Positivity

10 Reasons Why You Should Flip Your World Upside Down

What's More Scary... Being stagnant in your old ways or flipping your perspective for a possibility of something great? 

PC: Aaron Santoro

PC: Aaron Santoro

I say, f* it!! Let's turn your world upside. 

Here are my 10 Reasons to "Turnt it Up"!  

[Turnt it up] when someone does something so unremarkably amazing that there's nothing left to say other then them turntin it up.
  1. Give your heart a break! Would ya?! When you are upright, gravity pulls the tissues and fluids in your body downwards, including blood. In order to return deoxygenated blood back to the heart, your heart has to work hard to help pump the fluid upwards and against gravity. When you are upside down, you reverse the blood flow in your body and it encourages venous return – the return of blood flow back to the heart. As a result, your heart doesn’t have to work as hard.

  2. Helps your lymphatic system. Inversions encourages the flow of lymph back to the heart. Your lymphatic system is a key part of your immune system. It’s like a big drainage system in your body, collecting extra lymph from body tissues and helping to fight infection. However, the lymph system relies on movement and pressure to move the lymph fluid. Inversions help encourage the flow of lymph back to the heart.

  3. Energizes you and builds confidence. This reason is less biological & more psychological. When you get upside for the first time in the hammock, there’s no other feeling like it. It’s energizing and makes you feel confident.

  4. Improves your balance. Inversions add another dimension to balance training. It forces you to learn how to sense your body in a different space & way (proprioception).

  5. Builds core strength.

  6. Forces you to focus.

  7. Releases your ego and helps you practice non-attachment. Inversions can be hard, humbling and tough enough. With the ease of the hammock, it allows for almost everyone to get upside with ease.

  8. Inversions in the hammock can help with vertigo and motion sickness in small doses. (Let your instructor know if you are sensitive to movement.)

  9. Provides a new perspective. Literally, flipping your view helps provides you with a new physical perspective that often flows into your every day life.

  10. It just looks & feels freakin' good!

PC: Aaron Santoro

PC: Aaron Santoro

If you haven’t tried aerial yoga, there is no better time then now to try it. My hope for you, is to be challenged; mind, body & spirit. I invite you to show up, be present, and enjoy the transformative flight.

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What is all the HYPE about AERIAL YOGA?

Well..... I'll tell ya! Let’s just say the hype is strong!

PC: Aaron Santoro

PC: Aaron Santoro

Without assuming you know what aerial yoga is, let’s start there. Imagine aerial arts & yoga had a baby…. Voila! Aerial Yoga was born! Together they have created a beautiful combination of fluidity, strength, flexibility, decompression & support. Imagine, once again, having a yoga strap throughout your entire practice, a yoga teacher adjusting you to the proper alignment getting you deeper into your practice or modifying it to be more supportive and gentle. That’s right, restorative aerial yoga is thing! It doesn’t have to be all flips and tricks, although those are very fun. Aerial Yoga sounds pretty great, ay?! Well…  it is sure is!

Aerial yoga, makes the impossible, POSSIBLE! That’s what flying in the hammock will do for you! Fearless flips, backbends, and inversions might have only been a dream before the aerial hammock, but are now beyond feasible. Like anything else, consistency is the key to success. You will take your mat practice to the next level with some pretty badass supportive movements.

Practicing aerial yoga will provide you with benefits that you don’t receive from other practices out there.

Here are my top 5 Benefits to Practicing Aerial Yoga:

  1. Decompression of the spine: Think of an inversion table but so much more fun & easier to get out of.

  2. Proper alignment

  3. Less pressure on the hands, neck and shoulders

  4. Enhancing your floor practice – Want to go deeper into a pose? No problem! Want to take it down 10 notches and have yourself a gentle practice? No problem. Using the aerial hammock allows the deepening of your practice and the support of all your poses.

  5. Inversions without risk of injury to the neck or spine. Regardless if you are a novice or an advanced inverter, getting upside reversing the blood flow is incredibly beneficial, including anti-aging!! However, we know inversions aren’t for everyone. Take your time and modify as needed.

