Episode II Fitness: Beach Cruiser unfurl from a fury of activity

Easy breezy summer days are exceptionally serene when approached atop a beach cruiser bicycle. There isn’t any headache over trying to find a place to park and unless earbuds are in and there isn’t a stereo to shake up the placid peace. Again and again bicycling proves to be a Shangri-la mode of transport. To shoot Episode I we ventured onto South Bass Island with a bomber aboard the ferry and headed to the town hall for Hatha Yoga with Kathi Spayde.  An effortless cruiser fits every island escape.

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David Stover, the service manager at Fremont Cycle and Fitness readied the ride. “What you did was the basic which was a sixty-five dollar tune. That goes over truing the wheels, checking the shifting, putting the brakes in proper order and a light clean-up on the bike. That’s good for what you’re doing.”

Stover shared this in Josie in Paradise, Episode II about pedaling for a better fettle.

Josie in Paradise can be viewed every Sunday at 9:30 p on AT&T U-Verse from Key West to the Florida Keys, across the nation via ROKU on the Ohio X5 Channel, and here.

EPISODE I: Fitness Wellness Making Waves at PIB Hatha yoga moves into town hall

Rolling out their mats, and rolling into Put-in-Bay’s town hall is a collection of visitors to the island, retirees, workers, islanders, and bartenders. The yogis are as eclectic as their island paradise nestled directly off of Ohio’s north coast.

“I retired from NASA after thirty-four years working as an aeronautical engineer,” says Sue Prahst. “I was fortunate enough to leave and be able to live my life here on the island.”

Prahst is putting herself into the Hatha yoga poses alongside her husband, Steve.

“I’m getting up there in years so its really a nice way to feel good for the rest of the day and it releases a lot of stress. Its so nice to get here and get it all out and relax. This also involves a lot of stretching. This helps with my back problems and my wrist. I recently had surgery on my wrist because I broke my wrist this winter. I asked Kathi to add another class. I would be here every day,” the missus makes solid statements.

She had two more years in with the national agency all about aeronautics and space travel than her groom.

“I put in thirty-two years with NASA,” Mister Prahst confirms.

This is one guy all about exercise.

“I like to go to the gym. I’m kind of a gym rat and I like to bike ride, and swim and kayak. I think the thing about exercise is you have to keep doing different things. You don’t want to get into a rut and do the same thing over and over again so I’m always looking for something different to do. Yoga was never convenient or whatever and here it is on Put-in-Bay. Kathi has this class twice a week and its works in just fine,” Mister Prahst proves the benefits are as evident as the moon phases.

“Hatha Yoga is a combination of physical and mental self-control through postures, breathing and balance,” enters instructor and islander Kathi Spayde. “Yoga enhances breathing, balance, posture, flexibility (and) strength. It also lowers cholesterol, reduces stress, and provides better sleep.”

Sleep is something most vacationers find themselves lacking after a few days away from the mainland. Spayde recently added this amenity to South Bass Island and those such as the Prahsts are proving the instruction is what the island craved.

“Today I had three walk-ins they happened to see the sign out front and said, ‘hey, let’s go to yoga class,'” Spayde remarks.

The craving was created simply by the craziness one can only experience on an island fueled with an influx of visitors, revelers, and party-goers once season hits. To service them the workers have to work. Rita Overmier is one of them. She bartends at The Boardwalk Restaurant and has visitors surrounding her space from sun up to well past the hours when the sun finally sets.

“I like taking time to do something for myself. (I’m) relaxing, stretching, being around people who enjoy yoga,” Overmier admits. “This is the only thing on the island that I have time to do.”

The Prahsts are proof the hours with Spayde doing the downward dog and settling into goddess squats are an effective way to destress.

Sue shares, “I feel like a million bucks. Obviously on this island there’s a lot of partying going on…”

In their own backyard.

“We happen to have our own vineyard we make our own wine. People find us,” Sue expanded with her husband chiming in, “We have our place here. We grow some grapes and make some wine ourselves.”

Noting that their PIB home is the place to be.

“This is the best place to vacation in Ohio. Right here. We got the islands. The Lake Erie Islands are the place to go,” Steve said.

Spayde solidifies everything they’ve said, “we have a great community of people here and residents. Its not party time all the time. We enjoy the parties but not as much as the visitors do on the weekends. We’re bombarded constantly by people who want to come here.”

