Me of course! Where have I been? Good question. Teaching yoga, recovering from some shoulder pain (and no, I still have no idea what I’ve done- just started hurting one day) singing, writing, it’s been busy! I’m sure y’all can relate. In addition to working full-time, I’ve added some yoga classes to my schedule and it’s been keeping me busy and exhausted. I love it, it’s tough sometimes, but I’m so thankful for all the wonderful opportunities that have been coming my way.
So this post is a little different than my regular yoga/motivation posts. It’s more of an update on my life and an explanation as to why I haven’t been blogging as much. The ideas haven’t stopped I just haven’t had time to give them the attention they deserve. I have a few in the works though.
I’m also excited to share with you that I will be on Missy Kane’s Fit & Fun tv show next week. It’s a local tv show here in Knoxville, TN. She invited me to come and do some yoga with her. I hope to post a link to that when it airs next week. Here’s a picture of us getting our yoga on!
And now to my music- it’s been a part of my soul for as long as I can remember. Here is a link to my latest song, written and performed by me. The way I had to put this on the computer doesn’t sound or look great lol but wanted to be able to give you a listen if you wanted one 🙂 This song is an interesting one, it’ more of a rock song and everyone knows I’m a county girl at heart but I loved this version! Kevin Griffin an excellent musician and singer/songwriter wrote the music for this one and provides the back ground vocals. Thank you Kevin Griffin!
And back to SUP Yoga! Here are some yogi’s from one of my stand up paddle board classes! We’ve been having so much fun with these water classes! If you’re in Knoxville, TN…come and join us!
See! I told you I’ve been busy 🙂 I hope all of you are doing well and enjoying your summer as much as I am. If you have questions or thoughts, send them my way. Until next time….
Find more from me at http://www.bepresent100.com and on twitter @bepresent100
Love and be loved.
Yoga and weight training with a vinyasa style twist is what you will find in this post. Yoga has been my go-to exercise for many years and I love the versatility that it offers. Weight training has also been something I’ve enjoyed so I wanted to combine the two for a different kind of workout.
By adding weights to our vinyasa flow it increases our overall calorie burn, gets our heart rate up and challenges our balance and strength. (As you will see in the video, I almost take a tumble in Warrior 3 a few times 🙂 don’t laugh!) It’s beneficial and important for us to add cardio, weights and stretching to our workout routine to challenge both our mind and body.
Check out the video above for the vinyasa yoga flow routine and see the photos below to help you get started. Begin with a 2-5 lb weight for each hand.
ALL 4’s, with lift
Opposite arm and leg extends, take a small weight in the left hand and lower both the arm and leg up and down. Do 5-10 reps and switch sides.
Warrior 1 to Warrior 3 Flow
Hold a weight in each hand reach up for Warrior 1 and bring arms down and extend out in front of you and reach the leg back for Warrior 3. Flow through the poses several times per side. See video.
Warrior 2 -Reverse Warrior -Triangle Flow
We start in Warrior 2, flow into to Reverse Warrior and back to Warrior 2 stance then to Triangle pose. See video for flow.
Side Knee Plank with Oblique Twist Flow
Bring your right knee underneath the hip, take a weight in the right hand reach it up and through for an oblique twist. Reach back up and repeat. 10-15 reps per side. To add intensity come into a full side plank by lifting the knee and hips up and extending into a full side plank.
Boat Pose with Chest Fly Flow (video adds bicep curls too!)
Begin in boat pose and with both weights extend out to the sides for a chest fly while holding the legs up with bent knees, drawing the abs in and keeping the spine lengthening and reaching. Try to keep from rounding in the low back by drawing the naval to spine. You may also extend the arms out and in for a bicep curl. ( See video)Try 10-15 reps, and 3 sets.
Feel free to play around in your yoga poses to see where you can add your own vinyasa style flow. It’s always fun to look for new opportunities to change up your routine and challenge your body. If you have questions, you know what to do! Send them my way.
My name is Amber Boone. Please find more from me at http://www.bepresent100.com and on Twitter @bepresent100 Thanks for reading and if you have a yoga blog you’d like to see me post, I would love to hear from you!
