Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Revolution: 31 Days of Yoga

2017 is going to be epic! Epic, I say.....lol....only because I know of one thing for sure in my life that will be happening that is a good thing.....so, I'm super thrilled....

....but, until that day....I patiently wait and life rolls on - and as such - I'm soooo excited to start Adriene Mishler's ~ Revolution: 31 Days of Yoga ~ in January!!

I loved completing her previous bootcamps of 30 Days of Yoga and Yoga Camp. Now, she's introducing her 3rd installment which is the Revolution: 31 Days of Yoga.


Feel free to use her photo to spread the word on any social media platform you want.  Hashtag the word #yogarevolution .  Get the word out there, join in, it's so much fun!! You can get all the details here to sign up for the 31-Day starting on Jan. 1, 2017!

http://revolution.yogawithadriene.com/

Go here as well for complete details:


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Day 15

Final Day of the yoga challenge and it is a handstand....ofcourse, I had to use Paul the wall to assist me. Making fun 'Y' shapes - I think it stands for something, that 'Y' - I think it stands for the word YES - and that someday, I may be strong enough to do a handstand without wall assist. It may take me a long time, but I"m in no hurry.


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Day 13

Today is Half Lord of the Fishes or Ardha Matsyendrasana, or also known as a seated spinal twist.


This is a great twist if you need to warm up slowly and can't get your body moving - it's very simple yet invigorating and I normally practice it at the beginning of a routine before I practice more difficult flows.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Day 10

Moving right along with Chair Pose or Utkatasana. I did two versions because I needed the extra stretch.  The holiday hasn't provided me with much time at all for 'quality' yoga hours, so I've been inserting yoga in very briefly whenever I can, but it counts, right?

The first one is the classic pose.


And then I added in a little twist for my spine, and oh, that felt soooo good, very much needed on these cold, winter days, I have to warm up extra because I'm so cold.


Thursday, December 8, 2016

The unforgiving balancing act...

I've been trying to improve my standing compass pose or parivrtta surya yantrasana.  Although I see small improvements from my last photos of the same pose, I'm having such a difficult time how to simultaneously straighten the lifted leg and the standing leg at the same time. It's such a feat and I'm getting a bit frustrated, but I stand my ground and refuse to give up on this pose. I still seem to be leaning too far to the right at most.  I will keep researching this particular one.



Day 8

Goodmorning, Thursday! Today is Navasana or Boat Pose.  I like to have more control by using my hands to hold my legs.


Still remains a deceivingly difficult pose to master!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Day 7

Didn't have too much time today so quickly I did Bakasana or Crow Pose while in-between errands. I feel like crane will never be in my reach, but someday, Crane.....I will conquer you, I know I will.


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Day 6

I was really happy when I finally figured out the difference between Upward Facing Dog and Cobra.....for Cobra, the legs touch the ground, for Upward Dog or Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, the legs are slightly elevated.


Monday, December 5, 2016

Day 5

Downward Facing Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana. Believe it or not, DFD is actually not my favorite pose but it's a key element in the foundational poses and is a must.


I do try to incorporate it into my everyday flows.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Day 4

Took me forever to really learn how to hold longer breaths in Chaturanga Dandasana - the key is pressing tightly your arms and elbows really close to your body.  That's the leverage you need to keep the body tight and balance the rest of your lower back and legs. Super hard, as always.


Saturday, December 3, 2016

Day 3

Yay, it's Saturday! Quick, quick post for today - one of my favs in the warrior series is Virabhadrasana 1 or Warrior 1.



Friday, December 2, 2016

Day 2

This is a deep, forward bend also known as Paschimottanasana, it stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, and the feeling is pretty intense on your back and legs.  I try to practice this pose often during my flows.  Sometimes I can bend further - sometimes I can't and it can be a struggle.


But you never want to force it, this bend often requires a lot of stretching and warm up beforehand, unless I want to bend the knees slightly which makes it a lot simpler to press the torso against.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Day 1 and so many thoughts today


I'm back and I'm soooo excited to be joining in on a short yoga challenge this month.  Day 1 is Padmasana or Full Lotus Pose.


Somedays,  I really have nothing to say and I find myself simply playing along with the challenges and posting and that's it, I'm off and running into the daily life that surrounds me.....and then there are other days like - TODAY - where thoughts and ideas brew through my head and I feel like writing....writing a lot....and those who know me know I love to write. Blogging isn't always good, it isn't always bad either.....it's more so an exploration of thoughts that are written, to be reflected upon way, way, way.....down the road, when we feel the need to look back.

