SPECIAL EVENT: “Seren-i-Tea in the Square”. BE MY VIP GUEST THIS SUMMER!

TIME FOR A TEA PARTY!!

A few weeks ago, I  was invited to an exclusive summer yoga event, “Seren-i-Tea in the Square”. This June event will be hosted by Sokenbicha Tea, Japan’s leading tea brand that is exclusively sold at Whole Foods markets nationwide. Upon receiving news of such a fun summer tea party – I wanted to learn more about the company and their background.

Sokenbicha is called the “perfect blend of ancient wisdom and modern taste”. Their authentically brewed teas are unsweetened, contain zero calories and are made with tea blends and natural botanicals from around the globe. Sokenbicha is inspired by the teachings of Kampo, a traditional Japanese herbal approach to health and wellness dating back more than 1500 years. Each of their 5 teas are based on the elements of the earth: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water. It is believed that each element is interrelated with the others and only proper balance between all the elements will result in health and well being. The science behind the teas is based on Kampo, a traditional Japanese herbal approach.

There are five varieties of Sokenbicha:

  • Revive (Wood), a crisp oolong tea blend infused with pomegranate and raspberry notes, black tea and rose hips
  • Defend (Water), a mild oolong tea blend with guava leaves and ginseng
  • Purify (Fire), an aromatic green tea blend with chamomile and aloe
  • Shape (Earth), a bold barley tea blend with peach flower notes, pu’er and green teas
  • Skin (Metal), a full-bodied barley tea blend with cinnamon and ginger

Five different elements of tasty tea!

Just learning about all the tea’s and their background makes me THIRSTY! Im  looking forward to sampling some of the different flavors at their tea party this summer.  This June event, “Seren-i-Tea in the Square”,  will be an interactive party featuring music, meditation, yoga, education, natural refreshment and inspiration – all aimed at encouraging people to take time out to achieve balance in their hectic lives. Check out the EVENT page on Sokenbicha’s website – doesn’t it look awesome?!

HERE ARE THE EVENT DETAILS:

What: Seren-i-Tea in the Square, an interactive midday event featuring meditation, yoga, education and refreshments.

Who: Registration for this event is open to the public and you can register ANYTIME at http://bit.ly/SereniTea. , but 9 of my readers get to attend with me as VIP guests!

Some of the featured guests for Seren-i-Tea include:
Mallika Chopra – The daughter of Deepak Chopra, Mallika Chopra is a mother, author, blogger and founder of Intent.com. She will serve as event keynote to guide participants in finding serenity in their daily lives.
Stephanie Snyder (my absolute FAVORITE San Francisco Yoga Instructor!!)– Well known for her unique ability to infuse her challenging classes with strategic sequencing, yoga philosophy, technical alignment, and heart-felt humor, Stephanie has been featured on the cover of Yoga Journal Magazine, has been a contributing writer to Yoga Journals’ “Home Practice” and was named San Francisco’s most sought after yoga teacher by InStyle Magazine.

When: Saturday, June 25, 2011 from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

Where: Union Square, 333 Post Street, San Francisco, CA 94108

Why: Our hectic days are consumed with jobs, loved-ones, everyday pressures and obligations. Often the last obligation we think about is the one we have to ourselves.

This event is aimed at providing a real-time “self-moment” for participants and will offer tools and techniques to make “me-time” a deliberate and important part of daily routines – helping us achieve balance from within.

But here’s the BEST part….. In addition to inviting me, Sokenbicha has given me 9 additional invites for  guests. As my guests , you will receive a custom tote that contains a yoga mat, a designer scarf and other items, a total value of $80, plus a Whole Foods gift card for $50. A whole foods gift card and yoga mat?! Hello heaven! 

So, you might be wondering…. HOW do I get to be Caroline’s VIP and win that SWEET gift bag this summer?! Participate in the below Giveaway and join me for “Seren-i-Tea in the Square” June 25th:

I cant wait to have TEA with you this summer in the Square! The nine Giveaway winners will be selected by  Thursday, June 9th. So send your comments in and get ready for a great summer event and a special goodie bag treat! Good luck!!

Quick Disclosure: Sokenbicha partnered with bloggers such as me to participate in the Seren-i-Tea event as a VIP attendee. As part of the program, I received compensation. Sokenbicha believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Sokenbicha’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.


Caroline Jordan Fitness Weekly Update 5/22: FRESH AIR FITNESS!!

