Author: Yogabydegrees

At Yoga by Degrees, we like to sweat so we turn up the heat in our classes. Heat during yoga practice has numerous benefits. It allows for a deeper cleanse of the body and boosts the body’s circulation. Heat loosens up the muscles and detoxifies the organs. Heat allows for greater range of motion in joints, muscles, ligaments and other supporting structures of the body. Heat also has a calming affect on the mind and when the mind slows down and the heart rate picks up you have the perfect combination for a hatha yoga practice. Our classes are heated from 80º F to 105º F. Check out our website at www.yogabydegrees.net to find the right class with right amount of heat for you.

Wellness Wednesdays: Endings and Beginnings In Harmony

Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

“The moon is a reminder that no matter what phase I am in, I am still whole.” -Unknown

As I take grasp of the last week of teaching yoga for a period of a time to settle into a new profession, I have reflected a lot about transitions. I spent the majority of my time working with the mind body in a space of comfort and I now will be harmonizing the practice by spending majority of my new time with the physical body in surgery in a space of tension. While my teaching and practice in the studio will only be on a pause, the reality of transitioning from one lifestyle to another is beginning to sink.

When we experience transitions, we experience change. We may feel a sense of loss or abandonment as we become immersed in the ebb and flow of life. Relief can be found in the idea that endings pave the way for beginnings. It is important during transitions that we allow ourself the space we need to lament over what we are passing. Creating this space may give us the mental clarity to realize there are a multitude of opportunities waiting to unearth.

This realization of endings paving the path to beginnings may cultivate greater ease during the transition from one phase to another. Be that as it may feel like a loss of identity of leaving or pausing a sacred portion of your life, the future you are anxious about does exist quite yet and there is comfort knowing there are infinite possibilities.

However, many of us are reluctant to change, preferring that each day be much like the same due to its uncomfortable energy shift. At times like this, it may help to state our intention of what we want to benefit from such change. In a way, it is like asking a friend to assist you. If the time aligns, the universe will offer the key to doors you wish to receive to produce such change. When we have a clear directive from the mind, we have the ability to possess clear action. We can then trust we have all that we need within to take on the ending that is a new beginning.

 

Namaste!

Angie

4 Week Shred: Changes for Health, Changes for Life!

Happy New Year! It’s the time of year when we are inundated with fad diets, supplements, exercise programs, and more. But we’ve been there, done that! Maybe it worked for a little bit, and suddenly you find yourself exactly where you started.  What will you change in 2020 to achieve long term results? Our revolutionary bootcamp, 4 Week Shred, offers the important combination of nutrition and exercise to help you crush your goals. 4 Week Shred brings together small group training and group nutrition coaching from registered dietitian Nikki to offer you motivation, support, and the knowledge you need to get fit, toned, and healthy!
On the first day of our Shred program, we will discuss a different way to look at how, what and why we eat, also known as Mindful or Intuitive Eating. So what does Mindful Eating mean? Mindful Eating is a non-diet approach to health and wellness that helps you tune into your body signals, break the cycle of chronic dieting and heal your relationship with food. You will learn the tools needed to help you cultivate a healthier relationship with food and your body.
On week two of Shred, we will explore some of the more popular “diets” and products out on the market today. We will dive into the pros, cons and occasional dangers of some of these popular diet trends marketed for weight loss and health. Why these diets might be right for some individuals and inappropriate for others. Please feel free to post about any particular diet trends you would like to learn more about prior to class.

 On week three of Shred we will focus on nutrition. Some of the topics included but not limited to are: What foods are best to eat pre and post workout? How do fluid requirements change depending on exercise intensity and weather? What vitamins and minerals are important during different stages of life? How often and what types of exercises you should incorporate to meet your health goals?

 Week four will bring us back to Mindful Eating as we share our own struggles and challenges we have encountered during the four weeks together. What have you learned about yourself and what will be your next steps moving forward? Please come with an open mind and willingness to share!

