This is where I connect you with the tools I have found helpful in enhancing Health, Harmony & Happiness my life so that you can also use them in yours!
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Incorporating movement into your life is a major part of cultivating health, harmony and happiness, and having a yoga practice as the foundation of this movement is even better. A daily yoga practice along with regular walking for health are the primary tools I recommend for enhancing your health through movement. Here are some of the tools I recommend to help you on your movement journey!
Learn a personal yoga practice tailored to your needs through in-person Guided Self-Practice or Private Sessions at Cairn Yoga and Wellness Studio in Knoxville, IA. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your first session.
A Quality Yoga Mat
The Manduka Pro Mat is the only mat I recommend for daily use. These mats have a lifetime guarantee and will not wear or start falling apart after a few months. They are meant to be practiced on daily and only get better with time. The Manduka Pro is thick enough to provide comfort for your joints, yet stable enough that it won’t be a distraction during your practice. No need for the “extra long” version, a 26″ x 71″ mat will suit most everybody!
You may find it helpful to use blocks to bring the floor up closer to your hands as a way to support yourself in some postures. If you are just starting out and know that your mobility is limited, I recommend having a pair of blocks on hand for those times you practice at home. This is really something you could wait to purchase until you know for sure you are going to need them in your personal practice. Really the type of block you choose depends on personal preference, but I recommend these cork yoga blocks because they are environmentally friendly and the most economical value that I have found.
Foam rolling, also called self-myofascial release is a useful modality that can be used before your yoga practice or after a more intense workout session to calm your muscles and fascia back down. I often recommend students foam roll before their practice, especially if they are practicing first thing in the morning since it helps your body move a bit more freely after a 5-10 minute foam rolling session. Reach out if it’s something you’d like to learn more about, and if you already know what your doing with a foam roller, then here’s a link to the one I recommend and use!
Nutrition plays a vital role in helping you feel your best and move easier. Believe it or not, so many of the hidden ingredients in seemingly “healthy” foods can actually be causing an underlying systemic inflammation in your body that can not only make it more difficult to move, but could also be causing chronic ailments within your body that you may not even realize. I can’t say that our family 100% of the time eats “clean,” but we try to follow the 80/20 principle at least in terms of eating a clean diet. But in my opinion, you also have to enjoy life and the events that come with it, and part of that means occasionally indulging in that dessert or pre-game appetizer! But for all those other times, here are some of the resources we find to be staples in our nutrition planning.
Vitamins and Supplements
Quality of vitamins has been a priority of mine for quite some time and I’m always on the lookout for what is in the vitamins or supplements we are taking since many companies like to sneak in fillers and things like soy and sugar that actually could be working against your health. I frequently have people ask what vitamins or supplements I take, and honestly, I don’t take a whole lot, but one that everyone in our family takes year round is Vitamin D. Matt and I use these Seeking Health Optimal Vitamin D Drops. (The kids take these Zoomavit Vitamin D Drops as they are a lower dose.)
I found this company when I was looking for clean Vitamin D to take and discovered that drops were the best option for this. And I have been very impressed with other products they offer, and I also highly recommend checking out Dr. Ben Lynch’s book ‘Dirty Genes’ as it helps explain so much in regards health conditions we might have and why we react in certain ways to various irritants in our environment, diet or lifestyle.
We typically place a monthly Thrive Market order with everything from collagen for our coffee to Redmond Real Salt for…everything! A Thrive Market membership is easily worth it for us, as it makes it easy for our family to have access to clean, nutritious foods delivered right to our door. We shop locally for the majority of our groceries, but there are some things (in the quality that we prefer) that we just can’t get in the store in our rural community. AND we purchase a lot of the Thrive brand products that can’t compare in price or quality to what we have access to locally. And as a bonus, Thrive is always giving away free samples of various products with your order. For instance, we just got 2 free boxes of kids Cliff Bars with our last order!
Just to give you an idea, here’s a quick rundown of some of the usual suspects we put in our box:
- Redmond’s Real Salt Refill – I especially like to use this as an electrolyte replacement by simply adding a few shakes of it to my water…just enough so you can’t taste it.
- Life-flo Magnesium Lotion – Magnesium is needed for hundreds of the body’s processes and it’s likely that many of us are living magnesium-deficient, so putting a bit of this on every night ensures those processes run a bit smoother, including having a GREAT NIGHT SLEEP!
- 4th and Heart Grass-Fed Himalayan Salted Ghee – Use in place of butter as a healthier option!
- Thrive Market Organic Raw Cashews – Nuts are a staple for snacks in our household, and these are delicious!
- Thrive Market Grass-Fed Collage Peptides in Chocolate and Plain – Added to coffee every morning for a protein boost! Of course it’s great in smoothies, shakes and pancakes too!
- Thrive Market Lightly Salted Plantain Chips – A healthier chip option and goes great in trail mix!
- Alter Eco Organic Chocolate Bars – For that after dinner sweet! To be honest, I have another favorite chocolate bar from a different store, but I can’t always make it out of town to this store and it doesn’t ship, so we found a close alternative. I prefer the “sea salt,” and Matt likes the “quinoa crunch.”
- Thrive Market Organic Coconut Aminos – We use this instead of soy sauce!
- Thrive Market Baking Powder – Did you know that most mainstream brands of baking powder have aluminum in them? Yep. Well, Thrive offers a CLEAN version, with nothing but baking powder included.