Amp Up Movement, Slow Down the Mind.

Living a balanced, healthy lifestyle has been challenging. John and I have lost some weight, but we're definitely far from perfect when it comes to our diets. We workout often and track our activity with a Fitbit, but we still haven't found the perfect way to stay active.


Last June, right after a stressful school year ended, I was seeking at at-home yoga practice. Specifically, I was looking for something that I could follow at my own pace and still reap all of the health benefits of a solid yoga program. My sister-in-law owns a yoga studio, but the 30 minute drive was challenging for me to swing twice a week (or more). I just needed something I could do at home. Amping up my movement, while slowing down my mind was my intention. 


I stumbled across DoYouYoga.com, and subscribed to their YouTube channel and some of their Challenge playlists. It seemed I found a Golden Ticket! After about a week of daily yoga practice, which consisted of a 10- to 25-minute lesson or flow and a guided meditation, I started to notice a few things:
  • My flexibility was greatly improving. I wasn't able to do a backbend, a handstand, or twist into a pretzel, but I was able to get into the moves quickly and without pain. 
  • After about 2 weeks, I was attempting harder poses like The Crow, with a modification of course. I cannot even tell you what this was doing for my self-esteem.

from yogajournal.com
  • I was sore! But it it was a different type of sore than I'd experienced with other types of workouts. I think this is because yoga is low impact, but I can't be sure. 
  • Focusing on my breathing and clearing my mind became easier. As a result, at the end of a workout I felt physically stronger and mentally clear. Sometimes while I'm working out at the gym it's easy to check my phone, read emails, make mental to-do lists, and basically keep 'working'. Yoga forced me to quiet the noise in my head. 
To accelerate my yoga practice, I also talked with Heidi, a Beachbody Coach, and she hooked with up with a PiYo program. This program is also low impact and uses so many of the moves that I've learned over the last 8 months during my in-home yoga practice. I sweat more and get my heart rate up faster with PiYo, and it's a nice switch on occasion from my regular yoga practice. 


You'll remember that about 8 weeks ago I joined the Iowa Food and Family Project's blogger team for the annual Live Healthy Iowa Challenge. This is my second year on the IFFP team, but I have participated in the challenge with some teacher friends at a school where I used to teach. Our IFFP team consists of a bunch of my blogger friends. This accountability throughout the Challenge has helped me be mindful of wearing my Fitbit (the steps sync automatically to my Live Healthy Iowa Dashboard!) and the power of a team. 

Right now my girls Ally, and Katy, and Stephanie are crushing it with their level of activity! Please check out each of their blogs; you're going to love these women. 


What do you do to stay active? Have you tried yoga? 

I have a $25 Scheels gift card to give away to one lucky reader, courtesy of Iowa Food and Family Project! Just leave a comment and you're entered to win. I will draw a winner on the last day of our 10-week challenge, March 31st.


AMAZON DISCLOSURE: The owner of this website is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for bloggers and sites to earn advertising fees by promoting and linking to Amazon properties. Rest assured that I only link to products that I use, recommend, or covet :) Clicking on or purchasing something I have recommended from Amazon does NOT increase or impact your cost in any way.

Urban Homestead Meal Plan - Week of 3/13





In this week's meal plan (which is sometimes a photo of our menu board in our kitchen, sometimes a screenshot of my Real Plans, sometimes a simple list with links to recipes), you'll find several homegrown or local item from our urban homestead. Of course, there will be a few repeats throughout the week since we try to eat in-season and lots of leftovers for lunch. Breakfast is usually a smoothie or steel cut oats; something that can be prepared quickly in the morning. 

Monday - Roasted chicken with carrots (I don't have a roasting pan, so I cook the chicken on top of whole carrots instead) and a side salad
Tuesday - Chicken salad made with homemade avocado "mayo" and roasted cauliflower
Wednesday - Roasted cinnamon brussells sprouts with chicken
Thursday - Falafel with tahini sauce (my first time!) and a side salad
Friday - We'll eat out to celebrate my Irish husband at St. Patrick's Day
Saturday - Tuna salad (made with leftover avocado "mayo") and broccoli in coconut sauce
Sunday - Slow cooker pork roast with carrots and other veggies I toss in there

It might seem complicating to eat locally and in season, but we actually get the bulk of our meal plan ideas from Real Plans. You can go here to learn more!






SaveSave
SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave
SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave

SaveSave

Urban Homestead Meal Plan - Week of 3/6

Was your weekend as busy as mine? It seemed like I didn't have a moment to relax, and it all caught up to me on Sunday afternoon. We've only just begun our log cabin build, so I am a little nervous to see how crazy things will get as the project continues.
 
In days like these when my schedule is packed more full than I would like, it's extra important for me to be mindful of my eating choices. I had a follow up appointment with a doctor regarding a possible health issue we've been monitoring, and she gave me a pretty swift kick in the pants to get back on track.
 
"On track" basically means a modified paleo diet, which includes:
  • No dairy or wheat for 3 months (elimination diet to see if I have a sensitivity)
  • No refined sugars
  • As close to 8 cups of vegetables a day as possible
  • Lean proteins daily
  • Healthy fats daily (avocado, coconut oil, nuts, etc.)
Let's just say, I am spending more time grocery shopping for fresh produce than I ever have. I cannot wait until I can start growing my own food again, if even for the cost savings. It's been pretty easy to reduce our consumption of waste, even thought we're grocery shopping more.

In an effort to be more transparent with you and serve as a realistic inspiration for a zero waste lifestyle, I am sharing photos of our temporary kitchen on Instagram. I'll also be sharing photos and tips with how we reduce our consumption of goods in order to have less of an impact on our environment. 


….
 



 
In this week's meal plan (which is sometimes a photo of our menu board in our kitchen, sometimes a screenshot of my Real Plans, sometimes a simple list with links to recipes), you'll find several homegrown or local item from our urban homestead. Of course, there will be a few repeats throughout the week since we try to eat in-season and lots of leftovers for lunch. Breakfast is usually a smoothie or steel cut oats; something that can be prepared quickly in the morning. 

 
Monday - Homemade marinara sauce + ground pork over quinoa and a spinach salad
Tuesday - Paleo-approved meatloaf and roasted squash cubes
Wednesday - Spinach + goat cheese stuffed chicken breasts and steamed mixed veggies 
Thursday - Baked salmon over quinoa and roasted cauliflower
Friday - Veggie frittata with salsa
Saturday - Whole roasted chicken with some sort of vegetable on the side
Sunday - Chicken salad and whatever vegetable I can pull from the pantry.

 
It might seem complicating to eat locally and in season, but we actually get the bulk of our meal plan ideas from Real Plans. You can go here to learn more!
 






SaveSave
SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave
SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave

SaveSave

You might like:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...