Four Achievable Resolutions For 2017

It is almost 2017, and you’ve probably started to think about your New Year’s Resolutions. Am I right?

So many people commit to huge New Year’s resolutions that are nearly impossible to achieve. Then, they end up not reaching their goals. One suggestion I have for you is to make your New Year’s resolution ACHIEVABLE this year.

When you do achieve your goals, you will be so much healthier.

Here are four perfect resolutions that are totally achievable:

#1. Hydrate with more water
Did you notice when you drink more water you feel better? Water helps your body to run better and will even help you to lose weight. Water will help give you a beautiful, youthful glow too. Make sure that you don’t just chug it all at once. Grab a water bottle and keep it with you throughout the day. This will make it that much easier to achieve your goal, and it will be so beneficial for your entire body.

#2. Crowd out unhealthy foods
Unhealthy foods that are filled with sugar and toxins do our bodies no good. Instead of just eating because you have a sweet tooth craving or because something looks delicious, eat because you want to nourish your body. If you eat foods that will give you energy and help you to feel better, you’ll be on track for a healthier New Year. So, start 2017 by eating whole foods that nourish and benefit your body.

#3. Move more
Most people think of a New Year’s resolution as heading to the gym every morning. Although this is a great goal, it can sometimes be un-achievable with your schedule. You do not need to head to the gym to move more. In fact, if you sit all day it’s a very good idea to go for a walk on your lunch break, or stand up and move in between breaks. Make moving fun in 2017. You will feel so much better! However, if you want to experience some life-changing group classes in yoga and barre fitness, stay tuned! I will be posting my new schedule soon.

#4. Let go of negative thinking
Every person has thoughts that creep into their head. Sometimes we can become more judgmental and critical of others in our head, or even put ourselves down. In 2017 make it a goal of yours to stop the negative thinking. This will help you to be an overall happier person and will even help you to become healthier.

When you are thinking of your goals for 2017, I recommend that you start with an achievable goal that will really help you become a happier and healthier you!

I hope that these four suggestions help!

Peace to you, my lovelies <3 PS. If you feel like you need guidance to help you reach your health resolutions, contact me and we can schedule a free 20-minute session together.

Time To Register For Classes!

Barre Fitness
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Try one of the hottest new trends in fitness. Barre classes combine Pilates, ballet barre, and tried-and-true calisthenic exercises to tone your entire body-especially your abs, hips, and thighs (all of the “problem areas” on most women). This class is low impact and utilizes simple movements, but it is challenging! Bring an exercise mat and water. Ballet shoes or socks with traction are recommended. Recommended for all fitness levels.
Tuesdays, 6:30 – 7:30 beginning September 27
No class 11/08/2016
Register HERE

Gentle Yoga Flow
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Come relax and unwind in this gentler yoga class. Experience softer, flowing movements to lengthen muscles and relieve stress. Performed to soft music, this class is suitable for all fitness levels. Please bring a yoga mat to each class.
No class 11/3
Register HERE

Anti-Anxiety Tool #3 – Keep Hormones Happy

How I Keep My Hormones Happy
Ok… I’ll admit it. I am most likely… well, probably… oh, OKAY – I am most definitely in peri-menopause. See? I said it. There – done. And yes, sometimes I get swept away in a hormonal hurricane. So how do I stay grounded most of the time? Well here is what’s in my arsenal:

I try my best to keep my blood sugar balanced. I don’t let myself get too hungry. I try to balance proteins and carbs and I make sure that if I eat something with added sugars that I consume lots of fiber to slow down the absorption of sugar (think insulin levels). I exercise every day. I practice yoga. I get lots of sleep which has been shown to help keep hormones in check and
I NEVER leave the house without my ClaryCalm!

clarycalm

ClaryCalm is an essential oil blend that is comprised of top-notch oils perfectly blended for immediate application when the occasion calls. To learn more about my lifesaver, check this out

I have also recently fallen in love with this blend
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I diffuse this nearly every day! It reminds me of being on yoga retreat. When I was at Kripalu this summer, I swear it smelled just like this – like peace – like heaven. I feel better instantly as soon as the healing mist begins. I feel calm and centered. I can find my happy place quickly. It’s magic for me!

Wanna order some? Wise choice! Order here for a one-time purchase. OR, if you love oils, like I do, consider becoming a preferred customer for the best deals, EVER. Order here!

