Tag Archive for Bikram Yoga

Step 3: Eat more fruit!

Eat More Fruit

It’s Monday again and a new week has started. This morning I managed to get out of bed at 5.45 which meant I made the 7.00 o’clock class at my fav Bikram Yoga Studio. www.ducalme.se. It’s just heaven arriving there at 6.30 in the morning and start off the day with some stretching and 15 min of Savasana before the gruelling 26 poses in 40 degrees for 90 minutes start.

Exercise in the morning, especially on  Monday is a great way to boost your self confidence and give your self esteem a kick-start. Love it!

A new week means it’s time for the next step of The Plan. Step 3: EAT MORE FRUIT! 

”Fruit is quite possibly the most perfect food in existance. It is unique in that it barely requires any work to be digested. High in enzymes, it effortlessly passes through the body, supplying carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids and cancer-fighting tannins and flavonoids. Beacuse it’s made  up mostly of water, fruit hydrates the body and aids in cleansing, detoxifying and eliminating” 

Freedman & Barnouin

I am realising that this change in diet should have happened a long time ago. This is my 40th year of living, still not getting used to that, and now is the time to start taking care of myself again. For the past year I have tried to get back into shape and back to a better life style but the stresses of life have just got in the way.

Now that we have moved on from many of the heart aches that have haunted us in the past year, it’s time to focus again. The two previous rules have been hard to follow but I am still trying hard, I am faced with difficult decisions every day, several times a day and sometimes I fail. BUT I try to get back on track every time.

The key is too staying away from all things sweet and all dairy. Wish me luck! 

An Ode to Mod!

We’ve had a lovely day today, a day off work and pre-school thanks to the Christian Holiday, Ascension Day, when Jesus is meant have have ascended to Heaven. Thanks Jesus!

Instead of having a day full of ”must do this” and ”must hurry to get there on time” we completely chillaxed. The morning was spent at home where managed to have a lie-in, followed by some morning children’s TV, washing of clothes, and a wonderful breakfast. I even managed to get away for a session of Bikram Yoga at my new favourite place Du Calme on Birkagatan here in Vasastan.

I am really trying to get there twice a week but it’ proving difficult, so far I have only managed once a week this month. But this weekend it will all change, I am going again on Saturday afternoon and then on Monday morning. Bikram Yoga really is mind altering for me, I do not only get a great work out, my head feels fantastic afterwards. Lock the knees! 

After lunch we made a picnic and headed out on our bikes, me and Mark haven’t managed to get out cycling much in the past few years, but this is the summer when this will all change. I put Pixie in her seat and off we went. We headed towards Solna and Råsunda to have another look at the neighbourhoods, to play in a park and to have a picnic. Pixie and I sported our cool Bell helmets, matching All Stars and parkas, she is my mini-me after all. When she played around in Skytteholmsparken in Solna she truly looked like a little Mod.

On the way back home we stopped at Mackers for an ice-cream, yum!

An Ode to Mod

Time for Bikram!

Bikram Yoga Fashion

 

Starting the day with Bikram

I started the today with a 90 min Bikram Yoga session at my new favourite Yoga place ”Du Calme”. Kicking off at 7.00 I need to rise at 6.20 to get there in good time for the session to start, but that’s ok.

Situated just 2 blocks from my home here in Vasastan (Stockholm) this Yoga Studio has become an oasis for many yogis in the greater Stockholm area. I’ve just been going there for a few weeks but I already love the place and it’s such an improvement on my last Yoga Studio (Perfection).

Bikram Yoga is a series of 26 poses, following a specific sequence that Bikram Choudhury , the founder of the Bikram Yoga movement has put together. The poses have their origin in Hatha Yoga but one of the main differences between Bikram Yoga and other forms is that it done in 40 degrees heat.

I have become addicted to the rush you get from this excellent form of exercise. I started practicing last July and I have just joined this new Yoga Studio for another year, 12 months ahead I intend to practice at least twice a week. (Sporty Mama is back!)

If you ask me, I would recommend Bikram Yoga to anyone… you can be young, old, flexible or not, seasoned yogi or complete beginner, it doesn’t matter. It’s such an excellent way to start a cold and slushy winter’s day, I felt great heading to the office today! 

Pixie does Bikram

Fashionable Mamas practice Yoga! Right?

Well, there are quite a few mamas at my class here in Stockers and in Hollywood you’ll find many celebrity mamas with Bikram Choudry at his Yoga centre in Los Angeles.

So who does Bikram… Gwyneth Paltrow, Jenny McCarthy, Demi Moore, Madonna, Donna Air and Edith Bowman to name a few mamas.

Pixie is always so intrigued by my yoga classes. She always asks ”Mummy, are you going to dance yoga today?” when I am leaving with my yoga mat and water bottle.

