Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bikram Yoga, It's finally Spring cleaning and Pretty Flowers!

 The Southern Stump doing Triangle at the Lourve in Paris

It's Spring in London and the weather is gorgeous!  It is sunny most days which is surprising to me as I just assumed it would rain all the time here.  I enjoy getting out more now that the weather is nice.   

The next few months are extremely busy.  I have two trips planned back to the United States for my best friend's bachelorette weekend in May and her wedding in June.  I am so excited as this is something we have talked about since we were playing dress up as 5 year olds.  It will be a very special time for us as friends and, obviously, for her and her family.  I really can't wait.  With that said,  Operation "I will not ruin the wedding photos" training has begun.  I have been surprised that I haven't put on more weight since moving here as I haven't exercised as obsessively as I did in New York but...don't be fooled,  I need to tone up in a MAJOR WAY.  My plan will consist of running and getting back to one of my favorite forms of exercise...Bikram Yoga.

The Southern Stump doing
Half Moon at the Taj Mahal
Bikram Yoga is a series of 26 postures performed in a room that is heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit with 40% humidity that runs 90 minutes per/class.  It was developed by Bikram Choudhury and is done religiously by millions including tennis star Andy Murray,  Prince Harry, Lady Gaga and Madonna.  The heat aspect is to relieve tension and stress on the body while putting it in an environment that warms you up from the inside and allows you to go further into stretches without strain.  Bikram's philosophy is simple... "It is Never too late, never too bad and you are never too old or sick to start from scratch once again".  I love that phrase because it is true...all ages, shapes and sizes can practice this yoga and the results mentally and physically are so rewarding.

 I came to the practice in November of 2009 after being burnt out from running.  I will not lie...the first week was VERY difficult as I wasn't used to being so HOT...but after that,  I never really looked back.  When I arrived in London last year,  my first stop was to a Bikram yoga studio where I signed up for a 30 day challenge.  I attended the 90 minute sessions 30 times over a 30 day period...sometimes practicing twice a day!  It was difficult but well worth it as I felt so strong at the end of the challenge!  You can see from my photos above...that it also gave me the confidence and slight addiction of getting photos in postures taken in front of famous landmarks :)!

Last night I went to my first class since September of 2010 but I look forward to getting back in the heat next week.  I won't lie...the work that I did last fall in my 30 day challenge all died in the months I didn't practice but that's okay...Bikram Yoga is a constant practice and is never perfected so the most I can do is just get back and keep working!  Below is a video I found on Youtube from a studio in London which gives you an introduction to the series and the experience.  I highly recommend that all give it a try!!!!  You will get hooked....I promise ;)!

If you want to find a Bikram studio near you,  copy the link below and paste into your browser.

With Spring,  I have also done an overhaul of my closet.  I decided that the best way to prepare myself for the new season and to make use of my closet offerings was to try everything on,  iron what fit (because let's be honest...if I'm picking an outfit...I'll skip right over the wrinkly stuff because I don't want to bother when I have a tee-shirt right next to it!) and then organizing by silhouette and color :)!  I felt great when done and recommend it for anyone who wants to make the most of their threads!  I forgot how many cute things I have :)!

Finally,  I continue to explore my new London home and last weekend found me in Crouch End spending time with The Tester**'s mother, sister and niece.  We went out to enjoy the beautiful day and found ourselves having tea and cakes at Alexandra Palace followed by a walk through the Garden Center.  Here is a link to the palace which is casually called "Ally Pally" (love that) along with some photos to get you inspired for Spring!

Beautiful.  Tea and Cake can fix almost anything!

I hope you find beauty in the new Spring season!  Have a great weekend!

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