If that wasn’t enough..... read my next blog for 10 Reasons to Flip Your World Upside Down

 

PC: Aaron Santoro

PC: Aaron Santoro

 

If you like what you read, please share or comment below <3

 

12 Ways to Super Charge Loving Your Healthy Bodacious Bod

Do you struggle with loving your body? Are you guilty of thinking: I'm not toned enough, I wish I was thinner, I want a bigger x, I want a smaller x, I want this, I wish for that, more of this, less of that little, or even fishing for a compliment? If you said yes to any or maybe even all of them, you will need to read this. 

Pictured: Lauren Brunelli Talcott, Lizzy Dela Pena, &amp; me

Pictured: Lauren Brunelli Talcott, Lizzy Dela Pena, & me

May I share a story with you? Yes- keep reading, no- skip this section & just get to what you need. I don't know at what point it happened but I, like most other young kids, struggled with body image. Perhaps mine started a bit younger then others but perhaps not, maybe can you relate. I remember like it was yesterday, my 5'2" size 4 mama looking in the mirror, with her hands on her hips turning side to side and asking me if she looked wide. I don't remember my response to her but I do remember thinking, is she serious? I don't think my mom ever thought these moments with her were going to be so impactful in her little girls life. I literally stopped doing things all the things I loved because I didn't like how I looked and wasn't able to talk about. I was young & healthy, but I felt like I looked fat & unattractive. My family still to this day doesn't know this... So I'm sorry if you're reading this. I stopped dancing, gymnastics & swimming all because of how I felt inside. I felt so bad wearing my speedo & leotard and would make excuses to why I shouldn't participate anymore.  I quickly moved from a training bra to a size C to a DD. I was tall with enormous boobs, braces and just awkward. I started wearing big clothes to go with my big boobs and big curly unruly hair. What a disaster I was. Although, my mom will always say I was adorable. No, I was freakin' awkward and sought out attention in a very unhealthy way. Perhaps we'll save that for another blog. My childhood was pretty good otherwise, we had everything we ever needed and wanted except me wanting to look like the other pretty, skinny, girls. When I got to college, man was it game on! While most college kids were packing on their freshman 15, I actual lost 15 and was feeling damn good. I was working out so hard and definitely pushing it to an unhealthy place but I loved hearing, "you're so skinny" and being able to wear anything. How f*cked up is that? I was literally 15 pounds less then what I am today, maybe 20. I was itty bitty & quite unhealthy with bad habits, remember ephedrine? Oh, how I loved that stuff. It was a double edge sword because I knew it wasn't healthy but I did it anyway for quite awhile. As I lost the weight, I became wrapped up in what the scale & what people were saying. I quickly realized, this behavior & this whole scale thing has got to change! And just like that, poof, it was all gone! I registered for the ACE course and started educating myself on health & fitness. Any time I had to get on the scale for a doctor, I would stand on it backwards and ask them not to share unless it was of some concern. I knew the scale was a trigger to a road of bad habits and I wasn't ready to go back down that road. This lasted many many years & one day, I just stopped and started loving myself & this bodacious bod. I hope this helps you if you find you are struggling with loving your body. 

Here are my ways to Super Charge Loving that Bod of Yours.

 

1. Change your thoughts: You are what you think! You think negativity, that is just what you'll attract, create, project and become. You think you're fat and want to lose weight, guess what? The more you put yourself down, the more your body actually holds onto that unhealthy fat. #Truth. That's what stress does. It's time for you to change your thoughts. It's pretty easy once you get into the grove but you have to be consistent, you can do it, I promise! Here's how: when you have a negative thought about someone or yourself, turn it around right away and repeat the positive affirmation. Instead of judging all the things you are unhappy with, focusing on one thing that you feel good about. This might only be your nail polish to start. Let it be what it is, stop the negative judgment & love yourself! 

2. Are You Healthy?: What are you putting in your body? Are you on the latest trending diets to try to find a miracle? Stop the  yo-yo dieting and start living a healthy lifestyle. Eat colors! Stick to shopping the perimeter of the supermarket where you'll find fresh foods like fruits & vegetables. Avoid the center aisles filled with beige, processed foods. Stick to the real deal! Wouldn't you rather see beautiful colors on your plate or would you rather see beige? Come on, who even likes that color? Don't be boring like beige, be colorful, happy & healthy! 

