How To Be Grateful For Your Body

Think of every illness you’ve ever had: not just the serious sicknesses, but even every cold and flu.  Canker sores and rashes, too.  Seriously, make a list.  You’ll be surprised.  There must be dozens.  Your body has recovered from them all.

Think of every injury you’ve ever had: not just the broken bones, but every paper cut, every jammed knuckle, every bruise, every stubbed toe, every sprain, and any and all boo-boos since you were born.  There must be dozens of these, too, if not more.  Your body has healed them all.

Think of every headache, every sensitive tooth, every stomach ache, every stiff back, and any other soreness you’ve ever had.  These could number in the hundreds.  Your body has persevered in spite of them all, overcome them all, and continued to serve you and allow you to live each day after they’ve been forgotten.

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Reviewed: Bikram Yoga Summerlin

The 26 Bikram Yoga poses

I’ve attended 12 Bikram Yoga classes so far this year.  Bikram is the original “hot yoga” style where students work on a set series of 26 poses in a room heated to 105 degrees and 40% humidity for 90 minutes.  I got a two-month membership at Bikram Yoga Summerlin through Groupon.  Below are some random reviews of BYS and hot yoga.

I love the teachers.  I’ve had classes with four different instructors, and they each have their own personality that clearly shows, and they’re all very good (remember, I say this as a professional teacher myself).  Bikram yoga sometimes gets criticized for having a set script for teachers to follow, but they always still pause to help people who need encouragement or correction to their form.  They usually have a decent sense of humor, too.  In my most recent class, a new student felt she had to leave the room—the teacher let her rest, then invited her back in.  When she returned, we all applauded.  Things like that happen in these classes.  It was great.

Others criticize hot yoga for promoting injury, but I don’t see it.  Yes, the script and teachers push people, but good for them—in general, we’re all capable of far more than we give in life.  The teachers try to be sensitive to the needs of individuals, but ultimately the responsibility for not overdoing it lies with each of us ourselves.  I hurt myself twice in those twelve classes, and both times it was my own fault.  Nobody at BYS will harass you if you need to sit down and rest.

The facility at BYS is terrific.  Continue reading

Yogurt and Yoga

Two great tastes that taste great together. 

My favorite yoga workout over time has been Yoga Zone’s “Power Yoga for Strength and Endurance.”  It’s easy enough that I can get into most of it no matter what shape I’m in, but challenging enough that I always get something out of it: I’ve done this off and on for ten years, and it’s never been too easy. 

It runs nearly an hour, but if I don’t have that much time (or energy), the first half stands by itself pretty naturally. 

I also like the variety in this routine–I’ve done a lot of different yoga tapes, and this one makes about the best use of the time, with the most interesting formula of poses.

Speaking of this yoga tape, my decade-old tape started wearing out recently.  Lo and behold, this very program is now streaming on Hulu–available free any time! 

 After yoga, I try to pack in some healthy protein, in the form of yogurt.  Lots of people like to add sliced fruit to yogurt, and so do I (frozen blueberries make just about everything better–snacks, meals, motor oil), but I find that yogurt’s an easy cover for another healthy item–granola.  I get big tubs of generic yogurt from Wal Mart, and these bags of granola.  This brand isn’t too dry to start with, but mixing it into the yogurt really makes it go down sweetly. 

Banana or strawberry yogurt with some of this Bear Naked vanilla almond granola, after a Yoga Zone video, strikes me as time pretty well spent.