Posts tagged crazy sexy life

Dharma Talk - Week of April 22, 2013 - Where’s your sweet spot?
 Sthira Sukham Asanam
"The connection to the Earth should be steady and joyful." Sri Patanjali, Yoga Sutras
This week in my classes, I’ve focused on Yoga Sutra 2.46, as Sri Patanjali defines asana - our seat, our connection to the earth. When we practice yoga asana, our connection to the earth must be comfortable and easeful in each posture. When we are connected with our breath, we can move gracefully, floating like a dancer. Whether we are standing on all fours in Downward Facing Dog, or on one leg in Tree Pose, or balancing on our seat in Boat Pose, we must feel that solid connection to the earth, feeling grounded as the prana moves up through our body. In each posture, the aim is to find that sweet spot between effort and ease. 
"If the seat is not well established, the rest of the body will be in a guarded condition anticipating the inevitable toppling over… A well connected seat allows the upward-moving energy, or force of levitation, to rise through the rest of the body. When delightful space appears, we are enticed to move into it, to expand inside of it and experience our greater potential." Sharon Gannon and David Life, Yoga Assists
The asana sutra 2.46 also applies to our relationship to nature. Is our posture steady and comfortable as we go about our daily lives, or are we butting heads with people, are we feeling heavy and clumsy, conflicted? Are we connected to the earth, are we cognizant of our footprint here? This is a great inquiry, not just for Earth Day, but every day.  
In our daily lives, being connected to the earth makes all the difference. Mother Earth will be so grateful when we are aware, because when we take care of us, we take care of her.
"Health, ecology, spirituality, activism, and love - it’s all interconnected. Illness woke me up to this profound concept and allowed me to better understand the issues that threaten us today. What’s happening in our bodies is a microcosm of what’s happening in the world around us." Kris Carr, Crazy Sexy Kitchen
Like the planet, our ecosystem relies on a clean environment, proper nourishment, and balance. When we pay attention to what we are putting in our bodies, what we consume from the earth, we find a whole new awareness of our nourishment. Are we eating real, nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables? Are we choosing farm-raised or wild caught eco-sustainable animals? Where did they come from, how were they treated, how did they get to our plate? Was our food produced in a factory? Has our food been flown thousands of miles just to get to us? Or grown at a local farmers market? When we are choosing to eat environmentally sustainable foods, we are nourishing our bodies and also the earth. This is a beautiful thing. 
"Just imagine the vast and beautiful array of plants and animals we’ll never get to meet if we obtusely ravage their habitats (in order to grow food for cattle), rendering them and their wisdom extinct. Are you picking up what I’m laying down? Our global challenges can be solved if we become active dot connectors that take responsibility for our choices.” Kris Carr, Crazy Sexy Kitchen
Namaste my friends, tread lightly and be mindful.

Dharma Talk - Week of April 22, 2013 - Where’s your sweet spot?

 Sthira Sukham Asanam

"The connection to the Earth should be steady and joyful." Sri Patanjali, Yoga Sutras


This week in my classes, I’ve focused on Yoga Sutra 2.46, as Sri Patanjali defines asana - our seat, our connection to the earth. When we practice yoga asana, our connection to the earth must be comfortable and easeful in each posture. When we are connected with our breath, we can move gracefully, floating like a dancer. Whether we are standing on all fours in Downward Facing Dog, or on one leg in Tree Pose, or balancing on our seat in Boat Pose, we must feel that solid connection to the earth, feeling grounded as the prana moves up through our body. In each posture, the aim is to find that sweet spot between effort and ease. 

"If the seat is not well established, the rest of the body will be in a guarded condition anticipating the inevitable toppling over… A well connected seat allows the upward-moving energy, or force of levitation, to rise through the rest of the body. When delightful space appears, we are enticed to move into it, to expand inside of it and experience our greater potential." Sharon Gannon and David Life, Yoga Assists

The asana sutra 2.46 also applies to our relationship to nature. Is our posture steady and comfortable as we go about our daily lives, or are we butting heads with people, are we feeling heavy and clumsy, conflicted? Are we connected to the earth, are we cognizant of our footprint here? This is a great inquiry, not just for Earth Day, but every day.  

In our daily lives, being connected to the earth makes all the difference. Mother Earth will be so grateful when we are aware, because when we take care of us, we take care of her.

