Monday, April 14, 2014

Wedding Wellness

It was 

Hi friends!!  It has been far far far to long...and I deeply apologize.  As you may (or may not) know, I have been working on a YouTube channel with one of my friends.  We have been working hard every week to put a new video up and I personally think we are doing a great job.  That being said, if you do happen to check out our videos (RawYogaFitness), keep in mind that we have only been doing this for just over a month and are by no means professionals :)

Ok, on to the topic of the day.  Wow, I just realized I never made this announcement on this blog...!!!  I HAVE been seriously slacking...


Andrew proposed 2 days before this past Thanksgiving while we dined in Cinderella's castle with 2 of our closest friends.  I will do a whole recap and give you the full story later (leave a comment if you'd like to hear about it either via post and/or YouTube).

I can not begin to describe how happy and excited I am!  The planning has slowly begun, but it is going to take off this spring when we can actually go out of the house to visit different venues.  I can't wait!!

So, as a new bride, I will be sharing with you what I am doing to prepare for the big day.  From fitness to health, this blog will be the place for me to keep track of my goals as well as planning strategy.

I hope you put your email into the box on the right so that you can follow me through this journey and subscribe to RawYogaFitness on YouTube!!  If you are a new bride as well, be sure to comment and follow so that we can inspire each other through this fun, exciting, and sometimes hectically wonderful time!!

Luana ola!

Monday, March 24, 2014

It's Spring!

Hi friends!

Can you believe it's finally spring?!  Some days it doesn't really feel like it, but I have heard the birds chirping in the early mornings recently.

Although it is still quite cold out, the small bursts of warm and sun have lifted my spirits!  So much so, I have created a 20 day challenge for myself.  In order to really get back on track with consistent exercise, I have decided to complete a standard triathlon in 20 days.  Now, for some of you, this might sound really easy and for others it may sound really tough, so let me explain...

My goal in terms of exercise is to just get back into it regularly and have fun!  For me, if I set my goals too high and miss one or two days, I fall off the wagon completely.  But, by setting smaller goals that are a little less demanding, I am able to complete the task and if I want to do more, I will.  Check out the image at the bottom of this page to see my schedule; feel free to use and share but make sure you let others know where you got it :)

That being said, this is why I chose a standard Tri.  Check out RawYogaFitness next week and I will explain it more in details!  So far, I am loving it and have done much more than expected!!

Here's to health and happiness :)

Luana ola!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Winter Fitness

I have been getting so many newsletters, emails, blog posts, and videos on what to do for exercise in the winter, so I have decided to do my own and share some of my personal thoughts and experiences.

For my most recent ideas on getting exercise in the winter, check out RawYogaFitness!

So now that you have gotten some ideas on how to stay active, let me invite you to grab a warm beverage and a blanket, relax and warm up while you read the rest of this's ok I'll wait :)

Ok, all set?  Excellent!

First of all, I want to start off by saying that being active in the cold winter vs the warm summer are two completely different ball parks.  First of all, summer is warm, sunny, and you have more of an excuse to exercise than to not.  On the other hand, winter is cold, grey, and you have much less desire to be outside let alone exercise (when that blanket looks much more comfortable).  I truly believe that this is in our biology to slow down in during this time, assess things that are going on in life, and relax.

Think about it this way, 100 years ago (or even to this present day, depending on where/how you live) humans lived with the seasons.  Spring was to plant, summer was to tend, fall was to harvest, and winter was to plan for next year.  Three out of the four seasons are spent giving so much energy into planting, caring for, and harvesting food that it makes sense for winter to be a time to relax and plan; let alone the fact that you really can't do much else.

Just like we need sleep in order to function at our peak throughout the day, we need periods of time in our life to soak it all in and re-coop so we can put our all into life.

Bringing this back into modern times, it is easy to see how we all live a very fast-paced, out of tune with nature style of life.  We think that bigger, faster, and more work is better.  Although this might be the case in the short term, this style of living can seriously impact our health and well being by depleting our immune system, become taxing on our adrenal system, and might even lead to dis-ease.

So, to sum it all up...Don't Stress about it!  Winter is a time to get into our own heads and meditate on the direction we want to go with our lives.  Of course staying active is important, but if you don't have enough time/money/access, don't fret.  Just focus on moving your body throughout the day and get outside in the spring/summer/fall and enjoy it!

Luana ola!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Meditation is like day dreaming!!

Hi friends!  So as you may know from a previous post, one of my resolutions for this year was to write a weekly blog post.  So, here it is!

I got the inspiration fro this post from reading an article in Yoga Journal.  It really struck home with me because I had (and still have) a hard time taking the time and even just practicing meditation.  In this always-on-the-go society that we all live in and grew up in, it is really easy to get sucked into the idea that more is better and rest is for lazy people.  Well, through the growth of my yoga practice and listening to my teacher/reading articles, I have come to find that restful practices like meditation can actually make your life more productive.

I know it sounds contradictory, but hear me out for a moment and try to picture this scenario in your mind as you read.  The alarm goes off at 5am.  You roll out of bed, half asleep, to take a shower, wake the kids up, get ready, and some how eventually make it to work on time.  By the time you get to work, you need your daily cup of coffee and maybe breakfast (if you haven't eaten yet...more on why you should in a future post!!).  You continue with your day, have lunch, maybe more coffee, and eventually make it back home with just enough time to get dinner started.  By the end of the evening, you are exhausted and ready to crash in front of the TV.

Now, let's try to incorporate some meditation into the day and see if we can combat some unhealthy habits (i.e. lots of coffee, sugary snacks, and flopping on the couch in the evening).

