BALANCING ACT

 

Recently I had the chance to chat with my friend and Pilates Guru, Dawn Gaylardo about her extensive and formidable career in both Pilates and Theatre.  Dawn, who has trained with Master Trainers in both Pilates and GYROTONIC ® , has been teaching for over 16 years.  Currently she teaches Pilates at Renaissance The Studio in Red Bank, NJ.

Dawn most recently appeared in Lovers and Other Strangers as Cathy and Nine: The Musical as Luisa.  She is currently enrolled in acting classes and hoping to apply the techniques that she is learning in a show at some point in the near future.

  

Q.  Please tell us about yourself and what people, influences, events or desires led you to your profession.  How long have you been teaching Pilates?

 

Since I was always passionate about theatre and music, I enrolled in college immediately after high school as a musical theatre major. I ended up leaving school after my first year since I wasn't sure I could see myself pursuing a professional career in the performing arts.  This was largely due to the fear of rejection and  financial uncertainty in that line of work. I went back to my hometown, Danvers, Massachusetts and just started working. I had all kinds of jobs: waitress, bill collector, salon coordinator, admin, customer service.

 

I landed a pretty great 40 hour job working for the phone company around the same time (1999-2000) that I had found my passion for exercise. Back then I was doing a lot of weight training, group classes (my favorites were Pilates Mat, Boxing and Urban Rebounding). I was extremely lucky to attend a gym that had PJ O'Clair, a very talented, smart, accomplished instructor, trainer, and presenter who was already pretty well- known and respected in the fitness industry. As the Fitness Director, she had recently partnered with Stott (Merrithew) Pilates and was working for them as a teacher trainer and licensed training facility for New England. When the opportunity came for me to attend teacher training and apprentice there, I jumped on it. I had another amazing teacher and mentor there named Melissa LePage. She was so bright and sunny - an impeccable instructor. She had an amazing eye for detail and a fun, humorous approach but was serious about the work. She made you work and left no detail unattended. I will never forget how awesome she was and she definitely has influenced my approach as a Pilates instructor in many ways.

 

During my Stott Pilates Teacher Training program, I was introduced to Kathy van Patten. She was working as an instructor trainer for them at that time. Kathy, who had an extensive background in dance and in classical Pilates, brought her own magic to me. She was so warm and positive- she made you believe you could do things you didn't think you ever could, and then she got you  to do them! I ended up having the great fortune of working for Kathy in Beacon Hill (Boston, MA) at Boston BodyWorks from 2002-2004. It was where I was introduced to GYROTONIC ® , a movement system which I am really passionate about.  It was an incredible experience, which deeply affected me and opened my world to a different way of approaching movement. It was during that time I really started to blossom as a teacher. I have been influenced greatly by all of the master trainers that I have had the opportunity to work with, both in Pilates and GYROTONIC ®.

 

 

Q.  How would you describe the job of a Pilates teacher?  

 

We teach and tailor Pilates workouts on the mat and apparatus in private, semi- private and group settings. We program and modify the workouts based on our clients' needs and pay attention to modify and correct their form in order to protect them from injury while instilling good technique. That really only scratches the surface of what we do. Beyond this, we are problem solvers, inspirers, motivators, nurturers and entertainers.

 

 

Q.  What are the most enjoyable and least enjoyable aspects of your work?  Why?

 

The most enjoyable aspects of my work are facilitating a heightened level of body awareness. I love being there with clients when they have those "AHA!" moments, when they really GET something. I love helping people discover new ways to play to their bodies, and push them to connect intentions to sensations in movement. I also love introducing this work to new clients. I love when people feel the work and the reward in the workout. I believe that the workout should be challenging, but it should also be fun, pleasurable and joyful. It brings me joy when I see them feeling all that in a session.

