Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Take a Breath & Inspiration

I can't believe it's been almost a month and a half since my last posting. This is exactly why the journal writing or food journals never work out for me. It's not that I lack thoughts, that's for sure. Actually, I probably have too many thoughts floating around in my head and that causes me to move from one thing to another too quickly to stop and take a breath!

Speaking of breath...I went to this "Transformational Breathing" workshop a few weekends ago. Basically, you spend an hour lying on a mat and breathing in/out through the mouth. It's supposed to help you dig deeper into your true self as well as cleanse and rejuvenate your body/mind. So much so, that the facilitator was kind enough to offer you a bag in case of vomiting... scary! As weird as it sounded, I went for it and gave my all. My whole body went numb, literally. My body froze up and I was unable to move it for quite a while. I couldn't even open my eyes right away. It was something different that I probably wouldn't do again, but amazingly, the facilitator was able to tell me from the way I breathe (short inhale/very powerful exhales) that I have control issues and I'm an overachiever. Very true at times, I guess. I'll work on that, but I don't think I'll be engaging in transformational breathing anytime soon.

Anyway, I started this blog because I was supposed to take part in this 40 Day workshop at my yoga center. It was 6 weeks of yoga, meditation and from what I've heard from past participants, it's life changing. Also, the teacher who was running the program was really the first true teacher to bring me into the world of yoga and if the workshop meant I got more of her, I was eager and ready to go. Unfortunately, due to unfortunate circumstances, the program at my favorite yoga center was cancelled and although I could have still participated at a new place, I couldn't leave the commitment and love I have for "my" center. So, I decided that this 40 Day was not for me.

I did, however, decide to partake in my own little 40 Day on my own. I was getting up and attending yoga classes several days a week, was watching my diet and was living the yoga life. But, boy is it hard! I was consistent the first few weeks, but then life got in the way a my commitment waivered. I went from 5 days a week to 4 to 3 to not having been to yoga at all the month of May...yikes! And for me, when the yoga stops the eating starts! Diet/exercise has always been hand in hand for me so I've been struggling some this week to get it "back"! So I emailed my Deborah (yoga center director and new dear friend) about my woes and she replied back: "So, you fell 'off the horse' - it's the 'coming back' that is the practice, so no need to get bummed out about straying from your intention, just remember each time you come back, you strengthen it!" How true!

Before, I would get so down on myself for screwing up another diet and another exercise program and I would just throw in the towel. Next thing I knew, it would be 6-8 months later and I'm starting all over again. But, now I look at it differently. So, I haven't been on the right path this week. It's one week! One week in the rest of my life (which I'm hoping is very long). I'll pick up the towel, dust myself off and continue on!

That being said, I realize that no "40 Day" anything is what I need. What do you do after it's over? I know now that a 24/7/365 is the true way to live. Always live in the present 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year! And if you throw in the towel, just make sure you know where it lands for when you're ready to pick it up again!

Oh, and the unfortunate circumstance at the yoga center has actually been the best thing that could have happened to me. Not only did it help me to discover some pretty fantastic yoga teachers that I would not have known about otherwise, it has also led me to the path of becoming a yoga teacher myself. Yet another reason I know that "things" work out for a reason. Sometimes the reason doesn't show up right away, but it does show up!

Teacher training starts in June and I am very excited and eager to learn the tools to show others the path of yoga and how wonderful and life changing it is...namaste!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Happy Spring and Cellulite!

This is the first year in a long time that I am loving the springtime. Usually I would start to get anxious and nervous about the next cycle...summer and the shedding of clothing followed by the dreaded quest for a bathing suit. This year, I am looking forward to pulling out the shorts from long ago (hope the waists aren't too high...LOL) and later on in the season, shopping for a new bikini. Oh, it's happening this year so moms of Cape May, watch out! :-)

My biggest issue with the warmer weather hasn't been as much about my weight as it's been about the cursed cellulite. You can't hide that in the summer. There is not a bathing suit in the world that can cover the wonderful dimpled, cottage-cheesy (ewww) skin that has made its home on the back of my legs. I have been fighting the cellulite battle since the first dimple (probabaly around 18). I had done a pretty good job up until the birth of my sons. Not their fault, of course. I haven't researched cellulite enough to know how much of it is really genetic and how much of it is lifestyle, but I have researched the topic enough to know that I can improve it some, but most likely I'll always have it - along with 90% of other women. So, I've made the decision to accept it for what it is and move on. I have spent too much time and money trying to fix something that is so unimportant in the grand sceme of life. I've decided to just stop looking at it. Literally. I'm not sure how I'll be able to do that once I start shopping for my bikini, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

I owe this new way of thinking to yoga. Most importantly, I've learned that yoga transforms you from the inside out. As I've been working on myself internally, my physical self is falling into place natually. This is good stuff. I used to work out at the gym or run on the treadmill with a picture in my head of six pack abs, tight legs and buff arms. Now, I practice yoga with the vision of a healthy marriage, happy children and an uplifting enviroment for my family and the results from my new way of thinking are a happy place to be. Oh and guess what else is happening as a result of my new mindful way of thinking? Six pack abs, tight legs and buff arms.

So next week starting the 29th. I'm embarking on a 40 Day to Personal Revolution journey at my second favorite place to be, Princeton Center for Yoga and Health. (1st is home, of course).

Here is a blurb from the website: SHOW UP AND STEP UP INTO YOUR OWN POWER! COMMIT TO YOURSELF! Explore Your Edge and Radically Change Your Body Discover Your True Self and Allow Your Authentic Personality to Shine Awaken the Sacred Within and Transform Your Life Developed by Baron Baptiste, founder of the Baptiste Power Yoga Institute, this six week transformative journey incorporates daily yoga and meditation practice, journaling and an approach to conscious eating.

I have heard from other people that this is life transforming! Can't wait to start the revolution and continue the evolution of me!

Friday, March 19, 2010

First Post

Many thanks to Jenny for talking about her blog so much, she made me interested in starting one of my own!

My first thought in creating a blog was: what am I willing to share with total strangers and even more daunting, what was I willing to share with people I know? But, as I get older, I am less concerned with what others think of me and more hopeful that what I share can help others or at least open their eyes to something different. Maybe something wonderful. So, for that, I am throwing the censors out and letting the truth in.

I wanted to do write something about weight and getting into shape...blah, blah, blah, but after my husband threw the scale out of the window, I changed my thought process. Granted, getting into shape, weighing less is always something I've strived for in my life, but I'm slowly releasing that burden. Without that "monkey on my back" I'm actually feeling much more healthy and lighter on my feet than I've been in a long time. By any means, I don't think it's okay to be unhealthy and overweight, but once I stopped obsessing over it and once my mind was in a better place, the choices I made became easier and the weight-loss part followed. I still have a ways to go, but my goal has changed from wanting to be a certain size/weight by summer to wanting to feel good about myself (regardless of a number on a scale or the size of my pants) every season of the year, not just when the weather's warm and there's no hiding in bulky sweaters. It's a process. It's a journey. It's pretty much never ending, but it's also fail-proof. Eliminating the pressure of trying to look an unrealistic way in an unrealistic amount of time was too much pressure and if I wasn't "there" by June, I was a failure. That's not the route I'm interested in taking anymore....the road less traveled is for me. I would love one day that "the road less traveled" would be jammed packed with tons of traffic because everyone would decide this is a much better way to travel.

I have found this epiphany through yoga.

to be continued...