Off the Mat

I have this tendency to overdo things. I overdo things to the point that they get so overdone I stop doing them altogether. The last 8 weeks of this semester got a little nutty- I took on 6 more hours per week of teaching than I had expected to, and it’s totally backfired on me. While I certainly enjoy the income, I’ve managed to strain or pull or sprain or possibly tear a tendon in my proximal hamstring *the part of your hamstring that connects to your hip structure, you know kind of up in the bottom part of your butt). I thought at first I’d ignore it, long story short that didn’t work out well and I started having horrible sciatic pain. My chiropractor more or less put me on bed rest for a week. Well really he just told me no stretching it or working it, which for me is as bad as bed rest. I haven’t run, lifted, yoga’d, barely even broken a sweat since Wednesday morning (I snuck in my Pilates class before i saw the back cracker!) Besides me throwing a pity party for myself, I do have a point.

I can’t very well just cancel classes for a week or so, and thus I’ve learned to teach off my mat. In my BodySculpt class, or in interval training, it’s no biggie to instruct and not participate. Yoga is a different story. I’m used to participating with my classes. And let’s face it, most of us are pretty visual learners, especially when it’s something we’re doing with our bodies, contorting them into bends and twists and stretches all while concentrating on our breath. So this has been quite the learning experience not only for me but for my students as well. They are used to being able to look up and see where I am and what I’m doing at any given time. Now they have to learn to listen a little closer. To really focus on if I told them to move their left foot or their right, and if I said to place it on top of or behind the left or right arm. I do feel like even though it’s been difficult, this has made me a better instructor. I’ve had to think of different ways of cuing my students and I’ve also had more of a chance to walk around the room and make adjustments. I think has let me get to know my students a little better. I always take the time to make adjustments in class, but now I have the time to make even minor ones for people, which in yoga minor adjustments make a huge difference. 

I’m not entirely sure how much of a difference it’s making in my hamstring. It still hurts. Less sciatic pain, but still some. I see my chiropractor again tomorrow so hopefully we’ll get some major improvement. Until then, I’ll still be off my mat, and learning.

Namaste.

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Hot Damn I’m in a Headstand!

Those were the words I uttered (hollered) when I pulled my knees to my chest and pushed my feet into the air all on my own for the first time. Appropriately so, because I was in hot yoga. Hot damn, indeed. Since then I feel the need to do headstands at any given opportunity. I was working on (the very inkling of a thought of beginning) handstands with my mentor on Friday and so of course we took the opportunity to snap a photo of my leaning tower of headstand. I didn’t realize i leaned until I looked at the picture, but whatever people, it’s progress! Check it out.

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Ignore my demon eyes, I just want ya’ll to know I can do a headstand.

Onto more delicious things, like muffins.

When I went Paleo I had this idea that I was never going to eat baked goods again. Ha! All I’ve really done is perfected Paleo baking.

No, not really. Because my muffins the other day were a pancake recipe gone wrong. I was out of bananas, so I used pumpkin puree instead. Should work, right? Yes, unless you accidentally add an extra tablespoon of coconut flour, and then realize you have no coconut milk. EFF!!! So I sat, looking forlornly at my much too thick pancake batter, wondering what the hell we were going to eat for breakfast. Then it dawned on me. Muffin batter is really just thick pancake batter that rises, right? So I added some baking soda and put that batter in my super-see-duper awesome silicon muffin pans. Is it still a pan if it’s silicon? Hmmm.

This is what came out.Image

What the yum.

This is what went in ’em.

  • 1/3 can pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • a bunch of cinnamon (depending on how much you love cinnamon, up to a tablespoon)
  • pinch nutmeg, ginger, and cloves
  • 1/4-1/3 cup raisins

Mix together everything but raisins, I used my hand mixer. Fold in raisins. Grease muffin tin with coconut oil or use muffin cups. Divide evenly into muffin tin. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes. Image

When the tiny peaks are starting to brown like in the pic above, they’re done.

Know what I did next? Threw some grassfed butter on that bad boy and gobbled it up. Ok maybe I gobbled three up. Details, whatev.

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So this morning, I’d agreed to sub a yoga class at 8 am. WHY DO I CONTINUE TO SAY YES TO EARLY CLASSES?!?!?! Thus, no time for bacon frittatas. We had fresh blueberries and my kiddo had mentioned blueberry muffins, so I figured I’d see how well it worked with a banana and blueberries instead of pumpkin and raisins. And it was DELICIOUS. Duh. Here’s what went into these:

  • 1 banana
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • a bunch of cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of blueberries

Same as with the pumpkin muffins, mix it all together sans blueberries. Fold in the blueberries, and put them into greased muffin tins (or use paper muffin cups). Bake at 375 for ten or so minutes. I should have made a double batch of these.

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The fresh blueberries really made the difference.

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Next time i’m thinking some coffee and chocolate chunks will be appropriate mix ins!

Hot Yoga (As in Heated, not Sexy)

My stepmom asked me what hot yoga was the other day, as I was going to be there when she dropped off my new bike. 

Apparently she was not picturing yoga done in just under 100 degrees, but rather a very sexy flow of come hither postures. If you’ve ever done hot yoga, you know ain’t nothin’ very sexy going on as you try to twist yourself into a variety of backbends and balances all while sweating profusely from pores you never even imagined you had. 

So this new yoga studio opened, the only hot yoga studio we have in town. They ran a Groupon that was a screaming deal in and of itself ($29 for a month of unlimited. They usually charge $100.) And as if it were meant to be, I got an email from Groupon that same day telling me I got 10 bucks off my next Groupon purchase. NINETEEN DOLLARS for my whole sweaty month. I went 4 times a week the first two weeks. It was amazing. I detoxed and detoxed and detoxed some more. 

I loved it. I really did. However, I felt like maybe I needed a break, so I haven’t been back since Saturday (it is not Thursday). 

Like most things I do, I believe I overdid the hot yoga. The instructors at the studio are amazing. They’re great, and I can easily pop up into a headstand now thanks to one of them. I’m also beginning to work on handstands. I just think 4 days a week on top of the 20+ hours I already teach drained the hell out of me. 

So I’m going back on Sunday, and finishing out my Groupon. Then going back once a week as a drop in. There’s something extremely gratifying about a cold river rock being placed on your third eye during savasana after you’ve pushed yourself beyond the brink for an entire hour. And when the classes are small, they give tiny shoulder rubs with mint lotion that feels like that icy/hot stuff, but better. So yeah, I’ll totally pay that $15 drop-in once a week. 

And maybe if I’m lucky, I’ll look sexier when I come out of the studio.