My Number 2 Anti-Anxiety Weapon (You will love it, too)

As someone with anxiety, I have found that I need a bag of tricks to keep me calm and centered. In my last post I talked about how being outside really helps to stop an anxiety attack and can also be a preventative measure for future attacks. My second most effective anti-anxiety weapon is movement.

I became an exercise enthusiast after the birth of my second child. It was my attempt to help rid myself of the excess baby weight. To my surprise, I also found that exercise really helped me to stay calm. For me, the most powerful forms of exercise for soothing the onset of attacks were aerobics and yoga. I loved (and still love) weight training, but it does not work as well for my anxiety as cardio or my beloved yoga practice.

As I mentioned in my last post, recent changes in my life have triggered my extreme stress response and I am working hard to keep things calm and under control. One gift that seems to have fallen from the heavens is I have been presented with lots of opportunities to dance. I take awesome dance classes in my community, including hip-hop, salsa and burlesque (hey, don’t judge or knock it till you’ve tried it) – and then something AMAZING happened. I was invited to be a part of a group challenge involving a comprehensive fitness and nutrition plan that involves dancing for 30 minutes for 30 days!

Extra Bennies!
In terms of anxiety, dancing (much like yoga) takes me out of my own head. I get lost in the movements, the beat, the steps, the rhythm and I feel great for hours afterwards! But I am experiencing extra bonuses: I have become more fit and trim in the process! My endurance has increased, I am lighter on my feet and after a week of dancing each day for 6 days (so far), my clothes are just a tad bit looser and I have even lost a couple of pounds!. Now I should say here that I like my body no matter what, but it is cool to see some transformation. The moves are fun, low impact (unless I want to take it up a notch) and are easy to follow. I love this program so much, that I am running a challenge group of my own!

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I am looking for five determined women who are serious about getting more fit, cleaning up their diets and who are not afraid to dig deeper. Are you sick and tired of the way you look and feel? Are you looking to begin working out after a long hiatus from fitness activities? Do you like to dance and move in fun ways that are not jarring on your body? Do you need an accountability coach, health and nutrition coach that will cheer you on, give you tips and push you – just a little – so that you will not fail (that would be me)? Well do I have the challenge for you!
Join me for my very first fitness and nutrition challenge! 30 minutes for 30 days – dance, dance, dance. There are meal plans, a workout schedule with lots of variety so you don’t get bored. Each workout contains a breakdown of each move so that you can follow along. Not a natural dancer? No problem! The moves are not difficult and there are lots of modifications offered. I will act as your coach, cheerleader, educator and resource. You will also become a member of a group of warrior goddesses like you in a private Facebook forum where you can share recipes, cheer each other on, learn tips and tricks to staying on track and you get to pick my brain!

ARE YOU READY??
The challenge begins on Monday, August 29. If you are SERIOUS about making healthy changes in your life, please fill out the form below and I will schedule a free 20 minute consultation with you to get to know you better. Then I will provide the necessary information for you to register. Well, what are you waiting for? The form is HERE.

If you are a BADASS and want to order your challenge pack NOW so you can see all the goodies before the journey begins, follow this link to my Team Beachbody website. Please note that you will still receive a free consultation call from me, so please fill out the form.

I am excited about doing a group coaching program around this challenge. FILL OUT THE FORM and let’s get you on your way to a more fit, healthy, balanced and glorious you!

Got Questions?
Contact me and I will get back to you ASAP!!
Peace <3

I Have A Secret…

I have a condition that I rarely ever talk about. This is probably because I hate to admit it. Maybe it’s pride, or fear of judgement, or simply because I am a very private person and don’t like to talk about my more difficult stuff. But lately, I feel the need to share my story in hopes that it helps me to heal while perhaps helping others to see that they are not alone.

My secret… I have anxiety. No, not just the feeling that you get before a big event, or that which tends to accompany times of “basic” worry. I am talking about full-on, panic-attacking, feeling like your heart will explode (please, let me pass out first) kind of anxiety. The kind that can be debilitating and can happen at any time, anywhere, without warning. Yeah, THAT kind of anxiety.

It started about 10 years ago – very suddenly – and for no apparent reason. Like, NOTHING provoked it, at least nothing that I can recall. It was scary – really scary- because I did not understand what was happening. It was as if I was losing control of my life. It was the weirdest thing EVER.