"Health, ecology, spirituality, activism, and love - it’s all interconnected. Illness woke me up to this profound concept and allowed me to better understand the issues that threaten us today. What’s happening in our bodies is a microcosm of what’s happening in the world around us." Kris Carr, Crazy Sexy Kitchen

Like the planet, our ecosystem relies on a clean environment, proper nourishment, and balance. When we pay attention to what we are putting in our bodies, what we consume from the earth, we find a whole new awareness of our nourishment. Are we eating real, nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables? Are we choosing farm-raised or wild caught eco-sustainable animals? Where did they come from, how were they treated, how did they get to our plate? Was our food produced in a factory? Has our food been flown thousands of miles just to get to us? Or grown at a local farmers market? When we are choosing to eat environmentally sustainable foods, we are nourishing our bodies and also the earth. This is a beautiful thing. 

"Just imagine the vast and beautiful array of plants and animals we’ll never get to meet if we obtusely ravage their habitats (in order to grow food for cattle), rendering them and their wisdom extinct. Are you picking up what I’m laying down? Our global challenges can be solved if we become active dot connectors that take responsibility for our choices. Kris Carr, Crazy Sexy Kitchen

Namaste my friends, tread lightly and be mindful.

"When we are in our heart, we allow the total essence of our self, our unique spirit, to fly and be free. When you stay in your heart, beautiful things happen. All beings have it. A plan isn’t always necessary. Sometimes the most powerful healing occurs when we let go and move forward in the moment." - Lessons from a mustang

Read the whole article on Kris Carr’s blog: http://crazysexylife.com/2012/lessons-from-a-mustang/
One of my favorite heart opening yoga poses is “Rockstar,” “Wild Thing” or Camatkarasana, the ecstatic unfolding of the enraptured heart. Also known as “Flipping the Dog” because literally you flip your down dog pose, I could practice this one all day from any angle and be happy happy happy.

It is a wonderful pose for playing the edge. The more you open your heart and breathe into the space in your chest, the deeper the stretch and the greater expression of the pose. 
With this pose we are literally flipping our down-dog. It is an intense back bend that requires arm strength as well as open hips. You will get a deep stretch in the hip flexors, quad, and shoulders, strengthening shoulders, arm and entire back.
Like any back bends this pose will help you remove fatigue, anxiety, and depression.
When moving in and out of this pose I cannot help to feel like I am flying or floating in the air. It is one of my favorite poses!
We move into this pose from a down-dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) and a down-dog split
- by rotation of the body to the right side, 
- bringing our self onto the outer edge of the right foot,
- dropping the ball of your left foot outside of the right leg,
- lifting your chest through the right arm by pressing your body weight away from the floor,
- opening the chest straight to the sky,
- moving the left arm back along side your left ear,
- looking straight back and down toward the floor,
- making a beautiful arch with your body.
Once you have gained confidence and flexibility, from Rockstar pose you can move into a wheel (Urdhva Dhanurasana), another incredible pose to open your heart, chest, and lungs, and then rotate into your Rockstar pose onto the left side and back to down-dog. 
Downward Facing Dog - Adho Mukha Svasana

Downward Dog Split - Tri Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana


Rockstar - Camatkarasana

Wheel - Urdhva Dhanurasana

"When we are in our heart, we allow the total essence of our self, our unique spirit, to fly and be free. When you stay in your heart, beautiful things happen. All beings have it. A plan isn’t always necessary. Sometimes the most powerful healing occurs when we let go and move forward in the moment." - Lessons from a mustang

Read the whole article on Kris Carr’s blog: http://crazysexylife.com/2012/lessons-from-a-mustang/

One of my favorite heart opening yoga poses is “Rockstar,” “Wild Thing” or Camatkarasana, the ecstatic unfolding of the enraptured heart. Also known as “Flipping the Dog” because literally you flip your down dog pose, I could practice this one all day from any angle and be happy happy happy.

It is a wonderful pose for playing the edge. The more you open your heart and breathe into the space in your chest, the deeper the stretch and the greater expression of the pose. 

With this pose we are literally flipping our down-dog. It is an intense back bend that requires arm strength as well as open hips. You will get a deep stretch in the hip flexors, quad, and shoulders, strengthening shoulders, arm and entire back.

Like any back bends this pose will help you remove fatigue, anxiety, and depression.