Along the way through our 4 week journey together, we will have some friendly competition where you can earn prizes for meeting different weekly goals. Each week there will be a new goal to conquer. Each nutritional meeting is preceded by an interval group workout led by Teresa. Each 45 minute workout is completely customize able to meet you where you are on your fitness journey. Suitable for both beginners and for fitness fanatics! Additionally, participants will be challenged to attend yoga and yoga sculpt classes on their own during the week. This not only helps you create healthy exercise habits to continue throughout the year, but yoga has been scientifically proven to help with weight loss, toning and injury prevention. Non YBD members receive unlimited yoga at ANY Yoga By Degrees location during the month of February with their enrollment.
 Email Teresa@yogabydegrees.net if you have any additional questions . Ready to enroll?, please click here. We can’t wait to shred with you!
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Wellness Wednesday: The Space That Is Held

Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

As human beings we each acknowledge how overwhelming sensations can become as we move through our life. They may become so great that we feel that we no longer have the internal space we need to begin organizing the visceral chaos we experience. We each have had an encounter in which we had the trust and comfort to reach out to someone we know in order to be assisted through a difficult period. 

In times like these it is vitally important we reach out the most trusted, precious people we know to hold space. All too often we may feel like a burden for dumping our emotional baggage onto someone else so we continue to let it pile within until space is constricted to its max. However, we never know when someone else’s presence, experiences and additional information will be what we need in order to begin healing. These people who offer themselves as containers may simply provide their presence with the absence of words or perhaps communicated guidance. Regardless, their centered self brings a sense of steadiness that we can lean on as support as their presence creates an environment in which we can productively dwell without the fear of how we are perceived.

When someone offers their presence, they offer one of the greatest gifts that someone in need may ever receive. We must emit our gratitude to these beings of light as we would struggle onto our next moment if it was not for them

Namaste,

Angie

Wellness Wednesdays: Back to Basics

Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

As we move into the new decade we cannot help but hear everyone share their new year goals and perhaps how they may achieve it. I saw a common theme amongst the table conversations and social media posts that in order to achieve a goal, we must act aggressively towards it.

It can be a positive mindset, sure, but sometimes this mind set may cause us to become so mono-focused, distracted by comparison that we lose sight of the opportunities on the periphery of our vision. If we allow our self to stay receptive, we remind our self of the basic roots that ground us in which allows us to flourish as a whole to our desired goals. These basic roots are simply reminders to keep us feeling at an optimum-physically, emotionally, mentally, energetically, socially, etc for the purpose of attaining what we yearn for. They are beautifully unique to each of us.

If we reflect back on our daily activity, we may notice how mindless we can become. It is almost like we are on autopilot. It can be overwhelming to drastically swap mindsets immediately. However we have our ability to practice with intention and balance as we must experience both ends of the spectrum to understand balance. We can reflect on our core values and build based off our broad foundation. So while our complex life may encourage us to become the next bigger, better, best, sometimes it may be necessary to take a moment to redirect our focus inward to cultivate the space we need in order to grow with the basics.

Namaste,

Angie

Wellness Wednesday: Clean Slates

Happy Wellness Wednesday and happy New Year!

There are events in our lives that contribute themselves to creating a clean slate. Birthdays, leaving a job, and days like today- the start of the new year. It has its own underlying energy that encourages us to take on life eagerly. This new year may remind us the importance of focusing on what we choose to create because if we give our conscious awareness to unwanted aspects of our life we will only allow what we resist to persist.

We must be gentle towards our self in times of new beginnings as it is a vulnerable moment of change. It does not serve us to get down on ourselves if we do not reach our intended goals immediately. So often we feel we must act aggressively in order to achieve our desired goal. However, this can cause us to be mono-focused and avoid seeing the opportunities on the periphery of our vision. We must soften to expand.

This is why we practice with intention. We have the ability to send our focus and energy to the aspects of life we choose to gravitate towards. We acknowledge the forward motion, choose to reset and start again. Just like the new year, making the conscious decision to begin again has its own underlying energy. However we never have to wait for an event, like the new year, to begin again. As we move through life we realize it never really stops despite the circumstances we are in. But just like what we observe in nature, there are periods of obvious growth and dormancy that signal a time of waiting for the right moment to burst forward. We, too, can do the same if we allow ourselves to be receptive. Each time we choose to clean our slate we dedicate ourselves to flourish from our current version of ourself.

