Sunday, October 19 Robby is leading a 75 minute spin class. Robby is one of Philadelphia’s greatest instructors and has hugely influenced my Ironman training. If you haven’t taken a spin class with him this is a great chance to check him out.
Monday, October 20 Join me on a spin bike while I ride 100 miles on my bike between noon and 7:00pm. Workout with me, keep me company, and learn about yoga, triathlon, Ironman and the MMRF.
The goal of the Ironman Charity Race? I will be participating in the 2015 IRONMAN Lake Placidon July 26, 2015 on the Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Team For Cures. Multiple Myeloma is the second most common form of blood cancer and has one of the lowest five-year relative survival rates of all cancers. My commitment is to increase awareness and raise at least $5,000 for the MMRF. Learn more about the MMRF and my goals ahead here.
If you’re unable to join us and would like to donateto the MMRF, your donation is tax-deductible and will go directly toward the research and development of a cure for cancer. I appreciate your consideration and support. I am really looking forward to being part of the team for MMRF 2015 Ironman Lake Placid.
I am so excited to continue another year of triathlon and my journey though Ironman. I am grateful for all of the support and encouragement I’ve received over my first year and hope you’ll continue to share this experience with me. My goals in the upcoming year are incredibly important and special to me.
I will be participating in the 2015 IRONMAN Lake Placidon July 26, 2015 on the Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Team For Cures. As I watched friends and athletes cross the finish line over the final hours of Ironman Lake Placid 2014I felt incredibly inspired and realized that Ironman Marylandwas not going to be my second and last Ironman after all. It occurred to me while volunteering and supporting friends that I am eager to keep learning, growing, setting new goals, and I want to pursue my Ironman passion for something larger than myself. I look forward to taking the next step to continue something I have fallen in love with to make a difference. While I was at Ironman Lake Placid this summer I learned that the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation is the official IMLP charity partner. I knew that day that I wanted to race with the MMRF Team for Cures 2015.
One of my family members lives with Multiple Myeloma and I will race with the MMRF team for her and everyone who is faced with the challenges of MM. Multiple Myeloma is the second most common form of blood cancer and has one of the lowest five-year relative survival rates of all cancers. While there is no cure, great progress is being made. My commitment is to increase awareness and raise at least $5,000 for the MMRF.
The goals ahead of me? Swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, and run 26.2 miles and raise at least $5,000 for the MMRF. Training and fundraising for this event is a challenge, but I know it is nothing compared to the challenges faced by those who live with Multiple Myeloma.
I’m looking forward to the upcoming events I am working on to support the Multiple Myeloma Team for Cures.I will teach donation yoga classes and organize a number of exciting fundraising events. I am grateful for the support of the Sporting Club Bellevuewho will hold my first events with me on October 19 and 20, 2014. All fundraising and event ideas are greatly appreciated so please contact me with your suggestions. I am so incredibly excited to be part of the MMRF team and to have the opportunity to make a difference with Multiple Myeloma. I appreciate all of the support and encouragement that I’ve received throughout my triathlon and yoga journey and hope you’ll follow along and help support MMRF 2015 Ironman Lake Placid Team for Cures.You may follow my training and fundraising progress on my blog and on facebook.
I did it. I signed up for Ironman just now. Today is the Ironman World Championshipand it felt like the right day to commit. It’s been one month since myfirst triathlon. I set a goal to aim for Half Ironman about a week after the race but the past two weeks I’ve been watching Ironman videos, reading up on the event, talking to people, and had a dream that I was in the race below. I dropped $732.50 and committed to Ironman Los Cabos 2014.So what is an Ironman? An Ironman Triathlon is the longest distance in triathlons and the biggest commitment of endurance races. It consists of 3.86 km (2.4 mile) swim, 180.25km (112-mile) bike, and a full marathon 42.2km (26.2-mile). Ironman events have a time limit of 17 hours to complete the race, with a mandatory swim cut off in 2 hours 20 minutes, the bike cut off 10 hours and 30 minutes after the swim start and all finishers must complete their marathon by midnight.