Unfortunately it’s not really a session that I can bring her to, but just the other day I decided to show her a few poses on the kitchen floor. She loved it!

Getting read for...

Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

Eat Pray Love

I recently bought the book ”Eat PrayLove” by Elizabeth Gilbert which has proven quite an interesting and refreshing read. Today I bought the DVD made famous by  Julia Robert. Unfortunately the film lacks some of the spiritual weight and depth that I found in the book. Still it’s a lovely film. In particular the scenery is the first part of Liz’s  journey, shot in Rome, I marvel at the cityscape, the food and the beauty and heart of the people. The intensity of India is overwhelming in the initial scenes and then I wish I could join in the chanting. Bali is sexy

Story (wiki)

At 32 years old, Elizabeth Gilbert was educated, had a home, a husband, and a successful career as a writer. However, she was unhappy in her marriage and often spent the night sleeping on her bathroom floor. After separating from her husband and initiating a divorce, which he contested, she embarked on a rebound relationship which continued for some time but did not work out, leaving her devastated and alone.

Afterwards, while writing an article on yoga vacations in Bali, Gilbert met a ninth-generation medicine man who told her she would one day come back and study with him. After finalizing her difficult divorce, Gilbert spent the next year traveling around the world. The trip was paid for in advance with a book deal from the publisher.

She spent four months in Italy, eating and enjoying life (”Eat”). She spent three months in India, finding her spirituality (”Pray”).She ended the year in Bali, Indonesia, looking for ”balance” of the two and found love (”Love”) in the form of a dashing Brazilian factory owner.

I realise now that I have  tendency to pick a choose from different religions, but I need Ganesha and if only…

Lord Ganesh, the Remover of Obstacles

Resolutions for 2012

January 1st 2012, it has been raining all day. We are just arrived back home from a walk and a coffee on Kungsholmen. It was cold and wet, and in the end dark. Not really a perfect day for a walk. I’m feeling a cold coming on, I’m all shivery and my voice keeps coming and going.

Right now I am on the sofa with my laptop, Charlie & the Chocolate Factory on TV, Pixie’s watching Charlie & Lola on my Iphone and I am sipping a cup of Glögg. When I’ve finished this post I intend to flick through a couple of trashy mags I got my hands on and continue to read my book by Joyce Carol Oates. It’s the first of her books that I am reading, I haven’t got very far but I hoep to get through it in the next week or so.

What’s bothering me a little is the tickle in my throat, I keep loosing my voice and it feels like I will be sick tomorrow. Considering I have been sharing my bed with a sick little Pixie for the past week, I wouldn’t be surprised if I am next. Sigh!

 

I have been considering my New Year’s resolutions all day, in fact weather or not I should have any in the first place. When you set your sight on something with such a statement I find that you very often fail. But there are some things that I intend to focus on during 2012 and here they are.

1. Family

In the past few years I have realised how much family means to me. Mark, Pixie and I have began to build our own and the three of us are like the three musketeers. This year we will continue to have fun and lots of laughters together. I intend to spend lots of time with my mum, dad, brother and sister. At Easter I would love to go home to Ireland for a visit. We still have our home there so we could go at anytime, we always have a place to stay.

2. Health

Eating well and exercising is something that I started a long time ago but since having a baby I realise how important it is to never stop. Regular exercise is going to be the feature of 2012, not so much running as last year, instead I intend to continue wih Bikram Yoga. Lock the knees!  

3. Mind

Reading is something that I have neglected lately, I don’t seem to find the time. This year I WILL read more books than I read in 2011. That shouldn’t be too hard, I only read 6 or 7 novels, I should be able to beat that.

My arms are changing shape – Bikram Yoga forever!

I have been practising Bikram Yoga since the beginning of July this year. For nearly 5 months I have sweated like a maniac and worked out like a yogi at least two and sometimes three times every week. I have been gettig up at 6 o’clock in the morning to do my 90 min Yoga class between 7.45-8.15. It’s been wonderful but very hard work.

But I must admit that Bikram Yoga is one of the best forms of exercise I have ever tried and I can really notice my body getting back into shape. It’s nearly scary how noticeable it is, but my arms have just changed their shape. My arms have been a problem area for me for years but finally I am getting to grips with them. Gone are my ”dinner lady” arms, and now I have toned well shaped muscuular ones instead. Ahh, well. They’re not perfect, but very far from where I was at the beginning of the summer.

Perhaps I could even wear a sleeveless dress for Christmas!

 

Lock the knees and PUSH!!

I’ve been to another Bikram Yoga session at Perfection Yoga on Engelbrektsgatan this evening and this time it was tough. Not my day to say the least.

I managed through the first half of the session but had to skip the Three Pose and lie down for a short break. I have really low blood pressure and it must have been lower than usual today cause I found the heat harder to deal with today, harder than any other day even the first.

