Breath, Body and Balance

weight loss Archives

The Dailey Method Celebrates 10 Years

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Although the Dailey Method has only been in the Chicago area for a few years, the company has been helping women get tight buns, flat abs and lean muscles since 2000. To celebrate their 10th anniversary, the Dailey Method is offering specially-priced class packs and 10 days of giveaways from June 1-14. 
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Eat This: Easy Chocolate Chia Superfood Pudding Recipe

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Many people assume that being a vegan means having a limited diet, but that's simply not the case. I'm never starving and I never feel left out at mealtime. If anything, my journey from vegetarian to vegan has greatly expanded my palate to include veggies, spices, legumes, fruits and exotic foods that I would've never touched if I still ate the way I did before I went meat-free (over 10 years ago!). 
One of the most wonderful things I've discovered is chia seeds. Yes, chia seeds are the same things used for Chia Pets and Chia Obama (remember that?), but these little seeds are packed with nutrition. You've probably heard the word 'superfoods' used loosely to describe foods such as walnuts, salmon, yogurt, avocados, etc. But true superfoods are plant-based foods that provide a combo of bio-available nutrition that the body can use instantly. Chia seeds are a perfect example of this.
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Free Class of the Week: Core Yoga Sculpt

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Magazine covers, locker room chat and group fitness instructors looking to give you that extra bit of motivation seemingly have one thing to say: bikini season is just around the corner! As if you needed any reminder that summer is less than two months away.

If you've been going through the motions in your normal fitness routine or need to try something totally different, don't miss my pick for free class of the week, Core Yoga Sculpt at Spring Wellness.
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Fall in love with salads

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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I have a confession to make. I'm the first person to deny it when someone says that all vegans and raw foodists eat is boring salads, but truth be told, there really is nothing I enjoy more than an awesome salad (well, maybe a delicious smoothie). But, I'm not talking about your run-of-the-mill dinner salad of tired mixed greens, a few carrot shavings and a slice of tomato. My kitchen is always stocked with organic dark leafy greens, sprouts, onions, beets, Fresno peppers, cucumbers, basil, avocados, saurkraut from RAW (because I'm too lazy to make my own), sesame seeds and hemp seeds (for protein), so I can make an amazing salad that I top with a salad dressing made of Udo's Oil, apple cider vinegar, dijon mustard and raw agave nectar (thanks to Lisa Persico for that recipe). I love a good salad and I can't wait until summer for the amazing array of fresh, local organic produce at Farmer's Markets around the city, especially now that I have a copy of Philip McCluskey's newest eBook, The Raw Food Salad Bar.
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Get Fit Event: Crave Chicago's Bloom + Tone Party

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Women's networking and lifestyle company, Crave Chicago, hosts their first annual Bloom + Tone party this Sunday, March 28 from 1-6pm at Architectural Artifacts. This event, five hours of health, wellness and fitness, will be the kick-off to get Chicago ladies excited to get in shape this season. 
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What to eat before and after yoga

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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I've got breakfast, lunch and dinner down, but when it comes to pre- and post-yoga snacks, I can't seem to get it right. Having worked from home for the better part of the past two years, it wasn't such an issue, but now that I'm often leaving an office and heading to the studio, I'm either starving or too full during practice, both of which can be extremely distracting and not ideal for optimal performance or calorie burning. 
So I asked my friend and holistic nutritionist Jessica Marie for some advice. Jessica, who became interested in health after struggling for years with disordered eating (which lead to digestive issues and depression), now helps Chicagoans make healthy, realistic changes for their lifestyle with her company CHEW Chicago. I thought Jessica would be perfect to talk to about this, because not only did she attend New York's popular Institute for Integrative Nutrition, she's also a super busy, professional young woman on the go, so I know she knows first hand what it's like to be going full-force on most days and the importance of eating properly to keep your body and mind energized. Here are her suggestions for what to eat before and after yoga and working out.
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Tips for an effective Dailey Method workout

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Photo: The Dailey Method Chicago

Last month, the Dailey Method participated in a Groupon and sold over 1300 two-for-one class deals. I can't say that I'm surprised by the impressive number because the combination of toning, stretching and orthopedic exercises makes the Dailey Method a great workout for those looking for lean, sculpted muscles, tight abs and a nice tush. But it's easy to get discouraged in a Dailey Method class because the movements are tough. You know while you're trying to gracefully not clutch on to that ballet barre for dear life that you're working muscles you never even knew you had and you'll be sore the next day.
So, for the newbies, those that were discouraged by the tough nature of the movements and for those who have yet to try it, here are a few tips for an effective Dailey Method Class.
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A boot camp for yoga lovers

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Photo: LollyKnit

When I first heard of Mind Body Boot Camp at Wicker Park Fitness, I imagined it to be tough yoga with weight training or a similar class to Core Power's Yoga Sculpt. I was wrong.
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Top tech tools to improve your yoga practice

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

YogaSTRETCH

I love SmartPhones. I love twitter. I love technology! I'm not one of those people that can't function without checking their email every two minutes, but I am grateful for how much easier technology has made my life. I've already dedicated a blog to the great websites that make having a regular yoga practice easier and here are my picks for great fitness tech tools that make staying in shape easier.