SUCCESS!!! Smiles after an awesome outdoor workout at EQUINOX SF!

Caroline Jordan Fitness Schedule and Special Events May 22 – 28:

Monday 5/23: 5:30pm Competition Core and 6-645pm Chisel’d, 6:50-7:30pm Muscles On The Mat** EQUINOX

Tuesday 5/24: *** SPECIAL EVENT!! Tuesday night Club One will be professionally filming my Sports Stretch Class from 7-730pm. If you come to class, be sure to wear your favorite spandex outfit and bring a smile! 12:30pm Cycling EQUINOX, 5pm Ball, 5:30pm BOSU, 6 pm Spin Circuit, and 7pm Sports Stretch (FILMING!) Club One Citigroup

Wednesday 5/25: 5:30-6:00pm Competition Core, 6-645pm Chisel’d, 6:50-7:30pm Muscles On The Mat EQUINOX

Thursday 5/26: 12:30pm Cycling EQUINOX .

Friday 5/27: 12pm Abs and 12:30pm Cycling EQUINOX

Saturday 5/28: 10am Chisel’d and 11am Cycling EQUINOX .

Interested In Personal Training but not sure it fits in your budget? Try out a GROUP workout! Grab some friends and schedule a couples or group session. You’ll get quality training and SUPPORT in a fun group setting. Programs are carefully tailored to fit the unique fitness needs of each client and combined with lifestyle coaching for complete health and happiness. Don’t wait till next year to be healthier: Contact Me for details.

Fearless Fitness Tip Of the Week: Fresh Air Fitness!

I grew up in a studio. From everyday Dance practice to the gym aerobics floor, I was always moving indoors. It wasn’t until I moved to San Francisco that I thought to get outside for a sweat. AND WOA what a difference fresh air makes!I was blown away by the changes I felt in both my mental and physical health. Never had I found such a challenging hill workout or enjoyed the breathtaking views from Fort Point until I stepped OUT into the real world for a workout.

Research shows spending time outdoors has a profound effect on our health and well being. Unfortunately, most of us spend over 90-percent of our waking hours indoors and rarely take the time to get outside and enjoy the serenity and calm that nature has to offer.Most indoor workouts can be boring and repetitive, not to mention force you to breathe in the stale air of the gym.Spending time outside enjoying nature is one of the most basic ways to help reduce your stress level and boost your fitness. Here are a few ways outdoor workouts can affect your overall health and well-being.

  • Free Vitamin D. Scientists recommend outdoor exercise as a way to get your vitamin D through sunlight. Read more on the benefits of Vitamin D here.
  • Fresh Air. Getting outside gives our lungs a chance to fill up on fresh air.  It’s always nice to leave your home or office and feel the fresh air on your face.
  • Mental well-being. When you spend time outdoors, especially being active, you can lift your mood, think more positively, feel more internal calm and greater harmony with the world around you.
  • New terrain. When we exercise outdoors, our mind becomes aware of the changing terrain. Whether we use the hills, sand on a beach, or a winding path, our mind has to focus differently than it would on a flat gym floor.
  • It’s free! No membership fees!!  The outdoors belongs to all of us, you don’t need any special equipment and your starting mark is wherever you make it.
  • It’s not boring. I can hardly STAND 45 minutes of the treadmill, but I look forward to getting out on a trail or in a park and to see the world. Of course, treadmills and spin classes have their place, but breaking up your routine with a run outside or a local park bootcamp can be just the kick in the pants you need to see the results you want and stick with your health and fitness goals.

Ready Set GO! Workout Ideas You can Take ANYWHERE.

When it comes to outdoor workouts, the possibilities are endless. Sometimes all it takes is a little imagination and you can make the WHOLE world your gym. Here are a few ideas to get you started…. Soon you’ll be an outdoor workout ADDICT!

Disclaimer:talk to your doctor before starting an outdoor fitness program. I tell my clients to have a goal in mind, start slowly, and work up to their potential. Outdoor exercise can be adapted to anyone’s level of fitness. And ALWAYS include a warm-up and cool down to your workout.  5-10 minutes and you’ll be ready to get in a great sweat!

Walking/Jogging/Running:

  • Intervals.You can vary your intervals with different intensities. Some ideas: Try to sprint for 20 seconds, walk/jog 20 seconds, and repeat 5 times. Or jog/run for 5 minutes with two 1-minute sprints spaced in the middle.
  • HILLS.I learned to love running hills thanks to San Francisco’s inclined terrain. To get some great ideas for hill workouts, check out this post.
  • Suicides (ladders).Use trees, streetlights, or street lines as markers Sprint to the first (closest) mark, sprint back. Then sprint to the 2nd mark and back to the start point, and so on. Try using 3 to 8 progressive marks.

