Traveling from LA to NYC constantly for work has its perks but makes it almost impossible to keep a steady workout schedule. Besides the fact that it can be exhausting, it can also be hard to find the right time, place, and motivation.
Since staying fit is important to me, I have found some advice that helps me maintain my health while on the road. It is all too easy while traveling to take cabs everywhere so I try walking to all my destinations to burn extra calories. Not only do you fit a workout in, but also can explore the sights and save money.
Since traveling can be exhausting, it is important to maintain a steady sleep schedule. The more tired I am, the more I eat and less I workout.
Before booking a room, I research the hotel gym amenities. That way, I know what to bring whether it be yoga gear or spinning shoes.
And if all else fails, I try to do small movements in my room while catching up on the latest episodes of The Bachelorette! There are many workouts that don’t require much room (various yoga positions, sit ups, crunches, jumping jacks, squats.) This makes me feel like I put in some effort so I don’t go completely off course during my travels.
These tips have personally helped me maintain my workout plan during my frequent cross country commute, what do you do to stay on track?
As a fitness expert, I know how important it is to stay in shape. I also know how a busy schedule can sometimes get in the way of a desired workout schedule. Instead of skipping the workout, there are some great exercises you can do from home that can have the same effect.
Here are three easy fitness moves that you can do right from home:
The Burpee: This is a full body exercise performed in four steps. Begin in a standing position. Begin to squat position your body with your hands on the ground. Extend your feet back in one quick motion to assume the plank position. Return to the squat position in one quick motion return to an upright standing position.
Tree Sit: Stand with back flat against a wall (or tree) and lower until knees are bent at a right angle. Extend arms straight overhead and left leg forward so it’s parallel to ground. Hold for 15 seconds; switch legs. Do three sets.
Roll-Up: Sit with legs extended, feet flexed, back straight; wrap band around soles of feet, holding each end next to knees. Keeping arms and legs straight, slowly lower torso, one vertebra at a time, to ground. When top of shoulder blades touch ground, slowly roll up. Do three sets of 12 reps.
All of these exercises can be done in minimum space. If done often, these easy moves show great results.
If any of you are like me, it seems like there is never enough time to fit in a workout. As a mother of teen twin girls, it’s quite the challenge to balance a career, motherhood, and getting time to work out. Even if there is a small window of time – it’s hard to get excited about going to the gym.
Here are some helpful tips that work for me to find the motivation and most importantly, keep it:
Commit to a goal. The hardest part I have found is actually starting a workout regimen. Set a goal for yourself and work towards it! Whether it’s walking every day for 30 minutes, getting up an hour earlier to have time to run before work, or if you live in a city like me and commute to work, get off one or two stops earlier and walk to work.
Get a workout buddy. I have teamed up with my sisters and we work together to create and achieve our workout goals. We support each other in our respective efforts and push each other to the next level and at times provide comedic relief.
Don’t break the habit. When I take a day off from my work out plan, it tends to turn into a week off and then becomes my New Year’s Resolution for the following year. The more you make it a “must,” the more likely you are to stick with it. I put my workout schedule in my calendar and even set a “do you have your gym bag” reminder for myself for the mornings I’m scheduled for the gym in my calendar on my phone.
Make it fun. Try a new workout or check if your local gym has fun classes that will keep you interested such as a dance class or an upbeat spin class. Also, working out seems to be easier for me with music that motivates me. Grab your iPod and make a playlist specifically for your workouts.
Be patient. Many people just like to jump into exercising without any limits, which may result in tons of pain and lack of motivation to workout. Work towards your goal by increasing the intensity day by day.
Change your mindset. Many people look at exercising as a burden but it can be seen in a positive way. Next time you are stressed, go exercise – even if it’s just a walk. Exercise releases endorphins which improve your mood.
Implement an exercise log. I have found it useful to track my progress throughout my workout plan. If you see results, it will motivate you to keep going and keeping a log holds you to your goals and schedule.
Make it “you” time. As mothers, we tend to put ourselves last. Make your workout into “you” time. This way you will surprisingly look forward to exercising instead of dreading it.
Find a trainer. Almost every gym has trainers that can formulate a workout personally that will cater to your needs. Also, the trainer is a great source of forced motivation.
Lastly, reward yourself. After all of the hard work, it is important to give yourself a little reward whether it be frozen yogurt or treating yourself to some new workout gear . Even though this seems like taking a step backwards, it may actually motivate you to want to be rewarded again.
Here’s to hoping I can take my own advice and stick with this plan! What are some of the ways you stay motivated?
Wedding season is officially upon us and it seems like everyone is getting married this year! Weddings can be stressful enough as a guest; making travel plans, buying gifts, attending engagement parties, showers, bachelor/bachelorette parties, and of course the wedding itself! Add on to that planning your own wedding and I can start to empathize with you.
