    Oat milk/water
    Raw honey
    Frozen raspberries
    100% peanut butter (crunchy)

    Hob on medium, heat everything together in a saucepan for 4-5 mins, or until excess liquid has gone. Mush raspberries a little with a spoon, to mix with the oats.

    The peanut butter forms a slightly thick consistency on the spoon, but it’s still all good.

    My energy levels were boosted all day and I got some extra protein from the peanuts. Plus it’s dairy free! Simple, tasty and nutritious. A class breakfast.