Have you even been arrived at your destination and upon arrival realized you can't remember the drive? You can literally get so engrossed in your repetitive thoughts that you aren't fully aware of what is happening right in front of you. You can simply go into auto-pilot mode and mentally check out. This isn't isolated to your daily work commute. We tend to check-out during many of our daily activities, especially during meal time! Being present when you are eating offers many benefits. Let's break them down:
So hopefully I've sold you on the concept of a mindful meal. It would also be my hope that your implementation of mindfulness can expand to other facets of your life. While it can improve your mealtime, that isn't where the benefits end. If you can be more mindful and present in the following situations, it is likely you would also benefit:
Remember, this moment matters. Even if you are not doing anything that is super exciting or fun right now, hopefully you can accept the moment, and maybe even enjoy it. Be here now.
“Yoga allows you to find an inner peace that is not ruffled or riled by the endless stresses and struggles of everyday life.” B.K.S Iyengar
Thanks to the conveniences of modern technology many of us now wake up and look at our phones first thing in the morning. We check emails, make phone calls, catch up on the whirlwind of world events online, and get on with our busy days often feeling frazzled and drained. Life can feel overwhelming at times with everything seemingly happening at once. At other times, especially in the last grey days of winter, life can just feel boring or dull and we may find ourselves feeling unfocused, uninspired and disconnected.
Yoga can give us the opportunity to connect with a sense of inner peace, stillness and even joy despite the chaos. How? The practice itself connects us to our breath and through movement it brings us out of our busy minds and back into our bodies. Ideally this carries over to the rest of our day leaving us feeling better mentally, physically and emotionally than we felt before we got on the mat. So often being human means we live in endless pursuit of comfort, relaxation, stimulation, and happiness in general outside of ourselves. Through the practice of yoga it’s possible to step off of the merry-go-round of life each day, to reconnect with and even make friends with our bodies (in whatever shape they may be in) and to calm our monkey minds. When we allow ourselves to get quiet & and for that brief time to go within to that place of inner stillness and peace that lives inside of all of us, it can feel as if the world stands still.
My name is Tara and I currently teach Basic Yoga on Friday’s at 9:30am at Puravegan. I encourage and invite anyone who is interested in yoga (*and able to get up and down from the floor) to join us! Staring Wednesday March 15 I'll be adding a 10am class to the schedule. Check the Puravegan website for details.
This recipe is nothing fancy, yet it is worth bragging about? What is there to brag about? Here are the list of bragging rights:
What goes in it?
1/2 cup tahini
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup water
1/4 tsp garlic powder or 1/2 clove finely minced
1 TBSP liquid aminos (soy or coconut), soy sauce, tamari, or nama shoyu
Blend or whisk - add any other spices that you enjoy. I personally put pepper in just about everything. You may like citrus juice, coriander, mustard or anything. Don't be scared to experiment. If you want it thicker use less liquid. Should store for five days in an air tight container.
Often when a person decides to "get healthy" they focus on either exercise or diet. Some may be ambitious enough to tackle both! Ever notice that if you exercise AND eat healthy the benefits are astounding and they tend to work synergistically? What about if you added some other vitally important behaviors to the mix? Being healthy isn't always about simply how our body appears on the outside. You can diet and exercise to an extreme, but still have a compromised immune function. These 5 keys to having a healthy mind and body not only can prevent disease, but can also result in a general contentment with life and the challenges that come your way. I used to feel like I was on a hamster wheel every day, and that feeling changed when I learned how to take care of myself. Below are 5 Keys to Health that produced such a change in my life.
As I mentioned above, there is a synergistic relationship to all of these five behaviors. If you start eating healthy and hydrating, managing stress, sleeping well, exercising AND spending some time with friends you will feel like a superstar! I think you should get started right NOW!
WHEN: Mondays, 5:30 - 7:30pm, Feb 29, March 7, 14, 21, & 28
WHERE: PuraVegan Cafe!
WHO: Taught by Monica
$ 195 for all five sessions (includes meal, handouts, recipes, discussion & new friends!!! )
Discover which foods are optimal for weight management, learn about various health topics including blood pressure and digestion, and get empowered with the practical cooking skills needed to help you on your journey to better health. In our classes, attendees do all of this while enjoying a cooking demonstration and tasting delicious, healthful dishes in a supportive group setting.
Featured Class Topics
Praise for the Program
“I enjoyed tasting healthy foods I would never have cooked! I hope to lower my cholesterol, blood sugars, and weight by eating more fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes!”
—Bonnie W., Kennewick Community Education, Kennewick, Wash.
“The instructor’s enthusiasm and knowledge made the class one of the best classes I've sat in. The food was delicious! I know the changes I've made will be permanent. I've lost weight, gained energy, and feel the best I've felt in years!”