What do you get when you combine a love for water, the outdoors and a yogi? SUP Yoga, of course. It’s what’s happening these days. I’m here to tell you more about why you should try SUP Yoga!
What is Paddle Boarding?
Paddle boarding is a sport that allows you to have fun on the lake, get a great workout in and get a tan! What more could you want? Paddle Board’s are large surfboard’s, they are stable and can double as a yoga mat should you desire to break out your downward facing dog. You are able to stand up, sit down, lie down and even paddle on your knees. The possibilities are endless! You’re thinking what if I fall in, I have no balance? The good news is that your body is already good at balancing and you will surprise yourself at how good you will be. I promise! But you know what? What if you do fall in? Trust me on hot days you’ll be jumping in! That’s part of the fun. And guess what? The board’s stable enough that you can climb right back on with minimal effort. Think about pulling yourself out of the pool. It’s basically the same thing. It’s therapeutic, it’s outdoors, you can’t beat the scenery, and it’s just plain fun by yourself or with a group. Does it sound like I’m trying to make a sale yet? That’s because I am! It won me over on day one. Try it! You won’t regret it.
SUP Yoga, is you guessed it, yoga on a paddle board. Yoga is a little more challenging on the paddle board but that’s part of the fun! I do recommend you take a paddle board lesson before you take a SUP Yoga class. You’ll be more confident on the board and get more out of the experience. So maybe you are new to yoga and you’re wondering if SUP Yoga is something you should try? My answer is absolutely! After an intro paddle board class, and a couple of yoga classes, sign up for a SUP Yoga class! We do basic yoga poses and if you want to try a balancing pose or a headstand, I’m not going to stop you :). You always have the option of child’s pose or tanning on your board. Did I mention Savasana? Savasana will have new meaning after your SUP Yoga class, relaxing in the warm sun, sounds of nature that sing in the background, the gentle breeze that brushes over you and makes you feel like you’re a million miles away from reality. Yeah, it’s that good!
WHERE TO TRY?
If you’re in the East Tennessee area come and try it with me! I’m teaching SUP Yoga at two locations and various land classes around the area. See my website for my schedule at http://www.bepresent100.com
SUP YOGA CLASSES
Sup Yoga-Norris Paddling Adventures-Norris Dam Marina
Sundays @10am $25
SUP Yoga-Billy Lush Brand-TN River-Saturdays @8:30am $25
Registration is required contact me to sign up at firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow me on twitter @bepresent100 and see my website for more info at http://www.bepresent100.com
Mantra: Motivate yourself. Be happy. Live fully.
Meditate: Take 5-10 minutes and think about your current set of circumstances or situation. Are you happy with the way things are? If so, dwell on that gratitude and happiness. If not, think about what you can do differently. Sometimes all it takes is a simple shift in our attitude to change our perspective and get us on the right track.
We are as happy as we make up our mind to be. No matter what is happening to us, around us or within us; it’s all very much our choice on how we choose to react or be. Things are constantly changing sometimes things go right, sometimes they go wrong but the reality is everything keeps moving. You are the only one that can choose your response and behavior on the inside and out.
I’ll be the first to tell you that sometimes life gets the best of me and I don’t always have a yogic or yogi attitude. Sadly, I can be as stubborn and hateful as the next person, but when I catch myself behaving this way it allows me the opportunity to change and be different. We are going to have bad days, bad situations and sad times because that’s reality. Through creating awareness and observing our own behavior we have the power to be different, to be happy.
So maybe the next time we see ourselves heading straight for negative town, maybe we can choose to take a right turn to positive town instead?
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Life happens, so when it does are you ready to seek within? These poses will have you balancing faster than a cat’s meow. You heard it here first! Things don’t stop or sit still simply because we need them too it takes our focus, drive, determination and commitment to create balance.
