Radiant Orchid & Zen

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When I was in middle school, my mother started going to the gym. Religiously. Three nights a week. I got to be home by myself, just me and homework. It never really bothered me, but I picked something up from that. Since she’s become a fitness fanatic, she started buying workout VHS tapes (yes, I grew up before DVDs), and I started watching them. And ever since then I’ve been working out at home. Yes, at our last place there was a gym (read: treadmill, bike and unknown equipment in a tiny 1920’s apartment building basement) that I occasionally used and even liked, but it still wasn’t my thing.

Since Sam and I are one of those couples who chose not to subscribe to cable, we invested into a smart TV. Top that with a subscription to Hulu Plus and Netflix. As a result you get – “Who needs cable?” kind of attitude from us 🙂 In a good way!

What I am trying to say is – there are hundreds of workout videos available through these devices/subscriptions. YouTube is my other favorite source. But I have recently been able to give Gaiam TV a shot. And of course I fell in love. Not only do they have all insane Jillian Michaels workouts, they also have a wide variety of Yoga and Pilates, as well as other fitness routines that you can do. The filter system is extremely useful. You can pick the type of the workout, as well as the trainer, and duration (which sold me right there and then!)

On top of all that Gaiam TV offers Spiritual Growth, Nature and Culture, Seeking Truth videos and episodes, that can help guide you both physically and spiritually! I just wish it wasn’t $9.95/mo (compare to Hulu Plus and Netflix $8 each).

Do you work out? What types of workouts do you prefer? How do you stay fit?

Zhenya

Disclosure: I have been provided a free month of subscription to Gaiam TV, as well as free products, in exchange for this post, but that didn’t influence my opinion, shared in this post!

Just Say Ommm, Be Happy and Go Shopping

 

 

 

 

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A couple weeks ago I attended one of the Minnesota bloggers meet-up events, which was a yoga class lead by Katie of  Strawberry Halls Forever. It was an amazing experience, not only because I got to meet other bloggers in the area, but also because it was my very first yoga class!

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I have been doing yoga for over 4 years now, but never in a group! I am a loner (read cheapskate 😉 ) when it comes to working out. I love my work out DVDs and videos I find on YouTube (check out Fitness Blender – it’s one of the best resources out there!)

Now I got into yoga by accident, and let me explain how it happened! Back in my good old nannying days when I lived on the Upper West Side everyone and everything breathed and talked yoga! You see I was always more of a runner, and I loved my strength training as well! Remember Cindy Crawford’s videos from the 1990’s? Those were my go-to workouts for many years! My mom got me into them back when I was in 8th grade! And I still do them 2-3 times a week, though I’ve switched over to Jillian Michaels since then! But let’s return to the UWS though… I was really into FIT.TV and since the family I worked for had Warner Cable, I took advantage of it every day! I got into Gilad’s workouts, and Namaste Yoga by Kate Potter was on right after! So I gave it a shot and FELL IN LOVE! And have been doing it ever since! I tried other workouts by other instructors, but Kate Potter won me over!

And even though I’ve been doing yoga all by myself for a long time, I feel like it’s one of those experiences you need to live through as a group, so one of my goals this summer is to find a yoga class to join, so if you know of a good one in Minneapolis and western suburbs area, please let me know!

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Another thing that I’ve come to realize is that I don’t really have any good yoga clothes, and to me being fashionable at yoga is much more important than when I go for a run. So as I was looking for cute yoga clothes, I came across C9 brand at Target!

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They have very affordable and stylish work out clothes, designed specifically for yogis 🙂 And if you watch their website close enough, you can get coupons and discounts on C9 brand pretty often!

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Show style and strength in this yoga top by C9 by Champion, exclusive to Target!

3312 Bust a (yoga) move in these stylish, snazzy pants from C9 by Champion, a Target-exclusive line of fitness.

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Love yoga? Or just love comfy, stylish yoga pants that keep you covered no matter what? Whatever your yoga pants-wearing style, C9 by Champion at Target has you covered!

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What gives you peace and strength? Whatever motivates you, C9 by Champion apparel has you covered!
I am definitely going to Target to get myself some cute and colorful yoga tops and comfy stretchy pants (don’t worry, those will be worn to yoga classes alone 😉 ) Where do you shop for yoga clothes and what type/style of yoga would you recommend?
Xo,
Z
Disclosure
At Target Influencer Network, we support ethical blogging and strict adherence to the FTC guidelines pertaining to free samples and gifts. Participants in our programs are expected to do the same. For more information, visit: http://www.ftc.gov/os/2013/03/130312dotcomdisclosures.pdf

10 Things to do This Spring!

I love spring! Wait… I LOVE SPRING!!!!

This was better! And I am extremely excited that tomorrow is the first day of spring! And even though it snowed like crazy here in Russia yesterday, my hopes are up, and I know that “the Spring is a Coming”!

Now this spring I have decided to challenge myself to do these 10 things, and you are more than welcome to do them with me, because it’s going to be FUN!

1. Create Spring Art!

I came across this beautiful watercolor pastel of Cherry Blossom trees in Central Park, painted by a Brooklyn artist. And I was so inspired and moved by it, that I decided to create some spring art of my own!

You can learn more about the artist here http://mosleyart.blogspot.com

2. Wear florals, or bright colors!

I have noticed that lately I’ve been wearing a lot of blacks and grays, and decided to brighten up my life and my outfits this season. I found a great inspiration on www.fashionfame.com

Love the parrots!

3. Hear the birds singing!

I wake up to birds, there are two trees outside my window, that seem to attract the most annoying kinds of birds – crows and jackdaws. But I found this amazing video and you can hear the birds singing no matter where in the midst of the busy city jungle you are!

