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Yoga, health, wellness, and recipes from YogaDownload.com


12 Tips for an Instant Confidence Boost
12 Tips for an Instant Confidence Boost
Feeling low in confidence is a feeling many of us have experienced before. During work, amongst peers, maybe even with a loved one - there are many situations that can challenge our confidence and leave us feeling doubtful. But no one is naturally self-confident. Self confidence is a skill that builds up over time, and is something that you can use against the daily grind. To get you started in building up your self confidence, here’s our top quick tips for an instant boost of confidence - perfect for that next big presentation at work, mustering up the courage to ask your crush out, or just to feel more powerful in your day to day life. 1. Prune yourself If you look your best, you’re likely to feel your best too. It’s incredible how a shower, a haircut or a shave can make you feel absolutely amazing, and do wonders for your self-image. This will boost your self confidence by miles, and can be achieved by just waking up a little earlier to give your image a little more TLC than usual.

Yoga for the Solar Plexus
Yoga for the Solar Plexus
Come on yogi, light your fire! Join us this week as we work to stoke our inner fire, to stimulate our power center, and to increase our confidence in all aspects of our lives. As you know, yoga transcends the physical, and one of the most important benefits of a regular practice is the ability to impact your subtle body and change how you feel from the inside out. Through targeted breath and movement, you can increase the flow of prana (energy) in your system and live your life feeling your best. Who doesn’t need a little boost? As you’ve probably experienced, different types of yoga classes yield different effects. Sometimes you need to quiet and calm, other times you need to strengthen and balance, and other times you need to rev up your engines. When you’re ready to manifest your desires, focus on the Manipura or navel chakra. Of the seven main chakras in the subtle body, Manipura houses the fire element. It’s the seat of ego and self-confidence, relationships with others and our boundaries, willpower, self-discipline, and it’s truly the center of our power and personality.

Sugar-Free Chocolate Bliss Truffles
Sugar-Free Chocolate Bliss Truffles
These are the most decadent, mind-blowing, make you giddy with endorphins, heaven on earth, chocolate coconut truffles we’ve have ever tasted! And trust me, we’ve had our share of chocolate. We love traditional chocolatey treats as much as the next person, but what we don’t love is the nasty sugar crash, hangover and the compromised immune system that they leave us with. These sugar-free chocolate truffles are guilt-free and won’t leave you with a sugar crash. Raw cacao is a great source of natural energy and antioxidants, and coconut contains beneficial healthy fat. Did you also know that coconut oil can help to improve heart health and thyroid function? It also supports your immune system, boosts the metabolism, and can promote weight loss. Now that’s a dessert that loves you back!

8 Fun and Healthy Activities for Couples to Deepen Bonding
8 Fun and Healthy Activities for Couples to Deepen Bonding
Being loved up and part of a couple is a great thing, especially when you start to share parts of your life together. However, after a few years - you might find yourself grabbing the remote and binge-watching Netflix instead of getting out and doing new and exciting activities as a couple. It’s important to give the time to come up with fun and exciting date ideas, and do things together to strengthen your bond and keep your romance exciting. Here’s our top 8 ideas of activities to do as a couple, to deepen your bond, instill healthy habits together, and keep things fresh! Yoga We may be biased, but we think yoga is a great activity to share with your loved one to deepen your bond.

10 Tips to Be More Productive
10 Tips to Be More Productive
With today’s technology and modern life, there are more distractions than ever getting in the way of having a productive work day. From the moment you sit down at your desk, there can be 101 things that steer your attention away from your to-do list. If you’re finding that you tasks just aren’t getting done, here’s some tips to make your day more productive. 1. Start the morning right for you A healthy breakfast, an early workout, time spent getting yourself looking professional… Sometimes there’s just not enough time before sitting down at your desk at 9am to get absolutely everything done - especially if you want your eight hours of sleep too! Starting your day on a high note can set the tone for the rest of the day, so think about what your priority is.

