Just wishing you all a…

 

Posted on Tumblr by dreamshopeswishesbeliefs (I hope I got that right!)

Posted on Tumblr by dreamshopeswishesbeliefs (I hope I got that right!)

 

Also, here’s a great article on sleep deprivation. Enjoy! I hope you have a wonderful holiday season with family and friends! I am off preparing to welcome my family! It’ll be nice to have them around.

My woes this holiday season are many, it seems. I’m way behind on the shopping, finishing gifts bit. That’s alright though. I had a great time at my Seattle yoga training session. Although I received the merry gift of a whopping cold that left me flat on my sofa for two straight days, it was great to take the day I had off to see my family. After all, spending time with those we love most is what the holidays are all about, no matter how far behind one feels (for whatever reason).

 

One of the morning yoga classes I took was called Yoga For A Season Of Giving. The whole idea was about giving back to yourself during a time that often becomes stressful, leading to anxieties and frustrations and cranky moods rather than soothing peacefulness. I had a chance to think about this while taking this hour-long session (again, YogaFit rocks stockings! ;)) and my own challenges for being a happier, healthier person while lying on the couch.

 

At the beginning of our Level 3 training, we were asked to write down 1) how we compete/compare ourselves to others and, 2) how we can bring more love and acceptance into our lives towards ourselves and, by extension then, toward others. My biggest problem is, and has always been, comparing the way I look to others. To be perfectly honest, I’m a broke-ass military wife. It’s just the way it is, and this feeling of lacking money has been around in my life for a long time. I don’t blame anyone for it; it’s just reality. And it sucks. It really does. There are things I need and/or want that I have to do without, and that leads to comparing myself with others who obtain those things no problem.

 

Looks are, for whatever reason, a big deal to me, and that’s because our culture emphasizes these things–youthful beauty, clothes, make-up, etc.–in a barrage of advertisements everywhere. I honestly think that if we emphasized good character more than age and what we wear, I’d probably feel differently. I’d have different things I’d compare with others.

 

The thing that I am realizing as I grow older, however, is that these things vanish. One day you’re the prom queen, the next your the old clerk behind a cash register. They aren’t the things that really matter. This knowledge doesn’t mean that it’s any easier to be happy with the shape of one’s body or the pant size you wear, but overtime, I think those things fade away into the back of our minds as other things become more important.

 

Which brings me back to Yoga For the Season of Giving. The biggest lesson that I learned from taking that class–from experiencing YogaFit asĀ  a rule–is how vitally important it is for us to fill up our own cups. If we don’t, we aren’t giving from the wealth that is in ourselves but the poverty. As a result, we often give less and less willingly. I have found that by taking the time to help myself, to fill my cup, that my cup overflows. I am happier, healthier, and it matters less that I’m not wealthier in purse because I’m wealthier in spirit.

 

I encourage you to take a few moments each day, at any point in the day, to practice a little self-giving. Maybe it’s savoring a cup of coffee. Maybe it’s shutting yourself away for a nice long afternoon nap. Yoga For the Season of Giving doesn’t have to be postures or exercise. It simply is a form of refilling yourself, recharging for the next task that comes our way.

December 2012 Articles

December 13, 2012

As I’ve been out of town this past week, I’m a bit out of it still, trying to catch up with what I missed. Here are some great links. ACE and IDEA focused on women’s health this month!

 

Little Black Dress Workout

What to Expect From an Aerial Yoga Class

Seasonal Change Affecting Health/Fitness

Postpartum Core Support

2012 Women’s Health Research Review

Training Through the Transition

Alzheimer’s: Type III Diabetes?

Overeating and Ambiance

It is the holidays! My favorite time of year! The weather has cooled (well, everywhere but the desert) and the earth is giving us a bountiful harvest full of pumpkin, squash, potatoes, cranberries, oranges, collard greens, apples, and fowl game. Along with this wonderful bounty is the urge to eat quite a bit, and although we are supposed to put on a winter layer of about 5 pounds (~2.5 kg), we all are thinking, “How can we make this holiday season a little bit healthier?”

Found on Tumblr, linked to page found (http://she-who-loves-the-rain.tumblr.com/).

Found on Tumblr, linked to page found (http://she-who-loves-the-rain.tumblr.com/).

Here are a couple tips:

  • Plan ahead. Write out the day’s or week’s schedule…or even the month’s; be prepared by seeing what lies ahead, and then you’ll be less stressed and you won’t forget the details.
  • Substitute applesauce for butter one-for-one (it seems to work in all recipes except cookie ones; for those, consider using unmelted coconut oil instead)
  • Get to the gym. If you’re a procrastinator, do it early in the day when self-will and self-control are the highest. If you have a hard time remembering, set a reminder bell on your cell phone or put your gym bag in the front seat of your car
  • Get a gravy separator if you prefer to use drippings for your scrumptious, homemade gravy
  • Eat small meals. Pack your own lunches and snacks instead of eating out or buying on an urge when you get hungry
  • Around the holidays, actually eat breakfast and snacks before the turkey/ham/goose/duck dinner is served; also consider limiting alcoholic beverages as this increases the amount of food one eats–as it is, alcohol is empty calories, at 7 g/cal, the second most loaded source of calories behind fats

Here are a couple healthy alternatives to some seasonal favorites:

Light Pumpkin Roll

Healthy Green Bean Casserole

Sweet Potato Pecan Cinnamon Rolls (vegan)

Sweet dinner rolls

Healthy Christmas Appetizers

Healthy Christmas Recipes and Menus

I hope you enjoy the time spent with family and friends! I personally cannot wait to see my parents, who are traveling down to see us this year. Yay! May you have good will, good cheer, and great health this holiday season!