Monthly Archives: April 2015

ACTIVE BUT NOT WITH STEPS

I’m a little bit behind on getting my steps out for the last week and as you can see they are lower than normal but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been active. I’m still riding my yoga high from this past weekend and have so much new energy from my yoga practice that my steps are falling behind but my body and mind are building some great strength. As well I have really started to focus on my weight training so I can rock my arm balance poses and hold my postures longer. It is all so much fun and keeping me so healthy. My body is really feeling quite well and just as a side note I have gone 226 days without a flare.

 

Total Steps – 71,661

Average daily – 10,237

Miles – 27.95

Floors – 123

YOGATHON SUCCESS

Sunday was my yogathon at Gillette Stadium and I am so full of energy and love today.  My heart is incredibly full with joy, love, hope, light and energy so I’m getting on this wave and riding it for as long as it will last. I traveled down there and did this yogathon with an incredible group of people and while we were hours into our yoga practice once of the instructors said think about the connections you have made through your yoga.  I have made many connections but 4 very important connections were right there on the field with me.  It was amazing, we are so strong, our team has so much life and energy, and we had a blast.  You could see people get fatigued and lose form but our team with their strength kept our form and breath very well.

Speaking of breath, yoga is all about moving the breath and were challenged with the very first yoga instructor who moved way faster than our breath would allow so we had to slow down, find the sequence, and continue on our own breaths.  We are disciplined enough to realize that moving that fast without proper form would not get us through our day of yogathoning very long.   Finding your breath, your form, your alignment, your voice, your strength, your confidence is challenging but so amazing when it all comes together and so worthy of doing.  There was this strong energy there and you could feel it, really feel it.  At one point we all locked arms and did supported tree and Warrior III that was incredible.  Having everyone be and feel supported we were able to hold those 2 poses back to back for a long period of time with ease.

I am a junkie for this stuff but it is because I can take this huge feeling for fulfillment with me for a long time and feed off of it.  I have carried it into an otherwise stressful day and a let a little of it out as needed to keep me from not being overly stressed, fatigued, worn out, and broken.  The other thing that keeps my spirits alive and energized today is that I am so thankful that I have a healthy, happy, supportive, loving group of people around me that I can count on each and every day.  There were parents there struggling because of sick children, depressed children, and otherwise challenges in their family which is why they so needed the money raised that day to help our children.  Heart felt stories with not so happy endings but beginnings of new life and new support as we all came together on that field in honor of children who need our help.

We are already talking about doing it again next year, having a bigger team and raising even more money for the children who need our help and the hospital that makes it all possible.  I love the yoga studio and proud to be a member of it as well as so proud of the people in our studio and their dedication and commitment to making a difference in the world.yoga hands

AMAZING ACHIEVEMENTS

I am fortunate that I am still amazed by my body and I don’t say this in an arrogant or conceited way but really in an amazement way. Since the day I woke up in May of 2003 and literally couldn’t walk I have grown stronger, more dedicated to my health and wellbeing and pushed my body to incredible limits when I could. I would also struggle a lot with “I can’t do that” moments when the truth was I didn’t know if I could or couldn’t. It was a defense mechanism that I used because my body has failed me many times in the past and I didn’t feel confident in it. I would amaze myself with different challenges and goals but in the back of my mind I always had this unsettled feeling that my body would once again fail me and unfortunately it did in the form of flares. I would have my flare, move on, and start back at base-line, and work my way back up until my next flare always wondering when that flare might come. Never really believing it won’t come. I still don’t believe it won’t come and although I don’t prepare so much for the flare I’m just more open to it coming and going.

As many of you have read I’m truly focused on my yoga and practice hours upon hours a week. I’m working on my teacher training, I’m also just working toward yoga for life but most recently I’m working toward a yogathon which takes place this Sunday at Gillette Stadium (Our NE Patriots Football home) and I will be doing yoga all day. I love the aspect of doing yoga all day and have not worried once about whether my body would hold up until about a week ago when during a long session of yoga my shoulders got incredibly fatigued from chaturanga dandasana and I got that aching feeling as to whether my body was once again going to fail me.

Since I have started a daily meditation practice I have been using my meditation as a way to make peace with my body and let go of some of these uncertain feelings I have and be proud of the body I have. This week I have literally done back to back sessions of yoga and increased my hours upon hours to (hours, upon hours, upon hours) of yoga this week getting ready and training for Sunday. I woke up this morning thinking my body truly rocks. I am truly proud of what I have put this body through for the last 44 days training for this yogathon and so very much looking forward to how it performs on Sunday. I’m proud that it is strong and that my conditioning is good. In my meditation I allow myself to have thoughts of flare and then I disconnect from those thoughts. Meditation is not about stopping the thoughts but letting them come and go and disconnecting from them.