That means a decompression chamber was in the cards, hence Put-in-Bay Yoga.

“Its really cool to be here doing yoga in this historical place in the Put-in-Bay City Hall right in downtown (PIB), Its just a great feel,” articulates Steve.

Classes are every Tuesday and Thursday at 9:30 a.

The F I T N E S S segment from Josie in Paradise Episode I is here.

Josie in Paradise airs every Sunday night at 9:30 p from Key West to Boca Raton on At&t UVerse, on Ohio’s X5 Roku Channel, and here.

 

 

 

Unerring Competition up against enhancement

Pictures by Kim Kidinger

The conversations have erupted across the east coast of the United States. Trust me I hear about them from aunts in Palm Beach to my dad’s girlfriend in small town Ohio. The swimwear photos that have been taken of me over the past decade are this and they are that and so-and-so had a conversation about the photo at this family gathering….

To which I kindly refer to the insight I was given early in my television career:  

In the media business the audience is given a plethora of white static personalities to watch. These pros play the game safely in line with industry standards and mimicking moves their counterparts lacking creativity are making. Let’s examine Instagram sensation Tash Oakley for 10 seconds. She allows me to make two points.

1.) She did not play the game “safe”

2.) She is twenty years my junior, and admits to photoshopping her not-so-perfect physique.

We DO occasionally remove the lines and circles around my eyes. If a body part peeks out of a bikini we erase the goods we don’t want the public seeing. This isn’t Playboy. This is Paradise. Plus, when workout bra tan lines ruin the ambiance of an image we shade in uneven skin tone.

Josie in Paradise is about living well, and being an overall achiever realizing dreams. A healthy physique represents smart living and is earned as is everything else in life — with sweat. Only the naysayers, the critics, the liars, the posers and the groupies are gonna hate on health. True health lies in physical, emotional and psychological well-being. Plus healthy finances.

Josie in Paradise, featuring Real Estate, Hotels, Hotel Amenities, Fashion, Fitness, Spas and a Spoonful + Business airs on AT&T UVerse in Miami and the Florida Keys every Sunday night at 9:30 and can be seen via the Ohio X5 Network on Roku.

 

Into the water and onto the courts yoga studios are not all you'll see

Pics by Denise DeCrow and Travis Yednak

There is a notable fitness segment in the show, Josie in Paradise, and on my website. We do hit a couple of yoga studios straight off of the bat for local shoots; but definitely know this, we are not going to to stop with showing only a yoga or Pilates studio. Remember being immersed with me in The Dive Report with Divers Direct.

This segment is sure to submerse us all, including myself, into a wondrous and adventurous world.

Here’s what to expect: most of us don’t think about how many calories are burned in a batting cage.

Or, realize the swim training involved if the desire is to dive into ocean depths at one-hundred and twenty feet plus.

How about tumbling and tennis?

Have zero fear, the fitness segment is going to educate the masses from everything from “Birdie Girl Golf” to the Oriental Martial Arts Studio. Make space for a sports locker and plan to start ditching your desk for some activity.

 

Explore Energy, Frequency, and Vibration universe unfolds at Prajna Consciousness

There’s an awakening on State Route 51 east of Toledo and west of the Lake Erie Islands in a rural community called Genoa. An RN, and mother, experienced what she describes as a Lakshmi moment and is in the process of developing 33-acres of the family farm into a plot of land that promises healing with a yoga studio and future plans for composting and organic vegetables. On this International Yoga Day we are given a glimpse at how the comics are coming into alignment.

The Property

“My husband’s family farms and they wanted to ensure businesses and industry aren’t going up across the street where their grandson is growing up,” owner Heather Zeller explains.

The yoga property sits on 500-acres and students can delight themselves with wildlife sightings as they become ever the more mindful with mantras. On this particular day we saw a groundhog and rabbit scamper by.

Statues of the Hindu gods greet students.
Statues of the Hindu gods greet students.

Colored squares of fabric showcased above the statue outline the seven chakras. In the Indian culture they believe these are spiritual power points through which our energy flows.