When moving in and out of this pose I cannot help to feel like I am flying or floating in the air. It is one of my favorite poses!

We move into this pose from a down-dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) and a down-dog split

- by rotation of the body to the right side, 

- bringing our self onto the outer edge of the right foot,

- dropping the ball of your left foot outside of the right leg,

- lifting your chest through the right arm by pressing your body weight away from the floor,

- opening the chest straight to the sky,

- moving the left arm back along side your left ear,

- looking straight back and down toward the floor,

- making a beautiful arch with your body.

Once you have gained confidence and flexibility, from Rockstar pose you can move into a wheel (Urdhva Dhanurasana), another incredible pose to open your heart, chest, and lungs, and then rotate into your Rockstar pose onto the left side and back to down-dog. 

Downward Facing Dog - Adho Mukha Svasana

Downward Dog Split - Tri Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana


Rockstar - Camatkarasana

Wheel - Urdhva Dhanurasana

Go get your glow!

Some of my favorite tips to help you get that sexy glow on - even when it’s gloomy outside (like it is in NYC today!)

9. Use natural skincare products.Your skin is your largest organ and what you put on it you literally drink in. Everything you consume either gets assimilated or eliminated. Chemical creams and perfumes tax your body big time. You absorb 60% of what you put on your body! 

Note: Do you know what’s in your beauty products, soaps, and household cleaning products? Check out this article & EWG’s Skin Deep Database to find out what nasty (and toxic) chemicals you’re putting on your body every day. 

7. Shake your booty. Your lymph system, which carries away waste, needs you! Unlike your heart, it doesn’t have a pump. Aerobics is the pump. Brisk walking is the pump. Yoga is the pump.

6. Refined sugars and processed starches are the devil – dump them. If it’s made in a lab it takes a lab to digest. If it has a shelf life longer than you, don’t eat it. Choose low glycemic foods as much as possible.

5. Decrease the amount of animal products you consume (especially dairy products) and move towards more of a plant-based diet.

Watch: Yogi Tara Stiles interviewing Kris Carr:  ”The Plant Powered Way to Health” 

2. Create an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle. Learn about pH, the acid/alkaline balance, and say goodbye to the SAD, acidic diet in favor of alkaline raw organic veggies, sprouts, green drinks, green smoothies, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, love and oxygen. 

Note: Every nutrition seminar I attend led by my yoga instructor and health coach Donnalynn, she emphasizes the fact that stress and irritation create acid in the body, causing inflammation, illness, and havoc on the digestive system. Learn how to track the alkalinity of your body and keep it in balance.

1. Get back to nature and back to the garden – preferably the organic garden – when affordable – when not, try to choose fruits and veggies that are less sprayed. You can find a Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides at foodnews.org. There are over 80,000 chemicals in our world today, eating them and putting them on our bodies is a dangerous proposition.


See the whole list:

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-3401/16-Crazy-Sexy-Diet-Tips-for-Healthy-Living.html

 Photo by Amanda de Cadenet

As an irreverent foot soldier in the fight against disease, Kris Carr inspires countless individuals to take charge of their health and happiness by adopting a plant-based diet, improving lifestyle practices, and learning to live and love with passion. She is the subject of Crazy Sexy Cancer, which she wrote and directed for TLC, and the author of the groundbreaking Crazy Sexy Cancer book series. Kris’ third book, Crazy Sexy Diet (#1 Amazon Best Seller, NY Times Best Seller) is the ultimate diet and lifestyle game plan for wellness warriors seeking peak health, spiritual wealth and happiness. I met Kris in January during Jivamukti Yoga’s 2012 Blueprint for Joy, a 7-day yoga and lifestyle event which brought together yogis from near and far to gather in NYC to become inspired and connect. Kris radiates with so much kindness and beauty, she has a huge heart of gold!

Website: crazysexylife.com and crazysexyjuice.com

hello, 2012!

The only way appropriate way to ring in a new year is with a blast of energy, because well quite frankly that is just how I like to start anything. New Year’s Eve was spent at a party with my boyfriend and some of my best girlfriends – I couldn’t ask for more! New Year’s day, I treated myself to a much-needed massage at the grand opening of Sangha House, a new yoga & massage studio on 28th and Park Ave with loft-like floor-to-ceiling windows, huge flowing red curtains and bright red walls – a beautiful, vibrant space! I discovered that Karina, who happens to be one of my favorite teachers from my Brooklyn Heights studio, Yoga People, teaches at Sangha too. I definitely will be taking some yoga classes here during the New Year as I’m usually in the Gramercy area during weekends and sometimes just need to fit in an invigorating yoga class in the weekend mix.