Quick Yoga Fix: Ways to Stay on Track when Time is Tight
Quick Yoga Fix: Ways to Stay on Track when Time is Tight
Can you believe it is almost March? Time seems to be zooming at the speed of light these days and with that swift pace, some priorities in life seem to shift. Work, school, family, travel, all the little responsibilities…some days it’s tough to complete all the things you want to do after you’ve done all the things you need to do. And you want to do yoga, right? If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, you may be battling the Polar Vortex and spending an hour shoveling your driveway or taking thirty extra minutes to get to the office. That precious time could have been spent on your yoga mat. If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere, perhaps your holidays and vacation time created a lapse in your regular yoga practice. Regardless of why you’ve not had time to practice yoga as frequently as you would like, the result is the same. You’ve fallen out of your routine and aren’t feeling as balanced, strong, and flexible as you’d like. Maybe you feel like if you can’t get a full hour or ninety-minute practice in, it isn’t worth your time to step onto the mat. Not true!

Red Onions with Quinoa Filling
Red Onions with Quinoa Filling
Winter is the time of the year we tend to stay inside more compared to warmer periods. Staying inside often also means moving less and at the same time, winter dishes tend to be heavier. Good food is my passion, no question about it, but staying fit and healthy is something I am passionate about as well. This means that I always try to figure out smarter recipes that taste amazing but are good for me. It´s all about balance and the recipe I am going to share with you today is a perfect example of healthy food that definitely does not lack flavor! These little red parcels here are perfect as a side dish or even a vegetarian main. They look awesome on the dinner table and are rather healthy and balanced due to the protein in the quinoa. Red Onions with Quinoa Filling

6 Ways of Coping with Anxiety that Actually Work
6 Ways of Coping with Anxiety that Actually Work
Do you constantly get worked up about something or the other – be it a work presentation, your relationship or even about a party you need to attend? You have days when you find your heart pounding while you sweat profusely and wonder what is it that you’re really experiencing – is this an anxiety attack or am I just stressed, you may wonder. While both stress and anxiety have similar mental and physical symptoms, the difference lies in the fact that stress is short-term whereas an anxiety disorder is a sustained state of mind which tends to remain even in the absence of a triggering situation. If you find yourself experiencing the latter, you might be suffering from some form of an anxiety disorder. Before you panic or shun this thought, understand that you are not alone in this battle. As per a recent study, anxiety has become the number one mental health issue in North America, with one-third of the North American adult population experiencing anxiety issues.

Rise & Shine: A 2-Week Morning Yoga Program
Rise & Shine: A 2-Week Morning Yoga Program
Whether you’re already a dedicated morning yoga practitioner or if you are considering starting a new morning habit, we’ve got an excellent new two-week program specifically designed to kick-start your day. Certain techniques and styles are more impactful in the mornings and your instructors for our Rise and Shine program created each class to maximize these principles. Practicing yoga in the morning has the power to create a positive attitude you can extend throughout your day. When we wake up, we’ve got a new day in front of us to create exactly what we want in our lives. The way you start your day can have an enormous impact on how external events impact you. You may have noticed the more often you practice yoga, the more calm and collected you are when confronted with difficult situations. We don’t really have control over external events, but we do have control over how we react.

8 Morning Routine Ideas for Happiness and Success
8 Morning Routine Ideas for Happiness and Success
A good morning, can make it more likely you’ll have a happy and productive day. Fortunately, you can set yourself up for success each morning and some form of a somewhat consistent ritual or thing you do, that you enjoy and can look forward to. This can make all the difference in putting yourself on a positive course for the day ahead. These 8 morning routine ideas are a mix of movement, mindfulness, reflection, and others. Experiment with a few until you find one from this list (or perhaps another not listed), that you’d be excited to practice each day. If you begin to notice even slight improvements in your energy levels, productivity, and overall happiness, from any one of these ideas, stick with it, so it becomes second nature and a healthy habit. Here are 8 morning routines to to be happier and successful. Treat yourself to start each day! 1. Yoga Movement after a night’s sleep can wake everything up. Yoga designed for a morning practice,

