Tuesday, October 4, 2011

8/27/2011 Finish line

Yogatones interviewd for Chicago Tribune Health section

Yogatones interviewd for Chicago Tribune Health section....Men & Women book your hooping experience with me @ The Spa at Trump....pre wedding for the ladies, bachelor party for the men, couples, families....EVERYONE come get yo hoop on!! Or double it up Yoga & Hooping with ME!
Hula hoop a great workout, trainers say http://shar.es/b0Exs

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Tri Stories: T-20.....Sunkissed Skin & Inner Peace

Lovin' my Sunkissed Skin!

Tri Stories: T-20.....Sunkissed Skin & Inner Peace

 Great training this past week......after allowing myself some rest from swimming, I went back at it with different energy. Tuesday's open water swim gave me that extra boost I needed, my biggest concern about swimming in the lake; the depth of the water......After getting in and actually swimming at my race location, I became a bit more confidant in my abilities, a bit reassured....exactly what I needed! My top swimming priority up till Tri day....I'll be working on increasing my endurance in the water! I can't be stoppin' in the LAKE....Lol.....but very serious......Mindy, one of my swim coaches gave me some cool tips and techniques that I've been practicing, I'm swimming in the lake again this week.....with intentions of increasing to, two swim days in the lake.....I hope....well if time permits. Anywhoo....I'm super excited & super ready for this triathlon!!

Relaxin" post workout at WAC

I've been relaxing the mind, body and spirit as much as possible, long meditations, restorative yoga practices, soaking up the sun, good sleep and plenty of fruits, fluids and steam bath's.  I'm going to schedule a deep tissue massage for next week......Ahhhh......It's my intention to participate in  the triathlon with complete inner peace and to have TONS of FUN!!
Post teaching a Yoga class...Headin'
out for a bike ride

Peace Love & Sunkissed Skin Y'all


Monday, August 1, 2011

Tri Stories: Home Stretch, Y'all!!

Tri Stories: Home Stretch, Y'all!!

Me leaving the gym today!
Showered & HUNGRY!!
Well, this is it, the count down to my triathlon sprint is ON!!!  I'm going to post a pic or few on my blogg daily........July proved to be such a challenging month, I hit such a wall with swimming that I took last week off........I needed to fall back and get it together, 'cause the attachment I created was sure to hurt me on race day. 

I practiced yesterday.......what I didn't realize....Antonie, on of my swim coaches was watching me from a far!! After a while he comes in and says "good job Toni, now that's swimming" I can't tell you how good those words sounded to my ears........I ask Antonie a few questions "what am I going to do in open water, when I need to stop?" (this is a fact, I'll need breaks).  Antonie suggest I practice turning over into back strokes when I need a break......I spend the remainder of my swim practicing just that.  Tomorrow I'm going in for my FIRST OPEN WATER SWIM.........inhale.......exhale.......I'm just gonna get it DONE!!

My personal practice today..
DownDog (adho mukha svanasana)
Over the weekend I rode a total 45 miles.....meh......I feel very confidant about my running and biking leg of the tri, my running pace has improved!! Today I ran a 5K (indoor, to hot outside to run) in 31.15 min 10.10 mile/min.....Woot, woot, that's a GOAL I can check off!! I began this training running 13.20 miles/min with a tri goal of 10 mil/min.....with the biking, well, that never was a concern, I spin & ride on the regular, my legs are strong and thanks to my daily Hatha/Ashtanga  yoga practice, I've remained injury free and flexible!!

Yea, so I'm heading for the home stretch.....I've put the work in and I've respected the process.......I'm ready TODAY for what ever T- 26 will bring!!

Chillin' in the park.....
Peace, Love & Head Time


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Tri Stories: Going Inward….SHhhhh

Tri Stories: Going Inward….SHhhhh

Gotta take it INWARD......FOCUSED

I have a little over a month before my tri-sprint (37 days to be exact )…….I’m at the phase where it’s all within’…….I find it difficult to even write about all that is happening with me now, not only with the tri training, but in other areas of my life as well. When it rains it pours!! I happen to really like the rain storms I’m experiencing now, growth is happening…..The flip side is my writing creativity has taken a back seat, I can’t seem to find the words to blog…..I’m processing within’, focused and committed. I’ve been killin’ the miles on my bike average 50-60 miles on the weekend and another 25-30 during the week, I'm still spinning at least twice a week, running & swimming three times per week, daily yoga practice and meditation.........my weight has stabilized and thus far I’ve lost a total of 21lbs!! Though this has not been about weight loss, it feels great to have lost the weight. In regards to my running, I’m enjoying each run and defiantly notice a overall improvement in my endurance…….Then there is the swim…….yea……um…..SILENCE.