No one wakes up one morning and decides to do an Ironman. It takes time for the mind and body to agree on pursuing such a challenging athletic event. I know it will require motivation, discipline, mind strength, and a tremendous amount of commitment to training over the next five months. The training alone is its own challenge. I actually started basic week 1 training on Monday since I had a feeling I’d sign up today with a tri friend. I’ve read a lot online and am waiting for The Triathletes Training Bibleto arrive in the mail.I need to come up with my training plan, figure out obligations I need to work around, and research equipment that I’ll need while keeping a budget. I’m pretty happy I was able to purchase anXterra wetsuiton salefor only $127 with shipping thanks to the Kona Ironman World Championship week special. The race entry fee, flight, accommodations, a quality bike, and other expenses will probably add up to more than I’m expecting although I’m pretty good at meeting budgets.
I’ve mentioned the idea of an Ironman to a few people and haven’t exactly received the most reassuring feedback. That’s okay though and no reason to hold myself back from trying it. I actually ran into the guy who sold me my running shoes today and he thought it was crazy. I sent the Ironman link to my friend Jeff two nights ago and received the following response. It frightened me just a bit.
“are you doing a fucking ironman? That’s insane. You are crazy! Dude…It’s a REALLY BIG DEAL.”
Am I freaked out? No, but in the mornings I am usually very calm and have a hard time believing I am doing this and in the evenings I am pumped up and visualize myself in the race. Even though I’ve done my research I don’t think I fully understand the concept of what I am going to do. Perhaps I’m a little naive. I have very little experience, embrace the newness and feel ready to navigate learning curves. From what I read people go through breakdowns and breakthroughs in their Ironman training. I get that. The only thing I can compare that concept to though is business. You generally come out even stronger after a breakdown. Can I do it? I don’t even know. Right now I know that I couldn’t but with training and preparation I think I can. I will do everything I am capable of for the next half year to make sure that I make it to Los Cabos, cross the finish line of the greatest race I will probably ever compete in, and become an Ironman. I promise to put in long days of training, adjust my nutrition, and I continue to learn along the way. I will stay committed to my yoga practice which is an essential part of my training. Yoga will play a big roll in preparing myself mentally and physically along with decreasing recover time and reducing the chances of injury. The triathlon slogan really should be SWIM…BIKE…RUN…YOGA.
If you’re an Ironman I am open to suggestions and I’d love to hear from you. Sports are in some ways about discovery, right? I look forward to learning and discovering as much as possible through the Ironman. Athletes have until midnight, 17 hours, to complete the event. Right now I’m on the 16:59 plan.
Just planned a yoga retreat getaway with 8 hours until departure! I’ll be headed on my first visit to Vermont for a 3 day yoga retreat at Good Commons with Jocelyn Krasner of Your Whole Life. I just found the trip this afternoon so I don’t know too much about it. I look forward to the experience and I’m open to whatever is ahead these next three days. It’s almost midnight so it’s time to get packing. What all do I need though besides a bunch of yogawear, hiking shoes, my camera and perhaps a book? Seriously, who plans a trip with 8 hours notice? Apparently I do. Here’s the plan…
END OF SUMMER ESCAPE: YOGA IN VERMONT!
Labor Day Weekend Retreat
Friday, Aug 30 to Monday, Sept 2
What better time to visit the Green Mountain State than late summer for a long, luscious weekend? Add twice-daily yoga, beautiful hikes with breathtaking vistas, The Plymouth Folk & Blues Festival, an outdoor hot tub, blazing campfires and impeccable farm-to-table cuisine, and you’ve got yourself one heck of a holiday frolic! In addition to amazing meals, a juicy morning practice and a blissful evening practice, you’ll indulge in plenty of free time to meander the scenic trails, check out artisanal cheese making, visit a family-run farm… or if your prefer, melt with a massage, then find a cozy nook to kick back with a good book… perhaps a dip in the hot tub before an exquisite evening feast.
