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Monday, December 10, 2012

Diary of a Yogic Transformation

Hello fitness fans!

Wow, what year it has been for me. I won't go into detail, but let's just keep it at "life changing." Anyways, I'm back up to speed and I'm excited to start posting my blogs again about fitness, health, nutrition, spirituality, and of course, my favorite, YOGA!!!




Speaking of which, I recently graduated from an intensive yoga teacher training. It was a profound experience filled with laughs, tears, dangling upside down, reiki attunement, and deep personal healing. It's amazing how much I learned about myself on my mat during this time. It gave me a deep gratitude for everything I have, a deeper acceptance of who I am, and the deepest peace I have ever felt in my entire life. In the mix of all of this, I started a Kundalini Yoga practice.

Now, Kundalini yogis, these are the weirdos of the yoga community. They're the ones chanting, dressing all in white (usually included by a little white hat or turban) and the style of yoga is completely different than hatha. Most of the movements are quick and forceful while incorporating a breath of power or fire.

My first real experience was with a lady named Joy. And although this Joy character seemed kinda spacey and well, picture the fortune telling lady from Harry Potter with the thick glasses, her name said it all. She was vibrating with joy and happiness. So while I was a bit cautious approaching this practice at first, I was intrigued by the radiating beauty and calm of the woman in front of me. I thought to myself, this woman has something figured out. She has a deep peace and contentment I've rarely seen in anyone. I want to have what she has. So, acknowledging this desire, I realized I would have to do what she does in order to attain it. So with the guidance of my best friend (who actually started a Kundalini practice a few months prior and had an amazing transformation) I began.

My current path of Kriyas (or postures)

http://www.3ho.org/kundalini-yoga/kundalini-yoga-yb/kriyas-meditations/featured-meditations/pdfs/TenBodies.pdf

So incorporating Kundalini into my daily practice, here are some things I've noticed happening:

I'm more present in the moment
I have more overwhelming moments of gratitude for everything I have
I feel more content with myself
When I speak, it feels more truthful and wise
I feel more emotionally balanced
More positive people are presenting themselves in my life
Everything seems to make more sense to me (well, except Math...I don't know if yoga can fix that though lol)

I am still making my journey on this path and I am learning as I go. I have found that like most things, experience is the greatest teacher here. With all the changes I've noticed so far though, I can see that this practice is profound.

And just in case you're wondering, I haven't adopted a turban or little white hat as one of my accessories...but I would maybe. It could be a strategic place to store a sandwich or car keys.

Your Trainer,

Erin Is Awesome


Sunday, June 3, 2012

Detox Kale and Spinach Soup! It tastes good for real!

Due to popular demand I am sharing my ultimate detox smoothie recipe! This is the smoothie I used on my cleanse. In 2 weeks I lost over 2% body fat and about 5lbs. In three weeks (I know, I’m crazy), I lost just over 3% body fat. Unlike a juice fast, this recipe gives a lot o protein for muscle repair. Vegetables do have a certain percentage o f protein naturally, but for someone who hits the weights a few times a week, this smoothie gives more aminos for the muscles to repair.



1 cup kale
1 cup spinach
1-2 tbsp fresh cilantro
½ of a tomato
1 cucumber
½ an avocado
½ lime (squeeze the juice)
1 tbsp cumin
½ tbsp turmeric
½ tbsp curry
½ tbsp Himalayan crystal salt( or sea salt)
1-2 servings of unflavored plant fusion protein powder
2-3 cups of water



Combine all ingredients into a blender. I happen to have a vitamix so I can gently warm the smoothie so it’s more like a soup. If you don’t have one of these marvelous blenders, you can blend all the ingredients and then to warm it, pour it in a sauce pan and warm on low (rule to keep it raw is to be able to place your finger in the pan without having to remove it as a check) and keep the soup under 104 Fahrenheit.


I recommend drinking two of the above servings throughout the day while on the cleanse to make sure you get enough calories. You may also want to incorporate a salad for lunch or dinner if you need some crunch during your cleanse.
Good Luck. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me
Happy Cleansing!!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Surefire Stretches to Save your Shoulders



One of the most common injuries people come to me with is shoulder/rotator cuff injuries. From inflamed and overused trapezius muscles, to overstretched or torn rotator cuff attachments, there are many ways to injure a shoulder.

It’s understandable. For one, the shoulder joint is probably the most vulnerable joint to injury because the ball of the joint is larger than its encasement. The upper arms bone (hummerus), collar bone (clavicle) and shoulder blade (scapula) are the three bones that make up the joint. So, for the shoulder joint to be stable, the ligaments and tendons must be stretched and balanced to hold the joint in place.

Second, being into intense, full contact, adrenaline pumping sports myself, I can understand the challenge of slowing down the mind to be able to stretch properly. It does take mental discipline to be able to do this believe it or not. It teaches the mind and body how to transition and appreciate different kinds of intensity. For example, the stress relieving intensity of a deep stretch vs. pushing yourself to do 10 wind sprints in a row and not puke. They’re different animals, but both are necessary for balance. Think Yin and Yang;)

Below I’ve listed a few great shoulder stretches from www.shoulder-pain-management.com
Enjoy in good health!

Xoxoxoxo,
Your Trainer,
Erin Is Awesome

Pendulum Swings
Stand and lean over with arm hanging. Begin swinging the arm in small circles and gradually enlarge the size of the circles. Repeat 10 times.

Rotator Cuff Stretch I
Stand or sit.
Bend elbow at 90-degree angle, keeping elbows close to body, lower arms are pointed forward and parallel to floor, thumbs pointed up.
Move hands away from body until stretch is felt in shoulder.
Hold stretch for 30 seconds. Rest and repeat.

Rotator Cuff stretch II
Stand in front of doorframe bend elbow at 90-degree angle and place palm against doorframe. Move forward to stretch rotator cuff.

Rotator Cuff Stretch III
Sit or stand. Hands on waist, thumbs facing frontward. Bend at hips until body is resting on lap if sitting or parallel to floor if standing. Let arms hang toward floor to stretch the shoulder joint. Hold stretch for 20 seconds.

Back of shoulder stretch
Reach arm right across chest, use left hand to grasp arm just above elbow and gently pull arm farther across body until you feel a stretch in the back of the shoulder.
Hold stretch for 30 seconds. Rest and repeat.
Repeat on other side.

Overhead Stretch
Place hands on edge of counter top.
Bend upper body at hips at 90-degree angle.
Reach and stretch shoulders.

Towel Stretch - Internal Rotation
Place right hand behind back.
With the left hand, dangle a towel behind the back.
Grasp the towel with the right hand.
Gently pull the right hand upward by raising the left arm to stretch the right shoulder.
Towel should be in vertical position.
Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat on other side.

Towel Stretch - External Rotation
Place right hand behind back.
With the left hand, dangle a towel behind the back.
Grasp the towel with the right hand.
Pull right hand downward to stretch the left shoulder.
Towel should be in vertical position.
Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat on other side.

Wall Climb
Stand about 18 inches from a wall.
Face the wall. Place the fingertips of both hands against the wall and walk the fingers up the wall until you feel a stretch in your shoulders. Hold the stretch for a count of ten. Repeat ten times.

Wall Climb II
Turn sideways. Place the fingertips on the wall.
Arm should be slightly toward the front of body, rather than straight out to the side (at about a 30 degree angle to the front of the body)
Walk the fingers up the wall as high as they can go until you feel a stretch under the shoulder, without too much discomfort. Arm should be slightly toward the front of body, rather than straight out to the side (at about a 30 degree angle to the front of the body) Hold the stretch.

Sourced from www.shoulder-pain-management.com