Perhaps it’s also because I have greater expectations of myself now that I am getting into it, I want to get through each class and I want to stretch into and PUSH in every pose. Lock the knees, so to speak.

I’ve invested in some new Bikram shorts from DOM, Drop of Mindfulness.  I also bought a six-month membership today so now there is no way stopping me. I will sort ouy my shoulders and hips, I will get rid of the pain and I will get back into shape.

Sporty Mama is back!

 

 

 

  1. få tårna att sticka ut och bli synliga bakom den stående vaden. Krävs smala lår för att detta ska lyckas. Samtidigt ska man vrida ihop armarna och hålla ihop handflatorna i höjd under haka. Man kan säga att jag här inte kunde se mina tår och fick fläta fingrarna för att ha dem i samma höjd. Fick inte heller dem under hakan.
  2. Standing Head to Knee Pose – fick upp benet men var inte tillräckligt stark i ryggen att jag kunde hålla benet helt utsträckt (men två låsta knän) under hela posen.
  3. Standing Bow Pulling Pose – den vackraste av poserna. Här har jag på tio dgar höjt det bakre benet ca 50 cm! Viktigt att sparka (försöka sträcka ut) benet innan man faller framåt. Den sträckta handen ska peka mellan dina ögon i spegeln framför.
  4. Balancing Stick Pose – i utsträckt tillstånd ska du inte se ditt bakre ben alls och dina armar ska vara låsta i armbågarna och dina händer peka mellan dina ögonbryn i spegeln. Inte särskilt svår men jädrans jobbig.
  5. Standing Separate Leg Stretching Pose – alla fingrarna ihop och håll om din häl. Lås knäna (vilket är det som gör positionen svår) och böj dig ner genom höften, inte ryggen. Titta ner i mattan och dra dig sedan ner mot golvet.
  6. Triangle Pose – inget konstigt med denna, vanlig i den vanliga hatha yogan också. Tänk på att vrida höften framåt på den sidan som har det låste knäet och motsatt axel ska vridas bakåt för att få höfter och axlar i ett rakt led.
  7. Standing Separate Leg Head to Knee Pose – Ett ben framför det andra ca en meter emellan. Bakre foten 45 grader vinkel och främre rakt. Böj ner huvudet, gå ner och sätt pannan mot ditt knä och titta upp mot naveln. Lås knäna.
  8. Tree Pose – Lyft benet riktigt högt innan du vrider det och lägger foten på låret så nära ljumsken som möjligt. Skjut fram höften och pressa bak knäet på det böjda benet (målet är att få knäna i samma höjd). Här fick jag hålla i foten för benet ville hela tiden trilla ner. (Höftöppnarpose)
  9. Toe Stand Pose – samma som nr 11 men böj dig framåt, sätt fingrarna i marken och sätt dig sedan på huk (på tå). Jag kom så långt att jag hade händerna i marken här men kunde inte sitta på tå.
  10. Death Body Pose – denna var jag bäst på, utan konkurrens! Ligg med hälarna ihop, armarna längs med kroppen och handflator vända uppåt. Hur nära armarna kan ligga kroppen då du har handflatorna uppåt är ett bevis på hur ”öppen” du är i axel- och skulderpartiet. Blir bättre med tiden med bikram yoga.
  11. Wind Removing Pose –  Ha båda axlarna i marken, lyft upp ena benet och pressa benet mot golvet med sammanflätade händer (bröstkorgen). Viktigt är att under hela posen titta snett ner mot benet som är vikt. Slappna av i det raka benet och flexa eventuellt tårna om benet inte vill ligga längs med golvet. Byt ben. Ta sedan och för ihop båda benen och ha häl mot häl, stortå mot stortå. Fäst armarna runt knäna och håll om dina armbågar, pressa ner benen mot bröstet samtidigt som du pressar ner hela ryggen (från länd till nacke) i golvet och titta ner mot naveln. Sträcker ut ryggraden och ökar trycket på tjocktarmen. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  12. Sit-Up – Sträck ut benen och ”gå” bakåt på sittknölarna. Håll fast tin stortå med per- och långfinger som en krok runt tån. Sträck upp ryggen och dra sedan allt vad du kan i tån samtidigt som du håller ryggen rak och drar armbågarna ner mot marken. Tänk på att hela tiden ha foten öppen mot spegeln, flexad och platt. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  13. Cobra Pose – skitjobbig. Ligg på mage och ha handflatan ner i marken med spretade fingrar i höjd med axlarna. Håll ihop knän och fötter som om de vore tejpade. Lyft sedan upp överkroppen med enbart ryggmusklerna tills allt ovanför naveln är ovan mark. Tänk hela tiden på att hålla ihop knä och fötter för de vill görna dela på sig!
