Monday, July 24, 2017

Day 24

Just finished up my workout and am in resting phase now.

The husband is traveling on a business trip....and the boy is at school....and as I sit here, there is a very unusual amount of quietness....

More so than  I could ever's almost an eery silence.....

And with that, I'm able to enjoy this little photo that I was able to capture yesterday:

In its purest staging like so many of my photos are.....nope....the real thing...real life....he was with me at the grocery store and a bit bored as I was looking for something.  I could tell he was bored.  Grocery shopping isn't exactly the funnest thing in the world - even for an adult...ha! I turned around, and caught him doing a Virabhadrasana 2 - I quickly snapped it before he turned his head.....

My heart was full.

But I digress........

Lets go back to two years ago when I was soooo excited to introduce him to yoga.  And I did. He liked it....he did it with me for a while....My world was spinning, my son was doing yoga with me. How can that be? Here he was in 2015:

But then, after a while his interest waned.....and he said, "Mommy, it's too hard, I'm tired."  And I said, "Ok."

My heart sunk. Maybe my heart was broken just a little.

But as a mom, I continually learn that you can't force anything.....on anyone. I perceive myself as relentless in my own personal goals.......but I can not pressure any one else.....that I have learned through time and as I age.

It just has to come - basically to anyone and at their very own pace.

But yesterday's capture - oh - be still my heart!!! There was a little hope and excitement in me.....

For really, two years later.......when I thought he really wasn't looking at all.....maybe.....just maybe he's paying attention after all..... :)

I hope the spark returns for him...........Love him!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Day 19 and 8 lbs. x 2

It's so hot here in Cali that I feel like I'm doing hot yoga every day even though hot yoga is much, much hotter, but still.....the sweat factor makes me feel like that's exactly what I'm doing....but don't mind one bit... this thing called summer...I'm loving it...just finding creative ways to keep myself cool and hydrated.

Day 19 and still going strong with Adriene's July calendar.  It's been a great mix and mash of light and easy to vigorous and intense.  I'm never misled by a video that seems too short, because it could very well be deceiving.  She packs a punch even in the super short vids.

I've upped my weights to 8 lbs. for each arm lift.  So a total of 16 lbs.  Since the weights are much heavier now, I've decreased my reps to only 40.

Legs stay the same at only (1) 8 lb. dumbbell at 20 reps.

I was thinking of introducing one more form of exercise to add onto my yoga and weight lifting, but I've decided not to over do it.....that this is exactly enough for right now.

I'm exhausted but in a good's an exhaustion that I know I feel is working.....I'm still able to function immediately after exercising, and not completely wiped out.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Total Body Workout

Day 3 -

This morning was rough. I didn't want to get out of bed. It's just too comfortable to lay underneath the comforter on these lazy holiday mornings! Who doesn't just want to sleep in at these times? I looked at my clock at 7. I said, 'No, not yet'.  So I switched to my phone and set the alarm for 8:45. That was my max, I made it a point that I have to get up at 8:45 to start Day 3.

We had a choice between the Empower Series - Phase 1 - Heart, or its equivalent - Yoga for Weight Loss - Balancing Practice - I went for the latter which was a whopping 58 minutes. Man, it was intense:

Before that I stayed true to my weights...still playing around with combinations that feels right for me....For now, I've found a good balance for the arms consisting of 1 set - 100 reps.

Legs stay the same for now at 1 set - 20 reps.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

FWFG - July

Ah! The July calendar is up and I see some Empower series scheduled - super excited for those - her empower workouts are always a toughie! Most of them are more than 40 minutes.... super good challenge.  Can't wait!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Upping my weights

Arms -

I don't think my weights are heavy enough.  Have been pacing myself steadily at 5 lbs. for a total of 20 reps on each arm for 2 sets.  I'm not exhausted yet. So I need to increase my weights and decrease my reps.

My intention is not to lose weight but to gain muscle and endurance.

