Why teach yoga when you can’t touch your toes?

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pizza and yoga. #doyou

 

Seriously, I cannot touch my toes without bending my knees. Why? Could be my years of field hockey – perfecting that squat position. Or, maybe my years of sitting in a cubicle all day (lord, that’s depressing). Either way, it is what it is. Flexibility isn’t my strong suit but I’ve learned that this really has nothing to do with enjoying my yoga practice.

Yoga isn’t a sport. You can’t win or lose it. You can certainly see yourself improve e.g. gain flexibility, move into new, more challenging poses, improve your stamina. Yoga is a journey of the mind and body. It’s a  discipline that you can carry through life. Highs and lows. I found that yoga can help me in a lot of areas of my life…once I found the right studio (for me) to really start.

It’s called Studio143 in Scituate, MA. With a beautiful setting – a fireplace in the wall, cozy room, and amazing instructors, I finally started being able to relax into yoga and understand how breathing is a critical part of it all.

I used to do yoga in the city…the breathing part was a bit lost on me. Often I was distracted by the “perfect” poses around me…or inability to relax because I was either coming or going to something in a hurry. Breath? Why breath? But, in this new suburban yoga oasis, I’ve been able to slow down and dedicate time to (trying to) be present.

But how did this get me to pursue yoga teacher certification? Well, it got me more interested. It built confidence in me that hey, I could really do something with this. I then found out the name of a local yoga teaching school associated with Studio143, it’s called Sanctuary Studios in Plymouth, MA.

As I went back and forth between buying a $2,000 (beautiful Chloe) purse…I said to myself, Beth, you can either buy this purse that you’ve wanted for awhile…adding to your pile of material goods (which don’t get me wrong, I still love to shop) or, you can invest this money into learning something new and deepening what you already love about yoga. So, I did. Instead of buying a purse, I took that money and signed up for a 6 month, 200 hour, yoga teacher certification.

They told us we wouldn’t be the same person at the end of the course…and frankly, it’s the truth. Even if I don’t end up teaching classes, I can say that this has been one of the best money/time investments I’ve ever made. I’ve met amazing people from different walks of life, learned more about the human body, stress management, and self-care. Been inspired and frankly, been saved during one of the more challenging times of my life (post for another day, we’ll get to that).

As my teacher training comes to a close with the exception of my practicum eeek and a couple make up classes, I know I’m far from being done with this journey. I want to practice more than I do today. And maybe, just maybe, I’ll open my own studio one day – but that’s just getting ahead of myself. If there is one thing I’ve learned, it’s the importance and challenge of trying my best to live in the present. Yoga helps me be more conscious of my thought patterns and being able to calm and center myself when the ‘going gets tough.’ I want to bring this to other people when the time is right.

So, if you’re considering pursuing “YTT” – let me be one to tell you, DO IT. You will not regret it. I leave with you this poem which was shared on the first day of my YTT back in October:

The Journey (by Mary Oliver)
 
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice–
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do–
determined to save
the only life you could save.

5 random things 

Commuting and blogging – my new favorite pairing.

Below are 5 random…unrelated things that I’m sharing today:  

1) This product in one word = classic. One of my fave pharmacy buys. I keep one in my purse at all times. Makes lashes full. Waterproof. #classicbeautybuy 

2) This t-shirt from Wildfox. Take me to my beach house. Like, right now. (Ps: I don’t have a beach house, I wish). Love Wildfox for funky and SUPER comfy lounge clothes. #loungeallday (if I could)  

 

3) Emily Kinney aka Beth from The Walking Dead (rip). Love her and her Insta feed. Love her recent post. #creativity #youngatheart

 

 

4) Last night – the whole family had ice cream for dinner. It was worth it. This is Midge and Howie eating their ice cream off a plate #finechina #icecreamfordinneriscool

 

  

5) And lastly, this. Sums it up 

 

  #truth 

Happy Hump Day! xo

Lifestyle, Beauty, Relationship, and Money Resolutions for ***2-0-1-5***

This year I rang in the New Year in a low key way. I spent NYE and NYD up in New Hampshire in the White Mountains with my husband, Nick. Last year, NYE was a bit of a disaster for me. Pretty sure my hangover lasted 5 days. Ick. This year, I vowed to ring in the New Year in a more controlled & loving fashion 🙂 We spent a couple days eating, napping, and yes, drinking to our hearts content. While I was up in those calm White Mountains, I started my resolution list for 2015. I realize having too many resolutions might just set me up for failure – but hey, I’m going to throw out a few to see what really sticks. Below are my resolutions. 4 categories – lifestyle, beauty, relationship, and money.

What are your resolutions? Do you believe in stating a couple resolutions at the start of the new year?

I’m finding it quite inspiring.

