A much needed break…

When working at so many places putting in 10-14 hour days and feeling like life has hit you in the face and leaves you wanting to crawl into a hole and slowly whither away…and let me tell you it finally did me in. I was exhausted , overworked, and not making hardly any money after paying bills. So, I had to re evaluate some aspects of my life. What was working, what wasn’t working, and what needed to change so I could be living a more successful life. So, what did I do? I quick one job and got hired at another place, decided to beef up my yoga schedule to try and get more reliable income (still working on that), and decided to just pay off two credit cards in full draining my back accounts. Some things were done in the spur of the moment, others were done with a lot of thought and consideration. I have also had to shift how I think and feel about certain aspects of my life. How I do thinks? Can I do them better? How can I take care of myself better? And the best part is…I still don’t have any answers to any questions, I’m still lost in this crazy thing called life and I have a feeling this is going to be a permanent state of mind for a while. Do I enjoy being in this confusing state, no absolutely not. But, I know that it is necessary for me to be here; even though I may not enjoy any part of it. But, with this weird state, I am in and with myself just working my life into the grave, I know that good things are on the horizon. That if I can hold out for just a bit longer, things will be happier and healthier in my life. I’ll quote journey for a second, “don’t stop believing,” and that is just what I intend to do. Until next time everyone. Light, love, & Namaste.

Leah

COME TO A YOGA LIVE STREAM!

Hello Everyone!  I hope you are all having a wonderful day!  I am inviting you all to join me for my live stream TODAY MAY 2nd through PowHow.com at 9am CST.  The live stream will be an all levels, beginner friendly, and all sizes and ages yoga class!  AND THE BEST PART IS IT IS ONLY $4!  If you are interested Click HERE to register.

CAN’T MAKE IT TO THE LIVE STREAM? NO PROBLEM PURCHASE THE VIDEO BY CLICKING HERE

Hope to see you on your yoga mat…..literally!  Thanks for being awesome!

The Curvy Yogini

The Week Of Sickness = Corpse Pose for Seven Days Straight

Hello Everyone, I hope you are having a lovely, relaxing, and HEALTHY weekend….a huge emphasis on the healthy part, because I have been sick for about the last five days straight.  No, it isn’t Ebola or the Measles or Strep Throat….it’s just a nasty head cold virus that has to work its way out.  I’m at the stage of the cold where I don’t have a voice and I’m hacking up a bunch of stuff (I won’t go into detail about that…..that’s a bit to much TMI).  But, I am also at the stage where I feel the need to disinfect everything……I feel gross….therefore everything I touch feels really gross…..lets just say I had my mom (yes I live with my mom….you don’t go into the yoga teaching profession if you want to be rich) get Clorox Disinfecting Wipes and Other various cleaning products.  I have had to cancel a ton of classes this week because of this head cold and I have been watching youtube videos and playing my favorite video games (yes I am a nerdy yoga teacher that likes video games and documentaries).  But, since I have had to cancel classes this week I thought I would post a couple yoga sequences, with music according to each style, and references for each yoga pose….so you can still get your yoga at home.  Namaste.

See you on your Mat!!

The Curvy Yogini

Vinyasa Yoga Mini Sun A and Sun B Series

Start in an easy cross legged seated position, hands on the tops of your knees, eyes closed.  Stay here for 10 breaths (in through the nose out through the month)

(after the ten breaths) Inhale the arms up over your head, exhale drop the right hand down to your yoga mat, inhale up through the left arm (still over your head), and exhale reach the left arm up and over your head and gently rest your left hand on your right shoulder as your twist your chest to the ceiling (hold for 3 breaths) Repeat on the other side and hold for three breaths

Inhale both hands over your head and exhale transition into a table top position and do five sets of cat cows (inhale cow & exhale for cat).  Table Top, Cow Pose, and Cat Pose reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqnua4rHVVA

Inhale back to a table top position and slowly all the way down to your stomach.  Keeping the hands underneath the shoulders, inhale cobra pose hold for 3 breaths.  Cobra Pose reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zgvolE4NAH0

Exhale lower down to your stomach, inhale press up to a table top position, and exhale tuck the toes, press into the mat, and come into downward facing dog.  Downward Facing Dog reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayRU3ecmPbI

Sun Saluation A

Starting in Downward Dog, inhale look between your hands, exhale walk your feet between your hands, hinge at your hips, hands down to the mat, and stay here in forward fold for 2 breaths.  Forward Fold reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hrp6Q_QyDkc

Inhale Mountain pose w/arms up over your head (not shown in the video), reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATLU-XX_lro Exhale forward fold, inhale half way lift reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fbMtkw5-qlQ exhale high plank reference video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMR5ikcgWaI

Take a deep inhale and as you exhale lower all the way down to your stomach, inhale cobra pose, exhale lower down to your stomach, inhale press up into high plank, and exhale down dog.

