Tag Archives: yoga

6 reasons I fell in love with yoga

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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!

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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!

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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

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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.

Yo..

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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.

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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.

Warrior Juice

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Come one, come all
Be delighted, be enthralled
Bear witness to the fruit
(And veg) of Warrior Juice

This is what I drink most days. Every day would be ideal but preparation does get tedious (I also choose not to pay premium for readily chopped ingredients, since the saving can be allocated elsewhere).

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Anything can be added, but the main hero of our concoction is brocolli. Tough, tasty and textured, brocolli is a powerhouse of essential minerals and vitamins for the human body. In fact, it’s so nutritious it even fights off cancer (as do many of the wonderful ingredients of Earth). Honest!

Throw in some spinach, mango, kiwi, lime, avocado, celery, banana, ginger, raspberries,  blueberries, strawberries, pomegranates etc. Whatever takes your fancy. Fruits of course are all powerhouses in themselves, so it’s just a matter of making them work in the right amounts.

Banana and avocado help smooth the texture and ginger gives it a spicy kick, while celery makes it more refreshing. Sometimes I even throw in flax or ground hemp seed for an added nutrient boost. Just try to have more greens to fruit ratio so as not to overdo it on the sugar (about 3:1 is best).

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Time to mush it up with super greens

I don’t have an expensive smoothie maker, so instead I whiz the smaller, softer ingredients first, then go in with the brocolli after. At the moment it’s an immersion blender (which admittedly has resulted in a couple of messy accidents), but used tacticly enough it does the job.

Now we’re aware blitzed brocolli might not taste (or look) that fab to everybody… but never fear. It can always be sweetened up with a dash of pure, unconcentrated orange juice (again not too much, due to natural sugar). This also helps water it down if it comes up too thick (as does water, for this one I used coconut water 😉 ). It’s tough but try not to be put off by the murky colour it can turn once the greens go in- since real beauty is on the inside!

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WJ can be refridgerated in a jug with cling film, or in individual portions

This hippy’s body has found Warrior Juice most beneficial when consumed on a empty stomach, between 7am-1pm. It’s great to fuel cycling, yoga or just a quick breakfast on the go (try pairing with nuts or seeds if early in the morning)… It also does wonders for the bowel and detoxing!

So the possibilities are endless
Depending on your intentions
The vehicle is kept lean, clean
And basking disease prevention 😁

Staying Balanced.. 2014 in 4 Paragraphs

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Browsing through some of the older posts here, I’m left unexpectedly surprised at how negative many of them were.

Much of it was venting, but what surprises me most is how unbalanced yet interconnected the posts are. One post would be full of praise and gratitude for life and the universe, then the following could be full of depression, or casuslly dropping the word ‘suicide’.

So how do I feel now, upon entry to 2015? Well paranoia is certainly an issue. That’s clear from many of the posts. But so is lack of fulfilment.  And this seems to be where most of the sub – issues are stemming from.

On a positive note, I’ve been practising yoga and have fixed up my nutrient intake. Real food is back on the menu. I’ve done more meditation,  and an awesome Kyanite crystal arrived in the post today, right on cue. So the vibrations are certainly coming back into tune.. and I feel great!

I’d like to take the opportunity to wish the same peace and reassurance to all, and may your 2015 wishes manifest into reality.

Peace out.✌😇

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