Downward Doggin’

So I think I have officially caught the Yogi bug.  Ever since my doctor appointment, I started experimenting with a couple of yoga classes and ended up buying a Groupon for one month unlimited at a studio called YogaWorks.  Since I had minimal experience and didn’t know the good from the bad studios, I figured I would try whatever was somewhat close to my apartment and didn’t cost me an arm and a leg.  After trying a few less than impressive studios, YogaWorks was exactly what I had been looking for: a variety of classes from bar to power yoga, people of all levels, a zen studio, approachable instructors and multiple locations all over the city.  While I am usually not one to a) workout after work or b) go to a workout class of any kind, I found myself running out the door of my office every night to try to make whatever class was available at that time.  I am typically a run in the morning type of gal and usually don’t like the restrictions of having to make a class (only exception: SoulCycle), but for some reason, yoga has changed all of that.  Not only did I find myself leaving class more refreshed, I was relaxed, happier and clear-headed.  A yogi miracle!

Just to give you a little anecdote, my boyfriend and I were planning on meeting for dinner after he finished work drinks and I finished a yoga class on the Upper East Side.  After I spent a majority of the day telling him this probably won’t work tonight because “you will get caught at drinks longer than you think” and him encouraging me that was not going to happen and that we would meet at 9pm, I finally gave in.  Be the bigger person, let him win, I thought.  Fast forward to 9pm when my class is finished, I check my phone to find three texts along the lines of  “I’m going to be a little bit late.”.  What was my first thought?  No problem.  Now, fast forward to 45 minutes later and I’m sitting at the bar by myself next to two creepy grown men, while awkwardly checking my phone to avoid having to converse with them.  Still remaining calm all the while.  And finally, at 10pm, that tall drink of water walks in smiling from ear to ear, “I’m so sorry.”  My reaction?  Pure and utter forgiveness.  Not only did I not care, I was extremely happy to see him!  See?  Yoga mind in progress!  HA!  I am only kind of kidding.  But really,  I think everything that they say about yoga is true.  I’m drinking the Kool-Aid people!  It is such a great mind-body exercise with so many benefits short and long-term.  It makes you feel at peace and helps you rid yourself of a racing mind (which I am more than guilty of).  Not to mention it can totally change your bod!  (Fine, I will look like Jennifer Aniston if I have to.)  I hope to be “practicing” for the rest of my life!

Hello, amazing body!

Anyone who thinks “Yoga isn’t for me” should give it a second shot!  Because I was one of those people.  I think it’s about finding the right studio and classes and not being intimidated.  For me I really enjoy the Vinyasa flow style because you don’t stop moving and you don’t hold positions for very long.  The other class which has been really enjoyable is BarWorks, which is a class at YogaWorks very similar to a Bar Method or Physique57 class (for a fraction of the cost).  It’s all about mixing it up!  I have noticed a small difference in my body already and feel so much stronger from only a month of full on commitment!  Grab a friend and give it a whirl if you’re not already addicted!  And who doesn’t want an excuse to buy more Lululemon?

Hope you’re enjoying the long Thanksgiving weekend!  It has been absolutely beautiful in Massachusetts and so relaxing and fun hanging out with my family and friends!  So cliché – but I’m feeling very thankful!

XOXO

 

(pictures via Pinterest)

Cleanses: Do or Don’t?

Well folks I am on day two of my 48 hour Acai Berry cleanse, which I was convinced to do from a friend in a moment of weakness (think: Monday after a weekend away) and then was able to convince my bf and co-worker to join as well and I must say… I feel no different.  In fact, I may even feel worse and one out of our four-person cleansing brood has already dropped out (won’t mention any names).  I have done the Blue Print Cleanse once before and swore off cleanses after that “fun” experience. But then somehow forgot about my disbelief and decided to jump on the band wagon once again.  The Acai Berry cleanse basically includes a juice which you combine in water (4 oz juice, 4 oz water) four times a day in between meals.  The juice is meant to detoxify, restore metabolism and give you more energy.  The upside?  This time I can eat… vegetables, fruit and simple whole grains.  Which means I am basically just eating healthy and drinking juice and tea a lot more than I would normally.  Oh, and did I mention no caffeine?  No coffee….not happy.  After day one I felt, um, not great.  Too many fruits and veggies and too little carbs is something my body is not used to.  I am hoping by tomorrow I will feel fantastic and totally regret writing this post.  To be honest I don’t think that’s going to happen, but here’s hoping!  This is the breakdown of my 48 hour “cleanse”:

Day 1:

Breakfast – oatmeal with raspberries

Drink#1

Snack – banana

Drink#2

Lunch – salad with romaine, cherry tomatoes, corn, black beans, avocado, a squirt of lime and a pinch of salt (could be cheating but I don’t care)

Drink#3

Snack – carrots and celery

Drink#4

Dinner – brown rice with broccoli, peppers, tomatoes and mushrooms with a little olive oil and some salt and pepper