Bodyweight Toning:

  • Pull ups/Chin Ups.Use any bar that you can reach and grip. If you aren’t a pull-up person (yet!) work on a chin-up hold. Grip the bar and hold your chin above it for 30-60 seconds or more. You’ll get to pull-up status in NO time!
  • Squats and lunges.There are endless variations of the squat and the lunge. Squats can be done with one foot or two; feet can be together or split. Squats can be done at a controlled, slow, fast, or plyometric pace. They can be one continuous movement or held at the bottom. Lunges can go in all directions. You can walk and lunge or take one on the spot. Make it wide or narrow, continuous or held. Make sure to always keep good technique; you should feel it in your thighs, glutes, calves and core.
  • Push-ups.You can push up against anything. The floor, a bar, a bench, or an even higher platform to give you a vertical push up. Try all different angles or pushup variations to constantly give your upper body a new challenge.
  • Tricep Dips.Use a chair, bench, step, or even hill slope on your hike. Point your fingers forward and lower your hips using your arms. Create a 90* angle and then rise back up to start. You should feel the back of your arms engage throughout the movement.
  • Step-ups and Step Downs (MY FAVORITE!). Find a platform you can step on to. Step on and off with alternate legs. Or stay on one foot and lift or lower with controlled strength. For a video of how to properly do step downs and step-ups, check out my running specific warm up.
  • Jumps/Plyometrics. Jumping jacks, burpees, squat hops, mogul jumps… the possibilities are endless. Heres my quick fix outdoor cardio circuit for a few ideas to get you started.

Yoga/Stretch/Meditation/Breath-work. You can roll out your yoga mat just about ANYWHERE you want. Do your sun salutes in a neighborhood park or on the beach by the water. Talk about transformative yoga! And of course you can stretch, breathe, or meditate anywhere as well. Take a moment to enjoy the outside and remember that real relaxation isn’t found on the couch. Take it all in and appreciate it!


Do you work out outside? How often? What’s your favorite outdoor workout?

Fearless Fitness Challenge Of The Week: Outdoor Workout Challenge!

This week’s challenge is to get active in the great OUTDOORS and take your fitness to the next level. My hope for you is that each and every outdoor workout is an adventure, an experience that is both invigorating and peaceful. With a little scouting, you’ll find many places where you can stimulate your body, draw power from your surroundings, as well as center and quiet your mind. You will enjoy not just a full-body experience, but also a full-being experience: body, mind and soul.So take a jog along the Embarcadero. Go for a long bike ride and stop somewhere for a Picnic lunch. Take a weekend hike and spend sometime enjoying beautiful views from the summit. Its SPRING time and its about time you enjoy it. So I challenge YOU to get outside and SWEAT!As always, please feel free to email me with questions, comments, or success stories! I love seeing you accomplish all of your health and fitness goals…. feel free to share!See you in class this week for another awesome workout! Have fun getting outside and sweating in the FRESH AIR!!

Caroline

SPECIAL EQUINOX OUTDOOR EVENT and a MAY POWER PLAYLIST.

SATURDAY MAY 21ST.

CHISEL’D . OUTDOORS.

10:00 – 11:00 A.M

EQUINOX FITNESS PINE STREET

HILL SPRINTS. BURPEES. STEPS.

TOTAL BODY BLITZ 110%.

GET. READY . TO . BRING . IT.

This weekend, JOIN US, for a special OUTDOOR bootcamp workout at EQUINOX FITNESS SAN FRANCISCO. Class will meet inside the gym at 10 to sign waivers and rally. Prepare to take it outside to Pine street for outdoor fitness drills guaranteed to get the whole body feeling fit and FABULOUS. Class is ALL levels. Clear skies are on the forecast for this weekend…. get ready to get out in the SUNSHINE and start your Saturday off right!

For more information about EQUINOX Fitness Club in San Francisco, please visit their website:

http://www.equinox.com/clubs/sanfrancisco

or call: 415.593.4000

Get a great workout (and a TAN 😉 with me Saturday!

Cant wait to sweat in the sunshine – hope to see you outside this weekend!!