3. It's all in the Angles and Lighting: Oh my, is it ever!!! I mean, this isn't new news, you all know this. What you see in magazines and online are totally edited. For real!!! Let's be honest, most of us are all edited in someway. If it makes you feel good to do it, go for it but be real about it & don't allow someone to distort you into someone you're not. 

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Same morning.. it's all in the lighting & angles. 

 

Pants: Lululemon

Sneakers: Scott

Photos are unedited

 

4. Quit the Jealousy: Jealousy never looked good on anyone so just stop it. You never know their struggle and what they have going on. Be darn grateful for your body and all the things it can do each and everyday. Simple. 

5. Shapes | Sizes | Blood type: What is your natural body type? Athletic, Curvaceous, Petite, be who are you and embrace all the beauty that it holds. Ask yourself if you're healthy &  are you nourishing your body in a way you can be proud of? If not, make the necessary changes to be proud. Not sure how, ask me & let's get you started. 

6. Distorted Body Image | Body Dysmorphia: Did you read my story above? Perhaps my mama and I both struggled with this at some point. I believe most of have or do. I see this frequently in class when I ask students to open their feet hip distance apart and more often then not, they open up much wider then their hips. Of course, this can also be lack of body awareness and not a distorted body image. However, what we deem as being real, becomes our truth. 

7. Body Positivity: Empower Yourself! Look down and say, "I love you". Don't be afraid to love yourself. Rub & love that healthy belly, beautiful body, those curves & even that freckle. The more you whole heartedly love yourself, the better. You have to break your negative habits & self sabotage, if you truly want to see and feel things differently in your life. They are just habits & habits are meant to change, break and evolve. Are you ready to break the self sabotage of negativity? Now is the time, right now!  Don’t let your negativity define who you are. You are stronger then that. What do you do when life gets challenging, run from it or fight for what you want? Look at yourself and say, "I love you"!

8. Fishing for a compliment: Love yourself so much you don't need others opinions to validate how you feel about yourself. 

9. Check your chub!  That's right, grab a hold of your love handles and get real with yourself. Are you constantly making excuses and are actually unhealthy & unhappy? Are you sitting around, twiddling your thumbs on a beautiful day waiting for the next BBQ? Do what you want to do, live your life but stop complaining about something you can change. I'm sorry but no one wants to hear it. Get super real with yourself and find a reason why it is important to you to love yourself.

10. Buddy System: One of my faves! This is so important when you are just starting out on your new journey of self love! It's a great way to connect, be social and hold each other accountable to what you claim is important to you. Maybe it's achieving a goal of completing or winning a race, losing 5lbs, climbing an epic mountain or doing a handstand. Find a friend or a co-worker who wants to get healthy too, maybe there is already someone who is  living the life you want to see for yourself and ask to tag along! You never know the new friendships you will create. Surround yourself with people who have good self image and positive thoughts, they will rub off on you. 

11. Dress to your body:  High waisted or low? What makes you feel good? Rock what makes you smile. If you feel good in what you're wearing, you are more likely to do things you enjoy! For instance, if going to a fitness class, yoga, biking, running, life, is a struggle for you because you hate how you look before you even leave the door, seek out some better fitting clothes. Lose the big baggy sweats and get into something that makes you happy. Athleta, Lululemon, Nike, Adidas, even TargetForever21 are just some of the places you can get some great fitness clothes at all different price points. Invest in yourself! If you feel good in what your wearing, you'll want to move. It's true! When I wear sneakers, instead of flip-flops, I am more likely to go for a quick walk, run or hike because I am already all set to go. 

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Same pants, same body, same lighting, all within moments of each other.

 

 

Bra: Public Myth 

Pants: Active Creatures

Photos are unedited

12. NEVER EVER LET SOMEONE DEFINE YOUR WORTH! You are beautiful, strong and can do anything! Love yourself no matter what. You deserve it. 

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10 Reasons to Look Up

Why Look Down, When You Can Look Up?

Photo Taken @ one of the most beautiful places in the world -Mono Lake, California. Visit  monolake.org

Photo Taken @ one of the most beautiful places in the world -Mono Lake, California. Visit monolake.org

Learn how to achieve a successful everything.

