Yesterday I ate pound cake for breakfast. Oh, and pasta for dinner. I’m not talking about a vegan, gluten-free, grain-free version of these items, I’m not remorseful, rebellious or boastful. I’m not trying to sell you on a recipe. It’s just what happened. READ MORE
Today I got on my mat. Ok, I get on my mat most days, but today felt special. After a long week of holidays and family and travel, and ‘make do’ practices, I’m finally home and was expecting a friend to join me for an asana and breathing session chez moi. I thought “Now I will finally have a real practice!” But winter arrived unexpectedly today, and my yoga buddy wasn’t able to drive. I was back to facing the idea of a solo practice. In times past this might have spelled the end of my ‘get back in gear’ plans, but somehow today’s practice was amazing, focused and sweetly sweaty. It felt just as ‘real’ as any day in the shala. How’d that happen?
Well, partly after all these years I’ve finally grown up in my practice. I still LOVE being in the room with a lot of other devoted folks and all that energy, but my mat and my own breath are familiar to me, and the habit is ingrained. I can make the energy myself if I need to. And partly I’ve developed a few rituals over the past several months of mainly self practice that have really helped me make the most of my alone time and keep the yoga fires burning, even without community around me. Here are a few:
- Lemon water. I get up in the morning and drink it first thing. It makes me feel virtuous and begins the ritual of the morning. Ok, I drink my coffee after that too, but the lemon water is what makes it feel like I’m beginning my day in a healthy way and setting the tone for the practice.
- I set a time in my mind for getting on my mat and when the clock strikes that time, I “ekam inhale.” Practicing at the same time every day is even better, but though I don’t always manage to do that, I set a time in my mind the night before and keep it like an appointment.
- A little rebellion. I often practice to music, at least for the opening sun salutes and standing postures. There I said it, ashtanga police be damned. Sometimes a driving beat is helpful in getting me going or keeping me flowing. I respond deeply to rhythms. They draw my breath, heartbeat and mind all into one pointed focus.
Looking for inspiration to get on your mat, go to a class, or design your sustainable delectable life and practice? I’d love to help! I’m working on a free gift for you—a cheat sheet of my ten top tips for getting on the mat regularly. In the meantime, share your unique struggles with me via email or comments and let’s see if we can start your motivational tuneup!
And, coming in the New Year, I’m launching a new program for creating a healthy-yet-balanced life that includes a dedicated yoga practice AND room for mindful indulgence. In short, A Life Delectable. To get first dibs when the program launches and keep up to date on the latest tips and recipes, don’t forget to sign up for email updates and ‘like’ the A Life Delectable facebook page!
And now back to my New Year’s Eve healthy indulgent menu planning…
Wishing you happiness, health and lots of dark chocolate in the coming year,
A number of months ago my friends at the Ashtanga Dispatch hosted an Instagram Challenge, and one of the required poses was “the pose you wish…wasn’t.” So yeah, my immediate reaction was to avoid that challenge! But seriously folks, there are very few poses I wish didn’t exist. Though there are plenty of poses that challenge me, I find most of them enjoyable to work on. But there are one or two poses that feel more than challenging. They feel impossible. As if there is no finger hold. Nowhere to begin. Like they were designed just to show me my limits. There’s no work, just a feeling of inadequacy. READ MORE
“You know, there really is so much too much of you!”-A Tale of Two Cities.
This is sometimes how I feel about myself. Too many thoughts, too loud, too curly, too curvy, too many asanas, singing when I should chant, talking when I should be silent. Part of my journey of yoga: embracing it all. There is exactly as much of me as there should be. Yes, self-transformation can be good, but self-acceptance is even better. If it’s true as the Baghavad Gita says, that “yoga is the practice of tolerating the consequences of being who you are,” then I may be slowly, slowly almost practicing yoga. I see the growth and the stuck places too, everywhere in my life. And it’s evidenced in my yoga pants and my Instagram account. Say what??? READ MORE
There’s a little something causing a stir over on Instagram lately. Actually, it may not be causing a stir so much as it’s causing some drooling. It’s a chocolate coconut pudding pic from my breakfast the other day and yeah, I was totally a tease. I put it up there and left it there with no way for you to make it. Bad lady. READ MORE
Hi folks and happy moon day, otherwise known as a day ashtangis may sleep till (gasp!) 6 or 7!