It took some time to come to a place of peace within this new found existence. I avoided using anti- anxiety drugs and turned to more holistic therapies instead (insert disclaimer here: I am only sharing my story. I completely respect and understand that there are people who absolutely need traditional medical intervention. To those people, I wish you peace and comfort). My little tricks worked well and I had it under control for a while – until now. Now the beast called anxiety is back. This time, however, I know what has precipitated “the return”.

Ushered in by my dog’s illness, my soon-to-be status as an empty-nester, watching my children experience times that are so difficult that it is physically painful to observe, and the sudden, unexplained illness of a family member has reawakened this energy that I once thought I mastered. It is stirring, clawing – back with a vengeance.

So what now? How do I get it back into control? I have to get back in touch with my true nature and re-envoke my anxiety survival kit. Okay, it is not a physical “kit”. I am referring to simple, yet powerful practices that work for me when I do them meticulously.

Doing What Works
The most important thing that I had to remember was how to stop one of my attacks in it’s tracks. I have to get outside – no matter what the weather is like. It can be storming or 40 below – getting outside helps me to almost immediately stop an attack. Two good alternatives are sitting by an open window and/or drinking ice water. I do not know why these work for me. They just do. You may be thinking, “But Sybil, you are a yoga teacher. Why not practice deep breathing?” My answer: I’ve tried, but doing deep breathing in the middle of an attack just doesn’t work for me. After I have a burst of air or cold water, THEN I can access the breath. It’s like my system needs a little “shock” to begin the settling down process.

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The next thing I had to remember is how to prevent the attacks in the first place. I have lots of little tricks, and I promise that I will share them all. For now, I will share just one: it’s spending time in nature. Spending time in nature helps to ground me. Since I am having a rough time right now, I make sure that I do so EVERY SINGLE DAY, RAIN OR SHINE. This is crucial for me. Being in nature is healing for my body, mind and spirit. It helps me connect to all that is and reminds me that I am bigger than my anxiety. Whether it is going on a walk, working in my garden, or just sitting on a park bench outside, I have to be in nature each day these days to feel in control. The best thing – it’s easy and it is free. It is available whenever I need it. This is one of my best preventative strategies that I have. It is like shining a light in the darkness.

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Please remember, I know and respect that my way may not be your answer. However, I feel the need to share my story – And maybe, just maybe, someone else can find inspiration in it.

Since I have been spending so much time walking and hiking in the Lansing area, I thought it would be fun to start a walking group! Moving your body in nature feels amazing. Being with a supportive group of people who want to move, walk, chat, breathe and be is exhilarating! I want to get started in just a couple of weeks, so please message me if you are interested.

My 30 Day Yoga Challenge

I have a secret… I am a yoga teacher, but I haven’t practiced daily asana (the practice of yoga postures) in years! Of course, I have a regular practice – 5 minutes here, 60 minutes there – but I don’t “do yoga” every day. My yoga practice has sort of evolved into paying deeper attention to the subtleties – the things you can’t see or take a picture of (like breathing exercises, meditations and the philosophical aspects of yoga).

However, recently, I returned from a 5-day retreat at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health and I discovered that a daily asana practice is just what the doctor ordered for the time being. I say, “for the time being” because I try to listen to what my body needs. Sometimes it needs to dance. Sometimes it needs to lift heavy weights. Sometimes it needs to take hour-long hikes in nature. Sometimes it needs short bursts of explosive exercise. Right now, it needs asana… lots and lots of asana.
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During my time at Kripalu, I participated in yoga classes once or twice per day. The classes at Kripalu are generally 75 minutes long – so yes, that was A LOT OF YOGA. But is what my body craved, and is still craving. So my gift to myself is to listen intently and follow my heart. My heart yearns to have a daily practice for at least 30 days. How long each day? That depends. Will the poses and the physical intensity of the poses vary? You betcha. For me, this time is a rededication to listen to what I need each day. Today it was an Ashtanga short-form (about 30 minutes). Tomorrow, I will go to a 60 minute vinyasa flow, lead by a skilled and heart-filled teacher. I am certain that after these more vigorous sessions, I will need gentle yoga. Each day will be a surprise because each day will reveal something new.