Kiwi-Tini Sugar Free Cocktail
Kiwi-Tini Sugar Free Cocktail
It’s Conscious Cocktail time! We’ve just wrapped up another Conscious Cleanse and one thing we hear a lot of towards the end is that people are ready to enjoy an adult beverage! Anyone ready for a little detox retox? Giving up alcohol for two weeks is a big deal for many, especially if it’s something that’s habitually been a part of your lifestyle. So how do you incorporate alcohol back into your diet and 80:20 lifestyle in the healthiest way possible? This is where the Conscious Cocktail comes in! A conscious cocktail is one that upgrades your usual alcoholic beverage to one that is allergen-free, spiked with a healthy dose of non-artificial sugar-free ingredients in your cocktail.

Why Exercise Benefits the Aging Process
Why Exercise Benefits the Aging Process
Have you ever envisioned your life 30 years from now? What do you look like? How do you feel? Are you able to play with your grandchildren and enjoy everyday activities? These are common questions among most in regards to their future and quality of life as they evolve through the aging process. The question remains how we can slow down the aging process and ensure that our future is bright and fruitful? As a personal trainer, I have had the good fortune and pleasure to work with many seniors over the course of my 20 years in the fitness industry. Through my very own hands-on experience, I have been able to witness the physical benefit of exercise and healthy nutrition can yield a higher quality of life and sense of well-being among the senior population. So what exactly are the benefits of exercise as we age?

5 Powerful Fusion Yoga Hybrid Workouts to Try
5 Powerful Fusion Yoga Hybrid Workouts to Try
You can get into your best shape by combining yoga with other fitness workouts and routines. Yoga hybrid workouts have become all the range as of late, as an active lifestyle is becoming more and more popular. As it’s becoming more apparent the benefits a regular yoga practice can give you, there’s more ways to incorporate it into your regular workout. Here are some ways you can combine yoga poses with other fitness methods, to get into the best shape you can and move in more ways! If you’re adding a few moves to your regular workout, or adding some weights or dance moves into your yoga practice, there’s a yoga hybrid out there for you. Mixing it up can increase your endurance, strength, and most of all make your practice fun. Here are five unique fusion yoga forms, that are worth giving a try! Anti Gravity Yoga If you’ve ever fancied yourself a bit of an acrobat, aerial yoga is the hybrid for you.

Fusion Yoga & Fitness: Efficient, Effective, & Fun!
Fusion Yoga & Fitness: Efficient, Effective, & Fun!
Most of us who practice yoga also work out and participate in other wellness activities. Whether you run, cycle, lift weights, or walk for fitness, yoga is an excellent complement. Sometimes, however, time is short and it’s not possible to get in both your workout routine and a full yoga class. Enter fusion yoga and fitness classes, where you can experience the best of both worlds, all in one efficient, effective, and fun class. 1. Fusion yoga classes are efficient. When you are pressed for time, but you don’t want to sacrifice either your fitness or your yoga routine, try one of these hybrid fusion yoga classes and stay on track with your life and your health. Fulfill all your needs with a class that will allow you to check off your fitness box, and balance it out with yoga to keep your muscles supple and your mind calm.

White Bean Artichoke Dip with Rosemary Seed Crackers
White Bean Artichoke Dip with Rosemary Seed Crackers
Move over cheese-filled, bloat-inducing dips: Our White Bean Artichoke Dip is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. If you’re hosting any party, you NEED this recipe! Our White Bean Artichoke Dip is creamy, packed with flavor, AND it’s vegan! It pairs perfectly with cut veggies, but if you really want to step it up a notch, we’ve included our favorite homemade cracker recipe: Rosemary Seed Crackers. These crackers are relatively simple to make and super tasty. Not only are they delicious, they pack a serious nutritional punch: they’re high in fiber, plus chia seeds and flax seeds make these crackers full of healthy fats! They are also gluten-free and vegan, so all your guests, even those with food sensitivities or allergies, can enjoy them.