Lifestyle:

  • Get back into the gym and get fit – I seriously love the gym. When I’m there. It’s getting there that’s the issue…getting out of bed in the morning, to be exact. I love boxing class and pushing myself and seeing myself improve day by day. I love working out to rap music and getting excited during class when I hear a favorite song. But, this last year or so, I fell off the gym wagon. Hard. I paid for a $150-a-month gym membership and maybe went 3x in the course of the last 5 months. Shameful, I know. But here I am, making a pledge to myself to GET BACK TO IT. I’m ready to feel & be fit again. This is one of my top 2 goals of the year. #fitwithit2015 #bethgetoutofbed2015
A few of my favorite workout things: 1> Lululemon Wunder Under crops 2> IAMMAI sweatshirt, inspiration quotes are readable in the mirror 3> Twistband headbands, the best 4> BKR water bottle. Just enough water comes out with each chug

A few of my favorite workout things:
1> Lululemon Wunder Under crops
2> IAMMAI sweatshirt
3> Twistband headbands, the best
4> BKR water bottle

And now some random Fit-spiration. That’s right, Joseph Gordon-Levitt – I mean, this guy, GOT FIT for Don Jon. I have to applaud him for his metamorphosis. #randomfitspiration

from scrawny to brawny.

from scrawny to brawny.


Beauty:

  • Wash my face every night – I state this one knowing it’s a taller order for me (because I’m lazy and sometimes pass out in the fetal position on the couch during the week — that should probably change too). BUT, I want to do it. I’ve seen the positive results of religiously washing my face each night and I’ve seen the results of the counter (sudden break out, uneven skin tone etc.) I am somewhat obsessed with my skin and the sight of a mere line or wrinkle…and now is the time to better care for it. So, here goes it. Every night…wash and moisturize. #operationwashyourfaceeverynight2015
2 favorite winter skincare products: 1> REN Gentle Cleansing Milk  2> Caudalie Moisture Rescue Cream

2 favorite winter skincare products:
1> REN Gentle Cleansing Milk
2> Caudalie Moisture Rescue Cream


Relationship:

  • Send thank you notes – I fancied myself good at this at one point but then I realized I got a bit lazy. This year I want to be better about acknowledging nice gestures/experiences/opportunities with good ole, real paper, thank yous. #showthanks2015
Love these Kate Spade thank you notes. Good quality paper <3

Love these Kate Spade thank you notes. Good quality paper ❤

  • Be more patient with my hubby – I’m sure I could be more patient with many people and things…but one person who deserves more patience from me is my hubby. He’s a hard working guy…who is the ying to my yang in many ways. He’s thoughtful and funny and smart. I tend to jump at him for the little things…and this year, I want to be more mindful of that. I want to think twice before I snap at him to “stop chewing your beer!” or “stop being so slow!”  (when he’s walking “Nick-style” into a restaurant) or assuming he’s not listening when he’s really just taking a moment to think 😉  Because, he’s my BFF. Plain and simple. #bepatientspreadthelove2015
This guy. That face. <3

This guy. That face. ❤


Money:

  • Pay off my credit cards – this is it, it’s the year. The year I say “see ya” to my credit card debt. I’ve been good about managing it and using cash more often than credit. BUT, I’ve been carrying some CC debt from the days when I had little funds to spare (shout out to all those assistant media planners out there, it gets better). I want to pay it off once and for all. #debtfree2015 (except for school loans, car payment, and mortgage hehe)
I agree with her. Retail-therapy is A THING. But, bye bye cc

I agree with her. Retail-therapy is A THING. But, bye bye cc. Who’s cuter than Isla Fisher?? Confessions of a Shopaholic – good flick

A random post about hand cream…and a long lunch hour

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I’m loving roses lately…this is a funky pic I took of a rose on Valentines Day – artsy, right? 😉

Today…wait for it…I got a lunch hr…a legit lunch break for the first time in a long time. I.got.to.leave.the.building. WOW! (welcome to the life & times of an ad agency, folks).

I decided to really live it up so I spent my time at the Neimans beauty counter…where else would I spend it? Seriously. For me, it’s therapeutic to walk around the store…testing, examining, and smelling all the products. I rarely feel pressured to buy anything but often walk away with a lipgloss…my one serious beauty “vice.” I have pouches, drawers, and purses full of em…but whatever, they’re typically less than $20 so I go for it. There are worse things, right?!

