Thursday, June 27, 2013

And So I Golf

Semi-philosophical and heavy on the sap, but bear with me...

Hubs and I don't have a lot in common. I was never into sports growing up. I played soccer, so watching soccer was fun, but all the others were no bueno. He loves ALL (except soccer, oddly)
I was never into martial arts. He frequently mentions going back for a second black belt.
I think golf is boring (especially when its on TV - I mean UGH). He could spend all day on the course with friends.
I love art. I love making it and I love looking at it. He yawns at art.
I am (obviously) a hardcore yogi. It's torture for him.
I like to "go outside and do stuff". He likes to be comfy at home.

So, this is where I am right now. None of these things bother me. We are who we are and we are best friends.

I will happily give up an afternoon relaxing by the pool with a cocktail because he wants me to golf with him. Even though, man, golf is really... really not my thing. But I will have moments like the above because I'm hanging out with my best friend.

So, duh, we're married folks and we make compromises. I go golfing with him, he goes to the Getty and LACMA with me. I watch baseball and college football now (but please turn the basketball off) and he agrees to be my yoga guinea pig to help me build new classes.

And they start to not feel like compromises. Look at me up there having a freaking ball because I hit the ball across the water for the very first time... because I'm hanging out with my best friend.

So, here's to a summer - hopefully -  filled with doing things that make the other happy and being dang happy about it.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Seven Days of Yoga; Week 25

I spent last weekend with my baby sister in Portland. We had a fantastic time, but the only exercise I got was a 3 mile hike I mentioned in last weeks post.

Monday night, when I got home, I was too beat to do anything. I did power walk with my suitcase through the airport though. That's got to count for something. It didn't really help that I ate 2 1/2 donuts, gummi bears, Jimmy Johns, and pasta salad throughout the day. Really healthy stuff... no, not really. 

Tuesday I was back to feeling like me and home and such. I had a leftover donut for breakfast, but managed to keep it healthy through the rest of the day. I took the Total Fit Body class at the gym and was astounded by my calorie burn! 494 calories in 52 minutes! I did not think I'd worked that hard in previous classes, but if I got anywhere close to that, I'm happy.

Wednesday I was up bright and early for my 6am class, which I love, but my body is not used to being up that early, so by midday I have been wiped out. Like DONE. But this Wednesday I had to many plans to let myself be done. I had a meeting and a class I wanted to take, so I put on my big girl yoga pants and powered through it. (I have a lot of exciting things in the works right now. I'm excited to share them as soon as they're finalized!) Power yoga that night was super challenging. It totally wiped me out.

Thursday I taught my class, which I am loving more and more every week. My students are amazing - new and repeats alike. Then T asked me if I would go to the driving range with him so he could help me learn how to golf well. It was fun. He was actually able to teach me a few things - not that I doubted his expertise, but I did doubt my ability to pick up on anything he was trying to teach me. Oops.

Friday night I taught in morning and then was bck at the WHAC in the evening for Combat Cardio. Yet again, I let myself forget how challenging that class can be. Whooooooo!

Saturday I got to teach two classes - mommy/baby at 930 and yoga mind at 4. I was able to get in a little bit of practice during both. My inlaws were in town, and I kept having to disappear to go teach, so I didn't have time to get in a good workout just for me that day. At least I did a lot of demonstrating in my classes.

That's it for this week, yall. I don't even have a yoga related picture to post. The one I used is from last week. :/

Friday, June 21, 2013

Saying Goodbye to the Scary

Before I get into this, I feel the need to preface...
This is not a deeply philosophical post about facing your fears and moving on or anything like that. I'm talking about a tree - a big scary tree.

The other day, I mentioned we paid someone to help us with "something else around the house". This is what I was talking about.

We have a GIANT tree on our patio. It's taller than our tall skinny house. Really.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Happy at Home?

Lately, I've been using Thursdays to tell you about one or another specific thing that I have to be happy about, but when the year started, I was pretty gung ho about making my home a source of happiness, or - at the very least - not being a place that stressed me out. 

I have to say, I really feel like I am making excellent progress. So, for the sake of getting everyone up to speed, and it being Thursday - the happiest day of the week - here's where I am in my happy at home project...

1. Make your bed. I don't do this. I just pull the sheets and blankets up when I leave in the morning and I've been washing the duvet cover more often, so I don't get dog hair all up in my nose  as much as I used to when I'm trying to sleep. This has been working nicely. 

2. Bring every room back to "ready." This is getting SO much easier, but in the interest of full transparency, I have to tell you that we hired someone to come in once a month and clean our house. It's only once a month, so there is still tons of upkeep to manage in between, but it gives me a goal. I can see what the rooms should look like under the piles, so I know what I'm aiming for when I start to clean, and usually, that leads to me finishing the job. I finally got ALL the piles up off the bedroom floor. I got rid of maybe 20 pairs of shoes that were scattered around the house. Also, now that we have more space and light in the garage, I dislike going down there to run the wash less. 

