Tip of the Week

Roll with the punches! Life is gonna smack you right in the face when you don't expect it. If you're head's on straight, you're certainly gonna handle it just fine. Roll with it. Complain a little bit, and let it go.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Work It, Wednesday!

Today's Work It, Wednesday! takes a different approach from our previously published listings. What is this difference, you may ask? Well, dear Blogoworld, it's that you can do it RIGHT NOW. And should you? Well, that's a different story. Are you in church? You should not be doing yoga in church. Also, you should probably sign off of your Iphone in church, as well. :) Are you at your Texas family reunion? You should probably not do yoga there. Chances are you'll get hit on by your first cousin, Adam and the rest of the family will try to exorcise your demons away. Are you at work or sitting in your apartment/lavish mansion? Then, yes, this could be a good time to do some yoga. :) (P.S. if you're at work, go lock yourself in the file room for ten minutes. I do it all the time.)

So what exactly are we covering today? Oh my darling Blogoworld, it is yoga: the practice of strength and meditation. As the savvy weight loser that you are, I'm certain you've heard about yoga before. Does it help to melt pounds away? Sure, it does, especially if you've already lost the extra baggage. The most common misconception about yoga is that it will give you the results you want, quickly. NOTHING WILL DO THIS. Every weight loss adventure takes at least two weeks. So if you want a toned, amazing, strong yoga bod, you're going to have to put the hours into getting it. Use up energy, that is the point of weight loss.

So what can you REALLY do, if you've never done yoga before? Well, you CAN put yourself into the positions listed below, and this will be fun and hilarious and challenging, but you're missing out on the philosophy and principles of yoga. In order to love it, you probably need to understand it. So sign up for a class. Visit a website. Buy a video. Or learn online.

Child's Pose
This pose lengthens the spine, stretches the tops of your feet, and relaxes your body. Starting on your hands and knees, arms underneath your shoulders, pull your hips back so your buttocks rest on your feet and your torso on your thighs. Keep your forehead on the mat and let gravity help you sink into the pose. Shift your arms to the left and right for a deeper oblique stretch.

Bridge Pose
This pose opens the chest. Lie on your back with feet planted close to your buttocks, palms on the floor. Breathe in, and, as you exhale, press into your feet to lift your tailbone. Clasp your hands together underneath you and walk your shoulder blades closer together so your weight rests on your posterior shoulders and feet. Lift your hips upward.

Boat Pose
This pose builds core strength and creates heat in the body. Start seated -- legs together, knees bent, feet planted on the floor. Holding the back of your thighs, rock your weight back so it rests between the sitting bones. Lift your feet, knees still bent, keeping your lower back drawn inward. Inhale and extend your legs. Let go of the back of your legs, and extend your arms out parallel to the floor.
Warrior II
This pose increases leg, back, and arm strength. Standing at the top of your mat, step your right foot back about 4 feet and turn it 90 degrees to the right. Turn your left foot slightly in. Adjust your torso so that it faces to your right, inhale, and raise your arms out, shoulder blades wide, palms down. Exhale, bending your left knee until your thigh is parallel to the mat. Switch sides.
Forward Bend
This pose stretches the back and hamstrings. Standing tall with your feet hip-width apart, inhale and sweep your arms overhead. As you exhale, lift your tailbone and begin to bend forward from your hips, sweeping your arms with you as you go down. Keep your spine long and straight as you move, bending at the knees if need be. To return to standing, curl up slowly, one vertebra at a time.
Downward Facing Dog
This pose circulates blood to the head and stretches the back. Start on all fours, with hands under your shoulders. Curl your toes, take a breath, and, as you exhale, press into your hands, lifting your hips back. Holding the pose, keep your spine straight (bending your knees if need be) and your weight resting evenly between the legs and arms.

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