Anyways, today was especially nice because it’s been awhile since I’ve walked the Neimans beauty/fragrance section. They have some unique brands to discover. I came across a (new to me) brand called Aerin. Aerin was started by Aerin Lauder, the granddaughter of the fabulous Estee Lauder. If you look Aerin up on Wikipedia – the first line is: “American billionaire and business woman.” Dang. I was intrigued by her beauty line…according to the Dailymail.com:

  • Aerin was launched in 2011, first as a beauty collection and then later branching out to offer home furnishings, decor, and accessories. 
  • The lifestyle label is said to have been established with the hope of encroaching on some of Tory Burch’s polished, feminine-ware-seeking clientele. If offers the same look, with a more understated, sophisticated feel. 
  • Aerin (Lauder) has been a longtime staple in the society pages of Vogue. She is so closely tied to the magazine that Anna Wintour helped provide guidance on her namesake label’s launch.
  • The company’s products are sold at premium retailers including Bergdorf Goodman, Saks, and Neiman Marcus. Many of its items are priced in the high-end range – like $950 jewelry boxes and $10,000 bookshelves. 
  • Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2509465/Estee-Lauders-heiresses-Aerin-Jane-officially-declared-billionaires.html#ixzz2v1kpF5YN 

So, I’m pretty sure I won’t be buying any of her furniture any time soon – but today, one of the products in her beauty line really grabbed me. Lately, I’ve been all about ROSE…the subtle smell…from rose lip balm to candles, I’m just loving it. Aerin makes a hand & body cream that has a nice subtle rose scent. Not overpowering. I put a little on my hands at the store and loved the texture…sunk right in, moisturized well, with no greasy after-feel. Although the tube goes for $40 (yowza), I pictured it on my desk at work. I pictured using it during the day and enjoying the nice rosey scent. And I’m always a fan of the tube because you can get every last drop out…and it’s travel friendly and more hygienic.

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Aerin rose hand & body cream…find it at Neimans or Nordstrom

So, cutting to the case, did I buy it? Actually, no. Maybe another day. But I wanted to share THE FIND. It’s a lovely product. I also think it’s a good idea to keep a hand cream at your desk, especially during the winter when hands can get really rough and dry. No, you don’t need to spend $40 on a tube of hand lotion, that’s for sure. But, if you’re looking for a nice tube…may I suggest the Rose Hand and Body Cream by Aerin…I don’t think it’d disappoint. My hope is…if I ever do get my hands on a tube…I’ll use it at my desk…and it’ll evoke daydreams of hour long lunches @ Neimans…and hanging out with billionaire business women who have unlimited access to beauty products and the halls of Vogue.

Slow down…don’t rush…2013

Some people don’t believe in the whole New Years Resolution ‘thing.’ And sure, people can resolve to change or try something new any time. But this year, I have a different perspective on resolution time. Because, what better time to make a change or try something new but at the start of the new year. Just writing 2013 feels different…wow, another year! How cool!

Outside of trying some new beauty tricks and treatments (which I find super fun) – I want to try my best to stop rushing around.

Most of us have a full plate – between work, family, friends, working out etc. there is a lot we have to balance, women in particular! I constantly find myself rushing from one thing to the next and from one thought to the next. Sometimes working myself into all out panic or an anxious state. 

For me and most people, changing how I do things or think about things is clearly not an overnight change. And in the spirit of not rushing, I’m working to make some mini changes that I am hoping will help me think and move differently over time. 

So, this AM I re-introduced myself to yoga. After more than a year without it – I realized, my work outs are typically focused on cardio and strength training (both are great!) but often times the pace of these work outs feeds into my perpetual feeling of rushing and constant ‘going.’ Yoga, by nature, asks you to slow down and be in the moment. And despite the pace feeling slow – the movements challenge me in a more calming way (it helps to be constantly focusing or being reminded by the instructor to focus on your breathing).

Today, I walked into the studio – which was filled to the brim with regulars and of course, people like me regarded as ‘resolutioners.’ Whatever. I made it and I was ready to try it out again. The class was long – 75 minutes! Holy crap. The pace varied…I had a few moments of ‘oh my gosh, I forgot how hard this is!’ and instead of pushing myself to the point of pain or strain, I would go back into child pose and let myself rest. I probably looked at the clock 8x…finally, at the 50 minute mark I told myself ‘you’re not going anywhere, don’t rush out the door, don’t quit.’ And I stuck it out – fully enjoying the last 5 minutes of shavasana. Ahh CONCIOUS STILLNESS – and I mean true stillness because I’m not staring at some type of screen thinking about words or numbers or posts! I tried to stay in the moment and keep my mind from rushing through thoughts…that was pretty hard. But I did my best not to critique myself too much. I left the class feeling rejuvenated

Getting back into yoga for me is a way to focus on one of my ‘resolutions’ which is to slow down a little. To focus on the moment better. I can’t say it’ll change anything drastically – but I do know, my body and spirit felt better walking out of that class. I walked to my car and drove home more calmly than usual. I actually did the dishes and sat on the couch – and felt slower than usual…and it felt good! 

Do you have a resolution? Big or small, what are you doing to achieve it?