I’m grateful for this experience that I’ve embarked on, it has opened me up in way’s I never envisioned…….growth is fun, but it’s also painful at times, and right now I’m experiencing it all!! Well like I said, I’m really at a loss for written words, I just wanted to touch bases with my readers and let y’all know I’m DOIN’ IT!! No one ever said the growth process was easy…….but, I’m all about growth of mind, body and spirit, and as long as no harm is being caused to myself or others I will continue on this path of total self growth and awareness…………..I’m babbling now…..Lol…..well I am…….

Being one with nature is the best medicine for my mind, body & spirit......I say to those in search of me lately, check the lake or a nearby park, you're guaranteed to find me in either place, completely relaxed laying on a blanket in deep meditation , just letting go.......YUP, I've been leaving my words in Lake Michigan!

I’m going to sit for my eve meditation now then move through a gentle yoga practice to help prepare my body for rest……..Not sure when I’ll blog again, but for sure I will blog!! I’m thinking more about photo blogging this last month of tri-training…..hummm…..yea, I think that’s what I’m going to do………I welcome this inward time, I NEED IT!

Peace, Love & taking it inward




Sunday, July 10, 2011

Tri Stories: Weekend Wrap UP!

Monroe Harbor
Tri Stories: Weekend Wrap UP!

My training schedule is all over the place, and I like it! Now that Summer is in full swing, I’m getting’ it in outside…..Friday I got my yoga practice in then rode 23 miles on the lake & city streets and Saturday was pretty much a repeat of Friday, after my yoga practice, I rode 27 miles and a short 6 miles on Sunday....total = 56 for the weekend....Meh…..still low for me, but I’m building. I love to ride long miles and Chicago offers some nice bike paths, great way to spend time with nature & stay healthy!! Even my blogg writing time is being affected by SUMMER  in the city...Lol!! I'm going to blogg, but not on a specific schedule, I need to be out with Mother Nature and "Dem" Lol.....

Looking South

I mentioned last week that my right IT band was nipping at me…..It has since quieted down a lot, the yoga  sequence I put together for my personal practice has kept my IT happy. After my yoga & 27 mile ride on Saturday, I chilled in the park, the beach was wayyyy. to crowded, I was looking to soak up some Vitamin D & a bit of peace…..Saturday was beautiful out! People everywhere, volleyball on the beach, cover band playing on a nearby resturant roof top….bikers, runners, walkers……EVERYONE!! I avoid the busy beaches as I hit up Lake Shore Dr…….(North Ave beach is the worst,  and Fullerton beach being a close second). I hop off and hit the street path until I get a bit further south around Monroe Harbor, things start to peace out after the Shedd Aquarium, the ride south is pretty nice not so much foot traffic.......Anywhoo, I laid in the park for 2.5 hours, eyes closed, soaking up the sun while  gettin' in that HEAD TIME in…..YUM…….Soooo needed! Then a stranger strikes up  a lovely conversation with a me, which led  me to re-read the book *The Four Agreements* By Don Miguel Ruiz.


I’m a true believer that life happens just as it’s supposed to…..This dude, was about 20 steps away from me layin' in the grass chillin’ & tappin’ away on his Ipad…..we get into a conversation about life, living in fear.....a nice cool conversation, then he mentioned The Four Agreements and was able to recite each agreement in detail, not verbatim, IN DETAIL……I like that, someone who absorbed what they’ve read, I’ve struggled with that for as long as I can remember. I’m always impressed when people are able to tell you about a book from their mind set...... I read the book once before, and absorbed the words, but that was over two years ago…….I listened with intent as he went into detail, my memory kicked in and I could recall parts of the book.

I took that as a sign that I needed to re read the book……..Sometimes in life we crave, and need gentle reminders, to keep us grounded……well, I speak for myself, I need that at times……I peddled home thinking about my conversation with this stranger, (I would attempt to spell his name but I really don’t recall, (it was extremely difficult to pronounce), after the fifth WHAT!?!  I didn‘t want to ask for the sisth time….Lol..…….he was tall (like basketball player tall), peaceful and gave off a good grounded energy, I felt like the conversation was supposed to take place….[[SIDE BAR: initially he asked me out, but, um, I’m no COUGAR and dude was in his early twenties….Lol….It’s always the babies, that approach me…..always the babies……..Lol…..Once I broke it to him gently, he stopped the 20 yr old pick up rap  and got to real talk……Funny…..End SIDE BAR] The one thing I do love about meeting people, is that you learn so much about humans…WE ARE ONE……pretty much we all want to give love,  be loved, we want peace on earth and good will, good  health  for thy self & neighbor, we want loving families and dear friends……….The thing is…..we tend to want all those things, but live a fear based life, which locks us up…..We cant have any of the above if we don’t give it fearlessly....gotta be love to receive love……Yea, I thought about our conversation the entire peddle home.