 

It is also gratifying for me to watch the clients I work with progress, to hear them tell me that they are more consciously aware of their posture, their breathing, that they are feeling free from chronic pains that plagued them before coming. I love hearing their accounts of a better golf game, a faster running time, able to touch their toes for the first time in ten years, having more energy to play with their children or grandchildren,  more confidence, friends commenting enviously on how great they look and such. Ultimately to hear that they are feeling better in their everyday lives really thrills me and reminds me of how purposeful this work is- beyond the sculpt and chisel aspects.

 

Some of the more challenging aspects of this work are that as rewarding as it is, it can be very draining, physically, mentally, emotionally. I put everything I have into every session physically, and mentally.  I am very passionate about my workand as many years as I have been doing this, I have never learned how to give less than everything I have.

 

In addition to this, the schedule can be pretty crazy: 2 hours here, 3 hours there, mornings, evenings, weekends. Business can be pretty unsteady as clients come and go. Some clients move, some have situations change...as a result, this business can be stressful because of the financial unsteadiness. Many of us take the clients when they can come and sub and schedule ourselves like crazy. When things get busy, it is easy to put your own workouts and self -care last. It is essential to figure out a way to find balance.

 

Q.  What are your words of advice to a someone new to Pilates?

 

Be present. Be patient. Don't expect to get everything right away, just do your best, take in what you can and trust the process. Pilates works, but there is absolutely a learning curve and it is a process that is more fully realized with regular practice.

 

Q.  What is the most common misconception that people have about Pilates?

 

There are a few depending on who you talk to, but I think the most common one is that it's not a workout for men. It was invented by a man, and a pretty badass one at that!

 

(For more on that, readers, go here: http://www.Pilates.com/BBAPP/V/Pilates/origins-of-Pilates.html)

 

We do have a few men, they usually come to us older or after an injury, with the exception of elite athletes and dancers...but it is definitely a great workout for the men as much as it is for the women. Pilates is for everyone- people of all ages, sizes, shapes and fitness levels.

 

Q.   How would a young person with aspirations to become a Pilates teacher best prepare himself/herself?

 

Take lots of classes and practice your mat work every day that you don't have class. The more you have the work in your body prior to attending teacher training, the better! Learn as much as you can about anatomy and kinesiology. Talk with some of your favorite instructors about what their experience is like as an instructor. Most of us love to talk about our work, love what we do and want to share and many would be happy to mentor a diligent, aspiring instructor.

 

Q.  What is the most important or significant thing that you have accomplished in your work to date?  What do you hope to accomplish?

 

I just feel happy in helping my clients feeling better, getting stronger, etc.  I would love to help to make GYROTONIC® grow in this area.  I'm really passionate about the work and it is really something people need, a really nice complement to Pilates.

 

Q: What’s the future of Pilates?

 

Pilates has grown so much; it is definitely here to stay. At this point, there are many different approaches, variations, use of props, a variety of class fusion concepts with all sorts of bells and whistles and other modalities injected. It is much more affordable with so many places offering group training. I do believe that Pilates is a mainstay in many people's lives at this point.

 

Q: What’s your advice for novice instructors?

 

Be patient with yourself and your clients. You come out of training with so much information, and there is so much more to learn. Teach what you know, and stay curious, open, and insatiable for more information to help you deepen your understanding of Pilates, anatomy, kinesiology, movement and pedagogy.  

 

I cannot remember who said this but it stuck with me: "You teach what you are at that time." There are many instructors out there and nobody does what you do the way you do. You have certain reasons and passions and strengths that brought you to want to teach this. Think about what they are. Know your strengths and let them shine. Be honest with yourself about your weaknesses and work on those areas to turn them into your strengths. Always do your best and let that be enough. Some clients will love you, some will not. Try to accept that early on and try not to take it personally.

 

 

Q: What other exercise do you do to compliment your Pilates practice?

 

My #1 is GYROTONIC®. It is a whole body workout, that never disappoints me. There is nothing quite like it.

I also love doing yoga, bodyART®, walking/hiking/running, and sometimes Russian kettle bells.