On mornings like this, moon days and Saturdays, I sometimes find myself weirdly relaxed, or alternately at loose ends (like, what in the world am I still doing in my pajamas at 7 am?!) or crazy hungry. It’s like my belly knows we don’t have to power up for a practice first and demands feeding, pronto like.
On one of these mornings I found myself dreaming of peanut butter. Not almond butter or sunflower butter or calcium rich tahini, but peanut butter. And I wondered why you never see a peanut butter chia pudding. I mean, really, have you seen one? It’s always goji or strawberry or chocolate spirulina or some crazy thing. My go-to has always been simple vanilla with cardamom and/or cinnamon. But this week I wanted something slightly more decadent. And while I was at it, I thought, if PB, then why not PB and J?
Yes, I went there. And I’m so glad I did. I think It’s going to inspire a long list of chia parfaits. Actually, vanilla layered with the berry might be even better (how about vanilla layered with blueberry? Or cherry? OMG). I think Chocolate layered with the peanut butter would be awesome. And how about coffee? Like your morning brew and breakfast all in one go. Oh man, I’m getting hungry right now.
To be clear, I didn’t use real jam. I wanted these to be somewhat healthy. I merely made strawberry flavored milk to create my chia pudding, which, in combination with the peanut butter, give the PB & J effect. But you could use some jam as a topping or layer if you like.
And, just as a reminder, chia seeds are amazing health promoters. Their mucilaginous properties make them great for gut healing, while the high fiber content keeps you full. With protein, calcium and omega 3s, they’re teeny tiny little health powerhouses. And adding nuts and seeds, plus fruits and other super foods makes this a pudding fit for a super hero.
I made a big batch of these parfaits one Saturday morning and enjoyed them for a few days, with friends. So they’ll last. Make some on a day off then take them to go for those faster paced days. I know you might buy those chia pods or the like when you’re on the go. But chia pudding is simple to make. I know you can do it. And, those tiny little pods are not nearly enough to satisfy my breakfast hunger. Admit it, you eat two as well…
Anyway, I loved these for their beauty and their decadent flavor. One day I even ate mine drizzled with extra homemade nut milk. This is what my grandfather always did with his tapioca pudding and it’s perfectly indulgent.
You can, of course, eat just one flavor at a time. But I ask you, why????
Hi folks and happy happy summery day! I come to you today with something I’ve meant to post for over a week. Sometimes I am just not good at settling for ‘good enough’ instead of reaching for perfect, at least when it comes to my writing. So, here it is and I hope you like it, even if it doesn’t help with your Memorial Day barbecue. READ MORE
I come to you with just a recipe today. No deep thoughts. Well, maybe only deep, dark chocolate ones.
Let me back up. When your teacher asks you to do something, you do it, right? Fortunately, I like what was asked of me recently. I was asked to make breakfast treats for the hungry yogis at AYNY, a pretty fun and rewarding task. I mostly try to make the treats healthy. Indulgently healthy perhaps, but still healthy. Drool-worthy, but still healthy. Rich and satisfying, but…you get the idea.
So I was cruising for the finish line. I’d worked. Taught classes. Pitched articles. Visited my in-laws and extended family for holidays and emergencies, checked on my upstate house. I had 5 days to work hard at the day job, teach more classes and get everything organized and packed and set up so nothing fell down around my ears while I was away with family in Mexico when…BAM, the flu. Or something very like it. Yeah. That kind of knee-capped me. READ MORE
I begin to be a little nervous posting these rants. Wait a minute. Nah. I think we need some reality checks. I love my green juice. I eat a pretty clean, reserved diet. READ MORE