Between all the planning and parties and showers (for both my friends and myself) it can be very overwhelming. I was so focused on wedding planning checklists that it started to dictate my life. But here I am, exactly 1 month out from my wedding, and it is just now occurring to me that in the midst of all my planning and celebrating, I managed to forget about me. No one puts “start your wedding diet” on the wedding “to do” lists (which they really should!!), so low and behold I have 30 days to get my act together.
If you’re like me, you might be panicking at the thought of toning up your physique in 30 days but fear not! I took advantage of the Zobha network and some friends that have gone through this already and put together a tip list of how I can get myself wedding ready in 30 days!!
Here are 7 last minute tips that I have found helpful to look and feel my very best:
Drink lots of water and limit your salt intake. Sodium in your diet is one of the main causes of bloating. (Definitely avoid salt the day before and day of dress fittings!)
Exercise daily. If you are on a time crunch, starting a daily routine will make it a habit; the sooner you start the better you’ll feel! 30-45 minutes a day is recommended. Once I got the swing of it, my exercise time actually has become a time I look forward to. I can clear my head, think about what needs to be done, and before I know it the workout is over.
Eat healthier. Period. Stay away from all processed food, eat more veggies, cut out sugar, and use meat as a side dish. This will allow for not only weight loss, but also healthy habits for the future. Additionally, this can help with some last minute savings to put towards the big day or honeymoon. Go to the farmers market and pick up some fruit and veggies; and bring your lunch to work with you!!
Have a healthy, but effective energy balance. This basically means if you want to lose weight, burn more calories than what you take in. If you would like to know how many calories you are recommended a day, visit this site: fitm.ag/MP66Js
Try weightlifting. The more muscles you have, the more calories you burn which make it even easier to get in shape, fast. A lot of my friends jumped on the Cross Fit bandwagon and swear by it! By switching your workout routine every day your body burns more calories.
Do NOT crash diet. This can be extremely tempting especially if you only have a certain amount of time. When you are only eating a limited amount of calories a day, your body goes into starvation mode and doesn’t utilize the calories effectively which store as fat. If you are exercising daily, you need food as energy.
Eat small meals every couple of hours. Instead of three big meals a day, try eating 5-6 (250-350 calorie) meals per day. I stocked up on almonds and fresh fruit to have on hand when the cravings hit. This will allow your body to utilize the calories effectively and boost metabolism.
With these tips, I am finding it easier than I thought to get in shape. It’s all about commitment and dedication while keeping health in mind. Taking some time for yourself to go the gym is a great way to distress.
There are times all of us feel unmotivated, whether it be exercising or eating right. We find ourselves relying on our friends for advice, entertainment, and everything in between. Why not rely on your friends for motivation and support for staying healthy?
The benefits and importance of exercising in groups have been researched and noted. Exercising in a group setting gives a unique, social experience that keeps it interesting while building friendships. Not only does it make it entertaining, it also provides a sense of accountability and structure.
Many celebrities have caught onto this idea and put it to good use. Actress Kristen Bell started a twitter campaign to encourage her followers to join she and her friends to exercise for 30 days in a row, 60 minutes a day. Twitter followers are encouraged to tweet while including the hash tag #30dayhomies to tell of their successes and motivation. People are more likely to keep going in their workout plans when they feel the camaraderie through the complaints and successes.
Photo Credit: US Weekly | Tommaso Boddi/WireImage.com; Peter Kramer/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank
Here are some useful ideas to help you and your friends get started in your work out plan:
Find out if your local gym has classes that interest you. Group exercise encourages you to commit to a daily workout schedule.
Start a workout plan with your friends, much like Kristen Bell’s #30dayhomies and hold each other accountable.
Start off with fun classes with friends, such as Zumba and upbeat spin classes, to keep interest high while boosting morale.
Keep log journals with friends to track progress together.
If a support group for exercising with friends isn’t available, websites like michellelovitt.com, everydayhealth.com, and revolutionhealth.com, offer community boards and forums that allow users to post their ideas, troubles, and relate to one another.
Zobha encourages you to take these ideas and realize the power of group exercise and support from friends through your journey to becoming a healthier you! Tell us what group exercises have you done or plan to join with friends?
We are delighted to share Emily Tsay’s final blog post finishing her yoga teacher training at Equinox. Emily is one of our 2011 Grace of Giving of Scholarship recipients. We are honored to be a part of and follow her journey through this life-changing process.
Thank you for sharing your “wisdoms” with us, Emily. Namaste.
Congratulations to Sylvia Baedorf Kassis, our final 2011 Grace of Giving Scholarship recipient. Stay tuned as Sylvia shares her training experience with us this Fall.
