Friday, August 23, 2013

Bikram Friday - Vengeance is Mine



Hmmm! What can I say? Overall this week has sucked, it started off well but it went downhill from Tuesday night during Bikram yoga session. The owner of the studio was there; her session are pretty intense and I am not really ready for that right now, I can imagine it would put most new students off. Anyhow, I went to the session and boy was she pissed. The tone of the room was low and everyone found it hard to keep up during the standing section. We were all out of sync, some went ahead into the postures before she had started to instruct and some did not get into the postures at all, which made her deeply unhappy, I guess. She even accused me of moving into a posture too soon (the problem was that she was asking someone to take a shorter step and I thought she was talking to the class), too much talking from the instructor can be really confusing and off putting when you are concentrating and trying to focus on the words, particularly key words, so off I went into the pose; and she said I was doing it all the time, which was incorrect and I just smiled and thought, "fuck you lady".

She used to teach at another studio where I used to attend, before setting up her own. The difference with the two studios for me is location, cleanliness and the amount of space however the older studio had something the light airy studio does not, great tutors. The problem I am finding is they are too busy talking about their promotions and talking through savasna which is meant to be the time when you meditate and rejuvenate the body. Plus I am finding there is a lack of guidance, the older studio had great staff and they were good at pointing out your mistakes and focused on proper alignment, here I feel most tutors just talk. It is uninspiring. Having said that the older studio does not have the same staff when I used to go, so there will be no need for me to go back but lovely modern yoga studios does not mean the best place to practice.

You may have heard of instructors telling students not to drink during class, internally give them the finger and drink your drink if you need it. When you are in a sweaty heated room and it is hot outside too you need to hydrate. Luckily I have not had the pleasure of teachers who punish you by death should you choose to break their rule because lets face it, what can they do? Throw you out of class? I would like to see them try, the reputation will be such that no one goes back.

Despite my crappy week so far I will continue through until I have lost the weight I want and I would like to get into other types of yoga. I give myself until Christmas.

On a side note, I also had a job interview with a well known yoga company, it did not go too well. The energy and the enthusiasm I was looking for was not at their head office. I felt like I was filled with people of self-importance which I do not expect in the yoga arena at all. I can tell you now, for all the yoga skeptics out there yoga folks are not hippy, tree hugging, loving vegans some have a self-centered inner peace that no one can touch! Hmmm! I want to laugh at this statement but instead I snigger.  I may find myself reevaluating this accusation but for now this is how I feel.

I have been fulfilled with disappointment on many levels this week and I look to a positive future.

Namaste - I suppose.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Lululemon Clothing

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Over the years I have bought a number of Lululemon clothing and I have posted some of those items in past posts but these are some I have not mentioned before. Even though they are a few years old they have lasted, stayed in very good shape and I can wear them through the seasons.

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Can you name them all?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Bikram Yoga Friday

I am happy to report that I went to yoga two days in a row and I plan to go over the weekend unlike last weekend when I did not go at all, terrible I know. The breaks in between have however helped tremendously. I have found that my body responds well when I return, and I cope much better in class, nonetheless I do intend to go five times a week so that I can loose weight and get more into a routine, very hard to do until the kids go back to school. Even though the yoga center has child care, it is on certain times and late in the evening, if it was during the day time during school holidays I would probably go more often and it also give the kids a break from the home. Regardless, Wednesday night's session was much improved, I can stretch much deeper into the postures which I am thrilled about. I can move up to the front of the class so I can see myself in the mirror and it also motivates me to push harder because newbies tend to watch those at the front since we have been coming more often.

My intention is to sign up to a 30 day challenge as long as I can fit it in with the kids schedule, my needs no longer come first. Having a happy mum, means a happy home so its best that I go ;).

Namaste

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Books worth reading?

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I have a list as long as my arm of books to read but instead of reaching into my pockets I am visiting the library. Knowing what I am like with books, I will read several at a time and get part way through a book and never pick it up again unless it is interesting. 

So, I walked to the self-help section. I have to admit that I am embarrassed going into this self-help section. It really is targeted towards women and the words 'self-help' conjure up needy women looking for away to improve themselves so they can find the perfect suitor. I wish they would re-word it to something like, 'Increase Performance', 'Empowerment'. Thoughts?

The Secret has an eye catching cover but I failed to get through to the second chapter, if there is one, I mean, I am not sure I can spend precious time of my life reading something I find uninformative. Perhaps I have missed the point on this one or I need to read more...Anyway, I may try and pick this one up again or I may just place it into the return slot. 

The Power of A Positive No is very interesting. It is well written, easy to understand language, not blinding the reader with intellectual dialect. It has real stories and details of situations that everyone has been through at some stage, even the author goes through his experience negotiating very difficult situations which many of us never have to go through but it is interesting to hear how saying the right or wrong thing in order to get the answer can make or break a deal. Well worth a read for a housewife to a CEO.

Do It Anyway, I have yet to read this, I have been putting it off, partly because The Power of A Positive No has been more appealing. Ironic really, considering the book is called Do It Anyway - I think.