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Gearing up for Spring Cleaning

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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The Ejuva Cleanse kit.

I know it's hard to believe, but spring is technically only a few weeks away! 

I love spring because it's a chance to revamp your yoga practice or workout and do some serious internal spring cleaning. In its most simple form, a detox is an opportunity to give your body a break and clear out some of the old gunk, bad food and environmental stressors of the past few months. Spring is thought to be the best time to detox because it's the season for renewal. I've always been fascinated by detoxing because my health is important to me and I wasn't always so kind to my body in my youth. But while I was quick to try a detox, what I didn't know what that not all cleanses and detoxes are created equal and most importantly, detoxing didn't give you an excuse to go back and start eating like crap again.
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Super products to keep you supercharged

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Some of the healthy products I always keep in my kitchen.

When it comes to buying groceries, I'm a perimeter shopper. Most of my shopping is done on the outskirts of the store where the produce, grains and non-processed foods are normally kept. I'm weary of a lot of products on the market that claim to do this or that and I don't buy things with strange manmade ingredients I can't pronounce, so when I find a product that's natural, healthy and delicious, I just have to tell everyone about it. Here are a few of my absolute favorite products that keep me energized, healthy and thriving. 
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New Year, New Workout Challenge

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

Yoga Aid Challenge 2009 Takes Place In Melbourne

Screw the magazine plans, the TV-doctor approved workouts and all that other mumbo jumbo. Social Workout, a site for fitness enthusiasts, gym rates and urban yogis, will definitely motivate you to get out and get active. You'll find out about the hottest classes (for now, in New York, but they're planning to expand to Chicago), the latest health news, workout trends, gear reviews, yoga news, inspiring quotes, reviews and blogs from other members and my personal favorite, the Magazine Summarizer. But hands down, Social Workout is known for their free workout challenges (and the sweet prizes that go along with successful completion).
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Yoga is for every body

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Chi-Town Shakti instructor Bhakti White

Yoga is for every body, regardless of if you look like Seane Corn or fit into lululemon clothing. In fact, if you don't happen to be a teeny tiny yogini, that's all the more reason to get on the mat. Yoga can decrease stress, increase flexibility and improve posture, sleep and sex. Yoga also helps us respect our bodies and get more comfortable in our own skin, something that every human being, regardless of shape, can benefit from.
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Yoga Trends for 2010

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Photo: www.localfitness.com.au

I've read countless top 10 lists, 2009 year in review lists and fitness predictions for 2010. I love a good list, but with the exception of Gaiam's "Ten Yoga Trends" article, they lack a focus for the mind-body fitness set. So, based on the Gaiam article, the American Council on Exercise's 2010 predictions, Pilates Pro articles and my own experience running around Chicago to try different classes, I comprised a list of trends for mind body fitness in 2010.
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Free Class of the Week: Hot Core Yoga at Spring Wellness Center

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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This weekend, head to Spring Wellness Center in the Southport Cooridor for two unique, challenging and cheap workouts.

Spring started as a pilates studio, but they now offer yoga, hot yoga, boot camp classes, kettlebells and personal training, so you get the variety of a gym in an intimate studio setting.  
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Do Exercise Shoes Really Work?

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

A better booty, trim legs and improved posture simply by walking? Is there anybody on Earth who doesn't want that? No, I didn't think so either, which is why I'm not surprised that fit shoes, exercise shoes (exer shoes) and functional footwear is growing in popularity.

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The Top 4 Holiday Workouts

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

When the weather gets frightful, it's hard to muster up the energy to leave the house, let alone workout. That's why it's important to not only make your winter workouts effective, but also fun, calorie-burning bonanzas that will leave you craving for more, seeing results and treading through the snow to get to class on time. Here are the top 4 best holiday workouts to keep you slim, happy and fit into 2010 and beyond. 

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Urgent! It's time for an Emergency Holiday Workout Challenge

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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I felt great after the lululemon x Corepower challenge last month and with temps dropping and my workload increasing, I, like many others, am afraid I'll start to slack on my yoga and workout routines. So I was pretty stoked to find another challenge to keep me motivated into the New Year, the free Social Workout Emergency Holiday Challenge.
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BluePrint Cleanse Hits Chicago

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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The thought of the holidays got you down? Feeling a little sluggish? Afraid you might overindulge with the holiday party season upon us?
Well, BluePrint Cleanse might be able to help with that.
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Thriving on a Vegan Diet, Pt. 3

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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As I mentioned in previous blogs, I'm doing the Thrive in 30 vegan diet challenge with a group of friends. They've all agreed to share info about their lifestyle, eating habits and experiences. This week's spotlight is on professional badass Heather Crosby.
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An Homage to Get in Shape Girl!

