Tag: yogaeverydamnday

Yoga poses for back pain

As a reminder, I am not a yoga teacher, just a student. All thoughts and poses are my opinions.

As most of you know, I have been cross training to become a strong surfer and yogi. Whether it’s HIIT workouts, running or weight training, I have been working out regularly. This morning, I woke up early with the most agonizing back pain. So, I turned to what I know most: heat packs and yoga poses.

Below are a list of my favorite yoga poses for back pain. I have linked the poses to step by step instructions if needed :). Instructions provided by Yoga Journal

Fire Log Pose

In this pose, you stack your right leg on your left leg. I like to switch which leg is on top, as it stretches my back and hips.

Downward-Facing Dog and Dolphin

Most people know these poses. In Dolphin, the difference is you are on your forearms instead of hands. I love to peddle my feet in these positions to stretch out my back muscles.

Sphinx Pose

Since this is considered a baby backbend, it can alleviate those tight muscles in the back. For me, the ability to spread my shoulder blades really helps my back pain, since most of my pain is upper back related.

Wide-legged Forward Fold

My favorite back pain release pose. I usually do this pose three times. First time using prayer hands, second time clasping hands, third time just touching the ground. I find it also helps my tight shoulders.

Readers, I would love to know what helps alleviate your workout pain. As always, you can follow me on Instagram and Twitter @ScrappyYoga

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

Scrappy Yogi in Seattle

20170520_13270620170520_13154320170520_133054

This past weekend, the husband and I took a quick trip to Seattle. It had been months since we had a weekend away.  The only plans we had were to attend the Sounders FC game, but otherwise, the weekend was all free. The best part of it was our hotel was on the waterfront, near Pike’s Market.

While we did have a fantastic weekend, I want to talk about one experience in particular. Recently, I have been reading a lot of blogs about traveling alone and experiencing a place without a traveling partner. I read these entries with fascination since I don’t think I could ever travel alone. These people are so brave and I envy how they push themselves to experiences new things.

So, on Saturday morning, I decided to walk the city of Seattle by myself to grab my early morning coffee. I figured I would push myself out of my comfort zone, just like the people who travel alone. I know what you are thinking readers. I wouldn’t have to go far for coffee in Seattle, which is true, but I decided to walk down to the waterfront for my coffee; about 1 mile down the road.

As I started walking alone to the waterfront, I have to admit there was a little bit of anxiety. I have never been good traveling in big cities, and I am not a great navigator. I would be an awful participant on “The Amazing Race”. Luckily, I had my GPS, and the worst thing that would happen I would take a Lyft back to the hotel.

Walking to the waterfront was a beautiful experience. I took in all the sounds and people of the city. I saw multiple yogis riding bikes or walking to class, and a bunch of runners. I had a fleeting thought that I should join a yoga class, but quickly remembered I didn’t bring any of my yoga accessories on this trip.

As I walked to the waterfront, and saw the sun rise over the Puget Sound, all I was reminded about was that special moment when you surf the sunrise. That feeling of complete gratitude and appreciation for life.

After my moment, I walked back to the hotel, coffee in hand. I only got lost a couple of times, and managed to make it back.

Readers, I would love to know how you push yourself out of your comfort zone

Remember, you can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @ ScrappyYoga

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

Chaturanga, Burpees and Paddling

I have written before about becoming a stronger surfer and becoming a stronger yogi. All my workouts in general are about becoming a stronger athlete, but I noticed a decline in my surfing ability lately. I would get out in the waves and be tired. My arms would be on fire, and my body would just be exhausted. I thought, “How could this be?”. Between all of the burpees, weights, supermans, and Chaturangas; I shouldn’t be this exhausted from paddling. Or am I doing the wrong workout?

Recently, there was a blog article on Craftysurf.com titled, ” Surf Training: The Secret“, so naturally I was drawn to this topic. In the blog post, she states the secret is more paddling. Not all the gym workouts I have been doing, not all the Chaturangas that I have been practicing, even though I’m pretty good at it now, it’s paddling.