And don’t forget to download this week’s POWER PLAYLIST. Below are the hits we’ve been ROCKIN out to in class. HEAR them live this saturday, 11am CYCLING with me at EQUINOX SF!

MAY 2011 POWER PLAYLIST. BRING IT.

  • Sweet Disposition (Axwell Remix) / The Temper Trap
  • Stereo Love / Edward Maya & Vika Jigulina
  • Sweat (Snoop Dogg vs. David Guetta) [Remix]
  • Dirty Dancer (with Usher) [feat. Lil Wayne] / Enrique Iglesias
  • Where Them Girls At (feat. Nicki Minaj & Flo Rida)
  • Party Rock Anthem (feat. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock) / LMFAO
  • More (RedOne Jimmy Joker Remix) / Usher
  • Down On Me (Disco Fries Remix) / 50 Cent
  • Peacock / Katy Perry
  • The Show Goes On / Lupe Fiasco
  • Amazing / Inna
  • Run This Town (feat. Rihanna & Kanye West) / Jay-Z
  • Young Forever (Featuing Mr. Hudson) / Jay-Z

Do you prefer to workout outside or are you a gym junkie? I was never a fan of sweating outside until I moved to San Francisco. The city’s weather and scenery is WAY too beautiful and makes you want to get outdoors for FRESH AIR! Cant wait to sweat on the EQUINOX steps!

Functional Strength for Endorphin junkies!

Get Ready to twist, lunge, and chop yourself into a STRONGER ATHLETE!


Functional Strength for Endorphin junkies! Just minutes can mean increased performance and decreased risk of injury……

Runners Run. Cyclists Bike. Swimmers swim. Triathletes throw it all into the mix. And while we’d all benefit from strength training, it’s often difficult to squeeze in extra workouts when you passion lies outside the weight room.

I get it. Im an endorphin junkie 110%. And I’d much rather get outside for a run than hit the weight room. But I’ve learned that a small investment in strength training goes a LONG way in improving performance and preventing injury.

Functional strength training can be life changing for endorphin junkies like me. This type of training aims to replicate  motions found in an athlete’s primary sport – like swinging a tennis racquet or kicking a soccer ball – but with a more holistic approach to how the body ACCOMPLISHES the action. Exercise physiologist, Pete McCall, describes the body as one muscle – with 600 pockets. “The muscles work in a coordinated effort” he says.

Endurance athletes often develop weaknesses in the core muscles that stabilize the spinal cord and promote balance and coordination between the sides of the body. Functional strength training improves those weaknesses with exercises that emphasize unrestrained motion.

Unlike traditional weight training, the most functional strength training for an endurance athlete takes place in the vertical position – the same way you run. The exercises usually involve some kind of twisting to engage the core and medicine balls or exercise bands to provide resistance.

The GREAT news is you dont need a lot of time to see results. Just 20 to 30 minutes twice a week is usually enough – remember anything COUNTS. A little bit goes a long way towards reducing injury and maintaining your athletic longevity.

Want to get started building a stronger core to support the sports you adore? Check out my latest YouTube video for functional strength, “Minutes to a Stronger Core with the Medicine Ball”. This 8 minute series will take you through several core strengthening exercises with a medicine ball. Get ready to twist, lunge, and chop your body into tip top shape for your favorite sports! Click HERE to view the video.

What are YOUR favorite functional strength training exercises? Have you tried my YouTube series? Any requests or thoughts?

The FOOD JOURNAL

The FOOD Journal!

Research indicates that we lie to ourselves. We overestimate how much we exercise and we underestimate how much we eat. You can stop that now if you keep track of everything you consume, even water. How has your nutrition improved? What new foods have you tried and loved? How have your energy levels improved? What new healthy eating habit do you want to try this week? A nutrition journal can be a crucial improvement to your life. You’ll be more aware of what you eat and how you think about eating. This can be one serious high-performance habit. If you put GOOD in – GREAT will come out. Heres how the food journal will help you learn how best to FUEL yourself.

1. A Practice of MINDFULNESS.
One of the best benefits of scrawling down your after-breakfast snack is the awareness it brings to your eating habits. It causes you to consider your food choices in a more permanent manner, rather than as a momentary tool to fulfill your desires. It forces you to be honest about how you choose to fuel yourself. Having to be mindful of food choices will make you think twice before you chow down on a sleeve of Oreos or sip a third margarita. Are you aware of all your food choices? Do you take time to eat mindfully? Do you choose foods that make your body FEEL good?