While taking pictures of these balancing yoga poses, I set up on a fairly busy running/biking trail. Why? Partly, because the scenery and the hill across the way was a perfect place for my tripod but also, I knew that to achieve balance here, it would truly require me to seek from within. With a highway on one side, a river with boats on the other, runner’s and biker’s passing by quickly, it was anything but quiet but it was the challenge I needed. Rather than focusing on the sounds and things going on around me, I had to tune it out. I couldn’t worry about what everybody else was or wasn’t doing. It didn’t matter. I was making a conscious effort to balance in the midst of life.
We don’t always get to choose everything that happens around us or to us. The only choice were given is how we respond. These poses help bring your focus within. They teach us to maintain our center no matter what is taking place around us.
Balancing on All 4’s
Beginning on hands and knees, wrists under shoulders, knees under hips, left arm reaches out as you extend the opposite, right leg. Hold this position for 60-90 seconds and switch sides. Keep the spine long, gaze to the mat, hips even, belly button drawn to spine, shoulders back and down.
Side Knee Plank Balance
Beginning with right hand underneath shoulder and right knee under hip, lift left leg up parallel to the mat and reach left arm up the sky. This is prep for our half moon standing balance.
Side Plank Knee Plank Variation
Same pose as above except here you have the option to bind the left leg by bringing it in closer, allowing a stretch and a backbend.
Standing Splits with/without blocks
Begin in forward fold, reach one leg up behind you. It doesn’t matter how high you lift your leg. Activate both feet, the standing one by rooting down into the mat, and the lifted one by spreading the toes and lengthening the leg. Option: Use blocks to reach mat as shown in the picture above.
Warrior 3 with/without blocks
In this pose our goal is to bring the lifted leg and arms parallel to the floor. When first attempting this pose, use a block under each hand and practice lifting the back foot, eventually you may begin to lift one or both arms to reach out in front of you.
Half Moon Balance & Half Moon Balance Bind with block
This is one of my favorite yoga poses. Place a block out in front, a little to the side of whichever leg you’re balancing on first. You’re going to keep the balancing leg pointing forward. Take and lift the back leg up as in Warrior 3, except now we are going to rotate the hip open to the side. The chest also rotates and opens to the side reaching the top arm up. Don’t be afraid to bend the balancing leg. You have to feel your way into this pose. It will take some time and practice. Eventually you can begin to draw the extended leg in for a bind. Remember looking down helps with balance, looking up challenges it.
Find me on Instagram @outdooryogi and on twitter @bepresent100
Mantra: Feel the Waves.
Meditation: Find a busy space. Yes, you heard me right. Today our challenge is learning to balance when things get hard, when things are loud, when things in our life are anything but ideal. Close your eyes or maybe you want to leave one open. Perfectly okay here 🙂 now center on stillness, calmness and peace. How do you feel when you are calm, when you are centered, when you have peace? Take yourself to this place. Create that space in your mind, in your heart. Tune out all other activity. This will be challenging but keep practicing. Try 5 minutes a day while waiting in line, waiting in traffic, sitting with your kids.
Anyone can find their balance when things are going right when things are quiet. What we need to practice is finding balance when things fall apart, when the unexpected occurs, when sh** hits the fan. It’s happened to all of us. Life has a funny way of throwing us a curve ball from time to time. When that happens we need to be ready to hit it out of the park. Don’t be shy, don’t be afraid. Your first few attempts, you may strike out and that’s okay. Keep coming back here to this space, to the busyness, to the chaos, to the crazy. Keep searching for the calm, the peace, finding your center among the chaos of everyday life. That’s what balance is about the ebbing and flowing, feeling the waves of life.
How do you find your balance in the middle of chaos? Any tried and true techniques you can share?
Find more from me on instagram @outdooryogi and on twitter @bepresent100
Welcome to Part 3 of the Yoga Detox, Mindful Meditation. Meditation helps clear the mind and create space. It helps us to focus and reinforce positive thoughts. It has the ability to calm and center us with just 10 minutes a day. Meditation is one of the best things you can do for yourself. It’s been used to lower blood pressure, improve memory, lose weight, help with depression and anxiety and the list of benefits continue to grow.