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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I was a super lazy kid. I watched a ton of TV, had a panic attack every day before phys. ed (especially on dodge ball days) and besides going to town with my Skip It, I just didn't want to exercise.
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Thriving on a Vegan Diet, Pt. 2

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Last week, I wrote about being vegan and why I decided to do the Thrive in 30 Challenge with a few friends. Now it's time to hear from them. First up is acupuncturist Lisa Reichert. I asked Lisa to participate because I knew she could provide a Traditional Chinese Medicine take on Brazier's The Thrive Diet.
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Thriving on a Vegan Diet

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

I love October. As the month comes to a close, I'm finally finding the structure and balance in my workout and diet that colder temps bring. 

I'm doing the lululemon and CorePower yoga challenge, taking fun classes at H.E.R.O. Fitness and trying new studios all around town. Needless to say, I'm a very active person and I need a lot of energy to keep going. Most people are surprised to find out I don't eat meat or drink caffeine, but to me it just makes sense. See I'm a really active person and I need a lot of energy, so I don't eat foods that will slow me down. 
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The Eat Whatever You Want for Thanksgiving Yoga Challenge

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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The holidays are right around the corner, which means the seasonal stress, food, travel and cold weather are almost here, too. For most of us, this is a one-way ticket to fatassville, but what if you could actually get fitter this holiday season?
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A seven-day luxury spa staycation for $40

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

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Imagine having the opportunity to transform yourself in seven days with an unlimited amount of unique tummy-toning, booty-lifting and leg-slimming classes; top of the line spa treatments with earth conscious products and a discount on fancy products like high-end Japanese skincare and jewelry.

Sounds like something only those living the lifestyles of the rich and famous get to enjoy, right?


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Do Yoga, Eat Less

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

It's normal to be pretty hungry after a vigorous yoga class, but are you more likely to go for a double cheeseburger or a filling salad? If you said the latter, there's a reason for that.

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Yoga vs. Weight Training

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

Dear Elle-

We have a problem. Your recent article, "Iron Maiden," which claims that when compared to "faddish" yoga and pilates, weight training is the most affordable and quickest way to change your body, isn't entirely true.

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A Little Weight Loss Inspiration

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Maya Henderson

Your source for all things yoga and wellness in Chicago.

When I had cable a few years ago, VH1's Celebrity Fit Club was a guilty pleasure and I loved Dr. Ian Smith! I'm not sure if Celebrity Fit Club is still on the air, but Dr. Ian has definitely kept himself busy helping people, especially people of color, lose weight and get healthy.

One of his most popular efforts is the 50 Million Pound Challenge. Sponsored by State Farm, the Challenge is a free website that allows participants to track weight loss, learn healthy living information and connect with others who are dedicated to leading a healthier lifestyle.

This isn't a diet or a gimmick by Dr. Ian to get people to buy his books (although that can be incorporated in the program), it's free to anyone and it's helping people live their best life ever.

I had the opportunity to speak with two local participants who will be featured in an upcoming Challenge commercial.

Even though they aren't on the mind body wellness tip yet, I found their stories and energy so inspirational that I thought it was important to share some of their thoughts and words of encouragement for any readers who are trying to lead healthier and happier lives.

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Marilyn Winters- Chicago resident who went from 267 to 150 pounds

I had planned a trip to Jamaica with a group of college friends I hadn't seen in years and my eating buddy decided to lose 30 pounds. So I thought, well, then I can lose 40 pounds.

I heard about the 50 Million Pound Challenge on the radio, went on the website and registered. It was really simple. I had already started eating 1600 calories and walking for 30 minutes on the treadmill, but when I went to the website there were so many other tools to utilize. I started tracking my weight from week to week and reading the inspirational stories from others.

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How did you overcome roadblocks and weight plateaus?

I lost 100 pounds in a year, but the next 17 took 5 months. That was painful. But I honestly felt like there was a support group from the website. I would get online and read stories and get inspired. Plus, my trainer was the best in the world. On those days when I wanted to cry because the scale wouldn't move, he'd remind me of where I'd come from. Like, you can do 50 pushups and you have a waist now.

How are you maintaining the weight?

I've become a serious runner. I've done two half marathons and a 10 mile race. Now I have another half marathon, then I'm doing the Chicago marathon and a week after that, it's the Urbanathalon. I go to the gym and I'm taking pilates now. But I still have a life! Fitness has just become a part of my lifestyle.

I want a gladiator body. I'm 47, conditioned and in great shape. Plus with doing all the running, I have to be in great shape to avoid injury. 

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Any words of encouragement?

I hear "oh you lost the weight because you had a trainer" a lot. But I think it's doable without the trainer. I think we need to surround ourselves with people who have the same goals and the tools that we need to be successful are free and available on the 50 Million Pound Challenge website. I believe if you do what you're supposed to do, your body will treat you right.

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