—Leah M., Southlake Library, Southlake, Texas
“This class is helping me change my life. And I am so very grateful for being able to take it. Thank you for making that needed change possible. I will worry a lot less about my diabetes and expect the weight to drop.”
—Barbara B., Dayspring Enrichment Center, Wasilla, Ark.
In 2011, PCRM delivered our lifesaving message through 1,300 classes, to more than 9,000 people, in more than 150 cities.
written by Monica Stoutenborough, PuraVegan Owner
Ten years ago I never would have believed that I could feel this amazing. In fact, I didn't even realize just how bad I felt until I started feeling GREAT! I was 30 years old, beginning to gain weight, accumulate a variety of medications, suffered from regular migraines, and serious digestive pain. In spite of all that I thought that I was healthy simply because I was a vegetarian. Boy was I wrong. I was surviving on processed vegetarian food that was lacking in nutrients but abundant in calories, cholesterol, additives and lots of words/chemicals that I cannot pronounce.
In 2007, I took the plunge to eat a healthy oil-free plant based diet and it was a real shocker. Before I knew it my migraine medication had expired because I wasn't requiring it, my digestion pain was gone, I lost 30 pounds and felt like a super human! My weight loss took place over many months, but the relief from pain and discomfort was almost overnight. I felt like I discovered something that was too good to be true and became the office health nut at my job.
After learning that I had the power to decide how my life would be, I tried some other changes. After taking yoga classes at a resort in Jamaica I told my spouse that I was going to do that as well, helping us afford to travel by trading my teaching services. Within one year I completed a yoga teacher training and was taking my family on a trip twice a year in exchange for teaching yoga at beautiful resorts
I wasn't satisfied there though. I loved my job in corporate America, however I felt a pull to help other people create the life that they were capable of and craving as well. I finally left my stock brokerage job and here I am at PuraVegan sharing this lifestyle with as many people as possible. If you currently feel like I felt 10 years ago, stagnant, uncomfortable in my own skin, knowing that I was capable of more, then know that YOU have the power to create the life that you want as well.
Through meditation, stress management, exercise (yoga and walking for me), and diet I found that I was less affected by my surroundings and more content with life. I was less reactive to my circumstances and able to find acceptance in what I couldn't change in the moment, bringing me more peace and happiness. I also felt that my former lifestyle was aging me and that I was able to slow that down and at times I felt I was reversing some of the damage done to my body from stress and unhealthful foods. My mind felt clear, my emotions more stable and my relationships improved from this.
In assembling the amazing group of employees and teachers at PuraVegan we have built a team of passionate, positive, health focused people that want to help YOU. Please come in and try a class, the food, check out some of the books in our shop - many of them were motivators and catalysts for change during my transformative period and that is why we stock them.
I teach a De-Stress Yoga and Meditation class every single Thursday evening at 5:30pm. I don't care how healthy you eat - if you are stressed out your immunity is still compromised. It is time to take care of yourself and your whole body. Do not think that you have to be affluent, skinny, perfect or anything other than what you already are to start living the life that you desire. Your time is now - and we at PuraVegan would love to help support you on your path to feeling AWESOME! You start from here and now.
This is for our meditation students that would like a guided meditation for at home. Kim Eng guides you through a ten minute breath focused meditation.
"Take Action! An inch of movement will bring you closer to your goals than a mile of intention." ~Dr. Steve Maraboli
It's December, do you remember what resolutions & goals you set last January? Did you accomplish any of these goals, make progress, or forget about them by February? If you fall in to the later category you are not alone. According to Forbes Magazine only 8% of people are successful in achieving their New Years Resolution. Here's the thing, intentions are great to get us started, but action is what gets us where we really want to go.
You've heard the saying 'the road to hell is paved with good intentions'. Of course most of us 'intend' to better our lives each New Year by eating healthier, losing weight, quitting smoking, or exercising more. But we seem to either lose sight of, or just get worn out by, the work that is required to make a real lasting change in our lives. What if we took resolutions and intentions out of the equation and just focused on one thing, one action step that we can take each day to move us closer to how we want to be? Instead of saying to yourself, "2016 is the year I will lose these extra pounds!", what about saying 'I will do one healthy/new/scary thing each day!' Would that take some of the pressure off yourself to clear some huge self imposed hurdle, to break it down to a daily goal? After all, small 'wins' can snowball and help us build momentum to keep moving in the right direction.
