Today marks my absolute FAVORITE day of the week…. THURSDAY! It used to be solely because of Grey’s Anatomy. BUT about 20 weeks ago I embarked on my journey to inner peace, acceptance and growth by attending my first ever yoga class. Intimidating as any first yoga class would be, this however, was just the opposite. I’ve talked about my instructor in a previous blog post, but Caitlin is absolutely one of THE most stunning people I know. She just brightens up your entire day with her personality. Add yoga to that and BAM! It’s like a wash of calming, relaxing, can’t live without BLISS! Her yoga classes are AWESOME! She is so patient and always willing to help if there is something we just aren’t getting or something we are for sure needing a modification on. I used to think yoga was just for those ladies half my size, and the closest my yoga pants would ACTUALLY get to yoga would be… well… my couch! Ha! This has just proven the exact opposite. I CAN do this…. ANYONE CAN DO THIS! It’s about YOU! I’ve come SO far in my practice and I’ve grown so much both mentally/emotionally and physically!
So, I went ahead and compiled a list of my 7 essentials for any new yoga student. Whether it be for at home practice or to bring with you to your practices;
1. Strap – I am still in search of the PERFECT strap that works just as the ones in my actual yoga studio do. I find the ones that I’m finding are too thin for me. I’m sure it is that I am not looking in the right place. I have YET to physically walk into a sport store looking for this. I always forget when I am out, until I get home and want to practice that neat thing we did in class and I don’t have the proper strap. Anyway, get your hands on these and I promise it will take your yoga SO much farther.
2. Blocks – You can find these cheapest probably at Five Below. They work the same and are also structured the same. I’ve seen these range at other stores from $10-$20 depending on the size and name brand.
3. LIP BALM – I particularly am in love with my Rosebud Salve Strawberry Lip Balm, but I also always keep a Burt’s Bees on me. You know – it’s my obsession!
4. Yoga Bag – Or gym bag I suppose. My absolute FAVORITE is this bag from Thirty-One. I actually have it in this print too! Only mine says “Here for Savasana” on the front. My yoga mat fits perfectly on the back of the bag. There’s a spot for my stinky shoes… AND when I’m wearing earrings, or traveling with them, there is even holes for you to pin them to! I freaking love this bag!
5. Hair ties – DUH!!!
6. Yoga Mat – I feel like this is another DUH!!! You can find these also at Five Below. I feel the quality is more or less the same at a fraction of the price. I think the prints are even prettier. But if you would rather get an “official” sport store yoga mat, that’s fine too… Expect to pay between $5 and $30 depending on where you go.
7. Water bottle – Again… Kind of a DUH!! Moment. But, you also don’t realize how intense yoga can be vs. working out at the gym. You can sweat just as much, and need to replenish your body just as if you were working out on the treadmill or elliptical at the gym. You’re just working your muscles in different ways.
And there you have it… my 7 essentials for any yoga beginner! Today marks the end of my second 8 week session. Next week I will begin a 6 week session with 30 minutes of cardio prior to my yoga practice! I cannot wait to see the difference it makes!
Hu Tieu (also spelled Kuy Teav and គុយទាវ) is a Cambodian pork and seafood noodle soup, much like the Vietnamese Pho. While I’m a huge fan of Pho (it’s in my cookbook), sometimes it’s a little too beefy for my tastes; Hu Tieu serves as an excellent break from the norm.
It’s believed that this dish originated among Chinese immigrants living in Cambodia, and later spread to the rest of the…