“Just coming onto the property promotes a feeling of serenity,” Zeller outlines. “It’s really hard to be here and not be connected with nature. That alone starts to put you into that meditative mindset. It’s also a lot different than walking onto a yoga studio in a busy shopping center situated between a hair salon and a movie theater. I’m not knocking that experience. It’s great to have yoga everywhere. This is an opportunity to bring  people into a rural setting to integrate their practice with nature that takes us to the next level.”

Zeller believes Lakshmi came and said, "here ya go. Enjoy!"
Zeller believes Lakshmi came and said, “here ya go. Enjoy!”

Zeller the Visionary

Heather Zeller is a petite nurse by day and lifelong student. She works as an Registered Nurse and has about two decades of experience in mental and psychiatric nursing. She also works with women in addiction recovery at an alcohol and drug treatment center offering metaphysical counseling, reiki and hypnotherapy.

On the day we gathered material she appeared utterly and effortlessly comfortable in her long, black patterned yoga pants, Flashdance-style one-shoulder marbled top and with Mala Tulsi beads draped loosely around her neck hanging down to her sternum.

A bindi is permanently tattooed on her third eye center.
A bindi is permanently tattooed on her third eye center.

“The bindi shows that as a yogini I am seeing life from a spiritual perspective. I’m committed to a path of dharma,” she clarifies from her space on the red yoga mat.

More tattoos sprawl from her knuckles down her forearm and onto her collar bone to her back and beyond in what she refers to as her living sarcophagus.

“I equate this to what Egyptians do at the time of death. On their sarcophagus there would be different pictures of their life and pictures of gods and goddesses and those pictures are what would carry them into the next life. For me every piece of art is connected to my spirituality and my journey; huge lessons, blessings and heartache,” Zeller speaks to what we can all relate to.

The Yogis and Yoginis

Dressed in purple yoga pants that resemble a constellation in the sky and black tank top with a Fitbit fastened to her wrist observers wouldn’t reckon Rebekah Schwab, a resident of Genoa, Ohio, is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran.

During boot camp she fell off of an obstacle course on Parris Island during boot camp and busted up the bone in her spine.

“My back injury has given me a curvature of my spine. Then this past April I felt the calling to work on inversions. I’ve been working on them for two months now and am getting back into alignment and finding that inner space space to connect. This is an onward journey,” Schwab supplies.

Her interest in the practice began in 2008. For the past two years she’s been showing up regularly on the mat and believes there is healing in the holistic practice.

“My friends told me I needed this and that’s when the practice clicked for me. This is a mind, spirit and body coming together in this healing atmosphere.”

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Schwab is securing her education at Heidelberg University in Tiffan with a major in History and Minor in Archaeology. She is spiritual years beyond her young age having been raised in a Christian non-denominational home. There has always been a very spiritual aspect to her life. She was encouraged to study world religion and visit synagogues.

Tattoos of her Marine experience and Christian upbringing cover her limbs. They depict POG lifeTuefel HundenRose of Sharon, the Song of Solomon and other symbols deeply rooted in theology.

“This one reads, ‘I will go,'” Schwab describes what her ink illustrates, “every woman’s story in the bible she says to step out in your calling, to your dharma.”

She doesn’t know what career path she’ll take upon graduation, but is committed to becoming a certified instructor with hopes to hold a veterans’ yoga night.

Schwab is stoic, “all of us come back with turmoil from deployment or the transition of getting out and going in. Right now twenty-two veterans commit suicide per day. My hope is to give them a place of safety to connect with themselves and find a place of healing.”

Spouses will be encouraged to join with proceeds going to the 22 Foundation.

The Lessons

In this space do not be surprised for a twenty to thirty minute psychology session between you, Zeller and the other yogis and yoginis to take place. This given session equanimity, or the ability to hold even mindedness (peace) in all situations, was the core class focus.

Schwab shares her exploration into this, “this is fun to talk about because for the last two months I have started to practice. There’s something to learn here and I am going to go into this with grace and stay on an equal level.”

The practice may sound simple but in the world we are all constantly tested to hold our space, which is easy when practicing together with like-minded individuals where the energy field supports your own.

Enter Zeller, “the paradigm world doesn’t support this focus. The world is very materially focused and very egocentric. The small eye is ruling. We’re coming up against that energy. Whether we’re in a traffic jam, in a line at the store, or we’re dealing with family members. Our practice allows us to hold that space. We learn who we really are. We learn we don’t have to respond to all of the negative stimulus the way that we used to.”