Answer this question on your blog or Facebook page, and you could win a free Zobha yoga starter package which includes:
1 yoga tank of your choice
1 pair of yoga pants of your choice
1 pullover or hoodie of your choice
1 yoga mat carrier
1 eye pillow
Interested in winning free Zobha yoga gear? Here are the juicy details:
1. To enter the Zobha contest, all you need to do is mention this contest on your blog, website, or on your Facebook (in the Notes section).
2. In your post, you will need to link back to the individual pieces (on our website) that you would like to win.
3. Write about why you want to win each piece, and what winning the free Zobha yoga apparel and gear will mean for you in the New Year.
4. Let us know of your entry by sending an email to email@example.com. Use “Grand Prize Contest Entry” as the subject line and include a link to your website, blog post, or Facebook page in the content body.
Five more lucky people will win a Zobha yoga tank of their choice – just by mentioning the contest to their friends and readers. Simply tell your friends and readers about the contest and how they can enter themselves and don’t forget to send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Tank Contest Entry” as the subject line and a link to your blog, website or Facebook page.
Hurry – this contest ends on January 28th! (Only one entry per person.)
Posted by Shannon Paige Schneider, Zobha Circle of Grace Member
At the age of twenty-one, I was diagnosed with cancer. The path to health was messy at best and seemed to be one without any sense of grace. I experienced days, weeks, and months on end of pain and complications and tears and tears and tears.
I thought of all of the things I SHOULD have done to miraculously avoid the diagnosis. I thought of what I SHOULD do to obtain an illness-free future. I thought what I WOULD do differently if only I COULD soften the weight of illness, sadness, and suffering.
Shoulda’ Woulda’ Coulda’. It was not until I found the practice of my breath and body that these three little words began to lose their hold on my perspective. Yoga escorted me into the dark and bright spaces of my own experience. The poses asked me to see how I respond to myself and others, how I view the word “strength”, and what I was willing to accept as the truth of my story, perspective, hopes, and dreams.
Yoga invites us to participate fully with our own sense of personal resonance, health and wellbeing. Down Dog does not take away the pain of personal evolution; rather it asks us to explore on an ever-deepening level exactly what is at stake in every breath, moment, movement, and response to stressful or joyous stimuli. It asks us to choose, to learn to respond rather than react – in spite of what we SHOULD have, WOULD have, or COULD have done differently.
So the next time you feel like sitting and shaming yourself with a SHOULDA’, WOULDA’, COULDA’; realize that you are already there, here. Choose. Choose to participate and welcome yourself into your very own life!
Shannon Paige Schneider is an author, sacred activist, inspired life coach, and dedicated teacher of Shiva Rea’s Prana Flow Vinyasa Yoga. She interweaves her students’ unique purpose driven inspiration into the divine play of body and breath to unlock the secret wisdom held within the heart. Shannon is the founder and yoga director of om time yoga centers and Anjali Restorative Yoga. Shannon recently taught a Zobha – sponsored Breast Cancer Awareness class to raise awareness, energy, and the vibration of health and wellness for those affected by a diagnosis of cancer. To learn more about Shannon and where she will be teaching next, go to her blog.
The word “Inspiration” is derived from Middle English to express the experience of ‘Divine Guidance’.
In February 2006, I left a relationship of 14 years. Throughout the last 4 years, my connection to the aforementioned words has been nothing less than the most magnificent roller coaster ride.
Ending my relationship, I left behind the identity that had become my prison. Don’t get me wrong. I was safe, and comfortable. I wanted nothing, but needed freedom and space. The confines of my relationship with the most wonderful person had begun to strangle me. Safe, stable and comfortable are words that I would never have used in describing my life prior to this relationship. The lifestyle of uncertainty and comfort of change is how I was raised. I missed the familiarity of the unfamiliar. In order for me to grow, I had to go.
I think I felt this realization on a cellular level before I took action. I stuffed away my emotions of doubt and eventually became a shell of myself. Finally, I had no choice. My body told me it was time to go, ready or not. Sometimes we can prepare for the earthquakes, sometimes we see them coming. They still have the power to shake us to our very core, and completely change our landscape. Other times we are blind-sided by that lone phone call which, within an instant, changes our lives. So, what is the recipe for making it through? How do we gather the courage to release from comfort or an unhealthy environment and leap into the ring of change, the ring of fire?
For me, I had to recognize that through the cracks there was a great light shining, a light that was fueled by spirit itself. Ultimately I had buried my light all on my own. No one else can do this for you or to you. We give away our power, it isn’t taken from us. I had to remember that being Empowered comes from within. It was up to me to go through rather than around the fire. So I did. I moved out of the house that I owned with my partner, I took nothing with me but my clothes. I moved consistently without laying down roots for the next 3 years.
It was at one of my temporary homes that I opened my first package of Zobha clothing. My friend, and now fellow Circle of Grace member, Shannon Paige Schneider had recommended that I would be a good example of Zobha’s message. I felt the farthest from this! However, when I wore my Zobha, I felt feminine, connected, and graceful for the first time in a very long time. It felt so good.