3. Display sentimental items around your home. Last night I picked up my wedding album and flipped through it. Never fails to make me all smiles. 

4. Start a one-line-a-day gratitude journal. I did this. It went really well for a while and then I just started to forget to do it. I still pick it up every now and then and write a line or two, but I'm not writing every day. It suits me just fine. 

5. If you can't get out of it, get into it. I meant to post a picture of this, but decided I'd better not; I have full on dance parties while I clean the kitchen... no joke. I work up a sweat. It's a blast. If that's not getting into it, I don't know what is. 

6. Before you get up each morning, set an intent for the day. I've simplified this. At some point each morning, I just tell myself to smile and to be.

7. Do small favors for your housemates, expecting nothing in return. (not even a thank you) For this one, I am referring back to to #5.

8. Call at least one friend or family member a day. I text. :P Not a phone person. 

9. Spend money on things that cultivate experiences at home.  We got a table for the entry! It has two little drawers we use mostly for dog things - like spare leashes and poo bags - and, well, we just redid the garage, which helps move things out of the house and create more usable space, which TOTALLY cultivates our experiences at home. We also recently paid someone to help up with something else around the house too - a one time thing. Separate post coming on that.

10. Spend a few minutes each day connecting with something greater than yourself. I'd like to think that I do this subconsciously. Every day that I do yoga, I'm meditating and connecting, but part of me likes to think that this is second nature somehow. Like no matter the day or what I'm thinking about or doing, I am seeing love in everything and everyone. Does that mean I love them? NO no, certainly not. I can think of a few "things" that make me think "WTF, mate?", BUT generally... generally, the love is there. Really. 

Remember this is a linkup! Make sure to follow along with these other beautiful ladies on their happiness journeys...

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Sister Trip; Visit to Portland

This past weekend, I was fantastically lucky and happy to be able to visit my baby sister in Portland, Oregon. She's been living up there for about 3 years - since graduating from college - and I miss having her around.

Before I get into what a wonderful time I had visiting her and celebrating her birthday this weekend, I feel like I need to get something out of the way. There are inevitable questions that you'll have pop up in your head, so rather than wait for you to ask them, I'm nipping it in the bud.

My sister has Alopecia. It's an autoimmune condition that causes your hair to fall out. That's it. Thus the beautiful bald head you see above. No effects on her health whatsoever, unless we get into how emotionally traumatizing it can be to have your hair fall out when you're 14 years old.  She is a beautiful person, inside and out, and she doesn't let it define her as a person, but it is something people notice and ask questions about. If you have any other questions, I'd be happy to answer them for you. Leave it in the comments or email me. :)

But, seriously, let's get back to my trip...

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Seven Days of Yoga; Week 24

Y'all, I'm so behind on this. I'm having to resort to myfitnesspal to remember what workouts I did!

Sunday I was supposed to do X2 Core, but I needed to get up and out of the house for my workout. So, I ran over to Cardio Barre for their advanced class. It was a great class. I'd only ever taken this instructor's beginner classes, but she worked us hard in advanced on Sunday. I was happy.

Monday night I was back on schedule with P90X2. I decided just to move around the rest days. Instead of having one on Wednesday, I would just jump in with a workout. SO, Monday night I did X2 Core. I did not get the same calorie burn as last week, which was a little disappointing, but it was still a great workout.

Tuesday I didn't intend to, but I ended up taking the night off.

I got up crazy early on Wednesday to teach my very first 6am class.  That night I decided to do a little more switching and went to Power Yoga. I also decided to play around a little more with my heart rate monitor to see what my calorie burn was in that class. (548 calories, btw. Not bad)

Thursday night I taught my class.

and Friday morning I taught another class. I didn't do much yoga in either.

Saturday morning, I was in Portland. My sister and I drove out to the Gorge to hike Oneonta trail to Triple Falls. It was a little over 3 miles round trip and it was absolutely beautiful!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Yoga Website!!!

Happy Thursday! I decided to wait until today for this. It seemed like the perfect fit, seeing as this makes me very happy...

Y'all, things have been crazy 'round these parts! Since I got my yoga certification and started teaching regularly, I've wanted to start building my brand.
I've wanted a way - outside of my personal facebook page - to let people know what's going on, to invite them to classes, and just to share things from the yoga world that inspire me.

I bought/registered/got hosted my domain a little while back. My backwards thinking told me that because I wanted to order business cards to put in studios, I needed to build a website to put on the cards. And I needed a special "yoga only" email for that too. Then I could start a mailing list. See? Backwards.

