Cold Weather Got You Dreaming of Yoga Retreats?

You’re not the only one. Sun salutes on some secluded mountain top with a pristine lake in front of you or maybe a sunny white sand beach where you can spend your days in a bikini. Sounds divine. Well, if you are like me, we might have to keep dreaming. Unless you won that crazy powerball jackpot. In which case, you should share the love and take me with you.

I was giving a friend, who is new to yoga, some resources on navigating the yoga world with a limited budget. When I listed my blog, I felt slightly embarrassed giving him something that I neglected. I didn’t forget about it – I have been compiling the topics in my head. I was just lazy.

Anyhow, if some dreamy yoga retreat isn’t in the cards for you this year, you can take classes from the Wanderlust events…online. They have about 30 FULL-LENGTH classes filmed live at the Wanderlust festivals from top instructors. I watched one of the videos but to be honest, it was awhile back and I don’t recall the experience. But just add this to your list of resources in case you want to switch things up with all those other online resources. Here’s the link to their YouTube channel to get you directly to the classes but they have a ton of other videos such as lectures, interviews, and some shorter classes.

Yes, another online resource. You do miss out on the community of people around you (unless it’s such a packed class and the person’s mat is touching yours – no thank you). But technology has made this practice a lot more accessible for someone like myself who can’t afford to pay for yoga classes every day. Also, using public transportation in SF adds a lot of time to everything you do. A 1.5 hour class usually means 2.5 hours out of my day so a home practice means I’m more likely to get a class into my day. And whenever you can get your yoga in, it’s a good thing.

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MAJOR Discount on MyYogaWorks Online Membership

Seriously, it’s huge. Just wanted to include this disclosure that an affiliate program for MyYogaWorks.com contacted me and asked me to participate. I hesitated and finally responded to learn more and only agreed if it meant a heavy discount for all of you guys. They said it would be and it definitely is. And if you sign up through my site, I get some change, so win-win.

MyYogaWorks.com is offering all of you the first three months membership for $3 plus a free 14 day trial membership. THREE DOLLARS. The cost of a cup of coffee for in home yoga. Seriously, it’s pretty good, right? Check out my review of MyYogaWorks that I did awhile back if you would like more information.

If you are ready to get your home practice on, click on this link, sign up for the free trial and use code 3FOR3 to get your three months of yoga for $3. This deal is only good until 5/20/15.

Happy Friday!!

***Update 5/27/15: This deal has been extended until 6/30/15. So if you’ve been thinking about it and felt like you missed out, get on it!

ANOTHER Online Yoga Conference This Weekend

Came across ANOTHER online yoga conference that is happening this weekend, starting tomorrow actually. I think it’s awesome that this platform is being used to make yoga more accessible to the masses.  While I know it’s expensive to host a multi-day event, those in-person yoga conferences and festivals exclude so many people due to the cost.  The one downside to utilizing the internet is the lack of physical community and space for the practice. I’ve carved out a small area in my bedroom for my home yoga practice since it’s the main way I get my practice in these days but I miss the feeling of being a part of a larger physical collective (although at last night’s class, I could have gone without the woman next to me who was super distracting by doing her own practice and she lacked some serious space awareness eg her foot in my face…okay digressing).

So, getting to the details of why you are probably reading this! The Yoga Is Online Conference starts Thursday, April 30 and goes until Friday, May 3. The cost of the conference is $39, which gives you unlimited access to all the content during and after this weekend, which means you can watch it at anytime and you aren’t limited to just this weekend. To me, it’s not quite a conference but more me buying a series of yoga downloads.

The conference is hosted by Yoga Is, a documentary about one woman’s path with yoga. Suzanne Bryant, who is the filmmaker and the woman featured in the documentary, created this conference, to include 30 yoga and meditation teachers  such as Seane Corn, Dharma Mittra, Baron Baptiste, Kathryn Budig, Congressman Tim Ryan, Sally Kempton, and Rodney and Colleen Yee.  “Over the four days, seven to eight videos will be offered per day. The videos will contain two main sections: an interview with the teacher, then an immediate follow up class that will relate to the content of the interview.” You get 30 minute interviews and classes with each of the instructors.

The topics all look really interesting and definitely not content that I can normally access with my online yoga subscriptions.  I’m on the fence with this since I’ve had an extra frugal mindset recently. If you are reading this and purchase the conference, please feel free to share your thoughts and comments. I’m sure this won’t be the last one so feedback for future years would be helpful!

 

FREE Online Yoga Conference This Weekend

Oh hey. Yes, it’s been awhile. I hate the whole “I’m sooooo busy” reason but in part it was true – full time job, teaching five yoga classes, trying to squeeze in my own personal practice and training for a half marathon. Oh and those family and social obligations. But, there were lots of days where I mindlessly watched TV or was doing something totally unproductive. And you know what, sometimes, you need those days. For me, it was a few months.

