Monday, April 29, 2013

21 Day Cleanse

I am so excited to share with you a wonderful weekend recap and some info about a cleanse I will be starting up soon!

First things first, this past weekend:

  1. Friday I had a really fun Jazzersize experience with Andrew's mom.  It was a "beach body" theme and the focus of each routine was on the lower half of the body.  I have been to Jazz before and have found it fun, but not super challenging...this class was not the same!  My legs were burning so bad and I was sweating like a crazy person only 30 min into the hour long class!  I'd say it was a great workout, and super fun!  
  2. Saturday I taught my Vinyasa class at Xsport and did some grocery shopping at Costco before going on a cute picnic with Andrew in the afternoon.  We ended up going to the forest preserve to play a little Frisbee before laying out on our yoga mats to do some reading (both of us have exams coming up...).  Then, after I took a short nap, we got some vegan Gelato before heading home for dinner and a movie. 
  3. Sunday was so much fun!  Andrew and I did the March for Babies in Elk Grove in the morning.   It was a beautiful 3 mile walk and we got free coffee, and bagels!  After the walk, I drove straight to Essencia's studio to meet up with my fellow yogis and give a short presentation on Ayurveda (post about that coming soon).  All of the girls were so much fun and we had a blast sharing information and eating a bounty of delicious raw foods!
Now for the cleanse:
I will be starting a 21 day green smoothie cleanse with 6 other people.  I won't get into too many details, yet, but I will say that I am super excited to be eating a diet made completely from plants!  100% raw vegan for 21 days!

Cleansing can be a scary adventure if you are unaware of how to go about it, or have no one to do it with. 
Spring is officially in the air, so take some deep Ujjayi breaths of fresh air and give your body what it wants and needs :)

Luana ola!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

You Are Beautiful, Part 2

Did anyone do the challenge I sent out last week?  If not, check it out here!!

This past week, I have personally been able to see more beauty in life.  Despite the rapid weather changes surrounding the Midwest and the craziness going on around the globe, I have been trying harder than ever to see the light.  It is during these times, when there is darkness, that we need to find inner beauty and light to share with the world! So please share your experiences in the comments below.

As for a quick update on my life, a lot has been going on so this will be a big list of wonderful things that are beginning and ending:

1. Next week is finals week to end my first year in post-bac program to become an RD

2. I'm going to a fun workout this Friday with Andrew's mom.  It is going to be Zumba-like, but not officially "zumba"

3. Saturday will be my second time teaching yoga at Xsport!  Last week went well, but I was so nervous that I was shaking for the first half!  Now that I know what to expect and I have talked to my teacher as well as some friends, I think I will be much more confident and calm.

4. Sunday will be the opening of Essencia's brand new studio!  I will be hosting an Ayurveda workshop and we will be practicing yoga and sharing delicious raw, vegan foods!  Ahh I can't wait!!!

5. I will be starting a Raw Vegan Smoothie/Juice cleanse with some yoga friends soon and am also super excited about that!

Wow, that's a lot of excitement happening this week!  For being such a stressful week that just past, it is just what I need.  Isn't it amazing how nature just balances itself out?  It seems like whenever you have a bad day/week/time there is always something good that comes into your life at the end to make it all worth while. If you are going through a tough time right now during this change of seasons, hang on tight, talk to a friend, and drink some herbal tea because it will pass soon and a whole new beautiful world will be waiting for your beautiful self!

Luana ola!

Monday, April 15, 2013

You Are Beautiful

After watching this video by Dove soap, I am in tears from how true and how beautiful this video was.

It is so true that we are all our worst critic.  We find every little "flaw" in ourselves.  I put flaw in quotes, because these things we think are flaws are characteristics/personality/unique traits that no one else in the world has exactly like us! Beauty is so much more than skin deep.   Embrace what you feel is a flaw and see yourself how the world sees you; you are that beautiful!

Here's a quick thing I would like each of you to do this week.  Take 5 minutes at some point during the week and describe your face.  Just your face.  Try to write it down in great detail; freckles, moles, jaw line, etc.with detailed description.  Basically, if you notice it about yourself, jot it down, but don't look in a mirror.  Then, have someone who knows what you look like fairly well do the same thing.  When they are done, read both of the descriptions out loud and notice the difference!  I can almost guarantee that your friend/spouse/other will put so much more beauty into your face than you give yourself credit for.

Finally, leave a comment with how you felt after reading the results.  I am trying to show women and men alike that they are more beautiful than they think, so please help me out :)

I'll be posting my results next Monday in a follow-up post.

Note:  When typing in "beauty" in google images, the only pictures that appear are of faces and models...I sense something wrong here...Check out Healthy Tipping Point for more amazing inspiration!  And come back to see me for updates!

Luana ola!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A Sign of Spring: Beets!

Beets are one of those foods that you either like, or don't like.  As for me, I LOVE them!!  They are sweet and crunchy, and oooh so good for you; especially your liver.