I will keep you informed about this journey by sharing my insights, struggles, realizations, revelations and so on. I am looking forward to this.
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Are you craving yoga? Gentle Yoga Flow will be returning sooner than you realize. I will provide the link as soon as it becomes available. Until then, enjoy this gentle yoga class in the privacy of your own home.

Peace!

Yoga And A Sick Doggy

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About a year ago my dog Rufus was diagnosed with congestive heart failure (CHF). It turns out his heart is way – like WAY – too big (which is so tragically poetic – he is the sweetest doggy you’d ever want to meet). Anyway, apparently having a WAY big physical heart is a very bad thing.

I was told that his CHF could significantly shorten his lifespan and that he would never be cured of his disease. Instead it could be managed with medications. The meds worked wonders in the beginning, but as time passed, his condition worsened. He is now in the final stage of the disease.

Rufus, however is a trooper. He has shocked the veterinary medical community by doing as well as has been for as long as he has. He is still feisty, still happy most of the time and is still the sweetest doggy you’d ever want to meet.

So what exactly does the practice of yoga have to do with this story? Lots! Not for Rufus, but for me. Yoga is more than just exercises on a mat. The very word means, “to yoke”, or to join. One of my favorite teachers, Goswami Kriyananada, said that the purpose of yoga is to remove the root cause of pain and suffering. The root cause of this suffering lives is our busy, over-active, mindful-less, non-intentional minds (he used to call it, the “monkey mind”). The real trick to a yoga practice is to get out of your own head and instead be present, be in tune with, be one with each experience as it occurs. Attaching no judgement, we are charged with seeing things as they are – not how we think they are, not how we wish they were, not how we plan for them to be.

So what on earth does yoga have to do with my sick doggy? The practice of being ultra present with him helps me to see the magnificent being that he is, despite the illness. The illness is just the illness – it is NOT him. Any emotion that I may have around the illness is just the emotion, it is NOT me. When he passes, and I know that will be soon, what will remain is the essence of who he IS and that I got to be a part of his journey. So in the end, we are both blessed.

This is the power of yoga. It is not about how many cool yoga tricks you can do (although some are amazing), or if you can meditate for an hour – it is realizing that the practice of yoga is to remove the root causes of our pain and our suffering. Yes, it starts with the body (the yoga poses), it quiets the mind (relaxation and meditation) and it leads you to a place where you can see the light in even the darkest of places. In other words, you see the truth – just as it is. Nothing more. Nothing less.
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I thank God for leading me to this practice. It starts with the poses and if you stick with it and dig a little deeper, something amazing happens. I invite you to continue or even to begin your journey with me as I will be teaching Gentle Yoga Flow in the fall. The link will be available soon.

Peace

Ice Cream For Breakfast?? You Betcha!

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Ice cream for breakfast? You sure can when it’s made out of frozen banana and papaya!

Ingredients:
1 large ripe frozen banana
1/2 cup frozen papaya (I cut up a fresh papaya and froze it)
Dash of non-dairy milk (I chose almond milk)

Just toss in a high speed blender and blend til creamy! Don’t eat it too fast or BRAIN FREEZE. You can also use a food processor. I love my Vitamix blender for such a task. It’s ready in 2 minutes flat!

The frozen banana is the KEY to this “ice cream”. It creates a sweet, creamy base. The banana must be frozen.

Make this yummy treat today! Dairy free, all natural and delish. A great snack for kids, too. Don’t be afraid to get CRAZY with this. Experiment with other fruits… add mango, cherries, pineapple and berries… the possibilities are endless. Of course, just frozen bananas work great, too.

Fall Happenings

Sorry I have been away for so long! I have been busy planning what to do next with SHW. So many things are shifting in my life right now. I will officially be an empty-nester in a little over a month! My youngest is going away to college. I have been so wrapped up in personal stuff that my biz has taken a back-seat.

Although I am still unsure which direction to take this endeavor, I know for certain that I will still be offering classes in the Delta Township area. I am excited to be offering Barre Fitness classes beginning in September on Tuesday nights at 6:30. Wanna try this amazing workout (aka women’s best friend)? When I share the link, register soon afterwards. This class will be much smaller than my yoga classes! Your abs, arms, hips, legs and booty will thank you (after cursing you out from the initial soreness). barreclass1

In addition to Tuesday Barre Fitness class, I will also be teaching Gentle Yoga Flow on Thursday nights at 6:30. As soon as the links are available, I will post them so that you may register immediately.