Hour Glass by Rebecca Iannone



“The stormy life can be braved only by the heart’s sunny meditations…”
-Sri Chinmoy

If you’re anything like me, relaxing is near impossible. I enjoy having hobbies, projects, social
engagements, exercising consistently, playing sports, and of course working. I feel it safe to say that
most people pack on a similar level of activity and responsibility in the day. The result? Not necessarily
stress but more the sense that your daily life functions just as an hour glass would. The hours keep
slipping away with no chance to slow or stop the process. When the hours are gone you sleep and
restart.

Do not confuse that analogy for a depressing take on life. Instead, it is quite beautiful as it reminds us to
keep moving forward and make the best of this short time we have. Beautiful as it is some people may
experience more stress throughout the day than others. It is important to understand how to properly
manage your stress. Without a good outlet the stress will build up and bring you down. Everyone
deserves to find a way to live their chosen lives in a positive state of mind rather than constant anxiety.

There are many, many practices that can help relieve daily stress. It is my personal belief that the best
practice is one in which you receive all the benefits with little consequence- as consequence may just
add to the cycle of stress. Which practice can do all of that for me? You ask? Why meditation of
course. The only cost you pay is time. You must give time to this practice for it to benefit you. The
benefits greatly, let me say it again, GREATLY out weight, the cost of this particular practice.

Without further ado and unnecessary rhetoric the following is a list of just some of the long and short
term benefits of meditation:

  1. Reduces stress and anxiety
  2. Improved focus
  3. Increases energy
  4. Helps to balance emotions
  5. Increases tolerance for pain
  6. Improves memory
  7. Fosters creativity
  8. Boosts your immune system
  9. Reduces blood pressure
  10. Improves sleep
  11. Increases self-awareness
  12. Slows aging
  13. Improves metabolism
Meditation does not need to take hours. You can begin by just taking a few minutes in the morning to
sit still, clear your mind, and focus on your breathing. You can spend anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes.
Regardless of the time you choose to spend, taking just some time out of your day to center yourself can
make a world of difference with how you handle the daily grind.
Below I will be providing my list of sources but the first link may be quite helpful to those that do not
know how to meditate. Feel free to peruse the other links as each provide some great insight into the
art and science of meditation.

Sources:

Breakfast


By Beca Iannone

It’s a crisp morning, dew still resting on blades of grass.  The sun just peaking over the horizon.  You spring out of bed, give yourself a nice long stretch and hum a merry tune to celebrate the new day and your undying energy to seize every moment possible.  That sounds like you, right? Yep, me too, when I am still asleep and dreaming about waking up as a form of procrastination from reality.  Mornings are struggle of lifting the weight off sleepy eyes and rising from a warm bed to walk across a cold room.  Of course, a good night’s sleep can make all the difference with how the following day may unfold.  Regardless of the amount of sleep you have mornings still come with a drag in your step.  The best way to deal with this small struggle is to give yourself the time to have a well-paced morning routine.  A good routine can ensure you feel good about yourself and the day ahead of you.  On the contrary, a rushed morning routine can lead to the feeling of being one step behind throughout the day.   Feeling behind leads to cutting corners to catch up, and what is the first corner we always cut?  Well, it would be our own wellbeing, often times in the form of sacrificing what we eat and the amount of time we give ourselves to eat.

How long do most people go without eating?  Typically not more than a few hours, assuming they give themselves the time to replenish their bodies.   The reason we start to feel hunger after a few hours is that your body is asking for a resupply of energy.  It is like filling a tank of gas when your car is on empty.  Fortunately humans are much more complex and able to adapt than a car may be, so running out of gas for a human would just mean taking the fuel from another source.  The negative result of that process is that each time you do eat your body tries to store the food rather than burn it up for fuel.   It is an instinctual process our bodies follow to ensure we do not starve.  Food storing equals slower metabolism.  Slower metabolism equals easier weight gain.  Long winded explanation short do not skip breakfast.  It is the kick starter for your day.  It is the initial fuel that allows your body to focus on its usual functions and your brain to focus on the work you need it to focus on.  Breakfast does not have to be a huge ordeal but skimping or eating the wrong foods such as donuts or very sugary cereal is just an insult to your body and deterrence to a smoothly flowing day.  Go ahead experiment.  Eat a donut in the morning and notice how your body responds.  The next day eat a yogurt with fruit, or whole grain cereal, or a smoothie.  Then notice how your body responds.  I will buy you a donut if the energy of your day was much better kick starting it with a donut rather than a nutritionally sound option. 