Anyhow, I came across this on my Facebook feed a couple of weeks ago and thought to myself that I definitely needed to post this on the blog. But procrastination is one of my best qualities so here it is coming to you now.

Yoga International is hosting a FREE three-day event, the Living Yoga Conference, full of presentations, practices, and workshops from 13 renowned teachers such as Seane Corn, Shiva Rea, Rod Stryker, and Elena Brower to just name a few, and it’s all happening online.  There will be “over 15 hours of presentation, practices, yoga classes, and guided meditations”.  There is also an option for the conference pass for $99, which gives you unlimited access to all the presentations, video downloads, and bonus materials.  YogaDork, who is a media sponsor, has a discount code for 10% off the conference pass.  The code is LYC1699.  Events start 10 AM Eastern time all three days so for all the non-morning people on the West Coast like myself, get that pot of coffee set up the night before.

ALSO, Yoga International offers a TON of FREE yoga classes on their site ranging from 15 minutes to full 90 minute classes! FREE FREE FREE full length classes!!!  Pretty awesome.  There is also a lot of other resources on their site (I saw a tab for yoga videos and articles in Spanish) so if you are looking to learn more about yoga on and off the mat, be sure to check out the site.

Review of Yogis Anonymous

So if I don’t do the 50 navasanas, will anyone know???  I guess I would…

boatpose

So to accommodate my wallet and my schedule, I actually signed up for a membership with an online yoga studio company a few months ago.  My previous tactic of signing up with different emails to take advantage of the trial offers was getting complicated and frankly, I can afford to pay $15-20 per MONTH to access yoga so I should.  So I did a trial of Yogis Anonymous and then ended up just paying for the membership.

Yogis Anonymous is $15 per month.  You can get a free 2-week trial to start.  Other options include a $5 24-hour access pass or $10 7-day pass.

The site is fairly easy to use.  After you log in, you are directed to the video library on the home page where the latest videos are posted.  And just a note, everytime I log on, there are always new videos lining this page.  So on this page, there are three main tabs.  Under the video library tab, where you can search for classes by teacher, duration of class, and difficulty level. You can also search using key words.  On the second tab, you can search by category, which includes everything from beginner, prenatal, therapeutic, to yoga for seniors.  There are no additional filters from here so you just browse the videos within the categories.  The third tab is favorites, classes that you like and mark to be saved there.

They have a TON of teachers and a ridiculous amount of videos – for someone who has difficulty being decisive, I found a few teachers that I like and have just stuck with them.  And I haven’t really needed to branch out because there have been so many classes to choose from, at least the ones I went with.  And yes, one of them has the class do A LOT of navasanas, 100 in a row during one class!  I definitely crapped out about half way through – I would have been less inclined to give up had I been in an actual class.  When you hover your cursor over the video image, it gives you a more detailed description of the class, if you have viewed it, and an option to add the video to your favorites tab to watch later.

The class is shot from a few different angles.  With the way the room is set up, it has been difficult at times to see the instructor when they are up against the wall and demonstrating a pose – the camera angle doesn’t always change.  The sound and quality of the video is fine.  There have been instances where I’ve had issues watching a video and it just gets stuck or wouldn’t even start.  At first I thought it was my computer or internet connection but I would click on another video and it would work just fine, so who knows.

Yogis Anonymous also offers live classes in Santa Monica.  Unlike Yogaglo, they charge for their classes.

Overall, I’ve been pretty happy with it but I’m ready to test out another long term online membership with another company.  Just haven’t decided which one yet…

Breaking the Hiatus

Namaste broke ass readers!  Seriously, where did the time go?  I knew it had been awhile since my last post but I didn’t realize it had been two months!

There has been some activity relevant to the blog but not a whole lot, which also explains the brief hiatus.  I’ve reluctantly let wedding planning and work take over my life.  I spend a lot of extra energy complaining about the cost and debating the necessity of this wedding all the time, as my fiance can attest to, so it’s definitely not the most enjoyable process for me.  I just have to CONSTANTLY remind myself that it’s not all about me and that day of the wedding, it will be amazing to have all my friends and family in the same place celebrating with me because that is what it should be all about.

So with all this craziness, my fitness world has been put on hold.  I also think I have a torn meniscus which is preventing me from running and I took some time off from yoga as well.  When I was starting to feel better I went back to the studio that Annie Carpenter teaches at and signed up for another 10-class pack.  I managed to use the majority of class package with her so I’m pretty happy with my purchase and hopefully can do the same even though it seems like she has a pretty busy travel schedule at the moment.  I figured since this is the only studio/membership I’m paying for that it was justified.  I’m certainly getting my money’s worth – getting my own personal practice in and learning a lot for my own teaching purposes.