Yesterday, I had some extra time (how, I don't know...), so I decided to roast up some beets that we bought on Sunday.  Here's the before picture:  I simply rinsed them off and trimmed the greens off, but put them on the sheet pan with the roots.  Heat the oven to 375 degrees F and take the greens out after about 20 minutes.  Leave the roots in there for about 45 min, or until the skins are nice and soft.
 Here' the greens, fresh out of the oven!  I gobbled these guys up so fast.  I've had kale chips, but these beet green chips were so sweet and tasty I think Andrew and the rest of my family might like them (note:  they all don't like beets, not even a little...)
 Finally, the beets were finished.  They don't look much different, but I could hear them sizzling and there were little pools of juice bubbling out of them.
 Now, they are super simple to peel.  Just take a paring knife (or any small knife) and begin to peel back the skin.  Let me note here that your finger tips might get a little pink depending on how careful you are.  That being said, be careful because beets stain like no other and it won't come out!  Trust me, I learned this the hard way...multiple hand washings do the trick though not with clothes!
 Once they are cooled a bit, go ahead and slice thin, or cut however you'd like.
 I like the slices because you can see the pretty rings!

Back to liver health here really quick...for those of you who are squeamish, stop reading here...

We know that our liver gets a good boost of nutrition from beets because if you eat a serving, which is about 1/2 c slices, you will more than likely be urinating pinkish-red.  I just wanted to mention this because it scared me the first time it happened to me.  This is nothing to be alarmed with and will lighten as the beets go through digestion.

What is your favorite way to eat beets?  If you don't like them, would you be willing to give the greens a try?

Luana ola! 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Getting ready for summer

Whether or not you are a student right now, I'm sure you know all about the hardships that come with warming weather and school ending soon.  Even if you are in your career of choice, I'm sure you still get a similar feeling.  That being said, I'm dedicating this post to mindfulness and finding peace through all of the beautiful changes of spring.

We all know that spring is a time of change, a time of new beginnings, a time of birth.  So many beautiful things are happening around us every day, so why do we tend to sulk in the gloomy/grey/rainy days?  It is natural to feel tired when the sun is not shining, or the temperature is constantly changing.  This is Mother Nature's way of preparing our bodies and minds slowly for the heat and intensity of summer.  Think about during the winter when you walk from the freezing cold outside to standing right in front of a blazing fire inside.  It might feel good at first, but then you get really hot and uncomfortable.  But, if you were to have come inside from the cold, grabbed a warm drink to sip and sat near the fire, you would have slowly warmed up and felt great.  This is the same for spring.  Spring is that sip of warm tea after the blast of cold to help prepare your body for the flames (heat) from the sun.  Doesn't that make it seem much nicer?

If you need a little pick-me-up during this time of year, here's a few things that might help:

  • Read a book about summer/begin planning a vacation
  • Drink your favorite summer beverage
  • Go through your summer clothes and try them on to remind you that it's just around the corner
  • Listen to the birds chirp
  • Look at the new buds and blades of grass growing
  • Smell the rain
  • practice Pranayama outdise
  • exercise as much as you can outside
Hopefully these things help you in your journey through spring.  Just remember that this is a beautiful time of year, but in order to see the beauty, you have to slow down, take a step back, and listen/hear/see/feel/taste all the beautiful new things that happen in spring.

Luana ola!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Spring Cleansing

Ever since spring began (wait, has it?? last time I walked outside I about froze!...any who...) every other email/post/status/tweet I have been reading has been about cleansing of some sort.  Whether it be a detox program, 3 day juice cleanse, water fast, house cleaning, you name it and it's being done by someone somewhere.  What is all the hype about?

That is the question I asked myself before going on my own smoothie cleanse just before Easter.  Now I know why this cleansing stuff is such a big deal!  Although my cleanse wasn't all that difficult or strenuous, I did feel a surge of extra energy and happiness flowing through my veins as I sipped a green smoothie for lunch (and sometimes breakfast) every day for 7 days straight.  This was not about weight loss or muscle building, but just a small challenge I made up to test the "cleansing waters" before diving in to juicing and other cleanses.

If you have been following my blog of a while, you might remember when I went to Disney about 2 years ago.  During that summer/fall, I was 20 pound less than I had ever been since turning 16!  My friends and family told me I was too skinny, but I didn't believe them.  I counted calories, did some form of activity after every meal, and had an overall negative self-image.  Let it be said here that I did not lose this weight in a healthy manner...

That winter, I gained back all 20 pounds and have been eating healthy and exercising healthy ever since.  That being said, I am still working on my body image, but practicing yoga and becoming a yoga teacher has helped me tremendously with that!  I do hope to lose about 10 pounds, but it is not the most important thing in my life.  My health, happiness, and love of good food and life comes first.

Thank you for listening reading this post.  It means so much to me to hear from my readers.  I would love to hear about your experiences with any cleansing you have tried/heard of or any health success stories you would like to share.  As always, please feel free to email me or leave a comment.

Luana ola!

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Beauty of Spring

If you live anywhere near the midwestern part of the US, you understand my excitement about the warmth coming this way!!  Ever since March 20 (the official vernal equinox aka start of spring), the weather has been pretty cold with very few hints towards warmer weather...

Finally, this past week, the sun has been shining and the birds chirping many beautiful songs!  This week, it is even supposed to get into the upper 50s and maybe even reach 60 degrees!!!  As much as I love cool, crisp weather, there is just something about spring and summer that warms my heart.  In all honesty, it is probably the idea of relaxing in the sun, going swimming, bike riding, running in the heat, and general ease of life that I love most.

That being said, I only have 3 weeks left of classes before this semester is over.  I can't even believe it.  So many projects and tests to study for and so little time.  I have been trying to post more (especially pictures, and I am oh so so sorry about that...) but it seems as though time slips through my fingers all too quickly these days.  So please bear with me. Posts about my garden and spring fun will be coming soon enough :)

What is your favorite part about spring?

Luana ola!