2. Helps to find Your “Perfect Fit”: the diet that suits you best.
Some diets only let you have a certain number of points or so much of a certain type of food. While these can be helpful guides in your fitness routine, no pre-written diet is truly ideal for any particular person.  There is no perfect diet out there that will work for every single individual. We are all different, and the food journal serves as a tool to FIGURE OUT what foods make YOUR body feel best. Instead of letting some diet guru or program dictate a pre-ordained eating schedule, a food journal  will help you find a way to eat that fits you best.

3. Discover missing nutrients
Sometimes it is not how much you eat but what types of foods you are eating. If your food journal shows a lack of green vegetables, you are probably missing out on several nutrients like Vitamin E, zinc, folic acid, B vitamins, magnesium, iron and others that your body needs to function properly. Lack of certain vitamins and minerals can cause many health problems, not to mention unhealthy looking hair and skin (NOT fun!). If your diet is making you feel tired, grumpy, or unfulfilled, there could be something nutritionally “off” thats causing you discomfort. Keeping a food journal will help teach you how much you need of each specific nutrient and help you ensure you’re getting enough protein, B-12, and other essential nutritional elements.

4. Stay Accountable!  No Cheeto Goes Uncounted.
The small bag of chips with lunch, a few chocolates from a friend’s stash, or the whiskey-soda after work ALL ADD UP! Rationally, you know all the little things factor in somewhere, but you cant really internalize it until you keep a food diary and see it for yourself. Writing down the here-and-there food items will keep you accountable for everything you put into your mouth and let you see where all your calories are coming from.

5. Notice Your Personal Patterns
Everyone’s metabolism and eating habits are as unique as their fingerprint. Maybe your energy plunges around 3pm, after your boost from lunch has worn off. Or, perhaps you tend to eat after you’ve received unexpected or stressful news. Using your food journal to get a handle on your own eating trends will put you more consciously in control of your diet.

6. Help Your Trainer Help You
If you’re working with a fitness professional to meet your goals, a food journal can be a lifesaver. Providing them with an insight into your true diet and eating patterns (and not just what you’d like to report!) will give them the ability to help even more. They can pinpoint ways to get back on track or provide tips to help you FEEL your best.

Fearless Fitness Challenge Of The Week: Put good stuff IN for GREAT stuff out. JOURNAL IT!

Our challenge for this week will be to keep a food journal. This week I challenge you to take note of EVERY thing that you eat and drink. The easiest way is to grab a pen and use a notebook. But you can also choose to use fancier online free diet journals like the DAILY PLATE or IPhone  applications. Choose what works best for you and whats most convenient.  Journal the following:

  1. What you eat
  2. Time you eat
  3. Portion size / serving size
  4. What you drink
  5. Exercise that day
  6. Hours of sleep

Id also like to challenge you to dig DEEPER and note how certain foods make you feel after you eat them. Do you feel energized or lethargic after a meal? Are you losing, gaining, or maintaining your weight? Do certain foods cause allergic reactions or mood swings? Do you feel exhausted all the time? Are you enjoying what you’re eating, and are you getting all the nutrients you need? Listen to your body my friends…it will tell you what works for you and what doesn’t. Your ultimate goal should be to FEEL GOOD and to have the ENERGY you need to ENJOY life. That’s what its ALL about right?

SEVEN DAYS of Food Journaling….. are YOU up for the challenge?! Looking forward to hearing how it goes – let me know if you have any questions!

Other things you should check out this week:

Thanks again for being an amazing fitness family! Good luck with the food journal challenge this week and I’ll see you in class soon for another ROCKSTAR workout!

Caroline

RIDICULOUS Mix. Power Up your playlist with these sassy spring songs!!

Ummmm? Now thats just ri·dic·u·lous.

May 2011 WORKOUT Playlist: THE RIDICULOUS MIX

All of the songs on this playlist are just…. well… ridiculous. There’s Busta, Ke$ha, Willow Smith, and even some Peacocks…. I hope this helps you to ROCK your workouts! What is your favorite song to sweat to this spring? Leave a comment on the post and ADD to my playlist! Lets share some rediculously good music 😉