I sat with this post for a while. I was the strongest in the Summer and Fall when I could surf 3-4 times a week. Recently, due to work and bad weather in California, surfing 3-4 times a week is rare. Maybe my paddling isn’t as strong as it used to be?

Luckily, she offers easy advice: go out an paddle. While I think it’s important to keep going with the Chaturangas, burpees and my other workouts, she makes the point of no other workout is equivalent to paddling. So, I did, last Friday afternoon. I just got on my longboard and paddled, and then paddled some more. Liking this idea of just “paddle sessions”, I will start to incorporate this type of workouts into my life.

Surfers and Yogis, what other types of workouts to do you incorporate into your life?

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

Sun Salutation B, Wetsuits, and Surfing

*I am not a certified yoga instructor. These yoga poses are just my opinion always consult a physician before starting any new workout routine

It’s a no-brainer that a surfer should stretch before a surf session, and what I have learned from my surf buddies is that everyone has their own routine. Some surfers stretch at the beach, others stretch at home, and some surfers don’t stretch at all. I often receive questions about my routine, so I thought I would share what I do before a surf session.

What is unique about my stretching routine is it’s all yoga. I find that the yoga sequences prepare me mentally and physically for a great surf session. I usually start my yoga before I hit the beach and put on that heavy wetsuit. I start with Sun Salutation B, and here is a step by step guide from Yoga Outlet:

1. Standing Mountain Pose — Tadasana

2. Chair Pose — Utkatasana

3. Standing Forward Fold — Uttanasana

4. Half Standing Forward Fold — Ardha Uttanasana

5. Four-Limbed Staff Pose — Chaturanga Dandasana

6. Upward-Facing Dog Pose — Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

7. Downward-Facing Dog Pose — Adho Mukha Svanasana

8. Warrior I, Right Foot — Virabhadrasana I

9. Four-Limbed Staff Pose — Chaturanga Dandasana

10. Upward-Facing Dog Pose — Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

11. Downward-Facing Dog Pose — Adho Mukha Svanasana

12. Warrior I, Left Foot — Virabhadrasana I

13. Four-Limbed Staff Pose — Chaturanga Dandasana

14. Upward-Facing Dog Pose — Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

15. Downward-Facing Dog Pose — Adho Mukha Svanasana

16. Half Standing Forward Fold — Ardha Uttanasana

17. Standing Forward Fold — Uttanasana

18. Chair Pose — Utkatasana

19. Mountain Pose — Tadasana

I repeat this sequence 3-5 times. Now, I’m ready to hit the beach, but the yoga doesn’t stop. If you are a surfer who requires a wetsuit, you know how heavy they can be. I have a 4/3 Ripcurl Flashbomb wetsuit (which I love), but it does require me to stretch before surfing.

After I get onto the beach, wetsuit on, Paragon surfboard next to me, it’s time to start my yoga poses for my shoulders. Now, if you have been following my blog, you know that my shoulders are extremely tight so I need a little extra stretching in the shoulder and back. I always practice Dolphin, Thread the Needle, and 8-Point before surfing. Shape.com has excellent video clips of the shoulder openers I practice on the beach, so click here to see these poses.

Readers, what stretches or yoga poses do you love before a workout? I would love to know!

Follow me on Instagram and Twitter @Scrappyyoga!

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

Happy One Year Anniversary: The Scrappy Yogi is also a Scrappy Surfer

It’s been officially one year since I have launched this blog! It’s been quite a year of self discovery: yoga experiences, yoga festivals, marriage, surfing, Maui trips, and much more to come. Anyone who has been following me for the last year has noticed that I talk about surfing just as much as I talk about yoga, but I never really claim the title as “surfer”. The reason for this simple. A legacy surfer told me to try it for a year before earning the title of “surfer”. Well, it’s been a year, and surfing is here to stay. It’s a passion to say the least.

