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


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.

Yoga to Awaken your Inner Warrior
Yoga to Awaken your Inner Warrior
A true warrior is a combination of characteristics: strength, clarity, composure, and fearlessness. To awaken your inner warrior, it is vital you dig deep and recognize your own desires, truths, and powers. Being a warrior and standing up for what you believe in doesn’t mean you have to be the most physically powerful person, nor the fastest or most agile. A true warrior comes from within: being firm in your resolve, true to your beliefs, and learning to bend and not break. Yoga guides us to turn our attention and awareness inward with the intention of recognizing and releasing our inner truth and sharing it with the world. When you practice yoga with an emphasis on uncovering your personal truth, you begin to discover and cultivate your unique power and gifts. Through a dedicated yoga practice, we strengthen our external body and fortify our inner resolve. By becoming still and calm, you can discover what motivates you. Then, you know what you want and what you are willing to take a stand for, without fear.

Hormone Balancing Tonic
Hormone Balancing Tonic
Stress, environmental toxins, travel – all these things can cause our hormones to become unbalanced. Hormones act as messengers that send signals throughout the body that can dramatically affect overall health. Your hormones directly influence your metabolism, energy levels, emotional health, sex drive and reproductive system. So no matter your stage in life, making sure your hormones are happy is really important. Typically, as a woman, the first place that you might notice a hormonal imbalance is in your monthly cycle. That’s why we’ve developed this tonic! It works with the body as a whole to help provide nutrients and minerals, lower the burden of stress, and help detoxify and cleanse your system. Whether you’re going through menopause or just trying to regulate your cycle, this tonic will help you find a healthy balance. Even though this particular blend is aimed toward the women in our community, it can also be enjoyed by men as a balancing tonic. Ashwagandha can help with male hormone production and sexual health, while many of the health benefits of the other herbs are vital for both women and men.

5 Tips for Taking Those Perfect Yoga Photos
5 Tips for Taking Those Perfect Yoga Photos
Yoga is the perfectly balanced embodiment of strength and grace. Each yoga pose is an achievement and, like any other milestone, deserves to be celebrated. And what better place to share the achievements of your yoga journey than through photos, whether you share them with your friends on social media, or just to enjoy yourself? Whether you’re just starting out with your yoga practice or already an advanced practitioner, you know that even the simplest yoga poses require a ton of work. When taking a photo of your yoga poses, the ultimate goal is to make it look effortless and beautiful. Here are five ways you can create the perfect yoga photo for your Instagram, teaching portfolio, or just for fun! 1. Pick a pose and shoot in burst mode

Yoga Philosophy: The Yoga Sutra Roadmap with Bhavani Maki
Yoga Philosophy: The Yoga Sutra Roadmap with Bhavani Maki
Do you feel clear, calm, and happy during yoga practice, only to lose the feeling hours or even minutes after you step off your yoga mat?Wouldn’t it be fulfilling to carry that yoga high off of the mat into the other twenty-three hours of your day? Moving through physical postures and linking them with mindful breath is the gateway into a much deeper yoga practice. This week, we are excited to offer you a relatable, practical series on Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, to allow you to move to the next level and learn to live your yoga all day long. Yoga Sutra 1.2 Citta vritti nirodhah is the pillar around which the entire text functions. This principle has been defined with various nuances, but essentially means yoga is the ability to direct the mind without distractionor interruption.

The Psychological Benefits of Yoga
The Psychological Benefits of Yoga
We all know that practicing yoga can have great physical health benefits, but it can also benefit your psychological and mental health state. There’s no denying the high that you get after a successful yoga class or practice, and that zen-like state of feeling calm, grounded and centered. Yoga is a great practice if you’ve been feeling down, negative, or scattered with your thoughts. Practicing yoga has a way of subsiding those negative emotions, bringing you into a state of calm and peace. Yoga also helps you feel a connection to your body, and helps you become more aware of any thoughts, emotions and physical feelings around your mind and body. This sensation of mindfulness can help improve our emotional health, and lead into a calm state. The psychological benefits of yoga have lead to the practice being regarded as a great practice for those suffering from stress, anxiety, and other mental health problems. Yoga changes your brain.

Turmeric Sunrise Smoothie
Turmeric Sunrise Smoothie
One of the great benefits of eating clean whole foods is the palette of color they bring to the table. Or in this case, the glass! Are you ready to add some color to your routine? The Turmeric Sunrise Smoothie will! We all know that turmeric has a powerful anti-inflammatory effect and is a very strong antioxidant. We love the addition of blood oranges to any smoothie when they are in season – and when we’re not cleansing. Combine these with ginger and you get one bright and warming pick-me-up. This smoothie keeps your immune system and digestion going strong all day. It’s the perfect smoothie to drink as you transition onto the cleanse, but keep it out of your glass during the cleanse because of the oranges.

8 Ways to Be Strong and Healthy Like a Tree
8 Ways to Be Strong and Healthy Like a Tree
Trees are symbols of long life and strength. One of the oldest forms of life on the planet, they are not only well-grounded but flexible. Without trees, we could not live. Modern medicine tends to separate the mind and body, but trees with their roots firmly planted in the ground and their branches reaching up to the sky, remind us of how connected we can be to both. These eight lessons, are things we can learn from trees, and beneficial ways, we as humans, can embody their strength, power, and health. 1. Nourish Your Roots

Yoga for the Lower Chakras
Yoga for the Lower Chakras
Whether you are familiar with how balancing your seven main Chakras can improve how you feel physically, emotionally, and mentally or you’ve got no idea what these subtle body energetics are, we’re here to help you get the greatest benefits from your yoga practice. Basically, the subtle body is a blueprint of the physical body. When you practice yoga asanas, there is always a corresponding impact on your subtle body, which holds your emotions and life patterns or Samskaras. This week we’ve got four classes that focus upon the first three Chakras: Muladhara or Root Chakra, the Svadisthana or Sacral Chakra, and the Manipura or Solar Plexus Chakra. By working on balancing our subtle body energy from the ground up, we can create a solid foundation upon which to bring our dreams into day-to-day reality. To maximize the impact of yoga’s impact on your brain, nervous system, and nadi system, we’ll share a brief review of each chakra’s energetic powers.

A Complete Guide to the Lower Chakras
A Complete Guide to the Lower Chakras
The lower Chakras consist of the Root Chakra, the Sacral Chakra and the Power Center. These three chakras look after your physical and emotional identity, as well as your self image and your relationship to the physical world. The lower chakras are the chakras that keep you grounded, and connected to the world. They connect to the feet, legs, hips, lower back and core. Here’s a guide to the three lower chakras, and how you can balance them for a more productive life. The root chakra is the first chakra, and is your foundation. This Chakra connects your body to the earth, and draws energy to give you strength. If you’re looking for stability in life, a strong root chakra is key.

Baked Balsamic Cod
Baked Balsamic Cod
Cod may not be the sexiest fish in sea but it sure does pack a nutritional punch worth mentioning. High in omega-3 fatty acids, eating cod (and fish in general) is said to promote good cardiovascular health, which can reduce the risk of heart disease and inflammation. And if you know us at all, we’re all about reducing inflammation, so that what makes cod a hidden gem of a cleanse-friendly protein! Conscious Cleanse | Baked Balsamic Cod | www.consciouscleanse.com | #cod #easydinner Cod is a white, mildly flavored fish making it extremely versatile to an array of flavor pairings. It’s great in fish tacos, on the grill, or baked as in the recipe below and the one in our book called Baked Cod with Lemon and Olive Oil. Cod is a popular fish in most regions so it’s easy-to-find and often times inexpensive,