  • Look at Me Now (PO Clean Edit) – Chris Brown Ft. Busta Rhymes & Lil …
  • Till the World Ends (The Femme Fatale Remix) Britney Spears, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj
  • Against The Floor (Robin Skouteris Mashup) JLo Vs Britney Vs Rihanna
  • Sweat (David Guetta Remix) –  Snoop Dogg & David Guetta
  • Blow –  Ke$ha
  • Blow Ya Mind – Nicki Minaj
  • Whip My Hair – Willow
  • Woohoo (feat. Nicki Minaj) –  Christina Aguilera
  • Hello (Single Edit) – Martin Solveig & Dragonette
  • Take Over Control (Radio Edit)  Afrojack feat. Eva Simon
  • Liv Tonight – Nelly & Keri Hilson
  • Hit the Lights (feat. Lil Wayne) – Jay Sean
  • Time Machine –  Robyn
  • Peacock – Katy Perry
  • E.T. (feat. Kanye West) – Katy Perry

Want more? Check out my personal collection of SONGS …. maybe some of those will power you up too! Or even better…. check out my online schedule and COME TO CLASS – we will rock out to them together ;)

Enjoy! And make sure to WHIP YOUR HAIR while your workin it!

Reader’s Request: Nature’s Sports Drink!

 

Click here to watch my COCONUT water video. Are you nuts for coconut yet? 😉

Reader’s Request: Nature’s Sports Drink!

Q: Why is coconut water called a sports drink? Is it really an effective way to hydrate after a workout? What makes it different than water or other sports drinks and more importantly is it really worth the 2 bucks?

A. Awesome question! Coconut water has become a popular after workout choice to re-hydrate. My favorite brand is Amy and Brian’s and can be found at Whole Foods, Walgreens, and other supermarkets. Thanks to Amy and Brian’s company website, I was able to get the inside scoop on WHY coconut juice is  the perfect ALL NATURAL sports drink.

Coconut juice is an isotonic beverage. That means that its salt concentration matches that of the human
body, thus enabling fluid and mineral replacement after physical activity.  In fact, because it’s so chemically analagous to human plasma, coconut water has even been used by some third world countries to save lives through coconut IVs. This fluid can act as both a blood purifier and catalyst in the drug absorbtion process, which explains why Chief of the Food and Agriculture Organization’s Agricultural Industries Morton Satin calls
coconut water, “the fluid of life.”

A recent scientific study conducted at the medical school of a major university in Malaysia demonstrated
that coconut juice is as effective as sports drinks (carbohydrate‐electrolyte beverages) as a rehydrator, without the added sugar, additives, artificial flavorings and chemical colorings commonly found in those beverages (have you LOOKED at the ingredients in some of those “sports drinks”?).   Coconut Juice is all natural and nature’s most highly concentrated source of electrolytes.

The other nutritional benefits of coconut juice are delicious. It has more potassium per equivalent serving
than a banana. It is lower in calories than any popularly consumed fruit juice including grapefruit juice
(76 per eight ounce serving), and has 10% of the sodium found in tomato juice. Coconut juice, unlike
other tropical juices, is alkaline so it doesn’t upset the stomach. Coconut juice is low in natural sugars,
containing about half of that found in orange juice and less than a third of grape and pineapple juices.  Coconut water  also has potent antibacterial and antifungal qualities due to its high lauric acid content. This tropical treat is known to boost metabolism and revitalize skin, hair, and immunity.

There’s SOOOO much good stuff in coconut water – I think it is ABSOLUTELY WORTH the 2 bucks. Hope I was able to answer your question on using COCONUT water as a way to hydrate throughout your day.

Do YOU use coconut water? What is YOUR favorite brand? Have you noticed any health benefits since adding it to your diet? I love Amy and Brian’s but Im always open to trying new things! CHEERS to you and enjoy your coconut water!

CELEBRATE your MOM!

Mom with her two kids: Caroline and Tim!

In honor of mothers day, I would like to take this time to share my story, and to THANK the first and most important teacher I’ve ever had, my mother.
Story First Published In IDEA Health and Fitness May Newsletter 2009, “Mother Daughter Teaching Teams”.

“The sound of a 36 count cues me to wake up. It’s 5:30 in the morning and time for my mother’s step class. Quickly I dress to meet her in the kitchen as she finishes her coffee and carefully reviews her choreography. We have rehearsed the routine before and I get to demonstrate the advanced options during the class. Together we head out into the early morning for another energetic workout and the start of a great day.

Fitness has always been a part of my life. My mother was an aerobics instructor back in the colorful days of leotards and legwarmers. Together we attended pre/post natal fitness classes, mother-daughter workouts, dance lessons, and fitness conventions. Each workout nurtured my excitement and passion for group fitness.

