A Winter Cleanse: Yoga, Yard Sales & Louis Armstrong

Sometimes, moving forward means getting rid of the past. Parts of it, at least. While I’m by no means a militant health fanatic, it also means consciously incorporating healthful tidbits into your everyday.

For some, that means buying a pretty dress from the Alice and Olivia sample sale (oh, you live in New York City? Go! Great stuff on the sample rack; this was just $49)…

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…and selling bag upon bag of clothing and shoes on ebay and to Buffalo Exchange to reduce excess (because who needs two puffy coats anyway; there are already nine bids on this old beauty).

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It doesn’t matter how you do it, really. For me, finding balance again after weeks of feeling crazed meant incorporating a week of three five-mile runs (check!)…

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(Rainy or not, here I come!)

…snacking on Mallowmars while consciously cooking up healthful meals (check!)…

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(Arugula, sweet corn, tomato and mushrooms, with a hint of Parmesan cheese, also known as all the stuff that was about to go bad in my fridge. I hate waste!)

…drinking horribly colored smoothies (it’s amazing how aesthetically tragic a handful of spinach can make a strawberry-banana smoothie appear)…

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…and returning — finally — to a studio in Manhattan to commit to a full one-hour yoga flow.

That last one came yesterday, Tuesday morning, after a meeting to discuss a pretty cool new app called Yog, which encourages users to run with anyone, anywhere in the world. Kind of neat, right? After chatting up a storm about what it means to me to be a runner and blogger in New York City, with 10 minutes to spare, I walked from Irving to University where I reacquainted myself with Yoga Vida, my former flowing friend.

Although I was undoubtedly excited to get back to my yogi roots, to be honest, the experience confirmed the fact that I’m simply far too antsy these days to submit myself to a full hour of anything. Within the first five minutes, I found myself kindly requesting (silently in my head, of course) that the instructor stop talking about “finding your center” and “reaching deep down within.” I know I sound like a grouch. And really, I don’t know why I’m unable to connect with these instructors who are just verbalizing the same things I think about on my own.

In all fairness, it probably didn’t help that I felt like crap on Tuesday, my throat kind of scratchy, my body achy and sore. To top it off, my piriformis had been throbbing for about 24 hours, and so no matter what pose we were instructed to flow into, I disobeyed and found myself in pigeon once again. This rogue sequence spanned the duration of the class. Have I mentioned I love pigeon?

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On the bright side, 10AM yoga classes are empty, spacious and decidedly pleasant. The flow was slow and created with morning risers in mind, and the music, which included a little Simon and Garfunkel, was perfect and light.

The soundtrack aligned well with the kinds I’ve been running to all winter — mainly the tunes of Louis Armstrong and Ray LaMontagne. By putting down the electronic dubby techno madness and switching over to something more representative of the holiday season, one can cleanse themselves through sound as well — at least, that’s what I find.

So, that’s it from me for today, kids. When it comes down to it, this entire year — my first year in the blogosphere — has been about learning how to balance the loves, likes, needs and wants of living in New York City while throwing a little bit of fun, indulgence and debauchery in between. When the latter takes form, simply remember to cleanse once again — and I don’t mean with a 1,200 calorie diet of liquid juices (though if that floats your boat, I’m not one to judge). To each their own, as long as it leads to happiness and health in the end.

  • How do you cleanse when you’ve been naughty?
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5 thoughts on “A Winter Cleanse: Yoga, Yard Sales & Louis Armstrong

  1. Water and extra veggies! I wish I had more opportunities for yoga, my small town doesn’t have much to offer, but I’m growing a nice collection of DVDs.And I just started selling books on Amazon. seriously, my new fav hobby!

    • Have you tried yogadownload.com? Not bad. YouTube has a nice collection too. I’ve been loving Jillian Michaels’ yoga meltdown lately, but it is t-o-u-g-h!

    • Well it actually tastes delicious. That’s what I love about adding spinach to strawberry and banana, you can hardly taste the health at all. I’m pretty sure it worked though, felt much better the next day.

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