Archive for January, 2011

Inspiration is Everywhere


January 25th, 2011

pad thai
Check out this pad thai I made the other day. I have to tell you that it tastes as good as it looks. I would like to take credit, but really I got the recipe out of CHARLIE TROTTER’S book. OMG! This book is amazing.

caesar
This is the Arugula Caesar Salad from that book. It’s garnished with these amazing croutons and a pine nut parmesan.

croutons
These croutons will blow your mind. I’m serious…Speaking of blowing your mind…

standing bow
Last weekend, we went to the Regional Yoga Asana Championships. International Yoga Champions, BRANDY LYN WINFIELD and KASPER VAN DEN WIJNGAARD did the most jaw droppingly inspiring demonstration of the mind/body/spirit connection I have ever seen. Remember the STANDING BOW POSE from last week? Well, this is what it’s supposed to look like.

insane
Some of the stuff they were doing was insane. I was literally gasping in disbelief. I’m sure I was annoying everyone around me. But I just couldn’t fathom it.

crane
The pictures don’t even do it justice. You really should go to KASPER’S web site and check out the videos.

defy gravity
If I ever get to the point where I can do this pose, you’ll know that I’ve died and gone to heaven. Seriously!

ecopolitan Needless to say, this YOGA AND RAW FOOD REGIMEN that I’m on right now is changing my life. I’m not kidding. My body is going through some massive changes right now. I mean, for the last four years I’ve been kinda stuck in a very dysfunctional place. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been working on it. Slowly but surely. But it takes time for changes to start sinking in. It really feels right now like I’m starting to bust through some barriers. Which, I should add, looks pretty messy in the during. But I have a good feeling about it.

strudel
My boyfriend is getting hopelessly spoiled. Last week, I made these cranberry strudel. My friend, KELLY DENNIS, came up with this recipe. She is a pastry genius!!

tulipsMy friend, Kristen, gave me these tulips for making her lunch. Aren’t they pretty? I love them. I’m also trading food for guitar lessons. The answers are just coming to me. I’ve decided that this year my number one priority is my health. I think that just allowing myself to have this priority is a HUGE step. There are always barriers. But nothing is more important. I think that just making this shift in my mind is going to have beautiful ramifications. No more excuses. No more obstacles. It’s just that simple.

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Day 36. Bikram Yoga Challenge


January 18th, 2011

snow yogi
This has been the story of my life these days…tromping through snow to get to yoga! We have had a ridiculous amount of snow this year. I’m scared to see what happens when it all finally melts.

I’ve been meeting some really cool people at the yoga studio. This is WILL. He’s hilarious! He’s also doing a yoga challenge. So, we are like comrades in arms. You should check out his blog.

seacress
This YOGA CHALLENGE has been intense!! But in a good way. I’ve been helping things along with my uber clean diet. This is a watercress/seaweed salad that I made yesterday. I got the recipe from SARMA’S book, and it is a winner! I have to tell you that raw food plus bikram yoga equals very powerful detox, to be sure. I’ve been going through a lot…from sore muscles to amazingly efficient elimination to feeling ill to feeling wonderful to unbelievable progress with my health issues. Admittedly, I’m holding up better than I thought I would. In some ways, I wish that progress was a little faster. But I know that my body is going at MY pace. If it went any faster, I think I would be overwhelmed.

halfmoonThis is the half moon pose, and it is my nemesis (for a lot of reasons). It’s the second pose in the series. It looks easy enough. But for me, it’s hard. First off, it’s early in the series. So, I’m still stiff. It’s very hard for me to lift my arms over my head like that the first time around (we do each posture twice). I have a lot of muscle pain from my ACCIDENT in my upper back and neck. It’s actually improved a lot since I started this challenge. In the beginning it was more widespread and diffuse. Now, it seems more focused. Like a lot of the milder tension has released a little. Now I’m left with the most stubborn spots. The other issue is that according to my teacher, Martha, there are many small muscles in the pelvis that stabilize you in this side stretch. Since I was on crutches/walker for some time, these muscles are really weak. This pose starts with a left and right side stretch and then progresses to a front and back stretch. Sounds pretty straightforward, right? You would think so. But OMG. It’s hard!! My lower back is kind of a wreck right now.

standing bowThis is the standing bow. I’ve actually been making good progress on this pose the last week or so. It really stretches out the shoulder surprisingly. So to me, it feels really good. The professional yogis do this pose and it looks like a sideways split. Right now, I can NOT fathom how they do that. But it’s amazingly inspirational. I have a ways to go before I get to that point. But I can see my foot coming up behind my head when I look in the mirror. So, I’ve reached the first goal. Yay!