I was 15 when I told my mother my future was in fitness. I wanted to be a successful group exercise instructor. Any mother would be concerned, as fitness wasn’t an acceptable or profitable career path at the time. Through my strong will and commitment, I continued to pursue my dream with a determination to be successful at what I loved. My mother did what any loving mom would do: support me in my goals and help me every step class of the way.

Ten years later I find myself happily working as a full time fitness professional. Everyday I am grateful that I find passion and purpose in my work. My mother’s powerful and positive influence has enabled me to create a career from something I love. Her lessons brought me more than simple choreography ideas, but the skills needed to succeed as an instructor and an adult. The most important thing she taught me? That group fitness is not just about exercise, but about creating an experience that brings joy to people’s lives. The spirit and enthusiasm that she has for fitness continues to inspire me today. Thanks mom for making a difference in my world, so that I can make a difference in others.”

Read more about how my mom inspires me to LIVE with wellness in mind. Click HERE for her inspiring story.

And don’t miss a personal Mother’s Day Greeting from the BOTH of us! Watch by clicking here.

CELEBRATE Your MOM today and EVERYDAY! Build a stronger relationship with your mom by sharing a workout or activity you LOVE. If you cant physically be together today, go for a walk or dedicate your yoga practice to the mother in your life. The family that sweats together stays together (physically or in spirit) Spend quality time together, be active, and live long, healthy lives! HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!

The Secret To Sprinting.

Is life a marathon or a sprint?

Think life is a marathon? You keep running and running and whoever goes the longest wins? THINK AGAIN. Life is a series of sprints. You sprint, sprint, sprint, and then rest and recover. That way you’re always exerting maximum effort for the best result, but you rest so you dont burn out. If you just keep sprinting you’re gonna die quickly without living.

Two weeks ago I strained my right adductor muscle teaching cycling. It was painful, frustrating, and Im SO GLAD it happened. When I hurt myself my life was going a million miles a minute. I was doing it all – on top of the world and feeling good. I couldn’t see how much I was doing because I was operating at such a high speed. I said yes to everything… and then some. And when you don’t press the pause button… life will find a way to do it for you. Guaranteed. My hip flexor strain was a minor injury… but just the reminder I needed to SLOW down. Truth be told we could all use the reminder to RELAX more. Sometimes it feels as if we are hamsters on a wheel – going round and round, continually pushing ourselves all the time, and eventually this leads to break down. In order to be filled with energy, decrease stress levels, and live a powerful life it’s important to take time to RECOVER. Going the extra mile to help the body regenerate and cope with the hundreds of daily stressors in life makes a HUGE impact.

Now that my hip flexor is on the mend, I thought Id share my hard earned lesson and remind you to rest, restore, and recover. We are in it together – fearless fitness for HEALTH and HAPPINESS. And that includes balance…. Lets talk about that.

We live in a reactive world. We often wait until something happens and then we react. This is why our health sometimes fails. We’re so busy sprinting that we don’t stop until our bodies shut down and force us to take notice of the damage we’ve done. Instead, I challenge us all to take a positive approach and prevent stress from overwhelming our systems and our lives. I challenge you to focus on your body with exercise and prioritize your mind by scheduling downtime to ensure your wellbeing.We all want to go fast and accomplish more goals than there is time for in a day. But sometimes you have to go slow in order to go fast. By recharging your batteries and taking care of your health you will set the foundation that will have you feeling great and able to perform like a world class athlete.

Don’t get me wrong – I love intense workouts and training hard. You’ve been to class… we WORK it out! And I love coming into work and seeing people get after it in the gym. Yet there are still too many people on the edge of injury. Whether it’s a lack of sleep, high stress, too much time sitting at a desk, or running around like a crazy mess – we can all do a better job of maintaining our bodies. It’s hard not to fall into the misleading belief that doing only strength work and cardio will keep you healthy. But as I learned the hard way last week, when you don’t emphasize recovery and regeneration in your routine, you end up falling short of your potential.It’s a reminder that you must recover just as hard as you train. And while nutrition plays a vital role in the process, there are other aspects that are integral to complete regeneration and overall health. Sleep, massage, bodywork, and breathwork  are all essential techniques that will help your mind and body feel refreshed and rejuvenated.  Prioritize the below strategies from fitness professional Todd Durkin for recovery and regeneration. Use them to help your mind and body function at its best.

