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February 2017

Staying Mindful While Vacationing

By: Alison Doak

Now that winter is here to stay, many of us are bee-lining to warmer climates for a quick getaway. I just returned from six days at an all-inclusive resort in Mexico. You may be picturing an all-day eating frenzy, fast flowing cocktails, and lazy days. But really, I found that I was able to strike the right balance. Some of the keys (for me anyway), include: moving my body, starting with a healthy breakfast, and seeking out all the veggies I can find. I find that on vacation, there isn’t a lot of snacking between meals, which really helps. It’s important to stay hydrated too, so alternate a glass of water between cocktails and carry a large water bottle while basking in the sun.

Exercise: Many vacationers don’t even pack their sneakers, because they are “on vacation”. Don’t exercise as a punishment - do it because it feels good, helps you sleep, keeps you regular, or makes you feel confident. Don’t wait until the afternoon, someone will serve you a cocktail at happy hour, and all of your good intentions will fly out the window! Maybe you like a hotel gym. Perhaps the hotel offers fun classes – I tried water aerobics! A walk or jog on the beach may be what you’re after. My fabulous coach, Cheryl Chandler, gave me a couple of 20 minute HIIT workouts, which I actually did on my vacation! They were intense, but quick, leaving me plenty of time to get to the omelet station and then the beach.  

Food: Most resorts offer some kind of buffet breakfast. I suggest a veggie-packed omelet with a healthy dose of tropical fruit on the side. You may find yogurts, dried fruits, and nuts as well. We even indulged in some tasty green juices. Fuel yourself well so that you aren’t looking to snack between meals. At lunch, aim for a salad with a fun protein like local shrimp, native fish, or chicken. Jazz it up with fruit, nuts, salsas, or guacamole. At dinner, choose fish or a local specialty… and really savor it.  Skip the bread basket so that you can enjoy the main course without overdoing it. Share a dessert, or order a couple for a large group to share. 

Take these tips and get out of dodge :o)

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The Benefits of Prenatal Yoga
 
Many moms, especially those who exercise on a regular basis, think prenatal yoga is a little slow. “That’s for when I’m too big to move,” they say to themselves. The truth is that prenatal yoga offers plenty of benefits to all pregnant women, regardless of how many weeks they are along, how they’re feeling, or whether they can still go for a jog or do a burpee. If you’re maintaining a more rigorous exercise schedule, that’s great! You can still get a ton of benefits from a prenatal yoga class.
 
I recommend prenatal yoga for all moms-to-be because:
 
It’s safe. The movements in prenatal yoga are designed to be safe for all pregnant moms, no matter how far along you are. You’re also encouraged to be responsive to your breath, and to take breaks whenever you need them. Prenatal yoga teachers are also able to offer modifications if you have special considerations during your pregnancy.
 
It’s good for your body AND your mind. First-time moms may have a lot on their minds during pregnancy. Second, third, and fourth-time moms may have their hands full taking care of other kids at home. All moms are trying to do their best for themselves and their babies, and this can place moms under significant pressure.  Prenatal yoga helps your mind relax while you do something good for your body. You’ll leave class feeling calm, peaceful, and de-stressed, both in body and mind!
 
It brings you into a community of other pregnant women. When you’re pregnant, your body is constantly changing, and you may not always comprehend the changes, why they’re happening, or how they are affecting you. One of the best parts about prenatal yoga is that you’re in class with other moms-to-be, and you get to talk to them after class. Just the other day, I overheard one student giving another advice on some discomfort she had been feeling, telling her that it was perfectly normal and her doctor could offer additional advice. Getting to share this time with others who understand what you’re going through is a beautiful, healthy way to experience pregnancy!
 
It gives you a chance to connect with your baby. Life doesn’t stop just because you’re pregnant. Prenatal yoga gives you the chance to slow down and acknowledge that there is incredible transformation going on inside your body. It’s an opportunity to pause, connect with your baby, and acknowledge that by doing something good for yourself, you’re doing something good for your baby, too.
 
 
Interested in trying prenatal yoga? Class is every Thursday from 6:00-6:50 pm in Studio 1. $15 for members and non-members.
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