“Meditation is not passive sitting in silence. It is sitting in awareness, free from distraction, and realizing the clear understanding that arises from concentration.” Thich Nhat Hanh
Often in meditation we assume that we have to control our mind, that we have to magically make it be still and quiet. It reminds me of trying to calm a hyperactive child. The more effort you put in, the more you try to control, the more they resist. Our mind typically tends to be the same way. The more we try to control it the less control we actually have. Our thoughts swirl from one topic to the next, sometimes leaving us completely exhausted. So how do we control our mind for meditation? It’s simple. We don’t. The beauty of meditation is allowing yourself the freedom to simply let go. It’s not about forcing ourselves to be quiet for 10 minutes but it’s about giving ourselves the freedom to let go for 10 minutes.
“Meditation is the best exercise for the human mind.” Alton Howard
The beauty of meditation is that you don’t have to sit in a seated position for 10 mintues to reap the benefits. You have options 🙂
Ideas for Meditation
- Walking/Running is a great way to clear your head and focus on the present.
- Journaling and writing down your thoughts is a perfect way to center yourself.
- Listening to your favorite music and relaxing is a great way to unwind and let go.
- Reading is a great way to relax and focus.
Steps to develop a regular meditation practice
1) Commit. Make the decision to commit, set an intention to practice meditation everyday no matter what is or isn’t going on around you.
2) Schedule. Whether it’s first thing in the morning, a 10 minute break at work or at the end of the day. Set aside a specific time each day to practice.
3) Practice. Practice daily, use a timer if necessary. Don’t beat yourself up if your mind wanders or if it takes a while to get the hang of it. Even if you miss a day just begin again the following day. Like anything else it will take time and practice to become a habit.
Yoga Poses for Meditation
Hands on Heart
Comfortable seat, hands on heart. Connecting with your heart as you feel the rising and the falling of the breath being reminded of how fragile yet powerful we truly are, that we each have a greater purpose to fulfill. Our heart beats because we are meant to be here in this very moment. Sit here as you breath deeply down into the belly as you feel your heart beating and the rising and the falling of the breath. Allow yourself to connect with your body, allow yourself to feel any emotions that come up. Simply being aware.
Allow yourself to surrender in this pose. Letting go of everything that doesn’t serve you. Letting go of anything that weighs you down. Just for a moment release the heavy load that you carry. Be still and know that you are exactly where you are meant to be in your journey. Soak up the peace of this moment. Allow yourself to let go and simply be present. Forgetting everything else, even if only for a few moments. Clearing the space, clearing your heart, releasing any hurt, any negativity, anything that doesn’t resonate with you. Let it go.
Creating an intention and focus in this meditation. Do you need clarity? Do you need guidance? Whatever you need or want, bring your focus here. Now allow your mind to clear and meditate on this intention. What do you need in this moment? After focusing allow the mind to be free, let it go and follow it. See what comes up.
Mudras for Meditation
Mudras are symbolic hand gestures that you can use during meditation to set an intention or to simply help you focus. Here are three mudras that you may want to try.
Gyan Mudra– touch the index finger to the thumb. This mudra helps to clear the mind, improve alertness and enhances clarity.
Cosmic Mudra– use your dominant hand to cradle the other hand, with both palms facing up. Tips of your thumbs should be touching each other, forming a compressed oval shape together with your palms. This mudra helps to bring your attention inward and is useful to create self-awareness.
Prithvi Mudra– join the tip of your ring finger with the tip of the thumb. Extend all the other fingers and keep them relaxed. This mudra helps to ground and center us, promotes a sense of stability and increases tolerance and patience.
Meditation 1: Guided
“ Make meditation a daily practice, and it will soon turn into a habit.” Remez Sasson
I hope you enjoy the guided meditation and the techniques above. Remember it’s a daily practice, a daily effort but one that’s well worth your time and effort. Let me know which meditation is your favorite? Which one resonates with you? Questions? Send them to me.
Find more from me on instagram @outdooryogi and twitter @bepresent100 & @outdooryogi
Mudras Yoga in Your Hands, Gertrud Hirschi