As I traveled and connected with my extended yoga family, everyone noted the difference in me. They said I looked lighter. I felt lighter, I was lighter. I realized that I had felt like a fraud. Mostly because I was! I wasn’t living my truth, following my Sva-Dharma, my heart’s true purpose. Now that I had begun pursuing this it was clear that it wasn’t an option.
We must recognize that the feelings of safety, stability and comfort can only truly come from within. No matter where I am or what the resources may be, I have the deep depths of my well of faith, perseverance, grace and strength to draw from.
Our yoga practice can heal the deepest wounds. Sometimes it is our practice that reveals where the wounds are residing. By recognizing where our imbalances are, we can create a practice that correlates to the energetic body or Chakra(s) that need nourishment. Through this balance and strength we are prepared to face whatever the Universe provides.
I get incredible joy from teaching yoga, from my holistic (mental) health practice. I aim to cultivate an environment that fosters healing and integrating not only body, mind and spirit, but inspiration, faith and truth. Live your Truth. This is my passion and my ‘Divine Guidance’.
Coral Brown, is a certified senior teacher and teacher trainer for Shiva Rea’s Prana Flow Yoga. She leads retreats, workshops, and teacher trainings worldwide.
Posted by: Circle of Grace Member, Shannon Paige Schneider
My mother would laugh at me as a child and marvel at my creativity with language. I would sometimes hear words as I heard them and offer definitions that I felt made contextual sense. I would make words and their definitions my own.
“Empowerment” was one of those words. I remember hearing it and in the conversation it seemed clear to me that the power in question was something that made a person feel good on the INSIDE. I began to use the four-syllable word in the everyday, feeling really, REALLY, really big in my little boots.
Only, I was saying, “IN-powerment.”
My mom asked me to qualify it once. She cocked her head to one side and said, “You know, I think you are right.” So she did not correct me. In fact, she NEVER let on at all. I do not actually remember who DID finally point out the snafu but it kind of stuck with me my whole life and I think about it every once in a while when I feel small, contracted, or a little uninspired.
Who does NOT like to be powered on the inside? Who does not like to feel lit up and in the seat of solid decisions and following truth, joy, inspiration, and intuition?
Everyone can operate from a sense of internal power. This is actually the sustainable state. It is like GREENING one’s decisions and life-lived patterns. When we live without this, our energy falls, we push ourselves to the limit and burnout, exhaustion, fatigue, and depression are not far behind.
Power is something very different from force, though both can be internalized and can find a strong presence in the day-to-day. We can force ourselves to sit in front of a situation and take it in. We can force ourselves to show up in a situation where we are diminished or told we are not enough, screwed up, somehow not quite right. We can force ourselves to act as though we feel a certain way to attain a certain outcome. We can force a decision to feel right and righteous. We can simply force for the sake of force.
OR, we can soften and listen to the questions we are asking inside. We can soften and listen to the vibrations of grace we are answering to ourselves on the inside. When we soften and tap into the way life and love and energy moves through us, we realize that it is our nature to live in connection to an expanding universe. In lining up to that pulse of expansion, remembrance and placing ourselves in tandem to universal embrace, we too power up from the inside.
We find ourselves IN-powered.
When IN-powered, we are much less likely to make a decision for a small outcome. When IN-powered we don’t really feel the need to push a single agenda. When IN-powered, we look for grace, goodness, and a win-win in service to the expansion of the universe herself. When we live in a state of IN-powerment, there is less fear, there is more creativity and there are rows and rows and rows of more love blossoms blooming. When we are IN-powered, we give unconscious permission for others to do and live the same.
So the exercise is to sit, to soften, to listen, to re-spond rather than re-act and therein lies the work of a lifetime. However, the power certainly outweighs any sense of force, leverage, or sense of unsustainable lack.
Make a list of all those activities you have in your day that lift you up. Make a list of all those people in your life who make you feel held, safe, and present. Do you realize that these people, places, things all live in the vibration of you, your memory, your body, your capacity to connect? At ANY one time, you, me, we can turn within and see them, feel them, know that they are part of us from the inside out. We are, therefore, constantly IN-powered by those we love.
Here’s to living IN-powered.
Shan, as she is known to her students and friends, is the founder and muse of om time. She is an activist, an eternal optimist, and a lover of the flow of grace within everyone. Shannon has been featured in Alternative Health Magazine and Yoga International. She leads weekly classes in Boulder and Denver, as well as workshops, intensives, teacher trainings and retreats nationally and internationally.
Shannon will be teaching a Zobha-sponsored community class along with fellow Circle of Grace member, Coral Brown, at the Yoga Journal Boston Conference on April 10, 2010 from 1-2PM. For more information on the community class, see our events page - http://www.zobha.com/t-events.aspx