I still don’t know what the future holds for this body of mine and living with MCTD but I do feel very capable and able to ask it to do things that would otherwise scare me. I’m nervous for Sunday, rightfully so, but for other reasons. The crowd, the unknown, the weather, and lower on the list is whether my body will hold up. I will be doing a follow up to describe my experience and how it all went and in the mean time I still have 2 more days of training before the big day and thankful for the achievement of strength.

NOT ENOUGH TIME

I participated in a weekend warrior challenge through Fitbit this past weekend and I just didn’t have enough time to do everything I wanted nor did I have enough time to get in enough steps. I usually hang right in top 2 of these challenges and found myself in 4 place toward the end of the weekend a quick move into 3rd to finish out the weekend. The problem is that this becomes more stressful and not so fun. I already feel like my weekends are jammed packed, come and go so quickly, and I never have enough time but when I add a challenge to them then they become stressful weekends. No one needs that. With that said I also worked a lot on my yoga sequencing, worked on my golf swing, and stepped on the pedals of my bike but those activities just don’t register “steps”

 

My husband reminds me that when we get out on the golf course several times a week my steps naturally go up without me doing anything different and I enjoy this time because we are together, I get fresh air outside along with sunlight, and I’m active. I don’t consider myself a competitive person but my husband laughs out loud at that comment.

Stats for the past week, and really after seeing them I have nothing to worry or complain about.

 

Total 97,565

Average – 13,938

Floors – 233

Miles – 37.97

STEPPING IN TIME

This past week I didn’t think I did much walking because I was focused on my yoga as usual and I walked outside a few days to get some fresh air, enjoy the spring and rejuvenate. While walking outside I was listening to my podcasts and taking in the scenery so when I was done I was not fatigued or even felt like I had worked. However, I still managed to put in a good number of steps this week. This week also did not include any challenges so I’m happy with my progress this week.

 

Total – 91,769

Average daily – 13,110

Miles – 35.18

Floors – 154

 

Going forward my bike is out, dusted off and ready to ride so my steps are naturally going to decrease my activity will not.

“NUTELLA” FOR ADULTS

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As many of you know I don’t post recipes often because quite frankly there are so many blogs, websites and Pinterest sites that provide every recipe you can imagine or want. However, sometimes I even surprise myself and come up with a must share recipe. Quick back ground, last week a friend introduced me to Barney Butter which is this delightful almond butter made with cocoa and coconut oil, which you can find in your local stores or on line and perhaps that is the easiest way to enjoy this delightful creation of “Nutella” for adults. There is no hazelnut but just having a cocoa flavor, clean nut, spread for apples, vegetables, seed crackers or whatever you would normally put almond butter on. After trying this little tub of yummy goodness, and it is little, I had my husband try it and he looked at me so seriously with those confident eyes and said “this is good but you can make it better.” My husband truly has the most faith in me and knows that if it can be bought in a store then I can make it at home, better, cleaner, and less expensive so the gallant has been thrown, the challenge was on, and I was ready.

This weekend I think I came up with the perfect concoction of almond, coconut, cocoa and shared it with husband who said now that is truly a “Nutella for adults” shot, score, win in a matter of moments. So if you are so inclined and want to try this recipe, here it is and since I’m not a baker, chef, or food blogger this is my version without bells and whistles but my husband did think that having a picture or 2 were imperative so here it is and feel free to share with anyone you think would like it, or makes their own food. I think making your own food anytime you can is the best bang for your buck but we all don’t have a lot of time, patients or will to make food at home. I learn by making mistakes and I make a lot of mistakes in the kitchen so if your first batch doesn’t turn out like you thought, keep trying.

 

Ingredients

3 cups raw almonds

¼ cup coconut oil

Salt

2 Tbsp. cocoa powder

1 quick dash of maple syrup

 

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300
  2. On cookie sheet put the almonds
  3. Cover in coconut oil and add salt
  4. Roast the almonds to your liking, I want mine still moist so they cream well and take them out of the oven once I start to really smell them. Est time is about 30 minutes
  5. Cool briefly and add almonds to a food processor, or heavy duty blender if you wish
  6. Grind almonds and continually scrap the sides and be patient this is a long process
  7. Once the almonds start to cream add the cocoa powder and just a quick dash of maple syrup. This sweetness is to cut the bitterness of cocoa powder
  8. If you want it thinner or creamier you can slowly add in more liquid coconut oil. I had warmed a little bit and had it ready if I needed it but did not use it.
  9. Remove and add to your favorite Mason jar or container and eat anytime.

STEP BY STEP

My steps are in for the week and pretty decent for week especially since I was working hard on the my yoga mat putting together sequences which takes many many hours. At least for me it does to put them together, re-work them and remember them, but I love it.

Total steps – 87,296

Average daily – 12,471

Miles – 33.39

Floors – 138 floors

Hope you are all enjoying your steps and perhaps the weather is such that you can be outside.  I had my first walk outside of the season last Friday when it was 60 degrees here in Maine but then snow was in the air again yesterday.  Welcome to spring in Maine.