 

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/most-important-meal#3

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/magazine/2014/10/why-eating-the-right-breakfast-is-so-important/index.htm

http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/breakfast-question.html

https://www.rush.edu/health-wellness/discover-health/why-you-should-eat-breakfast

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/08/10/the-science-of-skipping-breakfast-how-government-nutritionists-may-have-gotten-it-wrong/

 


"You have to stop running"


“You have to stop running.” The five words that any runner doesn’t want to hear, and I’m no exception. The only difference (this time) was that the chiropractor told me those words two weeks before the Boston Marathon.  After a surprise win at the Louisiana Marathon, I was hoping for a similar performance at Boston.   This was a race I spent all spring training for, so the devastation was real.  

After getting hurt, I personally believe that I went through all five stages of grief during that time; denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and the hardest of all, acceptance. I thought of all of the countless hours I spent training and how I could have spent my time and efforts elsewhere. I was sad and I felt an emptiness that I couldn’t fill. That may sound extreme to most, but my love and desire for running is very deep rooted and has always been more than “just running.” Looking to fill the void, I decided to put my membership at higherpower to good use.

I found solace at the studios. I never felt excluded or, for lack of a better phrase, not cool enough, to be there. I looked forward to and enjoyed the regimen; cycling with Shani on Tuesday evenings, doing TRX with Ms. Awesome on Saturday mornings, and namaste-ing in between. I formed bonds with the other regulars. We’re all creature of habits. We go to the same classes, at the same times, and eventually, you get to learn more than just what bike they prefer to ride on. Knowing that Megha and Whit would be there on Thursday evenings, when I usually drag the most, motivated me to get my butt to the bike; when Tina wasn’t working Saturdays, I know I could count on seeing her next to me at TRX. I took comfort in knowing that there was a community on my side.

I took four months off from running. Ten weeks into those months, I had jaw surgery. My jaw was literally broken into pieces, so running was definitely out of the question. Typically, surgeons aren’t fans of patients doing much in the form of physically activity after surgery, but mine made an exception. Swollen face and all, 10 days after surgery, I (slowly) returned to my yoga, cycling, and TRX routine at the studio. As I’m writing this, I truly believe that getting back into my routine helped me recover quicker and with NO complications; mind you, I was on a liquid diet, with a splint in place to keep my jaw steady, so the potential for complications were there. My surgeon praised how quickly and how well the swelling had gone down, and I advocated for the importance of encouraging patients to do physical activity after surgery.

After I got the all clear to start running, I went for a run. Ok, I ran a half marathon. What? Those who know me know that isn’t that crazy for me. We had a planned trip to Vancouver to run the Lululemon SeaWheeze half marathon and my only plan was to run as much of it as I can. I ran a total of ten miles in the four months leading into the race, so was I was surprised to be able to run the whole thing at decent time! Sidenote: Running a half marathon this way, especially if you’re new to the sport, is not what I would typically recommend. I had a very strong running base prior to this; I ran >55 miles a week when I was marathon training.  I attribute my success at SeaWheeze to the cycling, yoga, and TRX I did to maintain my fitness and keep my muscles and endurance intact.

At the finish of SeaWheeze, in that moment, I felt pride and gratitude.  Following the race, Mark Berger, our friends, and I scaled Grousse Mountain; those climbs showed how the mixture of strength in TRX, aerobic training in cycling, and balance & agility, helped us get to the peak after the half marathon.  I was proud of myself for making through the race, up the mountain, through the recovery of surgery, and through an injury that hurt my spirit more than anything else. And gratitude: gratitude for my health, the people in my life, and the ability Find My High (with the help of higherpower) in more than one way.

 

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What Shapes You



We all have our own stories about what we've come from and what we're going to.

These stories shape daily priority – how we work, what we eat, when we sleep – and we repeat them.

As we muscle through the hubris of corporate life (or the freelance hustle,) and navigate the politics that have been consuming every inch of 2016, we create unhealthy routines that take from our mind & bodies with no maturing return.

I had an idea of what my priorities were and what happiness looked like as I placed myself in a daily repetitive rotation – this mix of importance and bliss shaped the things I felt were benchmarks of success – these benchmarks then justified my lack of attentiveness to what was genuinely impactful in my life. Success for me was in the form of multiple income checks, it was giving material things in place of my presence and it was being everywhere but nowhere at the same time. I felt like these were universal ingredients to achievement for all the folks nearing or surpassing 30-something, which further warranted what I set my mind on day in and day out. I had no idea this was static I was creating within myself resisting the nuances of what happiness actually can look like on an individual level.

As I continued to repeat my personal priority routine, I lost people, direction, and unhealthy weight. I hit bottom and I hit bottom hard. I scraped through the days as a shell, with absolutely no grasp on what 30 year old delight could mean.

And then I found higherpower - and higherpower found me

Whit - Blog 1 - Photo 1        Whit - Blog 1 - Photo 2

BALANCE                                                                            STRENGTH


I reshaped my intentions in cycle. I manifested thought into movement in yoga. I released frustrations in TRX.