Namaste,

Angie

Wellness Wednesday: Holiday Roots

Happy Holidays, yogis!

If you have not noticed yet, Nadja and I have started the tradition to kick start Christmas Eve by practicing together in a full room with the lovely YBD community followed by taking an annual photo before beginning our family festivities. Starting our day with a flow with the community is always a humbling experience as we can all gather to breathe, sweat and smile. We can remind ourselves of the good in humanity and return to the roots of why we celebrate this time of year.

It is inspiring to see so many students still prioritize their practice in the midst of the holiday chaos. I think the the true purpose of the holidays can often be swept amongst the details. While celebrations are intended to honor life’s more momentous occasions, these sentiments can be swept away by the stress of overloaded to-do lists and on-going holiday obligations. There are ways, however, that we can celebrate without running ourselves exhausted.

The holiday season may be the perfect time to take inventory of our personal values without the influence of social media and other external sources. We must allow ourselves to detach from expectations and adjust existing traditions in order to create the inner and outer fulfillment we wish to seek during this time of year based off aknowledging our deepest values. In doing so we may inspire others to reconnect to the purpose of the holidays. We have the ability to pause when the festivities become more of a hassle than a celebration. The holidays will be the most rewarding when we return back to it’s roots.

Namaste,

Angie

Wellness Wednesday: Mental Retreats

Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

I am currently in North Carolina visiting old friends where I have had the opportunity to detach myself from the hustle and bustle of everyday life back home and enjoy the ease of new energy of a new location. While I do not think it is always a good idea to run away from stress, sometimes allowing a period to detach from our current environment may be necessary to fall deep into personal solitude where we can fully own and release our joys, sorrows and fears without interruption.

When we detach ourselves from the ongoing motion we experience, we can quiet ourselves enough to notice how our inner world reflects our outer environment. We may see that when we stray away from the things that distract us, we reveal the root of our emotions and how much easier it is to still our mind from racing thoughts.

Becoming overly focused on a thought may cause us to constrict ourselves into a small space whereas becoming detached enough can allow us to view the relativity of a situation may set us free. As we immerse ourself into a place we never been to before, the simplest pleasures are far from superficial. Our ability to meditate has a new quality because of the energy we immersed ourself in is unfamiliar. Our senses become heightened, as if we are experiencing life for the first time with fresh eyes.

Once we acknowledge and create the space our mind craves, a broad perspective may wash to surface. This broad perspective may be just the thing we need in order to reinvigorate. This perspective may reveal to us what we deeply value and help us to understand the next steps of our path. Hopefully when we return home, we can take a little bit of this time stillness back with us and create the space for deep reflection on a daily basis. We may also come back to our life renewed and ready to take on the world.

Namaste!

Angie

Wellness Wednesday: Be Good, Real Good

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Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

I have strayed away from my practice convinced that it was not going to bring the freedom I need from the perfectionism mindset I held. I think the idea of losing faith in our practice is something we all can relate to in times of emotional stress that turns very physical. In these times we often hear the advice to just “show up” because “that’s 90% of your practice”. So that is exactly what I did. I forced myself to simply show up on my mat despite my racing thoughts and visceral sensations with no expectation to what my practice should or should not be.

Our ability to step onto our mat in a vulnerable state can bring us great courage to sit with the intense sensation we are experiencing. This may be the most important step as we accept ourselves to feel raw and fresh all at the same time. As I lied on my mat, convinced coming to a class was a bad idea, I felt reassured when a teacher I adore so much had said, “This time of year brings us so much pressure to be perfect. Why be perfect when we can be good? I mean real good”. 

Despite our best attempts to use the tools of mindfulness and emotional balance, sometimes we find ourselves again, trapped by the web of our own thoughts, locked behind the prison bars of unnecessary worry, expectation and judgement upon ourselves. The thoughts run themselves so intensely that we stand still fully aware of the storm that implodes as we feel no control over the momentum that occurs.