Meditation for Productivity: 3 Reasons Why it Works
Meditation for Productivity: 3 Reasons Why it Works
Meditation has now entered the public consciousness as something less mystical and more practical. Far from the romantic notion of the mystic on the mountain, meditation has always had its practical uses. Increasingly, the benefits of meditation are becoming apparent in modern life and well-being. There is increasing research that practicing seated meditation has the power to make us more alert, energized, creative, clear in our thinking, and productive. Whether you're craving a boost in productivity, or just want to feel better in at work, meditation has real potential to help. Here are a few ways meditation it can boost personal productivity and focus, whether around the house, in the workplace, or working on a creative project.

A Beginner's Guide to Ashtanga Yoga
A Beginner's Guide to Ashtanga Yoga
This week we highlight the incredible practice of Ashtanga yoga. Ashtanga yoga is a modern rigorous, disciplined, and traditional style of yoga. It is comprised of 8 limbs, with asana (the physical yoga pose limb), being a set sequence of standing and seated postures, that create inner heat, refine your focus, and challenge you physically, while keeping a single pointed focus. Basic Ashtanga sequences are well-rounded, and also feature many forward bends, the most inward facing family of yoga poses, where we meet ourselves. If you're feeling stagnant in your practice and want to take it to the next level, or feel you're craving some consistency in your yoga practice (and maybe life), give Ashtanga a try. You might find these practices are ones you can return to over and over again, as no matter how many times you practice the Ashtanga sequence, there is benefit, power, and progress. Enjoy the challenge and power of Ashtanga yoga this week, with four unique takes and versions of this transformative and powerfully simple style of yoga.

Ashtanga Yoga: Where the Physical Practice Began
Ashtanga Yoga: Where the Physical Practice Began
This week we highlight Ashtanga Yoga. Sit back, take a sip of your favorite beverage, and allow us to share the fascinating history of this vigorous practice. Ashtanga is the eight-limbed yoga path as outlined in Patanjali’s seminal text, the Yoga Sutra. In order to truly appreciate the place Ashtanga Yoga holds in the yoga world, we’ve got to look back about one hundred years. At that time, yoga in India was primarily seated meditation. Instead of simply studying and meditating, the Father of Modern Yoga, T. Krishnamacharya, developed a series of asanas combined with pranayama, in a vigorous set sequence of flowing asanas. For the first time in yoga practice, the physical postures and the controlled breath were part of a moving meditation.

Sugar Free Vanilla Custard Fruit Tart
Sugar Free Vanilla Custard Fruit Tart
When I first met my husband, he showed up to a BBQ with a gorgeous gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free fruit tart just for me. “Nice move, dude,” was my first thought. Followed immediately with “where did you pick that beauty up from?” To my surprise he had actually made it himself! Now I know better than to question his baking skills, as he was raised by the queen of baking. Every year on Thanksgiving, he participates in a pie baking contest between him and his two younger brothers. They each have their special pies – apple, pecan and pumpkin. Yes, all three boys are impressive bakers and quite the catch. Recently I put Adam’s pastry skills to good use and asked him to make a fruit tart for my sister’s baby shower. True to form, Adam went back to his roots and made a gorgeous fruit tart. When I saw this work of art I just knew we had to share it with our 80:20 community. It is truly to die for!!