I found common ground in higherpower’s safe spaces with women and men that were okay with openly figuring out what works, and doesn’t work for them.

After four 4 months of communing and being held accountable by instructors and fellow higherpower warriors - challenging my mind and body through fitness – I feel as though I’ve resurfaced as my whole self, in the best shape mentally and physically I’ve ever been.

My priorities have shifted, my purpose and intentions redefined and what creates my happiness is now different.

Self care is the staple of my daily movement, in hopes that I am tapping into my best self -- creating a better me for the people around me and the work I create.

As social media voyeurism creates comparative parallels between personal priorities and happiness, it’s important to identify avenues that connect mind and body to the daily mix.

For me, it’s adding a release mentally and physically into my routine and reminding myself -
Happiness looks different on you.

Whit - Blog 1 - Photo 3






New Year's Hustle Challenge

Everyone always says the "strength is in the struggle," but at hp we say the "strength is in the hustle."

YOU have the choice to attack life with all that you've got and HIGHERPOWER wants to help you for the New Year.

Check out what we have coming for you starting January 8th for 7 weeks.

  • Resting Metabolic Testing ($100 value)
  • Nutrition Workshop ($15 value)
  • Running Form & Yoga Clinic ($20 value)
  • Goal Setting Workshop ($15 value)
  • Hustle Challenge Tank Top/Shirt ($35 Value)
  • Coupon for Shoes at Varsity Sports
  • Coupon for Shoes at Bicycle World
  • hp coaches and mentors

Pricing 


Package A-$350 includes unlimited classes! ($550 Value) Click Here
Package B-$150 without classes ($225 Value) Click Here

Contact SWEAT@higherpowernola.com for more info.

Ten Ways to Beat the Summer Heat if You Love the Outdoors




The summer in New Orleans can be unimaginably hot, so getting outside may be a little harder mid-day. Here are some tips for making the heat and humidity a little more bearable in the summer.

1. Hydrate Extra before and during your workout
The heat will definitely increase the amount you sweat, so plan ahead and double up on your water intake throughout the day. The more you sweat, the more water you lose so extra hydration is key in avoiding dehydration. Also, bring ice water with you. There is nothing better than doing reps, sets, sprints, and intervals with ice cold water in between. To decrease your body temperature, you can pour water on your head or neck.


2. Workout in your wicks
Wicking clothing are lightweight and breathable. Wicking clothes will pull water away from your body making you feel cooler. A baseball cap or a wicking cap will keep the sun off your face.


3. Cool off before you start
Starting a workout in the heat will be easier if you are more willing to be warm. So cool off before. A cold shower or room can be chilly which will motivate you to warm up for your workout.


4. Workout in cooler places
Finding a shady trail or covered area will block the sun and  help you avoid a direct source of heat.

5. Exercise at cooler times of the day
In New Orleans, the morning (anytime before 6am) will be a cooler time for you to crank out an outdoor workout. After 6am, your next cool window starts around 7:30 pm, so plan your workouts around the temperature if you crave that outdoor experience.

Although it is summer in New Orleans, the outdoors increases endorphins, and the sun is a good source of vitamin D. So go outside. Gear up, hydrate, and prepare to sweat in the humid heat of NOLA.

If you’re not an outdoor lover, or the heat is too hot to handle, Higherpowernola has an awesome air-conditioned yoga and cycle studio both Downtown and in Mid City. Find your high



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What to Expect: Your Guide to Higherpowernola Classes



Cycle

Our cycle classes at higherpower are unlike any other cycle experience. As class begins, the lights are turned down low, and the music is cranked up. The cycle room becomes a new world as the instructors remove you from any other outside distractions. The cycle room is lit with neon lights and equipped with monitors displaying every individual's energy, rpm, power, rank and bike number. The cycle class at higherpowernola is the best indoor cycling in New Orleans. You will work on time trials, jumps, tap-backs, climbs, and sprints throughout class. Higherpower instructors turn the class into a whole new experience for even the most practiced riders. Classes end with a cool down and stretch leaving you with your new found high. Expect to need a water bottle, because you will sweat like you've never sweat before. Higherpower has towels and shoes available.


Yoga

at higherpower may be a different yoga experience than what your may be used to  in our yoga classes, Higherpower incorporates strength exercises to help you tone every muscle in the body; all the while increasing your balance, flexibly, and mindfulness. Our yoga classes take place in our heated studio, where distractions are left behind. We don't teach Bikram yoga, but our yoga studio does tend to be around 85-90 degrees.  If you sign up for our YAThletic class, your heart will be pumping, and you will face a more vigorous strength yoga flow. If you are not looking for a challenge, you can relax and rejuvenate in our our candlelit yin yoga class or beginner yoga class. Don't be afraid to challenge yourself, because our power yoga classes combine strength and relaxation in perfect balance. Be sure to bring a mat and water bottle, but don't worry if you forget it/don't own one. Higherpower has mats and water available to borrow or purchase.


