We’ve been so lucky here in Los Angeles, California to have great weather as well as having our hotel close to so many must haves!
Our desirables when traveling for work are simple – a great gym either in the hotel or within a few minutes of the hotel as well as close proximity to a Trader Joes or other similar type grocery store so we can buy our own food and avoid having to eat out. These two tools help Chris and I to say on track with our personal goals.
The other night, we took the opportunity to work out at the 24 Hour Fitness by our hotel and I am so glad we did! While holding the plank position and alternating with swingups, out of the corner of my eye I observed the most unusual workout! I was fixated on a gentleman performing motions that were graceful like yoga, but included a high level of strength training as well. It was a balance that I’d never seen before! I had to know more!
So this is where stepping outside your comfort zone comes in! It’s a bit nerve racking to walk up to someone in a gym and start chatting. You either feel odd for interrupting their workout or afraid they may think you’re interested in them! But, it was worth it to take a leap of faith. In just a few minutes, I learned the exciting and intriguing moves he was doing were from a program at physicalsubculture.com. I couldn’t wait to learn more and find some new moves to switch up my workouts.
When you step up and step out of your comfort zone, you never know what you’ll find! For me, I discovered some exciting exercise moves. What might you find? Learn more about their philosophy and exercises in their book Lift With Your Head
It’s time to say goodbye to AZ. Only for a week, thank goodness . Chris and I (and the amazing Bonnie) are headed to LA to shoot an upcoming magazine feature that you can catch in June! Sorry…I can’t spill the beans on which mag yet, but we’ll let you know as time time gets closer!
After the magazine shoot, we get to spend 3 days with some of our season 1 and 2 peeps shooting another EMWLE workout DVD. Yay!
Enjoying an outdoor yoga workout using a towel as my mat. Photo Credit: Marley
So now you’re interested in trying Yoga. Learning a new sport or trying a new form of exercise like yoga can be a bit daunting! Two big challenges are finding the time to workout or a class to attend and having the right equipment to maximize a yoga workout. Here are a few tips and tricks to overcome both of these obstacles.
Working Out Anywhere, Anytime . . .
It’s great to take a class or two to get started in yoga especially to help learn a few poses and breathing techniques. If you’re able to fit these into your routine, fantastic! Many classes though are offered on limited schedules and a late night at work can totally throw off any best intentions.
With schedules like Chris and I keep, there is not enough room in a suitcase to bring equipment with us when we travel so we often get creative and look around us for things to use in our hotel rooms or any location we find ourselves in.
Don’t let a gym’s schedule, a missed class or being away from home sabotage your routine. With a few simple tools, you can get a yoga workout in anywhere, anytime.
Mats, Blocks, Straps and more . . .
In an ideal world, we’d all be able to run down to the local sporting goods store, drop a few hundred dollars and have the top of the line yoga equipment to try this new sport. In reality, most people are in survival mode and even splurging on a gym membership or yoga class can be a big sacrifice.
Using a simple towel as an exercise mat and a shoebox as a yoga block to squeeze in a yoga workout at home. Photo Credit: Marley
Believe it or not, Chris knows what it’s like to feel the “financial pinch” (Chris lived out of his car at one point, and I…well, I won’t even get into it in this blog). We always try to be prudent with our finances and we do invest in quality equipment as we can. But even more importantly, we’ve gotten really resourceful in finding things around us to use as workout equipment so we can maximize any workout time we can get in our crazy schedules.
While a gym or yoga class typically provide the equipment to use during a class, we discovered these yoga essentials that can actually be created from household items, allowing you to make up a missed class after a late night at work, workout from home at anytime, or workout when traveling.
1. Yoga Mat – We have a couple of options here. You can use a folded up blanket or a beach towel, or if you’re on a hard slick surface – like tile or hard wood flooring – you can pick up a rubber mat intended to go under your rugs to keep them from slipping. It offers a little bit of padding for your back and bottom as well as a non-slick surface.
2. Support Blocks – Blocks can help you get into poses and maintain appropriate posture when you can’t quite reach the floor. If you’re just starting out you can use a chair or the back of your sofa as a support. As your flexibility increases, try using good sturdy books (like that unused dusty hotel room phonebook that the internet has made obsolete) or shoe boxes. You can even pick up a few old paperbacks and duct tape them together for the perfect size.
Working out with Chris’ T-Shirt! Photo Credit: Marley
3. Yoga Strap – The use of a yoga straps help lend artificial length to your arms or legs to bring you into a full pose. For example, you would wrap the strap around the feet if you can’t touch your toes in standing forward bend or hold the strap in both hands behind the back for certain shoulder stretches. Once again, you don’t need anything special to enjoy the benefits of a yoga strap. Use a jump rope, the belt from an old bath robe or coat, panty hose, or any sturdy fabric cut into strips. I use Chris’ t-shirts .
4. Meditation Pillow – Funky pillows with peace signs and flowers might be your style, but for this frugal mama, I use a good ol’ sleeping pillow for bottom-resting and meditation. To incorporate your own style, buy a fun pillowcase!
5. Yoga DVD – While there are some incredible exercise DVD’s out there, you don’t have to buy one of these to get proper in-home yoga training. Get online and check out the loads of instructional videos on YouTube. Not only are these videos free, but this also allows you to find an instructor that fits you best. This is also a great solution if you find yourself stuck in a hotel room!
By getting creative and looking for inexpensive solutions to use in working out, you can eliminate excuses and also be ready to overcome any challenges to your schedule so that you can stay on track. Yoga is a great form of exercise that can be done virtually anywhere with a little ingenuity and desire!
So we just got back from an amazing adventure on a cruise ship. I’ve NEVER been on a cruise, and to be honest I had no idea what to expect when it comes to food! Although our family was well-equipped with our own healthy choices, I was fairly confident that we would have no problem finding (or creating) healthy options on board.
Here are a few tips I learned that not only work on a cruise but on any vacation or just eating out:
1. Order your meal with a to-go box, and box half of it right away so you’re not tempted to eat the whole thing.
2. Share the love. Split your meal with someone. Most portions are too big for just one person.
3. Be sure and order all sauces and dressings on the side. Dip your fork in the sauce or dressing then put your food on your fork. You’ll get the flavor without the extra calories.
4. When it comes to a buffet on any ship, or in a restaurant, you can fill your plate with salads, grilled vegetables, and fresh fruit.
5. Keep your order simple with foods like broiled or baked shrimp, chicken and fish (never fried or breaded).
6. Avoid the calorie-laden dressings, pizzas, cream based salads, and desert bar.
7. Bring your own refillable water bottle to guard against dehydration.
With all that said, I also know that it is ok to enjoy! It isn’t every day that I get to sail the open seas like this, and doggone it, I wanted to experience this cruise. Luckily, I knew I COULD enjoy…but I also knew there are a couple rules I would follow to make sure my nutrition/health didn’t suffer!
Here are a few tips if you’re going to cheat:
1. Keep your serving size small. After a few bites your taste buds get used to the flavor and nothing is quite like that first bite.
2. Make a good choice. There are options and some are better than others. Still try to pick the lesser of the two evils if possible.
3. Just like with a meal, share the love. Split it with someone.
4. Work it off. If you feel like you’ve overdone it there is always a good hard workout waiting for you to burn off the damage.
5. Keep your water intake up. It will be easier to control your portions if you’re well hydrated. It also helps with the cravings.
Above all ENJOY! I sure did and I can’t wait to do it again!