Are You an Eco-Traveler? | 5 Steps to Plan Your Next Adventure

Wendy Worrall Redal by Wendy Worrall Redal | January 6th, 2014 | No Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living, Green Tech

Ecotourism. It’s a term travel marketers love, but what does it really mean?

Ecotourism involves more than just exploring nature or viewing wildlife, which on its own does not always contribute to the welfare of a place and its inhabitants.  Indeed, some destinations, such as the Galapagos Islands, are at risk of being ‘loved too much.’

At its heart, ecotourism involves “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people,” according to the International Ecotourism Society.

With this in mind, consider whether your travel plans include the following principles and practices that are central to ecotourism that makes a positive difference:

What’s on Your Fitness Bucket List?

The FIRM Master Instructor Team by The FIRM Master Instructor Team | December 31st, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Fitness

By The FIRM Master Instructor Stephanie Huckabee

Many of us keep a list of things we’d like to do before we reach a certain milestone. With my 40th birthday looming, I spent some time evaluating what I would like to include on my own so-called “bucket list” as I move forward in life. My list consisted of things like traveling to specific places, learning to cook my grandmother’s dressing and actually reading many of the classic literature titles currently gathering dust on my book shelf.

But what about a bucket list for exercise? Have you ever thought about keeping a running list of your dreams for fitness? Making a list of your long-term goals along with some smaller ones along the way could be just what you need to keep you motivated for years to come!

Yoga for All Seasons: Winter

Nichole Golden by Nichole Golden | December 31st, 2013 | 3 Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Yoga

Winter Yoga

It is important that we change with the seasons just as nature does by adapting our daily habits, yoga practice and food choices. During the winter season, the energy of the Earth and its creatures is drawn inward. We can use this time for restoration and introspection, just as many plants and animals use it for hibernation. In preparation for the spring, it is important to slow down and rejuvenate.

An Ayurvedic approach to winter

There is a rule in Ayurveda that “like attracts like.” That is why the kapha and vata doshas can become provoked and aggravated during the dry, dark, cold months of winter. This is because the climate is alike the qualities of these two doshas. If kapha or vata are triggered, digestive fire plummets, leaving you more susceptible to colds, poor circulation, joint pains and negative emotions. Here are some yoga and lifestyle tips that can help you to balance your doshas this season.

Reward Your Resolution

Girlfriend@Gaiam by Girlfriend@Gaiam | December 25th, 2013 | 3 Comments
topic: Girlfriend@Gaiam, Personal Growth

Reward Your Resolution

We’re almost midway through the first month of the new year, and if you’re like the majority of resolution makers, you’re likely already starting to falter. According to a recent New York Times article, “By the end of January, a third will have broken their resolutions, and by July more than half will have lapsed.”

That’s why now is a great time to recommit to those oh-so-noble goals. Two ways to do that? Checking in with your resolutions often and rewarding yourself for your progress. Sure, losing weight, saving money and getting more sleep are their own rewards, but a little extra motivation never hurt, right?

How to Eat Local in the Winter

Annie B. Bond by Annie B. Bond | December 25th, 2013 | 2 Comments
topic: Green Living, Healthy Eating, Healthy Home

beet.

Are carrots and turnips getting a bit old? What to eat?! It sure is tempting to reach for artichokes and avocados instead, but out-of-season produce is an extravagance because it is so energy-intensive to transport to your kitchen.

8 Ways to Keep Your Resolutions This Year

The FIRM Master Instructor Team by The FIRM Master Instructor Team | December 23rd, 2013 | 5 Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Personal Growth, Weight Loss

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By The FIRM Master Instructor Mindy Fenske

The new year is a time to reflect on what we have done, to make plans for the future, and to celebrate with friends and family. It is also a time for resolutions. How many of you have made resolutions in past years that have somehow been, well, less than achieved? Let that all change this year. This will not be the year that a goal has been set and not met. This will be your year of success, and here are the eight simple ways to make that happen.

Finding Meaning in the Holidays: Yoga & Meditation Tips

Michelle Finerty by Michelle Finerty | December 20th, 2013 | 2 Comments
topic: Health & Wellness, Personal Growth, Yoga

christmas tree

The other night, I was looking at my tree, decorated with the small number of ornaments that are meaningful to my family and me, and thought about how I grew up with a tree full of ornaments, each covering the one behind it. It was one of those moments of clarity for me, watching the tree in the dark of night with the lights sparkling: Less is more. Too many trinkets distract. It’s not about what you get or have. It’s about what you give, and the quality, not quantity behind that sentiment.

8 Yoga Poses to Stimulate Metabolism

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | December 18th, 2013 | 2 Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Weight Loss, Yoga

Wheel Pose yoga

In addition to yoga’s well-documented methods of promoting health and happiness. it also has the ability to help you lose weight,  burn calories, boost metabolism and reduce stress. Although yoga is not a quick fix, it can be an excellent long-term approach to losing weight and keeping it off.

10 Ways to Eat Healthy on the Fly

Wendy Worrall Redal by Wendy Worrall Redal | December 11th, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Family Health, Green Living, Health & Wellness, Healthy Eating

I just returned from an overseas trip, spending 17 hours in the air and several more hours in airports. Since I’m always a coach-class traveler, I was reminded of how difficult it can be to find healthy food at a reasonable price when you’re flying.

Ditto for road trips: our family drove from Denver to Seattle last summer, and the wasteland of fast-food chains and truck-stop convenience stores clustered around interstate exits is downright depressing if you want a quick bite that’s not burgers, fries or rotisserie hot dogs.

The key, I’ve learned, is to prepare your own portable meals ahead of time. Travel, especially flying, can be draining, not to mention dehydrating. It’s important to choose foods that are high in protein and complex carbs, to maintain blood sugar levels – and to drink lots and lots of water. Those tiny plastic cups the airlines provide won’t suffice — bring your own water bottle and fill it from a concourse drinking fountain once you clear security.

With just a bit of preparation time, you can enjoy easy, energy-sustaining snacks that taste better and cost a lot less than most ‘food on the fly.’ If you’re traveling this holiday season, mix and match a selection of these easy snacks — no need to bother with a cooler or utensils; most items will last outside the fridge for a while, and most can be eaten right from your hand.

4 Ways to Give the Gift of Fitness

The FIRM Master Instructor Team by The FIRM Master Instructor Team | December 10th, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Fitness

FIRMfeatureBy The FIRM Master Instructor Kelsie Daniels

The holiday season is once again upon us. And because I am one of those people who fully enjoys holiday dining, I have to prepare myself for the usual question that comes as I am stuffing my face: “How do you stay in shape?” One of the people who always asks me this question is my dear Aunt Jo. She asks it every year and then follows with how she wants to start working out and eating right.