Legs -

Still keeping this at 20 reps - only 1 set, because it's much tougher on the legs in criss cross/over and under scissors. I'm usually pretty tired after I hit the 20, almost dying. Ugh. The core and abs work is always so much harder for me than arms.

What else....I've noticed I have not been sleeping very well lately.  It doesn't always happen every night but I've noticed on some nights my brain doesn't want to shut down.  It doesn't matter how early I turn off my phone and the lights and anything entertaining - I still will just lay, and lay, and lay on the bed, until I realize it's roughly 3 a.m.  I noticed my body will finally be in a deep sleep around 4:30 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. Which is not a good thing!

Probably worrying too much - having too much on my mind....hasn't yoga taught me to only live in the present moment and not worry too much about the future???  Hmm, I need to take heed of that thought!

I've tried all sorts of ways to fall asleep on a more timely schedule, still haven't figured it out yet. Gotta keep thinking what I can do to improve my sleep.

Still enjoying the 30-days of June yoga.  It's just the right amount that I need for this month....will most likely take it up a notch for July.

Friday, June 2, 2017

FWFG - June

Adriene just came out with her FWFG June calendar....All 20 minutes or less each day - so I think this will fit in perfectly with my June schedule to keep me accountable.

I missed Day 1, so I just did Day 2 today. Looking forward to seeing what the new videos are on Sundays. Anyone want to do this with me?  I know some of my yoga peeps will, and some non-yoga friends have recently started yoga, so that makes me happy! I hope they enjoy can't push yoga on anyone, it has to be experienced before you decide if you like it or not.  And if you don't like it, then that's ok! Everyone should definitely find something that lights their fire!

I'm still enjoying my dumbbells at the moment. Yay!!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

5 lb. dumbbells

Taking note - have been using 5 lb. dumbbells in addition to my daily yoga routine for about 1 week now.

2 sets each arm. 20 reps.

Also interlacing them under and over my legs in yogi bicycles, super tiring - 1 set, 20 reps for now.

Will track my progress and see how I feel in one month.

Short term goal - upper arm toning.

Long term goal - muscle mass gain - pounds?  Haven't figured that one out yet....I'd like to be 115 lbs. again - anywhere from 115 - 120 with muscle......

I have so much work ahead of me.....

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Day 25

I've come up with a little cold - nooooooo, can't get sick! Why? Oh, why???  That's just how it is....the little one gets all the germs from school then brings it home to mom...ugh! Poor little guy...He is getting better now but I'm pretty sure he passed it on to me.........I have not felt good for two days now.

Nevertheless,  I persist.  I still tried to crank out Day 25 - which was supposed to be an Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana Variant.

Carmen wanted us to hook the arm over and across the head for an extra level of difficulty and bind the other arm to the pigeon foot.  I just went with the touch of my feet on the head and I couldn't bind the other hand to foot yet. Hopefully someday. A super, feel-good stretch for the back though!

.....I think I will rest for the remainder of the day.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Day 23

For Baddha Parivrtta Vatayanasana, I couldn't do the half lotus in front, so instead I reversed and turned my left leg up and back -

Then, I did the binding and twisting....either way you have your folded leg, I'm quite sure the feeling is super intense! Incredibly insane during the bind and simutaneously twisting....

And I threw in a quick 10 minute rinse with Adriene - Yoga for Focus and Productivity - this video is only 10 minutes but she packs a punch into it!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Day 22

Monday morning motivation!! Get out of bed and lets do this! So today's pose is a YogiDandasana Variant or Foot to Armpit..... a hip opener and torso twister that is excruciatingly hard to balance, so I did plenty of warm-ups before it.

Earlier in the morning, Adriene had one of her videos up, so I was so happy to see that.  I had to indulge in this, another great part of my morning warm-up.  Approx. time was about 29 minutes.

Yoga + Pranayama for the Spine.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Day 20

This looks and feels a lot more intense than the photo shows.  A revolved forward fold or Parivrtta Uttanasana.