 

Q: And now for some fun questions:

 

Q: What is your favorite food right now and where is it served?

Favorite food hard to narrow down but right now I say it's Taco Salad (and just about anything) at seed to sprout.

 

Q: What is your idea of a perfect day?

 

Perfect day sounds so cliché  but I'm in such need of time alone right now. I t would consist of a yoga class, a long walk barefoot on the beach, a healthy and delicious lunch, a massage and a manicure pedicure...and I will make this or a variation of it happen in two weeks when my daughter goes back to school!

 

 

 

living your dream...an Entrepreneur's path

I am SO EXCITED to share this first features interview with you!  Monmouth Beach Yoga & Wellness studio has been open 3 short years, but has been voted Monmouth Health and Life Magazine’s BEST yoga studio all three of those years.  This is no small feat considering the numerous yoga studios that are in the Monmouth County area.

Tucked in a peaceful haven in Monmouth Beach, there is a beautiful studio that has built a loyal client base fostering wellness and community.  I was so honored and happy when I got the chance to interview Lisa Matthews, co-owner of Monmouth Beach Yoga & Wellness.    

Matthews had a 22- year successful corporate career in insurance & finance on Wall Street before she finally made the leap to open the studio after the devastation Hurricane Sandy left in the area.  The community was working to rebuild itself on the exterior, but on the inside as well. Monmouth Beach Yoga & Wellness was created. The vision of opening a wellness studio had been Matthews' vision since 2003.

LISA HORAN-SOCKOL is Matthews’ partner in the business and focuses mainly on teaching.  If you have ever been to the studio, both the Lisas are usually there, cheerfully welcoming students – their energy and the vibe of the studio is what makes the yoga practice so special.

 See below for excerpts from the inspiring interview:

 Q: Can you tell me about your background and how you came to become owner of Monmouth Beach Yoga and Wellness? Why yoga?

 Lisa: I have been practicing yoga for over twenty years. I turned to yoga to find relief from years of continuous back pain and major surgeries. Through the years I have tried physical therapy, and other workout methods but nothing helped me as much as my yoga and stretching. Being on my mat not only helped heal the physical issues, but also cleared the mental chatter of my mind.

 As I continued to try different lineages of yoga , one class led to another and I soon became addicted. Yoga brought profound change- health and balance to my life. In 2011 I decided I was going to take that next step and enroll in the YogaWorks 200 Hour teaching program, to deepen my practice. It has always been my passion to open my very own Yoga & Wellness Center. In 2003 I drafted a business plan with the intention of opening a studio one day.

After the devastation of Hurricane Sandy I knew this was the time to help bring health & healing to the Jersey Shore Community, I retired from my very successful Corporate Career to pursue my dream and open Monmouth Beach Yoga & Wellness. THE REST IS HISTORY!

 Q: What was your biggest fear or limiting belief during the process of opening the studio?

 Lisa: My biggest fear was the UNKNOWN, but I knew to be a business owner you need to be a risk taker, do something you’re passionate about and work hard. I kept saying to myself I know I will be successful if I continue to give this EVERYTHING I have!

 Q: How did you save to open a yoga studio?

Lisa: Throughout my life I always remember my grandmother saying, “Every little bit counts, so rather than looking for one big way to save a ton of money, save in lots of small ways and set yourself up for success.” Do WHATEVER IT TAKES to make your dreams happen”. SO I DID JUST THAT!

 Q: Ahh, like the Compound Effect.   What’s your favorite memory of opening the studio?

Lisa: My favorite memory of opening the studio was in the beginning stages before I found the location. My original business plan had me opening the studio by myself, and then one day one of my yoga teacher training buddies (LISA HORAN-SOCKOL) mentioned to me she would want to open the studio with me and it just seemed like the right thing to do.   I knew Lisa would be a fabulous yoga teacher and that is what I needed so I could focus on running the business side of it.  I handle the Finances, Marketing, Advertising, Scheduling, and retailing, which is a full time job.  With all that, I couldn’t imagine teaching too... So we started looking for spaces and when I saw the space available in Monmouth Beach I KNEW THIS WAS WHERE WE NEEDED TO BE!