One book I would like to read but not spend money on is the Happiness Project. The only problem I have with this book and from the reviews I have read, is the author has no financial worries. Most people who want to read self-help books, I believe have some sort of money concerns perhaps mixed up with other emotions, (I am generalizing here, I have no stats to back this up). 

Certainly I look to read these books to improve myself in many ways, or learn some lessons for the work place which includes increasing my financial stability in some form or other. Sadly money does not live on trees and to keep a roof over ones head, money is necessary. Trying to improve oneself is a worth cause to spend time reading books.

Do you have any books that you think are worthy reads?

Friday, August 9, 2013

Bikram Yoga Friday

I was back into yoga this week. I am non of the wiser as to why my back got red and soar but I am glad it has not come back. I have been back to yoga twice this week and I hope to go at least once if not twice over the weekend.

I have made much improvement with my yoga, some of the postures I can get into fully some of them I am close to getting it right. My waistline is visible and my bottom has shrunk which is always a good thing, lol. I do not weigh myself nor use a tape measure I judge it by looking at myself in the mirror and assessing how my clothes fit me. I find it less depressing this way, as we are constantly being bombarded with what weight we should be for our height and what sized clothes we should be in but in reality, our muscle mass may be heavier, our body frames may be smaller, I do not want to put myself into a category where by my body does not suit that perfect size of clothing or weight, besides dress designers labels differ to a varying degree, which I find irritating. I judge it by the way I feel and see myself, it can be quite powerful, we are our own worse critics.

My nutrition has much improved particularly after watching some documentaries on how some foods are processed. I was mortified however to discover that a test tube beef burger may make its way into the food change. Shocked even that someone ate it. Our bodies are not set up for GM foods, they can barely cope with the food that is packaged. I may go into that in more details in a later post but these documentaries I saw on Netflix would alarm many people.

All in all, a good week with yoga and my much improved eating habits.

Namaste

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Goal Setting

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Since my last goal setting blog here I have added a few more to the list. The one thing I am struggling with is the career section. Since leaving school as a 16 year old my plans are somewhat different to now, just as well because the industry I had planned to go into was not all that lucrative and some years later a number of independent businesses went out of business because of the change in laws. So off I went to university and studied business and thought I would go into marketing or HR, I tried HR and it was not the area I wanted to be. Now I work in social media which I enjoy but it is not the field I want to be in since I do not find the products interesting what I think I would love to do is social media for a retail company in fashion, interiors, cosmetics or something similar. Products that interest me in turn I can engage the audience with my enthusiasm.

Having been through some recently grueling interviews and then finding the jobs have been put on hold, which is disheartening but I am not to be discouraged because the next interview will be easier and other opportunities will arise which may be the perfect fit. I see this as an opportunity. I have always taken jobs because I need the money opposed to wanting to work for that particular company so perhaps while I have the time and able to look for something of interest to me I can get what it is that I am looking for. Notice how I use interest a lot, I think that says I want to be in a industry that I like.

Now that I have some more free time I am spending it in the library, reading non-fiction books about women in business, negotiation skills, practicing saying no positively. I never thought I would read such books but looking back on it I wish I had read them before I started work after university because there is so much to learn in a job and politics to navigate and frustration to overcome. It is best to know how to handle these situations, as a youngster in the head office of a large retail company, I made many mistakes handled situations naively and got emotional quite easily. That has all changed now, for the better; no one wants to see someone teary when they are getting criticized or angry because things did not go their way. By the way, reading more is one of my goals.

I am also practicing my writing skills, again, this is one of my goals. So that I can structure my work better. I know I go off on tangents and can be erratic and also mix my tenses. Yoga practice is ongoing, I know some Brits think yoga a bit, how can I say it? Spiritual, hockey pockey, vegan eating hippies. It is not like that at all. I can attest it is one of the best exercises I have ever done, I have ran long distance, played hockey, mountain biking etc but this is one of the most challenging in terms of flexibility and strength building, it impacts less on the joints too and feel so relaxed and happy afterwards.

Here is my updated list:

1 Year Plan
Photoshop course
Writing course
Drop a few dress sizes
Eat well
Yoga practice
Ski with family
Have my own creative space
Start retirement plan and leave it alone
Take a vacation
Be in my dream job
Grow a small plot of vegetables

30 Day Yoga Challenge
Grouse Grind
Toastmaster

5 Year Plan
Continue with yoga, try something new - Vinyasa yoga
Own my own forever home
Canadian citizenship
Retirement plan in place
Take holidays with family
Grow my own food
Gardening
Healthy
60 Day Yoga Challenge


10 Year Plan
Paid off mortgage
Travel
Yoga
Increase retirement fund
Healthy

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Pixi Cosmetics



My recent purchase from Target. I wish I had bought Pixi products sooner, particular at the store in London near Carnaby Street. I was fortunate enough to be passing my Target when I saw the Pixi section, sadly the selection was under-stocked, so I was not able to get all that I wanted however I got a nice surprise when the larger box was on sale for a mere $11, normal retail price $27. It is a neutral palette that can mix and match, I love everything inside it, you can see the contents on my Instagram page. The lovely eye brightener is wonderful and so natural looking you barely notice it is there. It is great when eyes are looking a little red and it also helps to make the eyes look bigger. The foundation is amazing, particularly for summer, again you can barely see it on and the cap at the end is great for concealing dark circles under the eyes. What I really love about Pixi is they use extracts from plants to help to rejuvenate the skin as well as covering up. I suffer a little bit from red sensitive skin so these products do not irritate one bit.