It is important to remind ourselves that we intend not to be perfect, to not be too selfless. Now, this doesn’t mean we do not strive to be our personal best. It just simply means we must accept that there is no such thing as perfection- especially with the ebb and flow of life. Many of us strive to be this idea of perfect. We take on extra responsibilities, other’s worries, we develop an all or nothing mindset and invest energy where it is not necessary with the intention of doing good by helping others and growing ourself. All to often we run ourselves depleted. It is essential that we detach and view our life to see that no one is strictly judging to see whether we are perfect or not except ourself. But sometimes the idea of perfectionism is ingrained to our core from our years growing up. We can now choose to let go of the idea of performing under the approval of someone just as we can choose to experience life as fun and free from resistance.

Our attempt to hold on to this idea of perfection may only cause frustration and unhappiness as we resist against what is. When we decide to live life without regret, we can strive to the best of our ability. We can feel satisfied in our efforts regardless how strictly others perceive our outcome. Instead, we can rest in the warm arms of our practice to reassure we can be good, real good.

Namaste,

Angie

Wellness Wednesday: The Cost of Your Energy Investment

“I lied and said I was busy.
I was busy;
but not in a way most people understand.

I was busy taking deeper breaths.
I was busy silencing irrational thoughts.
I was busy calming a racing heart.
I was busy telling myself I am okay.

Sometimes, this is my busy –
and I will not apologize for it.

― Brittin Oakman

Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

We preserved through the first holiday of the season! It has made me heart warm to see so many of us gravitating towards our restorative practice in order to keep our mind and body in equilibrium for the next holiday to come. All too often we become highly engaged of the preparation of festivities that we may not realize how much personal energy we invest during this time of year. This energy investment can leave us feeling out of our element, disconnected from the joy we wish to experience. However the missing piece to our connection is always there.

Think of it as fresh air. We are continuously breathing in and out the air around us, surrounding us, moving through us. At times we must set ourselves free physically, mentally, emotionally, energetically from the situation we are in to make the conscious decision to take a fresh, deep breath until we feel renourished again to continue forward. Yet the air we welcomed into our bodies remain the same. It was our intention and perception that changed our moment.

It can all be too overwhelming for us as one power source to connect to a multitude of outlets. It may be necessary to unplug and consciously reconnect to areas that help us replenish such as our meditation practice. We may feel that we are neglecting family and friends for investing time for ourselves but it takes great awareness and stillness to acknowledge that soundless solitude is what we need. Closing ourselves off does not have to be a negative experience. When we are conscious of our behavior, a closed circuit may remind us how wholesome it feels to observe electricity connect and flow properly. In a way, our bodies work the same way. As we make the connection internally, we can bring ourselves back to the connection we wish to experience externally.

 

Namaste,

Angie

Wellness Wednesday: Warmth in Intimacy

Happy Wellness Wednesday, friends!

As we approach Thanksgiving we may feel inspired to internalize the warmth we receive from others and express gratitude. It may be the perfect opportunity to remind ourselves of our own concepts of self love and self worth as we invest ourselves in time spent with others. Taking the time to internally reaffirm our concepts of self love and self worth can help guide us to more intimate connections in our lives. We must love ourselves first before we can descend into the love of others.

We may feel more drawn to reconnecting with those we have not seen in quite some time and create more meaningful exchanges. If we allow ourselves to be open and receptive it may surprise us the intimacy that builds from a reciprocating cycle of gratitude. It may be difficult at first to find ourselves in a state of gratitude as we experience external distractions of the ebbs and flow of life which may take away connections, opportunities and possessions from us we wish to attain. This contraction and expansion of life may leave our heart space depleted. Oddly enough, these kind of losses may actually evoke us into a state of gratitude. However we do not have to be shook to experience this deep sensation of gratitude. It may be as simple as immersing ourself into the concept of being open to adore the simplicity of life.

When we allow ourselves to be open and vulnerable we develop rich, intimate connections. It can be anxiety-provoking to be vulnerable as we fear judgement or weakness. In reality, being vulnerable takes a lot of courage. It takes courage to really sit with our feelings, emotions and sensations. However creating barriers to protect our heart space can only wrongfully encourage us to push others away whereas softening these barriers can create enough space for people to move closer to us, allowing us to experience warmth.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Namaste,

Angie