• Hydrating Watermelon and Feta Salad

    Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 10.28.19 AMThis salad is great for the hot summer months.  Watermelon is 92% water, so you are sure to stay hydrated at even the hottest picnic. Try adding mint or basil if you like!

    Watermelon and Feta Salad:

    • 1 small package baby arugula
    • 8 cups 3/4-inch cubes seedless watermelon
    • 1 package feta cheese, crumbled
    • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar glaze (you can find this is in dressing isle or make your own!)
    • Basil or mint, torn into small pieces (optional)

    Arrange arugula on a large platter.  Top with watermelon and crumbled feta. Drizzle with glaze!

     

  • VIDEO: Yoga Alignment

    Screen Shot 2014-07-09 at 11.51.14 AMIn Yoga, alignment is crucial for avoiding injury and getting the most out of your practice.  Find out how to correct a few alignment issues with Lila Rasa, Soma’s resident yoga therapist!

    Check out the Video here.

    Lila is a Yoga Therapist and Teacher Trainer with over 12 years teaching experience. She is available for privates and can be contacted at lilarasa@gmail.com or check out her website here.

     

     

  • Yoga for Pregnancy

    Screen Shot 2014-07-09 at 10.58.23 AMThe practice of Yoga is one that provides an expecting mother with stability on many levels, as well as giving her the ability to go with the flow of life as it unfolds from within and around her. It serves as a way for a woman to connect with her ever-changing body, and to trust in her own ability to create the support her body needs, as well as to trust in the process of life. A mother-to-be learns to connect with her own inherent wisdom, developing skills that aide her throughout her pregnancy, as well as in her journey of motherhood.

    Because a woman undergoes so many changes throughout pregnancy, having a practice that gives her the tools she needs to stabilize her body, most specifically her SI-joints, is helpful. The SI joint, or sacro-iliac joint, connects the sacrum to the ilium on each side of the pelvis, and both are put under a lot of pressure during pregnancy, especially if a woman has already given birth before. Learning to support the SI joints in a way that keeps them stable while still opening and stretching muscles in the hips and legs is empowering and effective. It allows a woman to feel secure in her pelvic girdle, opening the downward flowing energy, called apana vayu, in yoga. This in turn creates space for the prana vayu (upward flowing energy) to open, allowing her breath to move more freely, as well as giving space to her organs, which get more compressed the further along her pregnancy is. An expecting mother learns to create the necessary actions in her body that allow her to be comfortable no matter which stage she is in during her pregnancy.

    Mothers tend to give so much of themselves to their children, especially in the first few years of motherhood. Establishing a practice that feeds Mom on many levels – physical, mental, emotional, energetic – creates a good pattern that she can carry into her journey of mothering. When a woman learns to give herself the nourishing time she needs, even if it’s only 5-10 minutes a day, she can create an inner connection that she carries with her throughout her day. She learns to trust in the process of life that’s constantly presenting itself in interesting, and perhaps eventful circumstances, while staying anchored in an abiding sense of calm – that’s the idea, anyway! And the practice of yoga is certainly called “practice” for a reason. It gives Mom the opportunity to connect deeply with herself and her own spaciousness, perhaps bringing this forth throughout her day-to-day life, no matter how chaotic or ungrounding things might be. And this, as any mom knows, is valuable.

    Lila is a Yoga Therapist and Teacher Trainer with over 12 years teaching experience. She is available for privates and can be contacted at lilarasa@gmail.com  Check out Lila’s Website here.

  • Exercise During Pregnancy

    Screen Shot 2014-07-09 at 10.39.09 AMShould you or shouldn’t you exercise during your pregnancy?  This is the question.  I have been supporting women through their pregnancy for many years now, watching how they handle the changes and challenges of their growing belly.  I have come to know that exercise is an important part of staying healthy during this unique time with some guidelines:

    -low impact exercise is better than high especially later in the pregnancy; like walking, swimming or stationary cycling.
    – It may not be the time to start a new exercise especially a strenuous one that requires balance and skill.  It is better to stick with activities that your body is familiar with except if you are working with an instructor or personal trainer.
    -Only working out to 75% capacity is better than really demanding exercise.  Doing a little exercise every day is better than one day of hard exercise.
    – Listening to your body as is very important during pregnancy.

    I recommend this article for more info:

    http://www.webmd.com/baby/exercise-during-pregnancy

    Exercise and eating well is the cornerstone of health and especially vital while building a baby.  I highly recommend the following teachers and classes who all specialize in pregnancy exercise.  Being fit supports labour, delivery and motherhood in very deep ways.

    Here are some resources across Vancouver:

    Prenatal Yoga:
    Lori Lucas, http://yogawithlorilucas.com/ Round House Community Center, Tuesday/Thursday 5:45pm-7:15pmNurture yourself and your growing baby with gentle Hatha Yoga. Learn yoga poses and relaxation techniques to alleviate the common discomforts of pregnancy and to prepare for your labour and delivery.

    Teresa Campbell, Semperviva, Saturday 12pmTeresa has honoured her calling in teaching powerful prenatal yoga, joyful mom and baby (and dad) yoga and inspiring yoga workshops for expectant couples that empower, validate and celebrate couples on their journey. Guided by her experiences, education and sincere love of people, Teresa creates warm and sacred space for others to discover the transformational power of yoga.

    Prenatal Pilates:
    Diana VanderVeen,  Round House Community Center, Monday 6-6:45pm
    This class will leave you feeling more toned and graceful in all trimesters of your pregnancy. Improve posture through core strength, stability and proper alignment. Learn breathing exercises that will help prepare you and baby for labour.

    Prenatal Fitness:

    Fit4Two, www.firfor2.ca  Many locations in Vancouver

    Connect with other moms-to-be in your community while reducing prenatal discomforts like lower back ache and swelling. Your certified pre and postnatal fitness specialist will lead you through pregnancy-safe cardiovascular, strength training, and flexibility exercises. All trimesters welcome to participate.

    Barefit and Pregnant, 3668 West Broadway (at Alma), Monday, Wednesday 4pm, 7pm. Friday 4pm, 5:30 pm

    For a healthy pregnancy, exercise is important. Join us 3 times a week for a fitness program designed specifically for pregnant women. Our one hour sessions cover: The do’s and don’ts of exercising while pregnant, Appropriate exercises for each trimester of pregnancy, Aerobics classes, Strength training, Safe abdominal exercises, a chance to meet other moms-to-be. All fitness levels welcome.

    Christina Longo, personal trainer, www.premiertraining.ca

    Premier Personal Training specializes in applying scientifically proven pre-natal exercise principals developed by the National Academy of Sports Medicine, one of the leading athletic educational bodies in North America, to the pregnant client. We can help you exercise safely and effectively at any stage of your pregnancy.

     

    Why should I choose a personal trainer who specializes in Pre-Natal Training?
    Due to the physiological changes that occur in a pregnant woman during her different trimesters, strict exercise selection guidelines must be adhered to, since the wrong choice with a pregnant client can cause an exaggerated injury, not only to the client, but to the fetus, as well. Thus, our expertise ensures a margin of safety while still optimizing your progress and results.

    Why should I exercise during my pregnancy?
    Research has shown that women who actively engage in exercise have a more comfortable pregnancy and may have a shorter labor and less need for medical interventions.  Other studies have shown that women who exercise regularly, prior to and during the first and second trimesters, feel better in the third trimester and perceive less exertion during labor. Furthermore, regular exercise during pregnancy will help to prevent lower back pain, keep your weight at a safe level and speed your weight loss after the pregnancy.

     

    -Lori Johnson, RMT