chalupa
I’ve been eating really well to support the challenge, and I have to say it doesn’t feel difficult at all to me. Now that I have the repertoire, I feel like I’m really hitting a stride with my food prep. Here are some chalupas I made the other day.

pizza
This is a raw pizza. I garnished it with marinated mushroom, COCONUT JERKY, and pineapple for a hawaiian feel (I’m in denial about the snow). Healthwise, I’ve been noticing lots of changes. My muscle tension is slowly dissipating. I hoped that I would have worked through most of it by now. But alas, it is a lot worse than you can tell when you’re all numb. But it is changing. So I’m determined to stick it out until I get ahead of it. My liver has been going through a lot. If you have liver issues like me, I should warn you that I definitely had to do a lot of work on my liver to work up to this. My yoga teacher even noticed. She said that it seemed like I had a lot of gunk to work through at first. I was really surprised that she would observe that. Really intuitive! The liver is definitely working things out. Like, I have this constant burp that comes and goes in class (a symptom that first appeared when I was in the HOSPITAL with my liver issues). I also have had some healing crises like an episode of the chills and a severe episode of heartburn that wasn’t food related (liver symptoms). But I went into see my doctor last week (to follow up on my TEST RESULTS – perhaps a topic which is worthy of it’s own post). She checked my liver numbers, and they were good. So despite the challenges, I seem to be staying on top of things. And my doctor encouraged me to keep doing what I was doing. So, I think I will. I’ll keep you posted…

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New Year’s Rampage


January 4th, 2011

kombucha
Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe that another year has gone by. At this time last year, I was just STARTING ADVANCED INSTRUCTION at 105 DEGREES. It’s so interesting to look back and reflect on YEARS PAST and see how PERCEPTIONS have changed and how things have unfolded. Well, last year I had a very reasonable goal which I’ve made significant progress on. This year, I’m on a rampage! It started a few weeks ago with a YOGA CHALLENGE. I gave myself a few weeks to acclimate to that before I really started focusing in on my diet.

fridge
This week is all about stockpiling goodies for my fridge and kitchen. Here you can see the pomegranate kombucha I made for my boyfriend (a hopeless addict who drinks at least two of these a day). I also made a big stash of SPROUTS. My diet is actually pretty good most of the time. Since I suffer from some DIGESTIVE ISSUES, I can’t really stray very far from a certain level of enlightenment, so to speak. But I do notice that I tend to stray towards going out to eat and getting comfortable with a little too much slop in the system. It’s amazing when you really clean things up. You realize what a difference it makes.

marinating
Here I am marinating a variation of the coconut bacon in ANI PHYO’S NEW BOOK. She uses this in tons of recipes. So it’s great to have around. Plus, I had a huge amount of coconut meat leftover from making a big batch of KEFIR.


My version is quite a bit spicier than hers. So I think of it more like a jerky.

kimchee
I also made a big batch of kimchee (which I am only allowed to eat when my boyfriend is NOT home). This is what it looks like when it’s just made.

kimchee
After it ferments, it turns pink. This year, I am much more savvy with the fermented foods which interestingly was the answer to my quest from LAST YEAR (to get my Candida under control).

peppers
Yesterday, I started pickling these peppers (another recipe from ANI PHYO’S book). She has a really nice section on kimchee in her book with authentic asian recipes. I like that!

onion bread
My boyfriend has been getting really involved too (which makes it so fun and creative). Yesterday, he made this AMAZING onion bread with pineapple pieces in it. He was inspired by VICKI (a fellow student at 105 Degrees). She made a recipe similar to this for her final project. It is SO DELICIOUS!! I was very impressed.

rampageIn other news, my YOGA CHALLENGE is going well so far. I’m just starting week four right now. It’s so interesting how things evolve from week to week. I’m still having a lot of pain and tension in my muscles but it has loosened up A LOT since I started. This week, I made the most progress on the standing bow pose. Actually, both of the bow poses are starting to open up for me. Right now, I’m having the most trouble with Standing Head to Knee pose (this will take a WHILE) and Half Moon Pose. I have a lot of issues with my lower back. I think there are a lot of muscles in that area that have gotten weak and out of whack. It really becomes obvious in these poses. My teacher, Martha, said that there are many small stabilizing muscles in the pelvis (which I BROKE) which will impact this pose as well. So I think I have my work cut out for me on that one. The other thing I’m noticing this week is massive detox. Yesterday was rather intense. But letting go of what’s not working for me is what this challenge is all about. So bring it on!

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