Dessert – dried mangoes

Day 2:

Breakfast – oatmeal with raspberries, lemon ginger herbal tea

Drink#1

Snack – banana

Drink#2

Lunch – salad with romaine, cherry tomatoes, corn, black beans, avocado, a squirt of lime and a pinch of salt (could be cheating but I don’t care), chamomile tea

Drink#3

Snack – apple

Drink#4

Dinner – Soba noodles with broccoli, peppers and mushrooms with olive oil and salt and pepper

Dessert – dried mangoes

So…as you can see, not horrible, but I think just the thought of not being able to eat certain things is just annoying and the reason why I never try to constrict myself with certain foods – it just makes you want it more.  Exhibit A, I have never wanted coffee and a turkey sandwich so badly in my life.  I have to say the Blue Print Cleanse did make a noticeable difference in my skin and I felt lighter, but that was short-lived.  So far I can’t put a finger on anything this cleanse has to show for itself, besides being light-headed from lack of caffeine (bad sign?).

What do you guys think?  Have you ever tried a cleanse?  Do you think they are healthy for you or a marketing ploy?  My co-worker’s dad is a doctor and told us we would have the same results and be better off financially if we bought a bottle of blueberry juice and drank it all day.  He’s probably right.

Almost the weekend!

XOXO

Under the Weather

While the weather outside has been absolutely gorgeous, I have been completely under the weather.  One combo I could live without.  All I wanted to do this past weekend was to go for a run outside, picnic in the park in front of my apartment, go to dinner with my gal pals…. but nooooo,  instead I was trapped inside, gasping for breath.  After pretty much losing my mind on Sunday from lack of activity, I tried to buckle down and go to work yesterday morning simply for the purpose of getting out of the apartment.  When I got there, my body sang a different tune and so I went to the doctor after about an hour and found out… dun, dun, dunnn… that I have bronchitis.  AGAIN.  For the second time this year.  Not only was I frustrated because I felt awful and it was about the 5th time I have been sick this year, but also because my best friend is getting married this upcoming weekend and all I can think about is standing up on the altar trying to fight tears while blowing my nose and coughing.  YUCK.  Not the look I am going for… or the point of this post.  The real reason I am writing this is because I want to share with you a few things I learned from Dr. Sue yesterday, who prescribed me several things outside of an inhaler and antibiotic…

#1: Being in a stressful work environment can weaken your immune system her first question was, “What industry do you work in?”

#2: Being unhappy in your job can make you physically sick: unhappiness = chemical imbalance = weakened immune system.

#3: Take a multivitamin – while I have pretty much been opposed to taking a multivitamin because I was under the impression that “I get enough nutrients from the foods I eat”… apparently I am dead wrong.  Especially as women, we need the added vitamins for our health now and in the future.  Go get yourself a multi-vit, ladies!  I bought this Rainbow Light version, as it’s apparently easier to digest.

#4: Take Fish Oil – another one I have struggled with as I attempted about a year ago and then gave up after tasting fish for hours after taking it.  AWFUL!  But… BUT! After asking a kind lady in Whole Foods how to avoid this nuisance, she informed me by storing the fish oil pills in the freezer, people have found they do not run into this issue.  Tried it last night and it actually works – PROBLEM SOLVED!  Fish oil is good for your immune system, hair, nails, skin and more.  Try it!

#5: Eat a colorful diet with lots of fruits, veggies and legumes – I like to consider myself “healthy” but I definitely have gained a liking for burgers and beer on a regular basis lately (whether it’s the truth or not, I blame the bf)… and apparently it’s not helping the bod (in more ways than one I’m sure).  So today I went to Whole Foods and loaded up on veggies, hummus, soup, nuts, dried fruit, etc.  I am devoting myself to being healthIER!  It may sound obvious, but I think we can all add more “color” into our diets no matter how healthy we may think we are.

#6: Practice Yoga – you always hear that yoga is good for just about everything… and it turns out, it is!  Not only is it good for toning your bod, it’s great for relieving stress, strengthening your immune system, getting a better sleep, improving posture and the list goes on.  So I am looking into finding a studio near my apartment.  Do you have a yoga studio in NYC that you like?  I’d love some recommendations!

Self Magazine

(Oh J. Ann… you make everything look good.)

Basically, the moral of the story is – take care of yourself and find a job you love!  Life is too short!  Even though you may think you’re doing the right things, you never appreciate good health until you don’t have it!  And while I may not have anything serious (thank goodness), it put things into perspective and made me want to make a conscious effort to look out for myself and slow down.  I am someone who is always on the move and living in NYC doesn’t help me in that regard.  But moving forward, I am vowing to take better care of myself and you should too!  I also signed up for an interior design course at the end of October in an effort to explore my passions on the job front and find what makes me happy!  What are your health tricks?  How do you relieve  stress?   Do you love your job?  Would you ever take the risk of leaving your job to do something you enjoy or feel passionate about?  I’d love to hear!

XOXO