You're trying to twist the torso and to pass the outer arm to the outer part of your thigh which would be my right arm over and past my left leg.  Super difficult.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Day 19

You can only fall so many times - ridiculously hard and crooked and all sorts of ways before you just simply - it a day...

I tried twice and attempted the bind, once I completed the bind but it was super crooked, my alignment was way off for Tripod Headstand or Sirsasana Variant.

So I tried it again without binding of the hand to foot and I'm a little straighter but still nowhere at the difficulty level of this pose.....!!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Day 17

Revolved Bound Triangle Pose or Parivrtta Baddha Trikonasana.  This one is super intense on the leg and hamstrings....felt it...

And with the added twist comes an extra level of difficulty. Phew!! I'm usually pretty sore by the time one of Carmen's challenges are completed....but I learn so much, and I'm so thankful for her tips and modifications.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Day 16

For today, I opted for the sitting upright version of Lotus or Pindasana variant - minus the shoulderstand.

It was difficult entering lotus from shoulder stand, I felt like I had no control once I went to insert my arms between my legs, need to practice more.  But for now, the sitting upright was a bit easier to handle.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Day 15

A most awkward one and trying to keep the torso as straight as you can is difficult.

Akarna Dhanurasana:

I do like her other modification, I'm going to have to try that one out as well. Looked interesting!!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Day 14

Happy Mother's Day to my very sweet mom! I can't wait to see you in a few hours and give you a big hug and tell you how much I love you!! I've learned so much from you, and to this day, I still continue to inhale your wisdom.

You've taught me a lot of important things but mostly - kindness, forgiveness, understanding, and that giving up is never an option.

Little did I know I would have to incorporate all of those qualities into my adult hood - my personal life now - as well as my own yoga journey.

Oh wild and rebellious I was from about 25 - 30. And isn't that an awkward age to be so???  Most people are rebellious much younger...that didn't happen for me until later.  Don't quite know how you dealt with me back then, but I guess I learned slowly then......I am grateful NOW, in the present day......I never would have known the word 'grateful' without you.

You will continue to live forever, mom, I just know it, because YOU are the strongest woman I know!! xoxo

Day 14 is Reclined Bird of Paradise or Svarga Dvijasana:

Another pose I was not able to do a full bind until now.  Although I entered this pose totally different than what Carmen suggested in her post.....instead of entering from Warrior position, I did a full splits first, stretched in a forward fold, lifted my right leg, placed my arm under, and then wrapped my other arm around - then straightened  my right leg again.  I guess it is different for everyone where the point of entry would be.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Day 13

This challenge has provided some breakthroughs for me....I can't even believe it - it's almost 3 years into my practice and I can finally bind in some areas that I've not been able to before.  Truly thankful for persistence....for I could have easily given up.  Every little bit of practice really helps.

Bound Half Lotus in Side Plank or Kasyapasana.

It's only Day 13 and I'm already sore.....oh my! Need sleep badly!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Day 12

As inversions are still my weakness, I've been doing a lot of wall drills - facing the wall - it seems a bit more comforting for me this way instead of the other way around.  Getting closer to the wall is what I want really for now as far as drills.  I think I'm close to managing a perfect line against the wall.....just need to dig a bit deeper with my arm strength and overall balance.

But for now, this will be the best version of what I have for Day 12 - Revolved (mine is not) ForeArm Balance or Pincha Mayurasana:

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Day 11

One of my fav supine twists pretty much in any practice/flow or before bedtime or if I'm just feeling lazy and don't want to exert myself too much.  I normally don't twist quite as much as the challenge pose but this also felt good.

Reclined Spinal Twist or Supta Matsyendrasana variant:

Love doing this in bed if I have the room for, most comfiest place to twist really.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Day 10

Haven't had too much time to really jot down how I feel with each of these poses and which part of the body I feel is really engaged  - but for now, just posting the poses and names so I can refer back to them later and fine tune....