Sunday I sleep in a bit, then sit for meditation….Oh, yea, my meditation is back on track and I’m feeling good!!  I pack my swim gear throw  on some running gear (just incase ), I was craving a run but not sure about it. I practiced all of my swim drills, when I walked into the pool Monica one of the swim teachers was in with a client, she smiled as she spoke, I was glad she was there, because no matter how much work I may need to get done, I will put the time and energy in to get it done! Monica’s a teacher that would not respect MY process if I was not putting in MY time, her smile let me know that. #imdeadserousaboutthisswim. I’m still not ready to go into deets about the swim……don’t know if I will, I’m really just keeping it peaceful, and leave what happens in the water in the water……..I can’t get caught up, it just slows me down, and I’m only interested in moving forward…

After my swim, I head to a local coffee/tea spot, make myself comfy and pull out *The Four Agreements* and proceed to read it cover to cover…..EXHALE………..I needed that! I know the four agreements, I made them in to a nice mantra, and used the mantra for sleep last night and meditation today

Peace, Love & The Four Agreements
-I will be impeccable with my words

-I will not take anything personally

-I will not make assumptions

-I will always do my best

I'm committed to these four agreements, as I continue to transform my life to new experiences of freedom, true happiness, and love…….

I slept well last night……



Thursday, July 7, 2011

Taking it in PEACEFULLY…..

Lotus (variation)
 Tri Stories: Taking it in PEACEFULLY…..

Being able to take my training outdoors is so sweet! Up and ready to go this morning, I began with meditation, followed by sun salutations, then I hit the pavement. I love running or biking while everyone heads into the office, making eye contact with the suits as they sit in morning traffic, gawking at me with a wishful look to say “ oh how I wish I was running now”…..Lol. Running in my hood is very peaceful, I really enjoy the running meditative state I easily transition into. Today I ran 4 miles in 30 minutes!! I was feeling great about the time, but lately I’ve noticed my right IT band is not happy post runs. This week I changed up my yoga practice, a nice vinyasa flow, followed up post runs with a nice hatha practice…….the change is making my IT happy. Mary, my ashtanga teacher said to me “ I’m amazed at how loose your hams, knees & It have stayed loose during this training”, I agree, for sure my yoga practice plays a significant role in my continued flexibility and I’m very grateful for that and for my commitment to my mat. I know so many people training for athletic events, who continuously pop tons of aspirin or ibuprofen, which are temporary fixes, don’t get me wrong I was all about it before I began practicing yoga and educating myself on how to heal myself without the use of drugs. So I know the mindset that takes place, I just wish we placed more emphasis  on preventative insurance coverage affording people the opportunity to  educate themselves on preventative wellness. I personally prefer to purchase a series of yoga classes & massages over aspirin/ibuprofen, and more than likely prescribed drugs at some point…….It even makes sense financially, it’s a lot cheaper in the end if you take care of yourself  first…..TRY IT!
Try this......

Instead of this...

After my lovely run I move into my post yoga practice, sitting in Lotus pose to ground with my breath…….I listened to my body and allowed my breath to guide me in and out of a beautiful practice…..Ahhhhh……Just what I ordered……

Natural release

I attended my swim class today…….I’m not going into details, I need to process and be with the experience……I will say, it was MUCH better than last week, Antonie give us some cool drills that I will work on before next week. My two water buddies Tom & Todd let out a big “heyyy, ya came back” when I walked in…..lol, that was nice. I’m not feeling good or bad about the swim toda…..I’ve decided to work on absorbing theses lessons peacefully, with the intention of practicing them peacefully, my goal being a peaceful swim on tri day…… I tend to turn up the anxiety level within, when I'm attached to things, even if my exterior appears grounded……I’ve know this……..BUT….. Learning how to swim has brought this attachment anxiety back to the forefront…….the difference is now, I’m ready to work on it………I could feel a smidge of peace in the water today.....just a smidge………I’M GROWING Y’ALL!

Peace, Love & Taking it all in.......PEACFULLY