Here it is! Have you ever heard, if you look down you're going down but if you look up, you are going up? I often say this is class and usually in reference to jumping through the aerial hammock but what I actually mean besides the physical action is to get your head up out of the dirt and more in the clouds. Yes, I want you're head in the clouds. I want you to be a dreamer, like a BIG dreamer. We are seemingly always looking down; down in our phones & down to the ground missing all the action right in front of us. Perhaps evening missing an epic owl or sloth sighting! Journey with me & please excuse my boldness but you obviously need to hear it if you're reading this. Ready? Lift your fudging head up and get really grateful! You want to make your dreams a reality, get grateful. Not just the thanks kind of gratitude but the "I'm going to seize the day kind of gratitude". You want something, you have to get grateful, stay focused and look up, keep looking up. I know it's not easy but you got this. Pick your heavy head up & let's make this happen!

Here are your 10 steps how to get out of your rut & start making your dreams come true! 

1) Write a Gratitude Log- I love this. Writing a gratitude log is a great way to remind yourself of all the little things we are so grateful for each and everyday. Positively Present, outlines how to cultivate positivity in 5 quick steps. "Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation." - Brian Tracy

2) Get Present- You want to get present really fast? Start by do something that scares the "S" out of you! A few weeks ago, my sweets took me mountain biking for the first time. I was literally PETRIFIED the entire time! I was having such a blast but honestly, I was scared out of my mind, laughing & screaming. I literally had no choice to be completely in the moment & present. If my mind had wondered even for the slightest second, well... I probably would have ended up wrapped around a tree. My point is, you don't need to get on a mountain bike, unless that's your jam but it's to get real with yourself and get outside your comfort zone. You'll have no choice to wake up from your rut slumber. 

3) Shake Things Up- This goes hand-in-hand with #2. Push yourself outside your comfort zone and go do something you've never done before. I used to wait and wait for someone to be around to do things with me and at the very last second many times and many people have backed out. In turn, I ended up not doing the things I wanted to do because I was always waiting for someone else. Stop waiting around for others and just go for it.... I double dare you. 

4) Work Your Shit Out- Don't get me wrong, the big 'S' happens to all of us but we don't need to stay victims of our circumstances. Get the help you need & move forward. Please stop filling one void after another, this doesn't help anyone and more importantly will end up hurting you and others more in the long run. Get the help now! You'll be grateful you did. 

5) This Too Shall Pass & Dwelling- My grandmother used to say this all the time. I have definitely adopted this mentality when life throws lemons in my direction. I take my mental sword & Fruit Ninja the heck out of it! So my question to you, if you know "this too shall pass" why are you still dwelling on way after the fact? Let it go and throw some sugar on the bitter lesson. 

6) Check Yourself- I have this concept, it's called the "Spilled milk theory". What happens when the good 'ol milk gets spilled? You take a towel and clean it up. It's time to do that in your life. Clean up your space, make your bed, delete old contacts that no longer serve, clean up your mess. It's holding you back, fact! Be grateful for all the goodness and wipe away the mess. 

7) Drink the Kool Aid - Check out my last blog. It's all about the Kool Aid

8) Get Active- the articles go on and on about how excerise effects our moods and enhances our lives but if you're just arriving to this concept, check out for PsychCentral for a quick read

9) Get Outside- When was the last time you stopped & literally smelled the roses? No matter what time of the year it is, you want to get the serotonin going, boost your immune system, feel happier, get outside. It's that simple. Instead of getting in the car to get that morning cup of coffee, get on your bicycle, strap your sneakers on & get outside. You owe it to yourself to feel the cool breeze. 

10 ) Get Out of Your Own Way- Last, but most certainly not least. One of the most important lessons of them all. If you are holding you back, BRAVO! It's now time to step aside, "Will the real Slim Shady please stand up?" Let go of the self-defeating behavior & start living to your fullest potential. You deserve it because whomever you think you are, whomever others think you are and who you actually are, they are all of you! It's time to get focused & out of your own way.  

Look up, Look Forward, Look Out &nbsp;  Photo Credit: Anna Jackow

Look up, Look Forward, Look Out 

Photo Credit: Anna Jackow

p.s. If you like this, please share it with someone that might need a little reminder. Thanks for reading! <3