High Bow or Dhanurasana Variant:

Friday, May 5, 2017

Day 5

This was quite the twister. I've never really enjoyed Revolved Bound Half Moon - but it is normally the difficult asanas that you don't like as much and need to keep practicing......Also known as Parivrtta Ardha Baddha Chandrasana.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Day 4

Gomukhasana arms in Dolphin or Ardha Pincha mayurasana:

A bit harsh on the elbow, so don't stay too long in this position. Some challenging amount of balancing.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Day 3

Carmen is right about this pose, it is deceiving, and the amount of balance on one leg and to twist both arms while balancing is harder than you would think.

Eagle or Garudasana arms in Half Lotus Squat.

On a side note, because I feel like rambling..........I've been having a heck of a time lately with some folks who find social media and yoga posting unbearable....

Well, in all honesty.....I truly believe from my heart that 'most' people choose wisely what to media is about sharing....we choose what we want to share vs. what we don't.  It is a place to share, to inspire.......for some, it is to educate and/or advertise.

If I have ever been inspired to try yoga because I saw someone else's photo...then I am thankful for it.

If, I, in turn, inspire someone out there to try yoga because I posted a photo of myself, then I am happy that I motivated them.  And that is media is a tool - you use it the way you want to use it - hopefully in a positive way.

Is it vain? It is what you want to think it is....

Because really, at the end of the day........I know who I am......I am just simply ME, I am a mom, I'm a wife, I have bills to write, paperwork to go through, food to cook, and a house to clean.......I clean kitchen floors just like anyone else - I'm not really that glamorous when doing so.....if you think I am - you can come by my house any time and check out the "Cinderella" fashion that I sport while on my hands and knees. It's really exciting stuff.

Like I said, at the end of the day, when you put your head on your know who you are....and everything's just social's fun....keep it lighthearted and don't take everything so seriously.  This is supposed to be real that's what I keep private.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Day 2

Today is Lotus or Padmasana in Fish Pose....quite the challenge of bending the back at the same time as keeping the legs in lotus and even on the ground.  Felt great, perfect amount of stretch to get me going.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Day 1

This looks fun, so why not? Woot!!! It's May, I'm so glad May is finally upon us, I was pretty much done with April a long time ago, ha!

I usually don't do Ardha Matsyendrasana super deep, but wow!! I really felt the intensity by twisting my torso even more than I normally do.....

Friday, March 24, 2017

Gratitude and other ramblings

What a beautiful spring day!!! It's finally here! I'm soooo happy that the sun is shining!  And I'm most grateful - that word - 'gratitude' needs to come by more often in my vocabulary!

I've been receiving a lot of sweet little messages - all forms of communication from private messages to emails to texts asking me where I am - I seem to be missing from the yoga challenges on IG.  How and what did I do to deserve such kindness....I will never know.

I'm thoroughly humble that the yoga community that I stumbled upon is TRULY one of the most gracious and kindest communities - so much so like the crafting community that I love very much! You really won't find a more compassionate and caring group than yoga lovers!

But I am still here......

Just taking a little break from all of the challenges and doing my own own practice still consists of anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes.  I try to complete daily....some days are harder than others....maybe somedays I skip because I just can't get in the time....

Still working on building core strength and arm strength.

I had a moment of 'realization' back in 2015 - I had lost too much weight. I could tell the way my clothes fit - it just didn't feel right....even my siblings were telling me, "Tif, you look TOO thin."  And they were right.  I was exercising too much and not eating quite enough.

But I'm happy to say it's 2017 and I've regained the weight that I lost....I've been trying to remember the delicate balance between exercising and nourishing my body with food, instead of just running, and running, all day long on exercise and not remembering to eat.

I still have a goal of gaining at least 8 more pounds and then I think I will be at the full weight I want to be at - mind you - that's muscle mass and toning that I want when I say 'gaining' weight.

That's it for now....