The space was flooded during Hurricane Sandy and needed a lot of TLC but I saw the big picture. My favorite memory was spending time with Lisa H picking out what was needed to make the studio SO VERY SPECIAL!!!

 Q:What’s your number one piece of advice for future yoga studio owners? What does it take to be a Woman Entrepreneur?

 Lisa: I have to admit it was extremely difficult to leave my corporate security- the medical coverage and the big pay check, but my desire to build, create, and learn, surpassed my fear. A successful business woman has to be a team player, for me I try to be an inspiration to others. Every challenge I'm faced with helps me learn. I am forever grateful that I took a chance, because it led me to pursue my passion and have a life and business I love.

 

Q: What’s the most difficult situation you run into on a consistent basis?

Lisa: The most difficult situation I run into on a consistent basis is there is only 1 of me. I try to do everything and be everything to everyone but I fall short on taking care of me.

Q: How did you decide upon your class offerings, type of teachers you’d employ, and the overall vibe of the studio?

Lisa: Well the vibe was easy... We are a yoga studio at the beach, stay true to your roots. As far as the classes and teachers, I wanted my teachers to establish their own voice in our community. Most of our teachers practiced in the studio before becoming a teacher at the studio. This helped them to understand the energy of our beautiful community; therefore making it easy to share and help create what was needed. Some of our teachers have been here since the beginning and they are truly alignment, anatomy conscious and understood my philosophy of the studio from the beginning.

 When we first opened we offered 20 classes a week. Now we are up to 40+ classes. This was determined by the community. I added classes as I saw fit. My motto is: "You do not need to be flexible, you just need an open mind to show up and enjoy! I believe that YOGA is for EVERYONE, regardless of AGE, LIMITATIONS OR INJURY.”

Q: What would you say to someone who has never done yoga, but wants to get started?

Lisa: You just have to try it, yoga is rehab for your body... Enjoy your practice, listen to your body. Don't expect to get it the first time, YOGA IS PRACTICE & PATIENCE...SOME OF THE BENEFITS OF YOGA: Improves balance and posture, Increases flexibility & strength, Detoxifies the body, removes toxins and improves the aging process, Reduces stress & anxiety, Helps with depression, low back pain, blood pressure and insomnia, and helps build self-confidence.

 Q: What makes Monmouth Beach Yoga and Wellness different than any other studio in Monmouth County?

 Lisa: We are different because we have truly created a supportive, healing, safe & non-competitive environment for people of ALL AGES. Our mission is to help our students to develop their very own personal yoga journey and self-transformation. We believe that a consistent yoga practice will leave students feeling rejuvenated and inspired. It will help open the doors to positive transformation; ultimately creating a calm and peaceful mind, an open heart, and a strong feeling of self-acceptance. We have many types of classes to showcase this.

We just don’t offer one type of yoga for instance Power Yoga or Hot Yoga. We offer a variety so our Community can have inspiring classes as well as a whole yogic lifestyle.

 Q: Are there any new classes or products coming up or anything else you would like to promote?

 Lisa: We have so many things coming up at Monmouth Beach Yoga & Wellness: Our Yoga Works Teacher Training starts Sept 10th , Our Beginner Series starts August 24th, Mala Making on the Beach Sept 18th, Introduction to Thai Yoga Massage October 16th, In the new year we will have Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training & a ton more surprises!

 Q: Where can people find and follow you?

 Lisa: www.mbyogaandwellness.com, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIN, IN THE STUDIO EVERYDAY!!!

 ***************************************************************************************************************************************************

 It was so fun to do this interview with such an inspiring Woman Entrepreneur in our community.