First of all, try going to bed just 30 minutes earlier than normal.  That way, you get a little extra sleep when that alarm goes off.  When your alarm rings in the morning, hit snooze, but instead of going to sleep, find a comfortable place to sit up.  Close your eyes and just draw out your day in your head, trying not to attach an emotion with the events, just simply listing.  When the snooze alarm goes off, turn it off and continue with the rest of your morning; noticing if you feel a little better.

Now, when you are at work and millions of ideas/projects/emails are being thrown at you, scoot your chair away from your desk (or even walk away if you can) for just 1 to 5 minutes.  Take slow deep breaths, concentrating only on your breathing, like nothing else matters.  When you open your eyes and go back to work, notice if you feel any better, maybe even more happy/ more productive.

Finally, when you get home in the evening embrace all of your family members and take a few moments to breathe in the happiness of being home.  Sometimes we can get more frustrated on the drive home because we are hungry, stuck in traffic, and just want to be home.  Move as usual throughout the rest of your evening, then right before you go to sleep, gently recap your day without attaching emotions and then list 3-5 good things that happened that day (either aloud with your partner/kids or to yourself) so that you are in a good mood before dozing off.

Believe it or not, incorporating these simple techniques into your daily life IS meditation (or at least a form of it).  You don't have to sit down for an hour and do absolutely nothing to reap the benefits.  Simply focusing on deep breathing and calming your mind will help tremendously.

Let me know how it goes in the comments below, and subscribe to RawYogaFitness on YouTube to learn more fun healthy lifestyle tips.

Much happiness and enjoy life!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Zucchini Pasta and First Video!!

Hi friends!!

So I'm sure you all are wondering when that video will at least I hope you are!!

Well, it will be up and running tomorrow as soon as I finish editing it.  Beware, though it is sort of long as I like to ramble.  Funny how my blog posts seem to be so short and yet I can chat away to a camera lens :)

Anyways, the YouTube channel is called RawYogaFitness and I hope you all check it out and love it.  I am a bit nervous (as you will be able to see in the video), but bear with me as it is my first time really putting myself out there and such.

So please leave comments either here on the blog or on the channel, letting Annie and me know what you'd like to see in future videos.  We are making weekly videos focusing on raw foods, fitness, and yoga (hence the title).

Much happiness and enjoy life!!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Smoothie of Love

I know, I know it not February yet...don't worry I'm not one to get caught up in the Hallmark holiday, but this smoothie just screamed love!  It tastes great and it's great for you!  Drink this smoothie any time of year to help your body to be strong, healthy, and happy.

I really got the idea to make this smoothie simply because I have a huge bag of cranberries that need to be eaten and I'm just not feeling juicing them.

 How beautiful is that??!!  Because of the ingredients, the smoothie of love can get bitter and / or have a bit of extra texture if you do not have a very powerful blender.  This is simply due to the hard nature of cranberries and gritty texture of pears, no big deal my friends, no big deal at all.  In fact, as someone who generally can not stand texture in smoothies, I gulped this one down like a champ! (It probably helped that I was REALLY hungry after working out too...)


So here's the recipe and feel free to play around with the ingredients to suit your own palate.  Be sure to use ripe bananas (that means they have a few brown speckles on them).  Your smoothie will be plenty sweet then.  But alas, if it is not sweet enough for you, you can add a few dates or other sweetener of choice.

Smoothie of Love:  serves 1

  • 2-3 medium bananas
  • 1 c fresh cranberries
  • 1 large pear
    • Peel bananas,  core the pear, and add to the blender with the cranberries.
    • Add 2-3 cups of water and a handful of ice cubes
    • Blend until smooth and enjoy!!
If you do try this recipe, please feel free to leave a comment below letting me know what you think.

Luana ola!

p.s.  My friend Annie (another blogger whom I will be sharing her blog with you soon!) will be starting a YouTube channel soon!!  Keep checking in and leaving comments to find out more!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Feeling alive, when all you want to do is stay home during the cold

In the midst of bringing in the New Year, I have found myself spending more and more time in the comfort of my own home.  Now, this could be mostly to do with the fact that there has been loads of snow here in the Midwest, but I also find it quite relaxing and comforting during these cold months to enjoy being home.

In this week's post, I wanted to address seasonal affective disorder (SAD for short).  It is a very real part of life especially in areas that do not get an abundance of sunshine during the winter.  Some symptoms of this "disorder" include depression, lethargy, tiredness, or even mood swings.  I really don't like that it is called a disorder though because that makes it sound worse than it really is.  Those symptoms are not fun to deal with, but they can be prevented and even reversed if the correct precautions are made.

If you are in a colder climate where the sun does not really shine all that much during particular times of the year, some of these tips might help you to feel better:

  • Make sure you are getting vitamin D every day whether that be from fortified foods or a supplement
  • Exercise to reduce stress and increase endorphins (feel good hormones)
  • Drink at least half your body weight in ounces of water (ex. a 150 lb person would need 75 ox water per day)
  • Try to be by a window to see the daylight as much as possible.  This will help balance your circadian rhythm (inner clock), making sleep patterns consistent and deep.
  • Write down some things you are thankful for or a fun thing that happened that day every night before you go to sleep or right when you wake up.  This will help to keep a positive perspective and help you to feel more happy throughout the day.
The overall point of this post is to help you feel alive during the cold winter.  It is so easy to wrap up stay by yourself during these dark cold months, but if you make an effort to go outside and enjoy it the winter will be over before you even know it.

So, think of the warm sun and enjoy the snow while you can.  Please leave a comment about one of your favorite things to do in the winter that keeps you happy.

Luana ola!