REPEAT SUN SALUTATION A 3 TIMES!!!

Sun Salutation B

Starting in Down Dog, inhale look between your hands, exhale travel your feel between, and come into a forward fold.  Inhale half way lift and exhale forward fold (this stabilizes out your back and spine)

Inhale Chair Pose (bring legs together to touch, arms up over your head (biceps right by your ears), and sink your tailbone low (like you’re doing a wall sit).  Chair Pose reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWsUHtwRGvI stay here for 2 breaths, than exhale into a forward fold, inhale immediately into a halfway lift, exhale high plank, inhale and exhale lower down to your stomach, inhale cobra, exhale lower down to your stomach, inhale high plank, and exhale downward facing dog.

Inhale your right leg high, reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2yYLDg4tR0, and exhale low lunge (plant your lifted foot between your hands).  Inhale Warrior 2, reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbIrd6onJwQ, exhale extended side angle, reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CPbp3o6jD7s, inhale reverse warrior, reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mx3Tn3tGJfY, and exhale cartwheel your hands down to the mat, inhale high plank, and exhale downward facing dog. Repeat on the left side

REPEAT SUN SALUTATION B 3 TIMES

Music you can use for this mini series (upbeat techno): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lptp0pG-80

Restorative/Yin Yoga Mini Series

Start laying on your back, eyes close, take 10 breaths (inhale through your nose and exhale out through your mouth)

Each Pose will be held for 3 minutes

Supine Twist on the left (hold for three) and on the right (hold for three)  reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elI403TmzZY

Reclined Butterfly Pose reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4guzdc7EiQs

Waterfall Pose reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EznG1cH5A4Q

Seated forward fold reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HyiFhjwWXkw

Wide legged seated forward fold reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xT5Cfzw4Jqw

Than bring the legs back together and lay all the way down on your back and come into Reclined Butterfly Pose one more time (hold for at least three mins)

After the three mins are up hug both knees into your chest hold for 4 breaths and then exhale into your final resting pose which can be anything and stay there for as long as your need.

Music for this series (nature/relaxing music): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOEvKulq2sY

 

 

One Fish, Two Fish, Crescent Lunge, & Prayer Twist

Inhale lift up your right leg, exhale low lunge plant your lifted foot between your hands, and inhale crescent lunge. As you get settled in your crescent lunge, notice how your thigh, hips, and shoulders are feeling. What sensations is your body giving you? What part of the body is stretching? Are you remembering to breathe? Try to deepen your breath a little more. Use the breath to relax the body or a body part.
Anyone that has been to a yoga class had heard versions of any of these phrases. Being a yoga instructor I say many of these phrases in my yoga classes. The phrases are suppose to help the yogis in class relax and come to a nice, zen, and calming place. But….does it really help? Or do I just sound like an idiot saying it? I was thinking about this as I was teaching my plus size yoga class tonight. As I was teaching and saying the different phrases and my students are being rock stars grooving and moving from pose to pose, I couldn’t turn my brain off. I kept thinking about what I was saying, the words didn’t flow like I wanted them to…to me it wasn’t believable it just sounded scripted and emotionless. Maybe I’m over thinking my yoga classes? Or maybe I’m overthinking everything else. It seems like once my stress level lowers my overthinking sky rockets and trying to find a happy medium has been difficult. The only solution I have found is get as much sleep as possible…….oh and drink lots of coffee….. Not permanent solutions but solutions non the less a solution. But, my lovely readers I have anatomy homework that is calling my name. Thanks for reading and what do you overthink? Have a wonderful week!!!

See you on your mat!