 If you have never been to Monmouth Beach Yoga & Wellness, try the New Member Special which is $30 for 3 Visits

 36 BEACH ROAD, SUITE 10 . MONMOUTH BEACH, NJ 07750 . 973.452.2828

See the Potential

See the Potential

 

I came to my passion for Pilates through a running injury six years ago.  I had a fracture in my pelvis and I had to find some form of exercise to channel my energy.  I had been doing Yoga at the time, but with the fractured pelvis, I really could not even do Yoga.  The sequences called for flexibility which I just could not do without causing more injury. 

So, I started doing private lessons with a Pilates instructor.  We worked on the Reformer, the Chair, the Cadilac and some Mat work.  I saw that my body was changing – getting longer, leaner and more toned – even without cardio exercise!

It was amazing.  Pilates strengthened my pelvis and eventually I was able to return to running after a long 6 months of no impact exercise.  So it was no surprise once I went back to running, I continued to practice Pilates.

I loved Pilates, but it was hard for me.  As a runner and spin-enthusiast, I was using the same muscles over and over again, which really caused my entire body to be quite stiff. Pilates challenged my core, which you can have a weak core even if you run and exercise.  Also, because I had tight hip flexors, it was hard for me to straighten my legs in Pilates exercises.  The Reformer really helped me to stretch out parts of my body and limbs which needed it. 

 

When I finally decided to get certified in Pilates, I never imagined I would become an instructor.  My initial intention was to get certified so that I could understand whether or not I was doing these exercises correctly.  Once I did get certified though, there was an inquisitive curiosity that awakened within me.  Could I teach? Was it possible? 

I had never really taught classes or anything large scale like that.  I trained assistants and interns in my corporate job, but I never taught exercising.  It was a brand new world to me.

I really had my doubts – my own voice that said I didn’t know what I was doing, that I didn’t have the background.

 

We are all different, but we are the same aren’t we?  We all question our own capabilities for greatness and have a tendency to squash our dreams before we even get started sometimes.

It just takes a small thought to infuse a sliver of light.  The light gets in and we see the potential.  SEE THE POTENTIAL.  See the potential in all you do.  See the potential in the broken car, the lost job, the illness, the ….. well, the list goes on.   What is the situation telling us?  What are we supposed to learn from the misfortune?  If we can harness the potential in the situation, we have the power to transform our everyday, ordinary lives.

 

Today I am a Pilates teacher and I love teaching.  I love sharing my passion with others and helping them to find their potential through health and fitness.  I would not be doing this if I didn’t get over all the reasons I could not and saw the potential that I COULD.

 

I hope you see the potential in your life today.

following your passion

I have been commuting to New York City for the past 17 years, working in the fashion industry.

Throughout the years, my positions have changed from creative to crunching numbers, to creative again and then back to more working with numbers/ analytical -based.

I have worked for major companies such as Michael Kors, Calvin Klein Jeans and Brooks Brothers to smaller companies known as private label/ manufacturers that work with major retailers. I have managed accounts with Macy’s, Kohls and Sam’s Club.

I fell into fashion not because I studied it in college, but because I literally “fell into it”.  I graduated with a double major in Journalism and Communications/ Public Relations from Rutgers University.  While I applied to Journalism jobs, I realized that I did not want to earn the wages of a journalist!  So, I answered an ad on Monster.com for an Assistant Buyer position at Brooks Brothers.  And so began my life in the fashion industry .. along with the commute.

 The commute did not always bother me.  I must say for the first 10 years I loved it.  At some of the companies where I worked, I would work 14 hour days, and take a car service home at 11pm.  That included Friday nights on occasion too.  The jobs came with no proper lunch time and transitioned to “working through lunch” with meetings and so forth as I climbed up the never – ending corporate ladder.

 I wish I could tell you that “recently” the commute and the image of a big corporate job in NYC has gotten to me, but really for quite some time my heart has been somewhere else.  For those of you who feel unfulfilled- you know the feeling.  It is a feeling of “just existing”,   which is different than “just being”.  The torrent of commuters who are in RUSH, RUSH mode can affect the most placid person.  If you are walking too slow, people will speed by you giving you a dirty look.  Like they are wondering, What’s wrong with you!  On some occasions, they might “accidentally” push to swipe past you.  Yet, if you walk too fast, there are those that will increase their pace like you two are in competition to see who can get to their small depressing cubicle first.