Out of all my cosmetic purchases this is one of the best buys I have ever made and one of the best price points.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Recent Lululemon Purchases

Here are a few purchases I made recently to add to my collection of Lululemon items. I will post my own pictures of my old and new clothing and accessories some point soon. For now, these pictures are from the Lululemon Canadian site.

The Loop it Strap is so handy and easy to navigate on and off the mat. My cheaper alternative strap had velcro fastening and even though it was easy to use I did not like how it attached, you had to be so specific that the velcro matched each end in a certain way. This strap is fantastic, no fuss, nice and thick and a pretty colour too.

Loop It Up Mat Strap
Picture by Lululemon: loop it mat strap

The No Limits Top is so light weight and nice and long that hangs below or on the waist line depending where you want the band to lie. I have the black top with the crimson bra top (it matches the strap above). I love this top for Bikram Yoga, it lies nicely on my hips and does not move throughout the postures so I have no need to worry that it will fall when I am in an inverted pose. It is light enough that it feels like you are barely wearing it and does not stick to you when in a sweaty classroom. It washes lovely and considering I have worn it almost all the time I go to Bikram and I also wash each and every time I have had no problems with it at all. I hope they keep this one because I hope to buy more in the near future. 

No Limits Tank
Picture by Lululemon: No Limits Top

I love my Lululemon purchases. Next purchase I hope to get is The Mat. I need a new one!



Friday, August 2, 2013

Bikram Yoga Friday

Ok so I did not stick to my Bikram yoga plan last week but this week I will. Here is my post:

I only went to yoga three times last week but I was doing other exciting things that made it impossible for me to go, however I like to go at least three times if not four when possible. I can tell you now that my body is changing, my waist is appearing and I have shape to my legs, I am also eating a lot better and taking in more water which is a huge shift for me. I love my food but I am eating more bean salads, less take-out food and processed food and eating less red meat.

Unfortunately after a very hot and uncomfortable session on Monday of this week, I was wiped out half way through the session, it was so hot but I pushed myself and did all the poses, I got home and chilled for the night. Next day I woke up with a burning sensation on my back and when I looked in the mirror I noticed a huge rash had appeared across my entire top half of my back but one area was red and soar and looked like I had burnt it. I don't sit for hours in the sun because I burn so easily and prefer to stay pale than look like a lobster therefore I knew I had not burnt my back from sun exposure. The next day was even worse, the skin was going brown from where there was little skin and a it was a little weepy, getting hot and sweaty made the situation worse. On a hot summer day it is hard not to get hot and sweaty. So I chose some cream in the cupboard that is anti-fungal. My thought was that my mat was not clean enough and bacteria could be forming, even though I had cleaned it a few days earlier. I bought some tea tree oil so that I could dilute it and spray on the mat to keep it clean from bacteria. I am hoping this will work, this is what I used to do.

Now I can't go to yoga until it has cleared up which is very disappointing. I may have to get a new mat if it happens again, if its not the mat then the heat from the yoga could be aggravating my skin which has never happened before and I will not be too happy if this is the case.

Has anyone else experienced this before?

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Goal Setting Lululemon Style


Some years ago, back in 2009 I set myself 1, 5 and 10 years worth of goals and you can find my list here: Goals. I used the Lululemon plan to help me along the way, you can find a printable sheet on their site. I quite like it since you can have your goals in front of you to see each day.

Yesterday I decided it was time to review my list and see where I am 4 years on. First of all I decided to print off the sheet from the Lululemon site and do an entirely new list. I wanted to see if my ideas, plans had changed in some small or significant way and why my plans had changed. I asked myself: Did I accomplish any of my goals? Did things change in my life that I had to reevaluate my plans? What goals still remain and do I need to change them or stick to them?

I am still working on my goals. It is not easy to start writing them down but once you start with the small things it becomes easier. So here are some of my new goals:

1 Year Plan
Photoshop course
Writing course
Drop a few dress sizes
Eat well
Yoga practice
Ski with family
Have my own creative space
Start retirement plan and leave it alone
Take a vacation
Be in my dream job
Grow a small plot of vegetables

5 Year Plan
Continue with yoga, try something new
Own my own forever home
Canadian citizenship
Retirement plan in place
Take holidays with family
Grow my own food
Gardening
Healthy

10 Year Plan
Paid mortgage
Travel
Yoga
Increase retirement fund
Healthy

I have yet to elaborate and expand on them but you get the idea. I think it is important to share your goals. The support of a community can help towards them. I will work on them more and share a new post soon.

Do you have goals you want to share?