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Day 28

Last day of the month for both challenges - Prasarita Padottanasana or Wide Legged Standing Forward Fold.....I don't think this was my best, I think I was sore and couldn't align the way I wanted to.

And this was my modified version of Padangustha Dhanurasana -

This is super tough on the knees and the front chest against the wall. I wasn't able to completely touch my hands to my feet doing the arms over-the-head method.  Great challenges this month! So glad I was able to participate in most of it.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Day 27

Day 27 was 2 legs behind the head or Dwipada Sirsasana. Not really in my means at this time but at least I tried. Good heavens, so hard -

And -- Half Lord of the Fishes or Ardhamatsyendrasana -

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Day 26

What a busy day, got to my yoga practice so late today - but it's all good - today was supposed to be eka pada padangustha dhanurasana but I found that rather difficult so I took one of her alternates and decided to do this pose standing up instead....changing it to Dancer's Pose or Natarajasana:

And the easy pose of Upward Facing Dog or Urdhva Mukha Svanasana:

Two more days, can't believe it, this month has gone by insanely fast....I really need some sleep.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Day 25

It's Saturday!! Finally.....and I'm so happy - peeked at the weather forecast for next week - super sunny and in the 70's - my kind of weather! Up for today is Vertical splits at the wall or Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana:

And Warrior 2 or Virabhadrasana 2:

Friday, February 24, 2017

Day 24

Sphinx Pose or Salamba Bhujangasana:

And what was supposed to be Chin stand with scorpion or Viparita Salabhasana - I tried the scorpion, various versions of it - didn't really like it, definitely wasn't feeling it,  so I went with both legs on the wall instead:

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Day 23

Since Durvasana isn't accessible yet, I opted for Svarga Dvijasana and Compass pose sort of combined.

And, Reverse Table Top pose is always a tough one to align......

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Days 21 & 22

Marichyasana C or Seated Twist was the easier pose - love all seated twists, so good for the spine.

And Tittibhasana A was pretty difficult at the wall...intense feeling, much rather prefer doing this pose without the wall:

Day 22 is Reverse Warrior or Viparita Virabhadrasana:

And when I tried Rajakapotasana 2 at the wall, I was like, NO. Oh, to the no, to the no, no, no!! It wasn't working and it hurt my chest and all my other body parts.....I even had to use a pillow to soften the harshness of the wall and my chest against I rested, but then I came back to it a while later and tried it again, I approached it differently and was able to at least sit up a bit higher and press against the wall, it wasn't so bad after all. I used both hands in the front instead of against the knee caps.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Day 19 & 20

I still had a Day 19 from yesterday that I didn't get to, so here is my best attempt at a 1-arm Handstand or Adho Mukha Vrksasana....I can really see I have a very, very long way to go with one arm....still working on just  two arms, but boy, how I appreciated how this felt today and how much effort and strength I needed. I'm really glad I gave it a try and modified it.

I, sooo, wish I had stronger arms. I'm just so little....Argh! Yes, there are disadvantages to being too small, I'm not even going to go there today.....NOT EVEN!

Next up is TittibhasanaC:

And -- I already did Revolved Head to Knee Pose or Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana on Day 15, so I just did the simpler version for today:

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Day 19

One of the many great foundational poses that build up core strength - Plank Pose. I try to incorporate this in all my flows.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Day 18

Saturday!! Yay! Totally late start this morning but hey, LOVE sleeping in on my's the best! Snuggles all morning with the boys and dreamily sleeping....wouldn't want it any other way.....

but wanted to get out my Day 18 before up is Baby Vasisthasana -- I just couldn't place my foot the way Carmen did it on the wall,  I kept slipping, so I adjusted my footing and i was able to secure my right leg......after that, I just had to use my head and get creative with's not the same pose as Carmen's but it worked for me. Whatever works, right?

And a Standing Forward Fold or Uttanasana -- I added in a small half lotus:

Woot! I'm so stoked for the 3-day weekend!