 It is a life that has afforded me the luxury of monthly facials, weekly massages, endless shopping trips to purchase my coveted Louis Vuitton bags and my endless pairs of leggings and workout gear.  It is a big paycheck that has allowed me to order not one , but two entrees on most occasions whether or not I finish both when dining out.

But I have recently realized it comes at a price.  I return to the comfort of my home to see my lovely cat and dog and husband not usually before 8pm.  I can be home by 7:30pm on a rare occasion.  That’s not so bad – except my day starts at 4am when I begin my run and then head into NYC around 6:30am.  Whenever I think about getting out, I try to rationalize – I only commute into NYC 4 days a week.  I get to teach Pilates on Saturdays and Sundays, which I love.  Isn’t that ENOUGH?

For most people work is work.  It’s not meant to be enjoyable….right??

 But then there’s always a tiny voice that whispers : “There are plenty of people who do what they LOVE.  They take risks, though.”  They risk everything with a knowing that they will be ok no matter what they do.  They are so passionate about what they are meant to do in life, they relinquish everything to follow their “True North”. 

How about you?

Where are you at?  Did you leave a stable job or career to pursue your passion?  Or are you at the same impasse as myself?  Are those that follow their passion mere dreamers who will one day look back and regret leaving stability for the unknown?

Wherever you are today, know that we have but one life.  A life to be lived fulfilled, always dreaming, loving and being kind to others.

I would love to hear about your journey.  Please contact me to share!

When is it time to Slow Down?

I run daily - 365 days a year - no excuses, no gripes or complaints.  I do it because I love the freedom of lacing up my Nike Lunar Glides and feeling the freedom of running.  It is just sheer pleasure for me - to hear the pitter patter of my feet on pavement, feel the racing in my heart, and falling into the rhythm of my own breathe.  

There was one time I had my wisdom teeth removed at 8:30AM and by the next day, I was out there at 4:00AM before the world was up and the sky was still dark, barring a couple of stars.  The birds start chirping at about 5:45AM, but usually not before during the summer time.  During the winter, it's a little different.  In the summer, the sun will rise around 5:50AM, although with the transition into fall, its been getting light later.  

About a week ago, at the end of my 3 hour run, I felt a little tenderness on the right side of my right foot.  Oh, I probably tied my laces too tight.  The next day, I ran about 2 hours , but by the end, the little tenderness felt like something more.  Of course, ignoring the little "something more", I laced up that same day for my 2nd run of the day.  I went about 30 seconds before I felt a shooting pain in the same foot.  

Ignoring my foot pain, I went out the next day and the next to run.  I was in pain, but I loved running even more.  By the end of last week, I stopped going on a 2nd run at least.  I have run through so much - blisters, missing toenails, a fractured calcaneous bone on my foot.  Six years ago, when I fractured my pelvis, I was still running until I finally went to the orthopedist and he said my hip was going to give.  Once your hip gives, you are in Big Danger.  Okay, that made me stop.

The other day my husband said to me , "You look like you are limping."  I said, "Oh, its just a foot thing".  Runners like to refer to these as "things" instead of "injury".  Injury means permanence and time needed to heal.

My situation made me think about the things that we do to push ourselves above and beyond- whether or not it is good for us.  This can apply to your situation whether or not you run.  People who work 100+ hour work weeks to hold a job in corporate America, parents who shuttle their children from soccer practice to piano practice to.... Or, those of us who are always rushing from one place to the next.  Where is the next place to be?  We are a culture of Do.  We see everyone else Do, and so we Do.  When is it time to Slow Down?