Meet Washington D.C’s youngest yoga teacher. When Ivan Nolia joined his mother for a yoga class at a local library he was immediately hooked. A year and a half later he became a certified yoga teacher and recently started teaching the yoga to his swim team. Ivan’s swim coach, Robert Green, says that the yoga is making a difference and the kids are enjoying it. ”Ivan is one of a kind, definitely. He’s extremely mature for his age,” Green says. “It was a blessing to have Ivan (start teaching yoga) around this time … The kids are dragging, and the heat is getting to them. The yoga is teaching them to breathe and be patient.”
Nolia enrolled in an 11-day, 200-hour intensive teacher certification training this year at Yoga District . ”It just looked so fun…Most people were 22 and up … I’m the only 9- year-old there … The first day it was very scary, the second day I got used to it, and third day — it was awesome.” says Nolia. Nolia seems to inspires lots of yoga practitioners and instructors in D.C. Instructor Aqeel Yaseen said that Nolia was “the highlight” of the 11-day teacher training and really inspired the older students.
Wow, impressive. This guy’s probably going to become a yoga legend. Check out more images at wtop
Join us November 17-23, 2013 in Belize for our Yoga Adventure & Relaxation Retreat! Reflect, renew and restore before the holidays as you nourish the mind, body and spirit in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Spend 4 days in the scenic Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, visit Mayan ruins, and enjoy 3 days on the awe-inspiring beaches of Belize—a world class destination for the naturalist and adventurer.
Duration: 7 Days / 6 Nights (3 day packages available upon request)
Morning and evening yoga in breathtaking and serene natural locations
Guided meditation, time for reading and reflection
Hiking and nature walks along trails in a beautiful nature preserve
Swim in the pristine waterfalls
Yoga and guided tour of ancient Maya ruins
Sunset catamaran sail
Delicious and healthy gourmet meals prepared by our private chef
Daily made service
All transportation within Belize
Additional activity options: scuba diving, fishing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, cave tubing, birdwatching, zip lining, horseback riding, river canoeing, and hiking the world famous Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave.
4 Days / 3 Nights in the Rainforest
Our estate cottage accommodationsat theHidden Valley Inn & Reserveare set in a private nature reserve set on 7,290 acres of wilderness in the Maya Mountains of Belize. Cottages are surrounded by the beauty and diverse landscape of a reserve with nearly 100 miles of trails, crystal clear creeks, majestic waterfalls, verdant ravines and breathtaking vistas that are home to many of Belize’s native cats, rare raptors and wildlife. Over 80 species of wild orchids live here, clinging to the walls of rocks and fern that line aqua-blue jungle pools. The continuous flowering of these plants throughout the year produces nature’s own kaleidoscope of brilliant colors and the crisp air is always heavy with a fragrant, exciting aroma.
3 Days / 3 Nights on the Beach
Just steps from the Caribbean Sea, enjoy your beach mansion accommodations on the beach overlooking the world’s second largest barrier reef. Relax by an outdoor pool and tropical gardens, or venture into town and get to know the friendly people of Belizean. The fine white sand and crystal blue waters will suit us, no matter our mood. Feeling adventurous? Kayak, snorkel, swim, or try some water sports. Want to unwind? Simply sit, breathe, sunbathe, or read, enjoying the breeze and views on some of the world’s most gorgeous beaches.
Itinerary (subject to change):
Day 1 (November 17): Following the transfer from Goldson International Airport, arrive and check-in at the scenic Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve which is the largest protected area in Belize, boasting an immense Rain Forest and natural Wildlife Sanctuary. In the evening we will take a short walk for sunset yoga on one of the most picturesque platforms, Yokol Chen, as we listen to the sounds of water below us. Join us for optional meditation to follow above the pool deck in the screened porch “Mantra Room.” Savor your first dinner in Belize, then relax and settle into your luxury accommodations as you drift off to the sounds of nature.