The last year of surfing has been an excited one. I bought my first Paragon Surfboard the “Mini-Log”, I have surfed in Maui, I have made “surf buddies”, and now I have integrated surfing into my life. I try to surf a couple of times a week if the tides and my work schedule permit it, and I am constantly looking at Surfline.

But what about yoga? Yoga is never going away.  I have even been told from my surf buddies that I incorporate yoga teachings and practices into my surfing life. And, on occasion, I can even been seen practicing yoga in my wetsuit on the beach before and after a surf session (it’s good for your body, but more posts to come on that).

So, from now on, I am also a Scrappy Surfer. I will write blog posts on how I weave yoga into my surfing life and vice versa. I will still write on my latest yoga influences, classes and experiences as well. Life is all about expanding your horizons, right?

Readers, have any of your workout programs lead you to other passions? Or other workouts you love just as much? I would love to hear your thoughts!

You can now follow me on Instagram @ScrappyYoga for fun tips, beach pics, and much much more!

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

Surfing is for everybody

Last year, I wrote a blog post on how yoga is for everybody and to not let expensive products and clothing stop you from trying yoga. I still believe this, and now I am applying it to surfing.

I tend to surf in Santa Cruz where there is a lot of localism. If you aren’t sure what localism is, click here to read local surfer Toan’s surf blog as he explains it well. 

I have experienced the localism. I have been laughed at for my board and my wetsuit before. It is not unlike a yoga studio making their yogis feel unwelcome. All I could think of is all the surfers that have stopped surfing and all the yogis that have stopped practicing because of these negative experiences.

This fear of being ridiculed could potenitally stop someone from surfing, which I think is just terrible. Surfing has changed my life for the better and I want everyone to have that experience.

So, I’m here to say to all the surfers and wannabe surfers, go ahead and buy the products you want. Buy the board you want, buy the wetsuit you want. Be strong and live your life, you only get one.

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

I’m not a girl, not yet a woman? 

Cue Britney Spears! Recently, actress Mayim Bialik released a video on how society needs to stop describing women as girls. Click here to watch the video if you haven’t seen it.

She states that using the phrase “girl” instead of “woman” is demeaning, and I agree with here. For example, I don’t want to be viewed as a girl at work for that connotation states that I need a parent and/or I am childlike. I am a woman at that can manage workloads on my own. This type of language is also used in sports as I am deemed a “surfergirl”, which most take as a compliment.

But then I started thinking, I don’t feel like a woman. I don’t feel like a girl either. I feel truly inbetween just like that Britney Spears song.

During my yoga session I couldn’t stop thinking about why I feel inbetween girlhood and womanhood. Then, I thought again about Mayim Bialik’s video. She says its all about how we use “girl” in everyday language. How many times have I said “girls weekend” or “dinner with the girls” or its just “girl talk”? These are women I am talking about with careers, families and responsibilities. No wonder I don’t feel like a woman, since I am part of the problem.

From now on, I use the word “woman”, and maybe it will help me feel more like a “woman” than a “girl”.

~Namaste 

Scrappy Yogi 

Modifications in Surfing: A Yogi Prospective

Modifications are a common practice in yoga, especially when poses are too difficult or too strenuous on the body. Having practiced yoga for so long, I’m used to the idea of modification, that my practice is not going to be perfect, and modifying can create a positive yoga experience. When it comes to surfing, the whole idea is the perfect wave with perfect conditions. No modifications required, right? Well, I think I found one.

Recently, I got a new Retro Noserider Paragon Surfboard. She’s beautiful! 9 feet and old school; perfect for little waves and lazy summer days. She’s quite different from my other board, which is 7 feet 8 inches, and I have had my other board for a year. We know each other, and when I surf, I’m a part of my board.

I could not wait to try out my new board in the ocean, but then there was an interesting realization. I haven’t surfed on this big of a board since Maui. I don’t know the board yet, and will I even be able to surf?