The Curvy Yogini

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Rock N Roll, A Slow Vinyasa Flow, & Let’s Get Personal…Really Personal

This week is all about new things for me, myself, my yoga practice, & just life in general. So as you see in this post I added a video to it. This week I decided to combined my two loves which are Yoga & Music. I have been singing since I could talk….but, I knew that a career in singing was not going to be possible when all the health issues I have started….and the fact that I had my neck sliced open due to my thyroid removal surgery. So, I got a degree in Political Science and I got certified to be a yoga instructor. It’s funny how life can change in an instant….for the better or for the worse. To add a very personal touch to this blog, I will talk about how I got fired from a yoga studio and I thought my teaching career and life was over. I will not mention the name of the studio, so please do not ask. A few months after getting certified to teach yoga I auditioned for (or in the real work market it is called an interview). Needless to say I got the job and was asked to teach three classes, 2 vinyasas & 1 restorative. For the first month or two everything was great, my class numbers were growing, and I was pretty happy with how it was going. But, before I knew it I has someone complain about my music. I used a non-lyrical acoustic semi popular rock/pop songs. I guess someone didn’t like it. Ok, I thought, I will just change my music…no worries. But, it wasn’t that simple…. From than on I was a target or I had a huge red X on me. Nothing I did was right, nothing I changed was right, I just wasn’t right. So, this led to my classes being review….but, the fun part was the senior manager who reviewed my classes was texting on her phone while reviewing both of my classes….and barely participated in the classes. I felt cheated, I felt like I wasn’t given a chance to succeed. I felt like my size was a problem. That the owners and senior manager thought because was plus size I couldn’t teach. So, slowly but, surely my classes were taken away from me. And I was left teaching only my restorative class. I even attended the studio’s restorative yoga training. But, really it wasn’t training….if you call the senior manager reading from a book the whole time training…than ya I got trained. I got trained by a Paul Grilley book (nothing against Paul Grilley he is an amazing Yin Yoga teacher). But, that’s the problem…he’s a wonderful Yin Yoga teacher….not a restorative teacher. In my personal opinion they are two different styles of yoga. Yin yoga is holding postures for 5 mins a piece with no props & Restorative yoga is holding the poses for maybe 2-3 mins and using all the props in the world. Both styles of yoga are great for the body, but they are different. So the training was not training, it was story time. So, after the training (if you could call it that) I thought things would be better. I am technically trained in restorative yoga so my problems should go away, shouldn’t they? Well, before I could ponder this happening I had thyroid removal surgery and was out for 5 weeks for recovery. But, I did go back to the studio at 4 weeks just to take a yoga class. Than the week after I returned and taught my wonderful Restorative Yoga class. I ended up with 25 people in the class, mostly regular students of mine. It was the biggest class of the day, week, & I believe month….so I thought, awesome I’m out of the woods….things were going to be ok. So I walk into the studio the next week & my manager pulls me aside and says the owner’s of the studio don’t want you teaching for us anymore so I am going to take you off the schedule…this will be your last class here. I was devastated….I have never been fired before, never been suspended, I don’t think I have ever gotten in trouble except for a verbal warning. But, the one thing that upset me the most was the owner’s reason to fire me. The reason was I didn’t have a restorative yoga certificate, but I took their training. So, in my opinion I didn’t get an answer to why I was fired. I still have never received my review for my restorative class….and whenever I see the owners or the senior manager they either will not speak to me, walk away from me, or will ignore me…even if I was nice to say hello to them. After I was fired….I really thought this was the end. No one will want to hire me. This isn’t the right career for me. But, I still sent out emails and I still tried to get more classes. Two months after I was fired I had 3 interview/auditions at places who actually wanted me to teach for them. I got a couple private clients that actually wanted to learn from me. I got referred to a place….yes someone actually referred me to someone to teach yoga for them. And that brings us up to today, now, the present. I currently teach at 5 different locations, I have 3 private clients, & I have a meeting next week for another teaching spot. I work 7 days out of the week, have 1 day off a month, & I am starting school back up in 2 weeks for Massage Therapy. I can’t believe how my life has turned around. Even though getting fired was awful…that door was meant to close, so all of these other doors could open. I am extremely humbled to work at so many spots. Am I perfect? Do I make mistakes? Have I messed up some stuff? YES, YES, & YES!!! I’m not a superhuman, I am just a yoga teacher….A yoga teacher who is trying to figure out her place in the world, yoga, & life. It’s hard being plus size in a size zero industry, but I have never been the type of woman to do things the easy way. So this week I challenge all of you to not take the easy way out. Make those difficult steps in life, have that crucial uncomfortable conversation, & don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Life is what you & only you can make out of it.
Until next time…stay beautiful, stay confident, & stay you.

See you on your mat!

The Curvy Yogini