Meals: Light Hors d’oeuvres upon arrival, 4 Course Dinner
Day 2 (November 18): We will take a refreshing morning walk along the Motmot Trail to the Om Shanti yoga platform nestled in a broadleaf valley. Om Shanti is the perfect place to take in the sunrise. Following our morning Vinyasa Flow, enjoy freshly prepared breakfast. From there, we’ll tour the property, including an easy hike to the Secret Pools and breathtaking Butterfly Falls, where we will have a chance to relax or swim in the falls. On our way back, we’ll enjoy a picnic lunch with breathtaking scenery. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon relaxing at the pool, reading a book, or unwinding at the spa. If you prefer to continue your adventure, go for another hike or try mountain biking as you explore the property. In the early evening, we’ll stretch deeply with Yin Yoga at sunset on the Awat Balam platform, with a view overlooking the Tiger Falls. The platform sits at the top of a ravine surrounded by the pine forest, where we can practice yoga and breathe deeply to the sounds of a rushing waterfall and the mountain breezes through the pines as you look over and across the steep valley.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and 4 Course Dinner
Day 3 (November 19): Join us for another delicious breakfast before we set out on an exciting and adventurous day ahead. We will visit the Caracol Mayan Ruins, where we’ll begin with an energizing and inspiring yoga practice at the ancient ceremonial site, followed by a guided tour detailing the history of the ruins. Caracol is the largest of the Maya sites found in Belize today, deep in the Chiquibul Wilderness. Excavation and preservation of Caracol began in 2000, with the restoration of Caana, The Sky Palace. Caracol boasts impressive views of the surrounding jungle. Next, we will continue to the Rio Frio Caves and Rio on the Pools where we’ll have the opportunity to take a refreshing swim. Upon our return to Hidden Valley, we will relax with sunset yoga, followed by our final gourmet dinner at this resort.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and 4 Course Dinner
Day 4 (November 20): We begin our last morning in the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve with sunrise yoga and breakfast. We will then transport you from the rainforest to the beach villa location. After checking into our luxury accommodations, unwind by the water and acclimate to our new tropical environment on the beach. A relaxing evening of yoga and meditation to the sounds and scent of the ocean breeze will be followed by dinner.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5 (November 21): Salute the sun with Gentle Vinyasa Yoga or Oceanfront Yoga Sculpt, followed by a light traditional Belizean breakfast on the open veranda with spectacular views. Relax and explore until mid-afternoon, when we’ll go on a snorkeling adventure, exploring coral formations and an abundance of marine life. Upon our return, enjoy the afternoon exploring the beach, swimming, kayaking, or relaxing as you overlook the clear blue Caribbean waters while sipping a fresh tropical beverage. Just before sunset we will escape to a beautiful surprise location for yoga followed by a cultural dinner experience.
Meals: Breakfast, Afternoon Salad or Light Meal, Dinner
Day 6 (November 22): Wake up for an invigorating Vinyasa Flow and Partner Yoga practice. During this practice we’ll play and explore the benefits from the energy of a partner in yoga. The practice weaves in trust, compassion, strength, and inspires connection with others. This class is fun and contains lots of laughter. Bask in the joy of friendship over breakfast, then enjoy the rest of the afternoon swimming, exploring or relaxing. To celebrate our last evening, we will hop aboard a 40 foot catamaran and feel the warm tropical breezes as we sail and admire the barrier reef at sunset. Island Appetizers, Sushi, fresh tropical juice, famous island cocktails, beer, soda and water included. After sailing, we will return to our resort for one final dinner together. End the evening with reflection and meditation.
Meals: Breakfast, Afternoon Salad or Light Meal, Dinner
Day 7 (November 23): Beachfront morning yoga, followed by breakfast. Enjoy your final morning on the beach swimming in the pool, ocean, kayaking or relaxing on the beach. Afternoon departures. Extend your stay on the beach if you wish, or head home relaxed and centered, ready to enjoy the holiday season.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Our last day will conclude by 11:30am. If you intend to depart Belize on November 23 please book international flight departures for 12:00pm or later. Please let us know if we can assist, if you plan to spend additional days in Belize.