I sat on my domain for longer than I'd like to admit. It made me uncomfortable that it was out there with my name on it, but had no trace of me on it. I was also hesitant because I thought if I set up a website, I had to set up a corresponding facebook page. I feel like I have a thousand facebook pages (cake, mark, blog), so on some level I didn't want to bombard my facebook friends with yet another page to "like". This one was more important. This one is going somewhere. (right?)

So, I buckled down. I spent hours in front of my computer playing with fonts and colors and looking at other yoga websites for just the right inspiration.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Currently; June 2013

I'm starting a new series. This one may only be monthly. I don't know yet. Gonna play it by ear. :)

Currently, I'm...

Gone Girl. I still haven't finished it. I even take my kindle with me places when I know I'm gonna have time to sit around and instead of reading, I pull out my iPhone to play games and poke around on instagram. I just am really not loving this book, y'all. I'm sorry to everyone who loved it. Hopefully I'll finish it soon so I can feel good about moving on.
I also have Compendium One of The Walking Dead sitting next to my bed. I like to pick it up leisurely when I don't feel like hating the characters I'm reading about, which is happening more and more frequently since no one in Gone Girl is likable.

Game of Thrones just ended. *sad face* People said the finale was anticlimactic - especially after the red wedding - but I dug it. I think Daenerys and Arya should team up and kill everyone. Done.
The new season of True Blood starts this weekend, and the final season of Dexter is right around the corner. Talk about a bloody summer in television. Aaaaaand we're totally pumped about Ray Donovan. Huge Liev Schreiber fans over here.

Listening to... 
I'm so sorry. It's so catchy. I am loving Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke (et al.) right now. It's so fun. I can't help it.

Struggling with...
I'm working on my Eka Pada Koundiyanasana. It's an arm balance with your legs all sticking out in different directions. I'm totally not even close right now, but I'm working on it.

A mini getaway in July or August - possibly to Vegas, but we don't know yet. AND more yoga classes. I have to make sure to keep my forward momentum.

Mommy/baby yoga every other weekend. Babies are great free weights, if you're interested. Mammas, try doing a squat holding your baby in front of you, as you lower your butt, straighten your arms out in front of you. I borrowed one of my student's 18 lb babies this weekend for this move. So tough. Whooooooo!
I also just started my 5 week 2x/week subbing gig at one of our local gyms. I taught my first class this morning and it was a lot of fun.

What are you up to lately?

Monday, June 10, 2013

Seven Days of Yoga; Week 23

The weekends lately have been a little out of the norm for me. For a while I would just get up on the early side, let T sleep in, and go do whatever workout class/dvd I wanted, but for the last couple of weekends we've had things planned, so I've wanted to talk to T before I head off to do my own thing. That meant this Sunday I was kind of waiting around for a little while before I decided to work out at home. I was feeling like a bum - having eaten a ton and not really worked it off - so I set up my heart rate monitor, put in my plyocide dvd and got going. It was so good. The next time I was just the perfect amount of sore - not in pain, but when I got up, my glutes and thighs would remind me that I worked hard the day before.

Monday I decided to keep it going with P90X2. Since I had done the Day 2 workout on Sunday, I just decided to flip them and do the Day 1, X2 Core, workout.

Tuesday was my Jiddo's 85 birthday dinner. That's my grandpa, in case you didn't know. I was not able to workout that night. We didn't even get home until 10. Womp womp. Luckily, since I've decided to officially restart P90X2, I didn't have to feel bad since day 3 is a rest day. :)

Wednesday night I picked back up for Day 4 of P90X2 with Total Body and Ab Ripper. It was a little frustrating at times because my stability ball never has enough air in it so it's damn near impossible to use for any of the balance exercises. I am worried it's just a low quality ball and won't cut it, but we'll see.

Thursday I taught my class. Holy smokes. We had the most people that could possibly fit in that room. I really do not know how they all fit. The big room can fit like 30, my room is about a third of that and has a support beam right in the middle. Anyway, I was SO pumped to have a full room - what an amazing feeling. Then I went home and did my own yoga practice for about 45 minutes. I was supposed to do X2 Yoga but for some reason the disk always makes the computer freeze up. I can run it on the PS3, but I didn't want to take over the living room since I knew T was getting home soon. I'm so nice. So I put on some music and got going on my own thing in the dining room. I really pushed myself and it was glorious.

Friday night I was back to P90X2 for Balance & Power. I am loving using my heart rate monitor track my burn. It gives me an actual physical number for how hard I'm working, which I kinda love. I was able to get enough air in. I remember the first time I did this workout, I was kinda scared of the name. It sounds intimidating, right? Now it's one of my favorite workouts ever. Amazingness.