Today I was thinking in my mind about body image....and how body shaming and bullying and how low self-esteem can become a consequence of all the negativity that encompasses certain peoples actions.  I believe this affects both men and women, but somehow, I sense that all women - everywhere - deal with this body image problem at some point in their lives.

I've never been perfect, and I never will be - I have fully come to accept that fact, but when I was little and growing up, I remember being bullied all the time, so much so that I firmly grew up believing that I was never ever - pretty enough, smart enough, tall enough, strong enough, certainly not as well endowed as some of my friends.  Kids called me the strangest names - 'chicken legs' was one name....'scrawny'....oh, and I could name so many others, but I'll refrain.

I never understood why people couldn't just be nice no matter what ethnicity you were, what you looked like, what your religion entails, what you believed in and what you didn't believe in, if you were big or short, or small or tall.  I had and still have friends and people I know today who are of all different ethnic backgrounds, so various in their beliefs and way of thinking and living.....and yet, I treat them all the same.

And then I found yoga, and it made me re-think every single thing in my life.  How I live, how I think, and how I interact with people. Has it improved my strength? Absolutely. Has it made me a more calm and peaceful person? Absolutely. Has it taught me patience and resiliency? Still a work in progress....

Has it taught me to be kinder, be more appreciative, more willing to learn? Definitely. Has it embraced me (my practice) so much so that I no longer worry about body image? Not all the way, no. There are still somedays, I wake up and look in the mirror and still don't like what I see....but in a sense, that is so foolish. But is it really? It's fair and truthful to say that yes, I feel empowered and strong, and confident. But it's also truthful to say that on 'some' days, NO, I don't feel empowered, strong, or confident at all....AND THAT'S OK!!  I'm human.

I think the biggest thing one can ever do is just be kind.  I've tried and still trying to help my own son on his own journey of growing up. It is 10 times more difficult for him.  I hope that one day he will really fully understand about kindness and thankfulness.  For sure, he will get hurt by others, but how he reacts to it and grows up with that knowledge will really take a superb amount of patience and energy within him.

I still seek, at this time in my practice, to be the most resilient I can be from all the pressures of life and everything that is thrown my way.....I think I've come far though....it's a constant road of learning and never doubting that you can achieve whatever it is you are working for.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Day 24

It's been a busy, busy week and I haven't had too much time for yoga, a little bit here and there, very scattered, but still very thankful for any time I can get in, even just to meditate and breathe.  So, pulling my Day 24 - last day of the challenge - from a week ago when it was still beautifully sunny in the 90's. Gasp!! Where did the weather go? It's soooo cold now....you know this girl doesn't like cold...

Final day of the challenge is Compass Pose or Parivrtta Surya Yantrasana:


I'm going to go hibernate until spring of next year.... ;)

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Day 23

First time for me for trying a variant of Side Plank or Vasisthasana.  I'm finally now able to lift completely my leg and hold with my hand, but still plenty of revisions to make it look better. It still looks sloppy to me.....but I'm happy with the flexibility I've been able to achieve finally with side plank.


Saturday, November 19, 2016

Day 19

It's getting colder and colder and pretty soon I won't be able to go out to the swimming pool....awwww, insert crying emoji's right here ---->          Oh, how I miss the days when the boy was really little and took lessons at an indoor pool and we still had membership there.....we could go anytime and it was so great.....warm pool all year long.....how I miss that soooo much.

.....but I have been thoroughly enjoying any sunshine we've been having recently.  Today is Side Crow or Parsva Bakasana:


Thursday, November 17, 2016

Day 17

Grasshopper pose is always a tough one and I really like to play around with it, sometimes I feel like extending my legs and other times - I don't.  I did two different versions for fun.  The first one is a variant which is harder and includes a bind - lowering one elbow to the ground and reaching over and across with the hand to grasp the foot:


And the 2nd variation has no bind, and I chose to not extend the leg for this:


Both are the same pose - the first one just intensifies the twist and hip opening.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Day 16

Today is Seated Wide Legged Forward Bend/Fold or Upavistha Konasana:


This is such an intense stretch - I hope to achieve more of a straight line as I practice it more....really want to acquire the wide legged splits - which is much tougher than forward splits, still a ways to go with that one.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Day 13

Sunday and it's a beautiful day outside!! Must get outside and play today.... will be in the 90's! In November? Yes, I'll take it! Today is one of the first advanced poses that I learned and it's such an amazing core strengthener and arm balancing.  Astravakrasana or 8-angle pose.