This morning I was running very slow - not 7 min or 8 minute miles.  I must have been doing a slow 9 minute or 10 minute mile.  At this point, my gait has changed.  There is a little hobble going on.  Then I thought to write this article on slowing down.  Maybe I ought to take my own advice.

Are you Acidic?

 

Are you Acidic?

 

Many celebrities and fitness fanatics are singing praise for the Alkaline diet, also known as the alkaline ash diet, which is based on the belief that certain foods can affect the acidity and pH of the body, and can therefore be used to treat/prevent disease and lose weight.  The foundation of this diet is about eating foods that work in harmony with your body’s balance (acid vs. alkaline) and keeping your blood and urine maintained at a pH of  approximately 7.0.

 

There is a list of alkaline foods that will help to maintain your blood pH, while acidic foods will cause pH to go down into an acidic state.  You can access their website here for a complete diet “how – to” : http://greenopedia.com/alkaline-acid-food-chart/.  Most foods such as meat and dairy products, refined sugars, processed foods, artificial sweeteners, caffeine and alcohol are considered acidic.

 

 

Well- known celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Victoria Beckham, Alicia Silverstone, Jennifer Aniston, Kirsten Dunst and Jared Leto are followers of the alkaline and plant-based diet.  I first learned of the Alkaline diet after hearing Kelly Ripa swear by it.  Ripa swears by a regime created by her nutritionist Dr. Daryl Gioffre known as the AlkaMind method.  The website to this is : www.getoffyouracid.com.

 

The purported benefits of the Alkaline diet are:

-Anti-aging

-Better skin

-More energy

-Weight loss

-Less aches and pains

-Prevention and reversal of disease

 

I purchased the AlkaMind Daily Greens powder, in addition to the Daily Minerals powder.  I also purchased the test strips(http://www.getoffyouracid.com/product/ph-test-strips/) to determine if you are in fact acidic.  When I first tested myself with the strips, I was at a pH of 6.5, which is considered acidic.  After integrating the Daily Greens and Daily Minerals powder into my daily regiment, I am anywhere between a 7.0-7.5, which is ideal.  Since I am a vegetarian, it was easy for me to follow the list of foods on the list.  I realized that I was taking in a lot of blueberries and walnuts (healthy but highly acidic!), which might have contributed to the acidity level. 

For me, even if you do not follow the entire regime, you start to notice things about your diet.  Perhaps your intake of caffeine is even higher than you originally thought.  Or perhaps the sweets that you thought you deserved in moderation was not really so “moderate”.  Subtle awareness enabled me to be more mindful of what I was putting into my body.

 

At the end of that day, you have to find what works for you, but I had to give this a try!  Please leave me comments/ feedback if you end up trying this.

Avocado toast

As the Olympics are heating up Rio, we are at the peak of summer.  Within a matter of weeks (which of course will go by in a blur), kids will head back to school with new supplies ready to make new friends and meet new teachers.  While we are at this in-between time of lazy summers and prepping for boxed school lunches, what a perfect recipe I have in store for you!

 

Avocado toast with or without smoked salmon

 

Makes 2 servings

Ingredients:

 

2 slices of Rye toast

1 ripe avocado

Salt

Pepper

 

Optional:

Chili pepper flakes

Smoked Salmon

Chia seeds

 

1.     Toast Rye bread

2.     Cut ripe avocado in half.  Scoop out the meat of the avocado and mash with a spoon into a bowl until smooth

3.     Smear avocado onto Rye bread

4.     Top with Salt and pepper , to taste

 

Optional:

Add chili pepper flakes, Smoked salmon and chia seeds

 

Enjoy!

 

DREAMING... DREAMING...

the vast blue sky holds infinite potential for today, any day, this day

don't allow today to become yesterday without feeling each second, each minute, each discomfort, each joy, each twinge of anger or contentment...

whatever you feel, feel it now... feel the ground beneath your feet, feel the air in your lungs, the sweet smell of life...

live each moment like it is your last breath..

find the joy in THIS NOW