9 Benefits of Yoga for Athletes
9 Benefits of Yoga for Athletes
Yoga is a key practice not just on it’s own, but to compliment other activities and sports. Many professional sporting teams and athletes use yoga practice to compliment their training, or include it as a key part of it. If you play sports regularly, trying yoga can boost your performance in a wide range of ways. Yoga will improve your physical and mental state, letting you push yourself to your limit in your training. Yoga can also balance out strength and development that can become imbalanced if you just practice one type of sport. This can also help reduce injury. Push away any thoughts of yoga just being about flexibility and contorting your body - yoga helps your muscles grow and works parts of your body that are underused in most people’s daily life. It also helps you stretch out any areas of tightness or pain. Here’s some of the benefits practicing yoga can have for athletes.

5 Olympic Athletes Who Do Yoga
5 Olympic Athletes Who Do Yoga
Even though yoga is not considered an Olympic sport, at least not yet, the reality is that it already is a big part of the Olympics. Yoga is a fundamental component of the workout routine of many athletes who are striving for gold during these summer games, and it might very well be one of the key factors for them to finish on top of the podium. It’s no secret that yoga is a great complement for other physical activities. Some even think every athlete should do yoga (Link: http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-4806/Why-Every-Athlete-Should-Do-Yoga.html) to increase strength, balance, flexibility and mental control. That’s why it comes as no surprise that more and more competitors are taking advantage of the benefits it brings to their discipline. From elastic gymnasts, to big rugby players, they are all bringing the lessons learned on the mat to their respective sports.

Yoga for Athletes
Yoga for Athletes
In order to be in peak condition for their chosen sport or sports, athletes maintain strenuous workouts and conditioning programs. Many athletes claim they don’t have time for yoga, but we’re here to share how yoga can provide you a competitive edge, whether you’re a weekend warrior or a professional athlete. This week, we’re thrilled to bring you more yoga for athlete’s classes, with a new program from YogaDownload Instructor of the Month, Robert Sidoti. Get ready to enhance your performance and prevent injury. A well-rounded yoga practice includes dynamic flexibility training, core stabilization, strengthening and balance work. Often, when athletes stretch pre- or post-workout, they are usually just stretching the muscles in the same direction and plane of motion in which they will be exercising. Yoga

Homemade Vegan Protein Powder
Homemade Vegan Protein Powder
Protein powder is frequently marketed as the key to achieving a lean, muscular body. Especially for those who are physically active, it’s often seen as a necessity for a healthy lifestyle. But is it really good for you? Most conventional protein powders contain added sugars, preservatives, and artificial flavorings. And the most common source of protein in protein powders is whey isolate, which is highly processed and not great for those with dairy sensitivities. And even though vegan protein powders are out there, they are usually full of the same added flavors and sweeteners and are just as highly processed as the non-vegan powders.

Finding Resiliency
Finding Resiliency
When I was 17 years old, the most unthinkable of events of my life took place on a Saturday in January. One that started out like any other Saturday, but would change my life and the lives of the rest of my family forever. After arguing over Saturday morning chores, I zipped off to the local mall, more of a leisure activity with girlfriends, rather than a shopping expedition. When a couple of hours later I returned, I knew immediately that something was radically wrong. The minister was walking down the path in front of my parents house. "What happened? Is it my father? Is it my Mother?” No said, the grim and paled face minister, "It is Chris, he is dead.” This would be the beginning of a whirling, incredibility, that would last for many years, and maybe does even to this day, as I tried to comprehend the “unthinkable”.

The Benefits of Warrior Poses
The Benefits of Warrior Poses
The series of warrior poses are the foundations of a strong and solid practice of asana. Warrior poses are among the most common poses in yoga practice, and help with balance, stance and hip opening. Warrior poses are great for nearly every type of body and skill level, are easy for beginners to get to grips with, while still being a great pose for building up strength, confidence, and feeling like, well a warrior! As we do warrior poses more and more often, it’s easy to forget the benefits they can give our minds and bodies. We’ve taken a look at some of the common variants of warrior pose, and the benefits these can give you. Warrior 1 Warrior 1 is a pose that will give you more flexibility in your hips, strengthen and tone your legs when practiced often.