4. Eat Healthy!

Am I the only person in the world who didn’t know about all the amazing resources www.livestrong.com has to offer? I found some great homemade hair care recipes yesterday, that I have mentioned in my previous post. But there is also a giant section on healthy eating, recipes included! So let’s all eat healthier this spring!

5. Do Some Yoga!

Whether you choose to follow the lifestyle of a yogi, or simply do some exercises to become more fit, you won’t regret it. I have already mentioned Namaste Yoga by Kate Potter. My new favorite is Yoga with Rodne Yee! If you are a Mac lover like me, check out some great Yoga Apps that are out there! And remember – stay motivated!

6. Begin your day with Laughter!

I learned this from Sam, he always checks what I call “his” websites with some comics, funnies, or humor! There is a great blog here on WordPress, that makes me laugh so hard, esp. the latest post on Easter Bunnies, make sure to check it out! http://ske​tchybunnie​s.com/

Some other websites that I like are:

http://explosm.net

http://www.collegehumor.com/

http://theoatmeal.com/

And don’t forget about the many many videos on YouTube of Kathy Griffin, Dane Cook, and other great comedians out there!

7. Believe!

Believe in God, believe in yourself, believe in others! Believe that you can, that you have the strength, the ability! Believe in opportunities, chances, fate! Believe in good, love, hope!

8. Take up a New Hobby!

One of my friends and fellow bloggers has recently started making her own soap, you can check it out here!

http://yourprofessionaltranslator.blogspot.com/2011/03/my-progess-in-making-soap.html

There are millions other hobbies out there! My mom does quilling! Here is a link to her website! I know that it’s all in Russian, but you can still see the works and how they are made!

http://stranamasterov.ru/blog/35499

Check out this link with a list of hobbies!

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/list-types-of-hobbies/

9. Plant an Herb Garden!

I always felt iffy towards house plants, but I love herbs, they smell great, and make food taste so much better! I am planning on planting a small herb garden and put on my kitchen windowsill! (Pictures coming soon!) I also believe that working with your hands, planting, gardening (which I don’t think I will be doing anytime soon) is good for your body, health and mind! And the smells of fresh herbs are also known to be great mood enhancers!

10. Redecorate your house, room, wall, table, shelf, ANYTHING for SPRING!

I found this amazing blog, that has some great redecorating ideas, the picture above shows a craft room, but there are other ideas there as well

http://itsy-bits-and-pieces.blogspot.com

I am planning on redecorating my TV stand, and maybe my desk! I am tired of the old dark brown color, and want to make it more vivid and exciting! (Pictures and DIYs to come!)

I hope you all enjoyed these ideas, and will be willing to give some of them a shot! Make sure to get back to me and tell me what changes you’ve made and whether you found this post helpful!

My Fav Workouts of ALL TIMES

I’ve been working out since 9th grade, my mom got me into it. She went to aerobics classes 3 times a week. I never went with her, but I remember buying our first VCR and getting the workout tapes! It was fun, still is. I wanted to share my favorite ones with you. I have never weighed over 120 lb, so these just help me stay toned. I also don’t diet, but I don’t pig out either.

1. Namaste Yoga by Kate Potter. This is a popular yoga workout, that you can

find on FitTV. It is usually on around noon ET. Each episode includes a warm-up, a sequence work-out, and relaxation and savasana. It’s a great muscle stretch, and gets you all toned in about a week. I’ve tried other yoga workouts, and they literally made me sick!

There are 3 Namaste Yoga DVDs out, I own two of them! Can’t wait to get my hands on the third one!

2. NTC iPhone/iPod App. First of all – it’s a FREE App. But it requires you to

have about 2 Gb of free space on your device, so I had to delete a lot of my music, mist of which I wasn’t listening to anyways. So I killed 2 birds with one stone: got a great workout app, and got rid of old music I skipped through anyways. There are 4 sections you can choose a workout from (Get Lean, Get Toned, Get Strong, Get Focused). Workouts last from 30 to 45 min, except for in the Get Focused part, where they are 15 min long. You add your own playlist, and listen to the instructions. If you don’t know how to do a certain exercise, there are useful videos, or step-by-step directions. This is an extremely motivational workout for me, because I just love the way these women look. I have tried The Biggest Loser Workout, but I already know I look better than those people, so there is no motivation there. But I am not saying TBL is a bad workout, it’s just not for me. NTC also has a system of awards, it’s a lot like a video game where one unlocks badges. I believe I am on Bench Marker now, meaning I have worked out for 360 minutes using this app!

3. Cindy Crawford’s workouts. I had them both on VHS! Can you believe it? I have them on DVD now, a sigh of relief, lol. Anyways, she is good!

The first DVD includes 3 workouts, and the second DVD is one long workout, which may seem like a drag at first, but once you get used to it, it’s fine! You will recognize a lot of moves, they are used in a lot of the modern day fitness programs.

This is what got me through High School actually, I did her workouts, and ended up looking better than most of the girls in my class!

4. Gilad bodies in motion. Yes, he is still alive! And even though he cracks me

up, he is good, and has an accent, if you dig those! You can also find him on FitTV, just like Namaste Yoga. They used to be back to back! The workouts are also about 25 minutes long (with the commercials). Unfortunately I don’t have any of his DVDs, so the only thing I recommend are the TV workouts.

5.  This last one is called 10 Minute Solutions. I do these when I am feeling

lazy, but I still want to workout!

I hope these help, I know I am no personal trainer, or health expert, but I am sharing these because they’ve helped me!

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