  1. SLEEP. Sleep restores and optimizes our metabolism, memory, focus, creativity, mental processing, speed, emotional balance, musculoskeletal performance, and immune defense. And that’s just for starters… the many benefits of sleep go FAR. Sleep is the foundation that helps you function at your highest level. And yet rarely do we prioritize sleep or think about how it influences every function in the body. Maybe you can run on adrenaline for a little while, but eventually a sleep deficit catches up with you. There is no “magic number” that is right for every individual – aim for a minimum of 6-8 hours of QUALITY sleep a night and all your health dreams will come true.
  2. Yoga and Pilates.While stretching is one way to improve the flexibility of your muscles, yoga and pilates offer another form of exercise that increases your flexibility, improves your structural alignment, and enhances your breathing. We know we are too tight. We feel it when we exercise, when we sit down, when we try to lift anything off the floor. And yet we still ignore our pain. Your body is telling you (sometimes SCREAMING at you) what’s wrong and yoga, pilates, or any other concentrated stretching will help improve your flexibility and facilitate relaxation. If you are super tight, stretching for 10 minutes after your workout isn’t enough. If you need to emphasize flexibility, prioritize it on a daily basis and feel free to do it multiple times a day. If you want help making time for yoga, pilates, and flexibility training, check out my latest quick fix stretching videos on youtube. Or for more detailed information on mind body workouts check out the blog for my yoga thoughts and pilates tips.
  3. Meditation and Breathwork.  We breathe, on average 18,000 and 22,000 times a day. How often do you stop and pay attention to your breathing? Seldom to never right? Its amazing, but the simple process of listening to your breath and focusing on it becomes a tremendous aid in feeling balanced, reducing stress, and controlling anxiety. Whenever you are stressed, worried, or tense, use your breathing to help calm yourself down. Take a few deep breaths and quietly let stress go with each exhalation. Simple breathing and meditation techniques can aid in immediate stress relief – all it takes is practice!
  4. Massage and Bodywork.Listen closely: massage and bodywork is not a luxury. It’s a necessity. Your body needs hands on attention to function correctly, and by integrating massage and bodywork anywhere from once a week to once a month, you’ll experience regenerative benefits for your mind and body. The pliability and the quality of your fascia are improved by massage and bodywork. When you exercise or sit for too long, adhesions build up in your connective tissues that restrict movement, comfort, and performance. By addressing your fascia with human touch, you can remove muscle tension and stiffness, heal quicker from injuries, improve joint flexibility, and improve range of motion so you can move more efficiently and feel better.  It doesn’t matter if your knees ache, your back hurts, or you have frequent headaches. Massage and bodywork can treat the cause and help you feel better from head to toe. Don’t know where to go for the bodywork that’s right for you? Check out some of my favorites like Joel Banuelos at San Francisco Bodywork and Psoas Massage on my yelp page.
  5. Vacation.How long has it been since you took time off? Its time to look at your schedule and plan a vacation. Whether it’s a long weekend or a tropical getaway, take some time away from it all. Reward yourself for all of your hard work. Do something you love. Find adventure. Don’t make excuses or say you’ll get around to it. Make it happen and it will serve as incentive and a reward for all the hard work you put towards making healthy changes. After all, it’s all about creating an extraordinary life. And reward is one way to guarantee that your mind is right and your body is fresh.

The world isn’t going to slow down anytime soon. Life is overwhelming at times, exhausting at others. But if you want to keep sprinting you need fresh legs. And I promise the strategies provided above will act as preventive medicine. Incorporate them into your regular routine and you’ll feel better and achieve more. Don’t wait until your health fails and you’re tackled short of your goals. Once you apply these strategies, you’ll feel completely rejuvenated and you’ll be shocked by how much the quality of your life improves.

Fearless Fitness Challenge Of The Week: Make Time For Relaxation in your Life

How much time do you make for recovery techniques? Recovery refers to any techniques you use to relax and improve your body. These strategies should be applied to both your mental and physical needs. Sleep, massage, yoga, meditation, healthy eating, and vacation. Is there a way you could incorporate more of these into your days? How can you make more time for more recovery, relaxation, and stress free living?

Ill make you a deal – If you remind me… Ill remind you to rest, restore, and recover. Lets relax hard – so we can SPRINT to the finish and WIN at life.
Thanks again  for being such a positive fitness family and bringing me joy every time I teach. Have a great week and Ill see you for another GREAT class soon 🙂 We’ll train hard so you can RELAX harder 😉

Caroline