I’m finally back to blogging after being away for two weeks. I have lots of exciting news and events to catch up on. The weekend before I left town I was fortunate to be able to visit New York City with my friend Kim and practice yoga with celebrity yoga and wellness trainer Mandy Ingber, creator of Yogalosophy. This was my second opportunity to take one of her inspirational classes. Mandy is well known for being Jennifer Aniston’s yoga instructor along with Kate Beckinsale, Jennifer Lawrence, Ricki Lake, Brooke Shields, Jennifer Meyer, and Helen Hunt. Her book Yogalosophy: 28 Days to the Ultimate Mind-Body Makeoverjust recently made the New York Times Best Seller’s List.The book offers a suggested 28-day plan to help achieve healthier bodies and happier minds. I highly suggest picking up a copy.
Kim and I attended Mandy’s Mind-Body Detox class at Pure Yoga West.The heated Vinyasa class was 75 minutes and incorporated her signature Yogalosophy hybrid routine pairing traditional yoga poses with toning exercises. It also incorporated themes from her book. After class we had the opportunity to chat with her at the book signing. Mandy is the most inspirational yoga instructor I’ve practiced with and I am grateful I had the opportunity.
I never imagined running a half marathon…until 6 weeks ago. Why would someone who dislikes running so much do something so unthinkable running 21.2K? In February I was excepted for a yoga teacher vacation in Punta Cana and realized the Punta Cana Half Marathonwould occur the day before teaching starts. I naturally felt intrigued by the idea of crossing the finish line in the Dominican Republic. Plus, it occurred to me that if I could manage a half marathon then the running part of the triathlon I’m doing this summer will be no problem.
6 weeks prior to the Punta Cana Half MarathonI ran outdoorsfor the first time this year.The possibility of doing a half marathon gave me an extra ounce of motivation that day so I ran all the way from Pennsylvania to New Jersey, totaling 6.5 miles. I remember feeling so energy depleted that evening and my right hip flexor was uncomfortable. I googled “how to train for a marathon in 6 weeks” and google’s consensus: not enough time. Tweleve to sixteen weeks seemed to be the average recommendation. Eight weeks seemed to be the minimum to physically prepare to run 21.3 K or 13.2 miles. But the Internet has led me astray before so I was determined to figure out a reasonable training plan. With just 50 days to the race I did not train for speed. I trained my mind and body simply to run. Three days after my first run I committed myself to this half marathon but it wasn’t until four days ago that it started to sink in that I’d really be doing this. That’s when I clicked the “pay now” button and confirmed my entry to the race. I haven’t talked about the race to anyone and kept it a surprise just incase I arrived Punta Cana and somehow changed my mind.
I must stress that I absolutely hated runningwhen I started training. Three weeks ago I committed myself to a running group that meets Tue/Thur at 6:00am. The people are super cool and it’s been a great source of motivation. Some runners tell me that running is a way to clear their head and many say they get into some sort of meditation while running. I haven’t understood this yet. Um…that’s one of the reasons I go to yoga. Why would I do something sort of miserable to clear my head or meditate? Running, for me, is a way for me to challenge myself and it allows me to process thoughts from my personal life. I completely love intense and challenging workouts but running, ehhhh… it might be one of the most boring forms of exercise plus it’s very hard on the body. I don’t think I’ll ever call myself a runner. But don’t get me wrong, I have the utmost respect for the elite runners and I they are truly amazing! I admit running has grown on me, become tolerable and the progress I’ve experienced feels amazing. 6 weeks ago I could barely run a half mile without wanting to stop and now I can manage 7 miles. I realize I’ll be running twice as far as I currently am capable. Maybe I have no idea what I’m getting into but I’ve been telling myself all I have to do is my normal run…twice. I know, sounds so much easier in my mind and on paper. But won’t the adrenaline and endorphins give me that extra boost?
