Pilates and your workday

I found this to be helpful so I am sharing with you all, enjoy! xo

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Sit at Work All Day? Here’s Why You Should Consider Pilates

 

A Yogi-Kind of Marathon

A friend of my moms/of mine (it’s cool how as you grow up, you can share friends with your mom), Mary, (check her out – she’s the author of an incredible book about a Buddhist monk and his story of happiness – it’s stuffed full of tweetable lines and life lessons), posted on Facebook a few weeks ago that she was sore from her yoga class that included 108 sun salutations. WHAT?!

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108 sun salutations. Who does 108 sun salutations? Turns out, a lot of yogis. I read Mary’s facebook post and wondered about both the significance of 108 sun salutations in her yoga class that morning, as well as if I could do it myself. I did a little research and learned a lot of cool stuff about the yoga world that I didn’t know, like the significance of opening our hearts to the new seasons, and letting our inner light shine. Real awesome stuff.

I am a marathoner. 26.2 miles in one stretch. It’s one of my favorite things to do, actually. So, I assumed that I would also love the challenge of 108 sun salutations. That is how marathon running started for me. I ran my first marathon because I wanted to see if I could do it. I ran my second because I was proud of myself for doing it once and wanted to see if I could do it again… and now I’m hooked.

So, I read Mary’s post again and wondered to myself, “Am I strong enough to do 108 sun salutations?? Then we took off for Lake Tahoe and I missed the summer solstice, on June 21.

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In the yoga studio of our hotel, a few days late, at 5:30AM I got up to attempt my 108 sun salutations. I kept count on a piece of hotel paper with tally marks. It took me over 2 1/2 hours. But I did it! I learned a lot too, as I always do with these sorts of things.

I was more sore than I’ve ever been post marathon – my legs especially. I hobbled around for days and days and found it excruciating to lift my arms to wash my hair. It was awesome. You can do anything that you set your mind to, and I love experiences like this one, that remind me of that on the days when I’m not feeling to sure of myself.

Join me next time! There are different variations of the sun salutations that you can try. The next time I’ll be taking the 108 sun salutation challenge will be to welcome the season of autumn, on September 23. (I got that from this chart – I have no idea how accurate it is and am open to other resources if anyone knows of any.) I plan to do this to welcome all of the seasons, as the seasons-change is one of my favorite things about the midwest.

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Yoga Inferno

I discovered a new yoga DVD last week that I am pretty excited about.  After sweating through my new favorite workout a few times since then, I have decided to share my thoughts with you all! I have been doing Jillian’s Yoga Meltdown DVD for the last few years periodically and it is super tough. I was looking for something new with some fancy moves to learn and decided to try out Yoga Inferno. INFERNO IS RIGHT! 5 stars, Jillian. You’ve done it again.

I love Yoga Inferno for more reasons than one. It is the toughest yoga DVD I have ever attempted which puts it on the top of my list of favorites. Also, there are moves in this workout that I have never done before and I love learning new moves! So many variations of some of my favorite basics (plank, mountain climbers, downward facing dog, etc.). Oh so exciting!

I love Jillian because she always offers up variations of the moves: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. Let me tell you though, in Yoga Inferno I was challenged even doing the beginner modifications. If you’re looking for a yoga DVD that will get you ripped, look no further. I plan on doing this consistently a few times a week all winter long. One of the things that I love the most about yoga is the way you can see progress quickly. I saw and felt myself getting better at holding the moves even after only doing the DVD three times. Practice! Practice! Practice!

I recommend both at-home DVDs but if you are really looking for a challenge, Yoga Inferno will really get you sweating.

 

Fresh September Starts

Happy September to all!  Hopefully the hot and humid heat wave of the last few weeks is behind us and we can start to get excited for the fresh fall air coming our way!
septHere are my goals for the month of September.  I’m really excited about them!

Hit 10,000 steps every day.
Too many days lately I’ve ended the day at 8,000 or 9,000 steps.  So close!  I am going to challenge myself this month to hit my goal of 10,000 every day!  And I hope to hit 40,000 one day this month – that will be a new record to beat! This is a post I recently wrote about step-counting.

#NoSweetsSeptember
Pretty self-explanatory. No sweets for me this month. More fruits & veggies!

Run 100 miles.
I tried for 100 miles in July but fell short by about 12 miles (taking almost an entire week off of running while in Hawaii really set me back – well worth it!) so this month I am determined to hit 100!  With marathon training at its peak, I don’t think this should be too hard!  Two 20-milers scheduled for this month!  Eeek!

#everybodyYOGA
You can read more about this challenge here.  I am so excited about participating!

What are your goals for the month?

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#EverybodyYoga September

At the beginning of the summer I participated in my first Instagram yoga challenge. It lasted for 40 days and although I missed a of them, (especially during the wedding weekend and towards the end) I got a lot out of it! It was a great way for me to ward off stress post-graduation and pre-wedding. It helped me to see the beauty in the world around me even in unexpected places. It helped me to see that my body is capable of some pretty amazing things and even a pose or two helped me clear my head.

Some favorites from my first challenge

Some favorites from my first challenge.

I am attempting another challenge for the month of September (shout out and thank you to Kathryn for who suggested it!) and we would love any company! We are choosing #everybodyYOGA and you can read for more details here. Check it out!

Here are some tips and things I leaned during my first time participating:
  • Trying out new poses can be scary, just do whatever feels good for you! Yoga is a practice and everyone is always growing and at a different point.
  • Striking a pose in an unexpected place is fun! While we were on our honeymoon I did child’s pose in the middle of the sidewalk outside an ice cream place in my sparkly “bride” zip-up. Why not?!
  • Work on breathing in the poses and really listen to your body about how it feels. You’re doing this for more than just a picture – you’re doing it to better yourself and your practice.
  • Different poses can feel different on different days. Don’t be surprised if a pose that is easier one day is tougher another. Your body changes day to day and be sure to adjust the poses to what you need.
  • That being said, you will see improvement! Doing yoga consistently for only a week or two makes a huge difference in your flexibility.

It is okay if you miss a day (or two or three or a lot!). Just do what you can, when you can, and have fun! Who’s with us?! #everybodyYOGA