A couple of my surfer buddies were going to our local break, so I decided to head on down with my new board. Once I arrived all suited up, I realized the wind was making some very choppy conditions. By the way, I loathe choppy conditions. It doesn’t make surfing that fun.

As I looked for my entry to the ocean, I couldn’t find an easy path.  With my surfer buddies egging me on to try, I finally had a realization. I can modify this experience to a positive one. Just like in yoga. I knew of a different entrance to the ocean, where it is not as intense, and walked down that way. I’m sure some surfers would tease me for this change, but honestly, I don’t care. It’s my surf life.

I had a great day trying out my new surfboard. It wouldn’t have been such a great experience if I had not remembered my yoga practice.

Readers, what have you modified in life to create a more positive experience? Also, I have started up a Scrappy Yoga Instagram, follow me @ScrappyYoga to see more pics of yoga gear, ocean waves, and surfboards.

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

 

~

 

Random Writings: Water

I have been thinking a lot lately about water. Whether that be drinking water, ocean water or the rainy forecast; the topic has been swirling. I guess what started this random thinking about water was this work week.

This week has been particularly stressful. Long days, lots of emails and lots of project deadlines. Tuesday was the longest day this week and all throughout the day my co workers kept offering me water. I kept refusing since I had my own bottle (see pic above), but then it got me thinking: maybe I don’t drink enough water?

Honestly, it is a struggle to try to remember to drink enough water and I knew once refilled my bottle. Between my love of coffee and carbonated water (not the same as water), getting in the allocated 8-10 glasses is a project for me. Especially when my day is all work and no yoga or workout. This got me thinking on the car ride home. 

Since I knew my body didnt need the water for a workout or yoga, I didn’t bother to take care of it. I just focused on my busy day. When I got home, my head was pounding and I was exhausted. I’m guessing drinking water throughout the day would have helped.

Readers, do you struggle with your water intake?

~Namaste

Scrappy Yogi

Beachbody On Demand-Yoga and Focus T25

*All opinions are my own. I am not being paid to endorse these products.

The 30 day yoga challenge has officially come to a close! Honestly, it was refreshing, fun, and super easy to add yoga to daily life. I would recommend it to anyone that is starting to get into a regular yoga practice routine. What I didn’t expect to come from the Beachbody on Demand Yoga sessions, was my obsession with Focus T25.

About two months ago, my husband and I decided to eat healthier. Not a special diet or fad, just eat clean and cut out junk food. My husband wanted to start a better workout routine as well, so we decided to try Beachbody on Demand. For those of you that do not know, Beachbody on Demand is a streaming app with all types of workouts available. This app is great because you can stream it at home or on the road when you travel (see pic above of our home gym setup). My husband started with Focus T25 with Shaun T.  The Focus T25 program consists of high intensity workouts that only last 25 minutes, and they give you a calendar to follow. You participate in three levels: Alpha, Beta, Gamma. Obviously, as you progress through the levels, the workouts get more intense.

My husband’s results were amazing! In one week, he dropped 15 pounds and he was having fun. Honestly, who doesn’t have 25 minutes a day? So I decided to also give it a try since I am always looking to become stronger as a surfer and a yogi. My first two workouts with this program were intense, but it definitely was changing my body. I decided to dedicate myself to the program, while also completing the yoga challenge, to see if these workouts helped my surfing.

After three weeks of Focus T25, I was able to surf. We had a series of terrible rainstorms that kept me beached for a while, so I was itching to get on my board. The surf for the day was sluggish at best, meaning more paddling than anything. I thought that these conditions were going to be great to test out all the working out I was doing. I got into the water and paddled into the lineup. First sluggish wave that came my way I decided to go for it. I paddled and I caught it so easily! I was overjoyed that all the working out was paying off.

Readers, what other workouts do you participate in?

Namaste

~ScrappyYogi