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Posts Tagged ‘Thanksgiving’

Thanksgiving gratitude – breath of spirit

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

Morning all. I am really lucky to be gifted with the ability to teach yoga. I’m pulsing with excitement for my 9am class. This is a morning of celebration – of our freedom as a nation and freedom of choice. I hope you have grandiose plans today. I do. I’m so lucky. You see, I usually don’t have family around. Some of that is their choice, some are too far away. So I get to choose my own family, long and short term dear and wonderful friends for holidays. I think I may be luckier than you. You have family to go to today!

And with that sometimes comes some inflated or heated family dynamics!

Well, I’m here to tell you that you had a part in that even if it was a very, very small part. And today’s the time to take ownership of that, to let it go. Let go of keeping score, the need to be right or in control, to have the last word. It’s time to remember this practice of yoga is our inspiration.

Deep breath in here. This is inspiration. To breathe is to inspire. In spiritus. The root of inspiration. To breathe in is to take in the winds of spirit into the sails of our heart. Today, when someone in the family resolves to “he said/she said” umpteen years ago, breathe.  Offer thanks for your breath that stabilizes and centers you. Then, eat some stuffing!

Yoga philosophy says we choose our biological family so that we can grow spiritually. We need to let go of certain aspects in this life to gain deeper steadiness on the path. Breathe here, full, long, deep into your heart, gain some space around the limitations that may present. Dive deeper into gratitude for all your life offers.

We give thanks today for our breath, our family, food, our very lives. Giving gratitude is not only good for your soul, it’s good for your health. Gratitude connotes vibrancy as there’re no grudges, grievances, or negative energy being encapsulated within.

Sometimes, though, I tend to only offer gratitude when things are going well. When they aren’t, I tend to forget. That’s the humanness of our being. We do this practice of yoga today to remember our truest essence, Spirit. Breathe…….

Today, I give thanks to all my students who continue to inspire me. Their willingness, bravery, tenacity, and enthusiasm for the practice on and off the mat are truly inspirational. I will share with others the blessings each of them bestow upon me.

Om, shanti, shanti, shant.

Happy Thanksgiving.





Smarter strategies for Thanksgiving – new traditions

Thursday, November 10th, 2011

My mom was an awful cook. That said, Germany to Alabama in her early 20′s transformed her quickly. She’s a master of mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, and Southern cornbread dressing. Painstakingly and proudly I sliced the celery for the dressing and, of course, I was put in charge of chopping the onions, too. Funny how moms delegate those tear-jerking tasks. Elbow deep smushing cornbread, onions, celery, eggs and veggie broth is still a heart-felt comforting place to be.

We’d gorge on roasted turkey, miles of mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole with those little melty marshmallows, and the revered green bean casserole piled high with Durkee fried onions. Pass on the giblet gravy, thank you very much. Then stuff down pumpkin AND pecan pie slices. Then, I can’t remember a thing. Too intoxicated with fat and carbs.

Free from the parental units, I took up running. Glory be, the Turkey Trot 5K and the Jingle Bell Run that not only opened my body in breathless anticipation of the mountains of yum those holidays pour in, but instilled a bit of mindfulness. If I’m going to run this hard, I thought, I’m NOT going to refute it with an overdose of gluttony.

I dare you and your families to create new non-food traditions this holiday season – especially activities that get your heart pumping and brains cleared of Turkey Fog. A long walk or hike early in the morn, bike riding, jogging or if your’e competitive like me, a planned 5K or 10K. My gym opens early on holidays and offers vinyasa yoga, gravy-burning spin class, and Zumba, then a steam, shower and joy for the day. Tag football in the afternoon, frisbee, walking the dog, and ok, if you must, Wii.

Couple of ideas for you here to make this happen: (more…)

Get your game on!

Friday, October 29th, 2010

Thanksgiving calories add up.  Watching football all day adds those calories to your waistline. 

You have two choices – eat less or move more.  Choose move more, and you can have fun, too!  Get the family in gear now so you’re in the habit on the big day.

A 155 lbs person burns this much for one hour per example:

Circuit training 563
Hiking with a backpack 493
Jogging 493
Swimming, moderately 428
Power yoga 363
Shooting baskets 317
Bicycling, leisure 281
Volleyball 242
Frisbee toss 211
Hatha yoga 195
Playing catch (football or baseball) 176

Mind Over Meals – Indulge!

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

Indulge this year! As you contemplate your Thanksgiving Day menu, think about indulgence. What? Yes, ‘think.’ About indulgence.
close-up of a walnut pie
Think how delicious it is to take a bite of Southern-style dressing or low-fat macaroni and cheese, even roast turkey and traditional pumpkin and pecan pies. Even sumptuous Snickerdoodle cookies. Or decadent chocolate fudge brownies.

Then, consider committing to the usual hog-fest (most Thanksgiving Day meals – per person – rack up 3,500 calories) by engaging in mindful food preparation and mindful eating throughout the entire day. That means eating a decent morning meal to stave off the usual starvation as you sit down to enjoy the family meal. It means taking smaller portions of the foods you love the most (leave behind those that just simply aren’t worth the calories on your hips), then take smaller bites, chew slowly, put your fork down between bites to enjoy the conversation around you, and offer thanks for the nourishment. Savor, delight in, and totally enjoy your meal. Even down to the last graham cracker crumb from the caramel pumpkin pie.

You’ll actually eat less and be 100% more satisfied. And, you’ll be able to join the kids for a game of touch football in the back yard!