  14. Locust Pose – lägg armarna under dig med handflatorna NERÅT! Gör halvont och är lite obehagligt först men det är skit och brosk som byggts på dem som försvinner efter ett tag. Ha handflator och armar så nära varandra under kroppen du kan utan att det smärtar. Lite ont men inte smärta. Lyft höger ben med låst knä och spetsad tå och det andra benet ska vara helt avslappnat. Byt. Gör sedan posen med benen ”tejpade” som i övning 16. Jädrans bra rumpövning. Avsluta med att ligga på mage med först vänster öra i marken (paus mellan poserna) och sedan höger öra i marken (efter pose nr 2). Fötter avslappnade och stårtå nuddar varandra.
  15. Full Locust Pose – ”747:an”. Armarna över huvudhöjd och benen ”tejpade” som i övning 16 och 17! Bara höften ska röra marken. Avsluta med att ligga på mage med först vänster öra i marken (paus mellan poserna) och sedan höger öra i marken (efter pose nr 2). Fötter avslappnade och stårtå nuddar varandra.
  16. Bow Pose –  Håll om fotens mitt med tummarna utåt. ”Sparka” benen och lyft samtidigt upp ovankroppen. Här ska sparken lyfta benen mer än överkroppen lämnar marken. Ska liksom ligga på den mjuka delen av magen här. MAX 15 cm emellan knäna och fötterna. Detta måste man fokusera på då de vill åka ännu längre isär. Avsluta med att ligga på mage med först vänster öra i marken (paus mellan poserna) och sedan höger öra i marken (efter pose nr 2). Fötter avslappnade och stårtå nuddar varandra.
  17. Fixed Arm Pose – Sitt på huk med fötterna vid sidan om låren. Böj dig bakåt samtidigt som du försöker hålla ihop knäna som görna vill dela sig. Lägg bakhuvudet i marken, lägg armarna ovanför huvudet med händerna knäppta runt armbågarna och skjut upp bröstet så högt du kan med båda axlarna i golvet. Gör denna övning ont i knäna ska du inte böja dig bakåt! Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  18. Half Tortoise Pose – Sitt upprätt med händerna ovanför huvudet i låst position och knäppta händer med pekfingrarna rakt uppåt. Böj dig sakta sakta framåt tills lillfingrar och näsa nuddar mattan. Titta upp ”mellan ögonbrynen” med bara lillfingrarna i mattan och sträck armarna så att det känns som om axlarna ska hoppa ur led. Försök få din rumpa att ha kontakt med dina hälar. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  19. Camel Pose – Stå på knä med ca 15 cm mellanrum mellan knäna. Luta dig bakåt samtidigt som du tittar mot taket. Sätt händerna på hälarna och skjut fram och upp höfter och bröstkorg. Har du druckit under passet är det risk att du blir illamående och yr när du kommer upp i denna. Trycker upp matsmältningsorganen mot halsen. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  20. Rabbit Pose – sitt på huk och lägg handduken över tårna. Kläm om hälen med sträckta armar med tummen inåt och fingrarna på utsidan. Böj huvudet neråt mot naveln och för pannan mot låren med huvudet även nuddandes golvet. Lås armarna. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  21. Seperate Leg Stretching Pose – viktigt här är att då du håller runt ex högerfoten ska då vrida ner vänster axel och armbåde mot golvet. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  22. Spine Twisting Pose – var rak i ryggen och vrid på utandningen, se om du kan vända dig så du ser dig själv i en spegeln. Byt. Avsluta med nr 13 i ca 30 sekunder.
  23. Sätt dig på huk med armarna sträckta och händerna på knäna. Andas häftigt med magen inte bröstet.

Doing the Bikram…

Recently I’ve become obsessed with Bikram Yoga. Read about it on  Wikepedia .

It’s sometimes referred to as Hot Yoga as it’s postures are performed in hot and humid temperatures.  I currently attend Perfection, just by Humlegården here in Stockholm and I am really enjoying it.

Apart from being a great form of exercise, Bikram yoga has many other health benefits?

1. Flexibility:  We all know that yoga makes us more flexible.  Yoga in a 37 degree room is great because you’re operating at basically the same temperature that you body is anyway, so you’re already warmed up! When your muscles are more flexible, you’re at less risk for injury.

2. Stress Relief:  Hot yoga helps relax the mind and the body.

3. You burn more fat:  In Bikram yoga, you burn more fat than a regular yoga class. It is common to lose centimeters in a short time of hot yoga practice.

4. Your feel stronger:  Your body is stronger, but you also strengthen your will power, and your ability to challenge yourself, since hot yoga requires lots of concentration.

5. Your skin looks better: Sweat makes our body release toxins. It’s a natural detox, plus your skin has a healthy sweaty glow :)

For more information about BikramYoga and its benefits, click here.