I am considering one of the online yoga sites for membership which will hopefully allow me to get more of my practice in when it’s convenient for me.  I’ve explored and re-explored some of the sites to figure out which ones I like most and where I should invest my hard earned dollars (although let’s be real, they are only monthly memberships – I can cancel at any time).  There are a lot of great online classes out there and a couple nights ago I was barely able to get into kapotasana (pictured below) thanks to a class.  And I never ever thought I would be able to get my forearms on the ground.  Anyhow, I’ve narrowed it down to MyYogaWorks and Yogis Anonymous.  I love the YogaWorks method and how it’s very alignment based.  I know what to expect from all the instructors and that’s nice.  For Yogisanonymous, I’ve just really enjoyed my trial run and have taken classes that just jive with me.  I’ll probably do the latter since I’ve had around 4 months with YogaWorks already.

First time ever getting my forearms down

First time ever getting my forearms down!

Oooohhh, and one other related yoga topic – I freaking won a weekend pass to the Yoga Journal Conference in SF next year!!  As a perk of working in the nonprofit world, you get to work at or attend special events/galas.  I attended one last month where they had a silent auction.  I walked around to check out at all the goodies up for auction and the bids people were placing on them.  Then I saw one of the auction items – it was the weekend pass to the Yoga Journal Conference and no one had bid on it.  It was about five minutes before the silent auction closed and I had to quickly decide what I wanted to do.  The minimum bid was $125.  I had planned to do the work-trade option next year but remembered that you had to put out $200 initially to do that and then would be reimbursed $100 if I did a satisfactory job.  For $25 more, I can participate without doing any of the work!  I actually would love to be a part of the behind-the-scenes action but for my first year, this sounded great.  So I put my minimum bid down and then hovered over the area until they ended the auction.  Needless to say, I was pretty stoked!  Deals can be found where you least expect it so always be on the lookout!

More Free Online Yoga!

YD Yoga

This time, courtesy of the YogaDork blog.  Here’s what they had to say on their blog post today:

We’re very pleased to announce that starting today we will be regularly featuring free online yoga videos courtesy of the one and only Yoga International. Enjoy our first offering, a shakti flow practice to get the energy flowing and the blood pumping. Our Valentine to you.

Have a happy Friday/Valentine’s Day!

 

Review of MyYogaWorks

Alignment, alignment, alignment!

myyogaworks

Late last year, YogaWorks contacted me about a groupon deal for the their online yoga classes through MyYogaWorks.com to share with all of you.  BTW, the deal seems like it’s still going on so check it out!  I had signed up for their free 14-day trial but this was poorly timed as I only had the opportunity to take advantage of a couple of classes.  Yogaworks graciously offered an extended online membership to MyYogaWorks and this has given me the opportunity to fully explore their site.

If you couldn’t tell by the first three words, YogaWorks is all about alignment and that is what you will get with their online classes.  I LOVE alignment, perhaps a bit too much, and the teachers are constantly giving tons of instructions to help you refine each posture. All their instructors have done advanced studies through a 500 hour teaching certification so I feel confident about the cues and directions they are giving me.  And if there was any doubt about how to get into a pose, there are typically two yogis demonstrating the pose with one offering modifications. You can search for classes by duration, difficulty level, teacher, target areas, benefits, and even videos for aspiring teachers.  MyYogaWorks also has a section that they call their “Journey Series.” It’s a sequence of videos that help you get into a specific pose, learn yoga basics, complement a specific sport, or help you destress for your wedding.  The site is simple, clean, and easy to use. I will say that I do like the variety of teachers, instructional styles, etc with some of the other online sites but you still can’t go wrong here – a lot of quality teachers and classes to choose from.

As I mentioned, they have a 14-day free trial and your credit card is required to sign up.  You can use this coupon code YOGA2014 for a free month with MyYogaWorks. After that, it’s $15 per month. If you are hesitant to give up your email or just want to take a yoga class from time to time, Yoganonymous offers a free full length class from MyYogaWorks on their site.  Not sure how often they switch out the classes but it’s another option.  And who doesn’t like options??

Online Yoga Membership Giveaway Winners and New Socks

Thanks all for entering the contest! I really enjoyed reading the descriptions of your practice. The two winners of MyVirtualYoga.com 3-month membership are speakingofvegan and vera. Please email me your email address so I can pass it on and get you started on your home yoga practice!

In other news, I think I’m in need of new socks.  What do you think?

photo(1)

Being broke all the time, I try and get the maximum use out of all my purchases.  I noticed a hole in this pair about a few months ago and I was strategic about which foot I put this sock on.  I mainly kept it on my right since there was less rubbing with the small hole by my fourth toe.  However, I guess I wasn’t paying attention prior to my run (might have something to do with the fact that I was about to experience a 3-day stomach flu!) and my inattention means this pair is now officially retired.

Any favorite running sock suggestions for me??

Hump Day Inspiration

gabbybernstein

Just a little something that I found to be very relevant to this blog.  Gabrielle Bernstein is a life coach, author, motivational speaker, etc.  I follow her instagram page and it’s full of affirmations so check it out to find your inspiration on a daily basis.

Also, tonight is the last night to enter the online yoga membership giveaway!  I will be choosing two winners tomorrow at 9 am PST so get your entries in before that time!