Saturday I taught my very first mommy/baby yoga class. It was so much fun. I can't wait to do it again. Later that afternoon, we went golfing - not really my thing, but we had fun. It was my first time doing 18 holes. We had a cart, so not a lot of walking, but its all I needed to count as my workout for the day since it was supposed to be a rest day anyway. :)

Friday, June 7, 2013

Freakonomics & Happiness

Husband & I @ College Graduation

Over the last 6 months or so, I've become a pretty hardcore podcast listener. A while ago, I listened to one done by the Freakonomics Podcast called Women are Not Men and - being the feminist that I am - it really struck a chord with me. It was in no way sexist (in my opinion), it simply looked into the ways men and women are different. One part in particular left me wanting more - beginning at around the 26 minute mark - exploring women's happiness.

They looked at two studies - one done 40 years ago and one now - looking at reported levels of happiness of men and of women.

What they found was surprising...

In 1970, women reported higher levels of life satisfaction than men, and today men report higher levels of life satisfaction than women. 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Polar FT4F Heart Rate Monitor

Way back when I first started P90X in November 2010, I thought about getting a heart rate monitor. For a couple of the workouts, the suggest having one so that you can track whether or not you're "in the zone". I didn't really think about it seriously until last year when I started using MyFitnessPal and I wanted a more exact count on my calorie burn.

I've been on the lookout for a heart rate monitor for a while. I've been all over Amazon and local sporting good stores looking for the one that was right for me. I wanted a quality HR monitor that would tell me my calorie burn and not cost over $100.
I read reviews before I purchased this heart rate monitor. Two of my favorite health/fitness bloggers both wear and have reviewed their Polar devices.

I was hesitant to buy this one for a while. I somehow convinced myself that I could find a quality heart rate monitor that tracked my calories and zone for $20. I totally found a $15 heart rate monitor too... and it stank. I had to get it crazy tight on my wrist for it to pick up my heart rate. It had zero personalized settings. No calorie counter.

But I guess you get what you pay for.

What ultimately kept me from buying a higher quality one for a long time was the color... which is still kind of silly because I am a huge fan of pink. For some reason I didn't want to draw a lot of attention to the fact that I was wearing a heart rate monitor. (I later learned it comes in other colors)
Ultimately I came to this conclusion: WHAT-EVER.
It looks like a watch. The only way you can really tell that I'm wearing a heart rate monitor is if I walk around topless. I'm talking COMPLETELY topless (aint. gonna. happen. ever.) because I have to tuck the transmitter under my sports bra to get it up close enough to my heart to pick up the beat.
This has been my only complaint about the device. I kinda have to jam the transmitter up into my left boob.
A photo would be TMI. Mi dispiace.

I wasn't super pumped on the idea of wearing something around my ribs, but research (and a little experience) has taught me that wearing the transmitter right next to your heart gets the most accurate read... and it makes me feel like a serious workout pro. ;)

I dig that it not only tells me what my heart rate is, but whether or not I'm in my "zone", and how many calories I've burned.

The first time you turn it on - like any fancy computer nowadays - it walks you through the set up. You enter your age and weight, set the time, etc, and a quick glance at the manual shows you what buttons to push to do what you want. Super easy. I'm one of those people who always over-complicates things, so when set up was easy, and then the transmitter didn't pick up my heart rate, I assumed I set it up wrong.

Nope. I just hadn't jammed it right up into my boob. :P

Do you have a heart rate monitor? How do you like yours? If not, do you think you'll get one?

I received no compensation from Polar or otherwise for this review. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Seven Days of Yoga; Week 22

Wow, we're already 22 weeks into the year. That's crazy.

Sunday we worked on the garage all day.

Monday I tried to recover from two days of eating nothing but pizza, cookies, and beer, but it was rough going with Memorial Day festivities and preparation. Luckily, I had a class to teach, and it ended up just being me and one of my close friends. So, I just did the whole practice with her. It was wonderful. 

Tuesday was my day off. I got so much done. I'm still proud of myself.

I met up with a friend in the morning for a 3 mile walk with the dogs. Then later that night I thought I was done, but T asked me to go to the gym with him, so I did another 25 minutes on the elliptical

Wednesday I took a really challenging Power Yoga class. I haven't been to a really tough class like that in ages. It was nice to get back on the mat for a really hard class that just totally wiped me out and made me sweat like a maniac.

Thursday night I taught my class. It was another one of those classes that I needed to demo everything, so I got a halfway decent workout out of it.

Friday we went to the gym. Neither of us were really feeling it. I pounded through an 8 minute mile, but spend the rest of my 20 minutes of the treadmill borderline strolling. The mentality was "at least we got out".

Saturday I didn't really work out. I spent about 2 hours in the morning walking up and down the stairs, putting clothes in the washer, cleaning the kitchen, and picking up random items throughout the house. It kind of counted, but it kind of didn't. I was very yogic in my mind though, so that's got to count for something, right?

Looking back at this week, I feel like I could/should have pushed myself so much further. I'll just have to make up for it this coming week. ;)