TRX

If you are looking to sweat and get your ass kicked with a strength and cardio combo, then TRX E.P.I.C. will do the trick. Our  TRX E.P.I.C. class takes place in our yoga studio and features body-weight and dumbbell strength exercises, in addition to, some short intense cardio blasts. In this class, you move from your mat to the TRX bands which will keep you focused and cause some serious sweating. Don't understand TRX?--- TRX bands (with foot-loops and handles) hang from the ceiling, and allow you to perform almost any strength or cardio workout. You will be holding onto the straps at an angle, using your sheer body weight as a challenge. Our TRX E.P.I.C class is badass and even beginners fall in love with it. It's always fun to try something new, and we guarantee you will love it too. So grab your mat and water bottle and get ready to shred serious fat and calories in this awesome high intensity class!

Staying Hydrated While Living the #SweatLife


This is making me thirsty.
IMG_1468_copy2
The body is made up of about 60% water but, as you probably can sort out, it doesn’t just stay full - it needs to be replenished. Think about how much you sweat working out. And then think about just regular day-to-day stuff in the Southern Louisiana heat. Making groceries at 5 p.m.? Sounds like you'll be pretty damp by the time your bags are inside. 

At higherpower we offer complimentary filtered water and encourage our guests to bring a water bottle with them to class. So, this begs the question: If just existing depletes hydration, how much water do you really need to drink to stay on top of your game?

When you workout, it is essential to stay hydrated. You’ve probably seen a few of those people getting swole at the gym with a gallon of water by their side. No need for that; a traditional water bottle will do just fine. (We sell them at both studios!)

The “authorities” recommend the 8x8 rule, mostly because it is easy to remember and it amounts to plenty for an average person to consume daily to stay healthy and improve body functions.

The 8x8 rule is simple: Drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day. This number is often disputed and touted as a myth but if you use it as a goal, you can get a feel for where you are when it comes to staying hydrated.
 
Besides, water is delicious.

Hydration is also a component in performance. Muscle tissue is made up of approximately 75% water, and water loss leads to increased muscle fatigue. Water also regulates the body’s temperature so a drop in water means an increase in body temperature. At higherpower we are all about staying hydrated. Listen to your body and keep an ear out for reminders from our awesome instructors to take a few sips mid sweat-sesh.

In case you need more reasons (did we mention how delicious water is?) to stay hydrated, drinking plenty of water is also linked to healthier skin, faster metabolism and may aid in weight loss. For more bad-ass reasons to stay hydrated, check out Benefits of Drinking Water on TheGreatest.com.

 

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Summer of 69 Challenge



It's HOT and summer is finally upon us.  We want to keep you motivated to keep your fitness up as the temps start to rise.  We are doing a challenge led by one of our lead mentors Brooke Baker.  All you need to do is show up, hold yourself and friends accountable and get a prize at the end.  Here are the deets:

SWEAT in as many classes in 69 days.

Prizes:
Double Baker's Dozen-26 classes = Kaballah bracelet or multi-functional headband 
Triple Baker's Dozen-39 classes = Higherpower Sunglasses ($15 value)

Most classes Taken---A kick ass grand prize:
-------FREE personalized higherpower class of your choice for you and all of your friends! AND a package of apparel and gift cards!----


Challenge begins June 24th and ends August 1st.


Do it for You!



Sweating at least once a day, is one of my top priorities as a young adult. It is the way I thank my body for never giving up on me when I push myself extremely hard. When I close my eyes in a Higherpower cycle class, I remember how lucky I am to have such a healthy body and mind. In YATheltic yoga, I breathe and think back to a time in my life, when I needed this. I needed this practice, this class, this teacher, and this moment. In TRX, I push myself to  my ultimate limit, because I am strong and have overcome weakness. I exit all higherpower classes, with a smile on my face, because I just kicked ass and proved once again, I am strong, healthy, and happy. But many times, I take for granted my health. A friend of mine, doesn’t have the ability to enjoy fitness like I do, and I could never imagine a life without exercise. Take a moment to mindfully bring a  individual in your life to mind who would appreciate the ability your body has. Think about what it is like to be unable to flow in yoga class, crush reps in TRX E.P.I.C, or climb a hill in cycle. Don’t take your next fitness class for granite, instead, do it for a friend who wishes they could be next to you in class. Do it for your health and strength. Do it because you have a healthy body that will work as hard as you are willing to push it, because someone out there wishes they had your amazing ability to enjoy a healthy lifestyle filled with higherpowernola yoga, TRX, and cycle classes.  



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