Throughout the first week of 2012, I practiced yoga at Jivamukti Yoga, spent two evenings in spinning classes and abs training, and attended seminars at Jivamukti Yoga’s 2012 Blueprint for Joy, a 7-day yoga and lifestyle event which brought together yogis from near and far to gather in NYC to become inspired and connect. On Monday, Kris Carr (author of Crazy, Sexy, Life) spoke on her journey recovering from cancer and how yoga and eating clean has transformed her life. Kris found out during Valentine’s Day in 2003 that she had stage 3 incurable cancer with dozens upon dozens of tumors metastasizing in her body. Doctors suggested a triple-organ transplant – which she did not agree to. The lesson Kris emphasized was that she needed to be her own navigator in this journey. She instructed the audience to tap into that creative, intuitive space in their mind that they feel at the end of a yoga class – that wisdom, that very smart voice inside that we need to listen to. Her voice told her when she was diagnosed that to come out of this she needed to create a wellness program for herself,  “When you follow a healthy clean diet, you will glow from the inside out.” Kris went on to explain what causes inflammation – dairy, meat, in some cases – wheat, and processed sugars. Cancer cells thrive on these things! To have the most maximally healthy body, avoid these triggers. Know what works and what doesn’t work for your body, and if something doesn’t work with you – eliminate it from your diet, it’s that simple. Prevention is key. And if you are ill, by sticking to a clean diet you will heal your body in the best way possible.

 "I learned that a nutrient dense, plant-based diet rules, the Standard American Diet kills, stress sucks (all life-force), exercise is non-negotiable, joy is utterly contagious, and having fun must be taken seriously." Kris Carr

The strength, wisdom and positive energy of this beautiful woman is nothing short of inspiring. She has genuine compassion, kindness, and is so easy to relate to – there were so many ‘ah-ha!’ moments when she was speaking that I just wanted to kiss her feet and say “THANK YOU for being honest and REAL!” The yogis around me agreed as we gave her multiple standing ovations. For many of us, as admitted by raise of hands, we get criticized for our clean yogi diets, for being vegan or vegetarian or just plain conscious of what we eat, sometimes family and friends just don’t get it and it’s tough to be the odd one out. It was awesome to share this commonality with about a hundred other people in the same room who shared the same passion of eating well and feeling damn good about it!

Kris admitted that cancer is her guru, her teacher. She celebrates each scan, each milestone – 3 months, 6 months, and now 1 and a half years, cancer-free. “From compassion arises strength,” she said, “If I don’t apply this to my body, I will quit because it will be too painful.”

On Wednesday, I attended a second seminar at Jivamukti, presented by Dr. Neal Barnard, founder and president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). Check out Dr. Barnard’s blog - I wish I knew about this when I was pursing my biomedical engineering degree… this is the side of medicine I would have loved to go into! The seminar “Kickstart Your Health: Learn How to Boost Metabolism, Lower Cholesterol, and Dramatically Improve Health” provided me with even more energy to be conscious of what I eat. Dr. Barnard is revolutionizing the treatment of diabetes, high cholesterol, autoimmune and thyroid diseases. Having two of the above, I am a wholehearted believer in Dr. Barnard’s methods as changing my nutritional balance (less animal products, more plant-based protein, elimination of processed sugars and dairy) has already had positive results. In a recent test my doctor was amazed when my cholesterol dropped 100 points to reach a healthy level – without any medicine! I ran into Donnalynn, my yoga instructor and nutrition counselor, at the event and I am so thankful for her guidance. I can tell you firsthand – it really matters how you detox your body – eating clean, practicing yoga, working out – ridding the stress and toxins will take you far in 2012!

Speaking of new journeys in 2012, I will be volunteering with Compass Yoga, a new non-profit founded by Christa Avampato, a yogi dedicated to improving the lives of individuals facing mental and physical health challenges. Over the past few years, I have discovered how powerful yoga is - it allows me to tap into the fears and desires in my head and gives me confidence to get through whatever I face with strength and vigor, both on my mat and off. What better way to give back to others than help them to tap into this potential too? I can’t wait to get started!