I believe in being kind and compassionate to yourself. I also believe in stepping outside of your comfort zone to stretch yourself, to grow, to evolve and maybe even surprise yourself. We can start to make change in our life with something as simple as spending 5 minutes first thing in the morning in silent meditation, just allowing ourselves to breathe and set the tone for the day. Or how about going to bed at night with a guided loving-kindness meditation online to end the day with gratitude. Maybe you don't feel ready to come to a yoga class yet, but you could check out some short beginner yoga videos online in the comfort of your home. The simple movement and breathing can actually start to shift how you live your life by allowing you to really honor your body and spirit, to really listen to what you need.
Change does not happen overnight, but the person taking a short walk each day is literally going to be miles ahead of the person who stays on the couch. So take action today, THIS IS YOUR LIFE! Interested in trying out some basic yoga and meditation at PuraVegan to kick off the New Year? I'm offering a 75 minute Intro to Yoga Class on Saturday January 9, 2016. Check out the website for details, call, or sign up in person. In the meantime, I also encourage you to check out the Meditation & Yoga Nidra classes currently on the schedule. If you're ready to start now, we're here for you and we'd love to see you!
written by: Tara Beckmann
When you see or hear something about yoga, does it just seem like something that requires you to be young, flexible, thin, basically ‘in shape’ to practice, and that it is therefore, not for you? Have you seen posts on social media that make yoga look like more like a performance or a feat of contortionism that appears to put the body in terribly uncomfortable looking positions and just thought, ‘No thanks.'?
I’d like to help in any way I can to make the practice appear less intimidating, more approachable, and actually doable! My hope is that more people will see that yoga is a deeply personal practice, something you do for yourself, and that it can be whatever you want it to be, whether you come to our studio or any other, or simply decide to start a practice at home. Know that your choices are not limited to ‘hot' ‘power' ‘flow’ ‘vinyasa’ or whatever classes. You do not have to do headstands if that’s not your thing, and in fact, I highly recommend checking out beginner, basic, yin, restorative classes, or intro classes if you are indeed a newbie. If you haven’t practiced in a while, or maybe you used to run, hike, bike, weight train or whatever, and you’re just interested in getting yourself moving again, you might actually enjoy a Zen Yoga class with me. I used to weight train and hike, I love to move, and I’ve always been active in general.
As time went on though, the weights and the trails left me feeling sore, and not really in a positive growing pain kind of way. More like a repetitive use kind of soreness. In addition to that, I had always struggled with insomnia, anxiety and depression. I got sober and stress did not magically disappear, in fact it got a lot worse at times. I struggled with socializing and feelings of loneliness and isolation. For me personally, going to a yoga class became a way to be around other people, but not in a way that I felt obligated to talk necessarily. It became an opportunity to take ah hour long break from ‘reality', to check in with myself, to clear my mind by moving my body, breathing, and linking that breath with the movement. t’s a powerful tool for connecting to your own intuition, to find your own inner reserve and resolve, to get down on the mat and simply get to know your body. For all of these reasons, I decided to study so I could teach this practice to others to help them find a better experience of life in the way that it’s helped me.
My yoga practice gives me the ability to have a gentler, kinder and more compassionate relationship with my own body and mind. It is self care, daily hygiene, a time to work out the kinks in my system, both physically and mentally. It calms and settles me, and I can assure you that more times than not it looks nothing like an Instagram worthy post.
We all can quickly come up with a list of obstacles preventing us from taking time to exercise, prepare a healthy meal or relax, but the most frequent reason I hear is guilt. So often we feel guilty for taking action, time or money to do something that improves our health and/or happiness. I say hogwash! How can you be a patient and kind parent, spouse or friend if you are stressed out, run down, or operating on crappy fuel and junk food?
You owe it not just to yourself, but to your loved ones to take care of you! If you have ever flown, you know that each and every time you fly the attendants will remind you that in the case of an emergency you should put on your own oxygen mask before helping others. Why is that? Well you can only go so long without oxygen right? You only have a matter of minutes before you will pass out. After you have passed out you cannot help anyone! In fact, then others will need to help you instead. So, put on that oxygen mask immediately, and you can be of service to the entire plane.
Is this any different than real life? I would argue that it isn't. It's likely that you have a number of others that depend upon you including children, pets, co-workers, family members, neighbors and others in your community. If you are neglecting to take care of your health, you won't be able to help anyone else for too long. If you are stressed out and under nourished it is a matter of time before you will exhaust yourself or even worse get sick. Long-term stress that goes on for years can have even more serious results such as chronic diseases including cancers and depression. But with a little planning you can take a few minutes for yourself and take action to feel great for years to come!
Here are some suggestions / reminders of ways that you can help yourself out:
These are just a few ideas, I think you get it. The main point is do NOT feel guilty about taking time for you. This life is a gift and so is your body. Take good care of it and reap the benefits of self care. .