To get the most feeling out of this pose, the key is to really press your legs together tightly and pinch that arm.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Day 12

I really wanted to change it up a bit today with my Dhanurasana or Bow Pose. Have always wanted to alternate the hands with the legs and twist into bow. Super difficult and I'm nowhere near the level I want to be with this pose, so a lot of practice ahead of me.


Friday, November 11, 2016

Day 11

I always call Camel Pose or Ustrasana the elusive pose because sometimes I feel I can do it correctly and other times, I can't feel it.  But - overall, the intense backbend does make this pose a great heart opener.


Thursday, November 10, 2016

Day 10

So I've been continuing my daily practice but thought I'd try and jump right back into the November challenges. I don't know why it takes me so long to get back into the rhythm of the challenges....more often times, it's always some priorities that lie ahead of me instead, but - nonetheless, I will try and finish out November's challenge with Kino and Kerri.

Also have had a nagging headache for the past 3 days that just won't go away, and I usually never get headaches, so I've been working around that.


Let's get to it.   Day 10 - Ekapadarajakapotasana or King Pigeon.


Monday, October 31, 2016

Day 31

Last day of the month and last day of the challenge, wow...it's November....gasp!! It's almost Christmas, crazy....

An L-handstand....I noticed that my arms aren't as straight as I would have liked them to be, but I didn't want to  re-do the pose....good enough...I'll take it.... :)


Sunday, October 30, 2016

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Day 29 - Day 12

Today is the last day for the Twist Out Tension Challenge. Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana.


This was a great challenge, I'm starting to like the shorter ones instead of the ones that last all month.

And the Rocket Challenge continues with Day 29 with Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana - so the revolved version of yesterdays Half Moon pose:


Friday, October 28, 2016

Day 28 - Day 11

Compass pose or Parivrtta Surya Yantrasana or sometimes known as Sundial Pose. Sometimes I feel my leg is straight but the photo never shows it straight....such an odd pose but the stretching sensation is amazing really!


And Half Moon Pose or Ardha Chandrasana...aw, now this is a balancing act for sure, it always takes me several tries before I can truly balance and align myself.  I don't normally put this into my routine either.


It is THE WEEKEND!! Woot!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Day 27 - Day 10

For the Twist out Tension Challenge - Hanumanasana or Splits with a twist.


For the Rocket Challenge, sometimes I can align my Virabhadrasana 3 and other times, it's a bit tricky.  Of all the warrior poses, to me, Warrior 3 is the hardest.


I'm so excited for the end of the month, Halloween! Haven't even assembled my costume yet. Better get a move on that. Best holiday ever....we love Halloween way too much!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Day 26 - Day 9

Today is one of my fave arm balances - Fallen Angel or Devadutta Panna Asana:


And pose #2 - I thought Version C of Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana was super hard....looks easy - deceiving.

You have to keep the leg out in front and try to straighten the back, no drooping on your back...gahhh!

I could only hold for a few seconds before I dropped that leg:


Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Day 25 - Day 8

Day 25 is also Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana except it is version B:


Similar to version A, but you take the leg facing front and swivel your hand and foot to your side, either left or right.

And Day 8 is Revolved Triangle or Parivrrta Trikonasana:


Monday, October 24, 2016

Day 24 - Day 7

I have dubbed this fun arm balance as the 'Tomato Face Pose' - because that's where all the blood rushes to -------> your face as you concentrate on the balancing...otherwise, known as a Side Crow or Parsva Bakasana:


And Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana or Extended Hand to Big Toe Pose:


Sunday, October 23, 2016

Day 23 - Day 6

Parsvottanasana or Pyramid Pose is up for Day 23.


And Day 6 is a Twisted Warrior Variation, the original pose was awkward for me so I modified it just a tad to suit my comfort level:


Saturday, October 22, 2016

Day 22 - Day 5

Day 22 is the last variant of Prasarita Padottanasana - D:


AND Day 5 is Half Lord of the Fishes or Ardha Matsyendrasana:


Friday, October 21, 2016

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Day 20 - Day 3

Two poses today for both challenges......it's such a super gorgeous morning, the sun is shining brilliantly, I love it when I get so much sun coming through the window while I'm doing yoga...it's the best....wish I could go sit out by the pool right now, but alas, I have other things I need to do today.....hopefully this weekend!

Up for the Rocket Challenge is Prasarita Padottanasana B, there are a few more of these variants in the coming days:


And a mouthful here, for the Twist out Tension challenge, Parivrrta Prasarita Padottanasana, similar to the classic pose but adding revolving twist:


Gotta run.............