So why do I aspire to run a half marathon? In addition to making this part of my triathlon training I guess in some weird way I want to complete this race because it’s something I never imagined doing before. Working through the challenge, conquering any fear and discomfort that running presents me will only strengthen me in the long run. And by strengthen I mean both physically and mentally. Stepping outside your comfort zone and using mind over matter is essential to growth. Time is not my goal for my first race. I want to enjoy this race, or at least parts of it. When I take quick water stops I want to notice and remember the scenery. I am grateful I have the physical ability and opportunity to run a half marathon in Punta Cana. I am not going to beat myself up pushing too hard through my first race. The ultimate goal is to finish strong and uninjured. I want to know what it feels like to cross the finish line. The miracle won’t be that I finished though, it will be that I had the courage to start something that was once unthinkable to me.
The image above was my check in for the race this evening. I have to remember to explain what the white paper that reads “Mind” means…it’s kinda funny. When I saw my name and number I felt my nerves tense up and I felt a little bit of anxiety. Clearly I need a tiny bit of yoga and deep breathing before bed tonight. I’m also a little nervous about the change in temperature. I’ve been training in Philadelphia in extremely cold weather. It’s mostly been between 25-40 degrees in the mornings. Tomorrow morning it’s supposed to be 88 degrees with 90% humidity.
Start out slow. I am pretty sure I’ll start out feeling strong and confident from to the excitement and adrenaline rush. But I know I have to hold back and not go full force. The first 3 miles should feel easy I think –that’s the roundtrip distance of the Ben Franklin Bridge connecting Pennsylvania and New Jersey which I run each week. Taking it easy in the beginning will be a challenge but I know my body will thank me many miles later.
Break up the race. I’ll break up the race into smaller segments. It will make the distance feel more manageable. At mile 3, I will tell myself “just 3 more miles to go and you can walk a little if you need to.” Maybe I’ll even break it up mile by mile.
Mind over matter. A lot of this game is mindset. I know this experience will really test my mind and strength. I refuse to give into self-doubt and discomfort in the mind. I will have faith in myself. When I feel weak, which I expect to happen around mile 8, I will bring my focus on what surrounds me…the other runners, people cheering, and the beautiful scenery.
Mantra. Translates to “talk to myself” As the going gets tough I know I will need to reach deep inside for extra strength. I will use endurance mantras. Telling myself things like this should work…The mind tells the body what to do, let’s go-let’s go-let’s go-LET’S GO! Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try so keep on going. Run Peach….RUN. F-ING RUNNNNNN! Keep going, the reward will feel soooooo good. And finally…you can do it…you can do anything you set your mind to.
How much do you know about yoga and what has it taught you, how has it inspired you and what has yoga encouraged you to become? How do you apply what you’ve learned in yoga off the mat in daily life? Sitting in lotus just five minutes into Pradeep Teotia’s Master Class I felt very grateful for this opportunity and what was about to happen. Born and raised in a small village outside of New Delhi, Pradeep is an internationally certified yoga teacher who draws mostly from his training in India. Pradeep visited Philadelphia last week and held a master class yoga workshop at Dana Hot Yoga. Itdeepened my every day practice and understanding of yoga. The class was physically challenging and vigorous, yet mindful and inspiring. It integrated practices of the mind that relate to daily life. It’s challenging for me to describe the incredible experience so instead I’ll leave you with photographs that my yoga friend JoeLongocaptured.Pradeep’s energy and style of teaching is unique and inspiring. If you ever have the chance to take a class with him take advantage of the opportunity.
Grateful. Thank you Pradeep for an amazing, inspiring and challenging master class experience. I have never experienced yoga the way we did this evening, thank you for coming to Philly. “Now is the beginning…” Om shanti.
The Dana Hot Yogis and Pradeep out for Indian food after our 2 1/2 hour practice.
Pradeep Teotia is in Philadelphia tonight and teaching a Power Yoga Master Class at Dana Hoy Yoga! It’s supposed to be an “vigorous yet mindful Vinyasa flow rapped with love and devotion.” I’m looking forward to the class and hopefully learning something new tonight.
Pradeep Teotia has been practicing yoga for his entire life. He developed his unique, distinctive style of yoga, Original Bhakti Yoga(Yoga of Devotion). Over the years, this style, an amazing workout for the body, mind and spirit, has made him a well-known, popular teacher across the country and around the world.