She points out that if we begin to navigate our karma, even stressful periods can bear spiritual fruit and allow us to grow. This is more peaceful than trying to find a recipe to escape your destiny because of your own behavior. We are programmed to cling to past pleasure and pleasurable experiences as well as avoid those that are painful.

IMG_6836Yoga becomes tangible when students realize they can tap into a higher power that is within them and not an esoteric or abstract idea. Genetic programming can be changed by influencing the energy fields around us. We can turn proteins around us off and on by the foods we eat and mindfulness, or consciousness we practice.

“When were not in alignment,” Zeller expresses the rococo of yoga, “we are functioning from the reactive receiver. For most of our lives we have built our responses out of recreating pleasurable experiences or avoiding displeasureable experiences and people. If we are not present we are responding to every situation and not living in equanimity.”

Chanting positive mantras, exercising, eating clean unprocessed food and reacting to situations in a conscious state of mind versus using the subconscious wired with old reactive, negative programming are the main keys to building a positive well-being.

Zeller takes the class to Schedel Arboretum and Gardens in Elmore at 6:30 pm every Thursday evening. For other class times check the Mindbody ap or visit her on the web. See you on the mats!

Om Shanti Om. My soul honors your soul.
Om Shanti Om. My soul honors your soul.
Josie is a former tv anchorwoman and award-winning journalist. She has USF course credit in Religions of India, studied Catholicism on the island of Islamorada and spent two years studying theology in the basement of Cleveland's St. John's Cathedral.
Josie is a former tv anchorwoman and award-winning journalist. She has USF course credit in Religions of India, studied Catholicism on the island of Islamorada and spent two years studying theology in the basement of Cleveland’s St. John’s Cathedral.

Make sure you read the Forward for definitions of the complexity of this article. If you have a story idea you’d like to share, you can email her at josie@josiekoler.com 

 

FORWARD: Prajna Consciousness Sanskrit, US Marine lingo and other vocab defined

I’m starting to break down the 33-acre energy field nestled on 500-acres of family farm on Route 51 on the Coastal Ohio Trail.

This location popped up on my iPhone6 screen with two taps of the MindBody app. I entered “Explore”, “Fitness”, then “Yoga”. The screen led me to Prajna Consciousness and after two attempts to locate the property on the west side outskirts of Genoa, Ohio, I knew there was a story.

The studio sits against vast fields.
The studio sits against vast fields.

A trip down the unpaved driveway leads visitors and yogis to their journey before they can put the car in park and turn the ignition off.

How fitting to work on this piece on June 21, 2016 International Yoga Day 2016.

Before we delve into the deep discussion of consciousness, energy fields, the students and the owner, Heather Zeller, I feel a lesson in the lingo of the land of yoga, Sanskrit, associated with the country of India dating back 6,000 years, is an absolute necessity.

Explains Zeller, “Sanskrit is the oldest language on the planet and is also based off of mathematics and vibration. The sounds are not necessarily based on phonics. There is an energetic principal that lies in Sanskrit.”

Plus, one of the students I will profile is a former U.S. Marine
Plus, one of the students I will profile is a former U.S. Marine

I felt her terminology, too, is necessary to expand on.

Prajna Consciousness Dictionary

Bhagavad Gita: a 700-verse Hindu scripture that presents the synthesis of the concept of Dharma. Ancient Indian text written between 400 and 200 BC as a guide to spiritual realization

Bindi: a red ornamental dot worn or tattooed in the center of a woman’s forehead between her eyebrows, most commonly in India, and is of vast importance reminding the self and others focus is on the spiritual journey versus the material connecting to the third-eye center

Dharma: law or doctrine of Buddhism that believes we are all subject to the principle of cosmic order

Divisa: Lord, God

Epigentics: belief we can change our genetic (DNA) programming based on our environment and energies we are attracting and projecting rather than being subject to creation programming via our conception

Equanimity: mental calmness and composure in a difficult, stressful, and or trying situation

Grunt: U.S. Marine Corp slang for Ground Unit

Jehovah Nissi: translation: the Lord is my banner

Jyotisha: the Hindu system of astrology to track and predict energetic movements with astrology

Karma: destiny or fate due to personal behavior and actions

Krishna: Lord God in the Bhagavad Gita, the embodiment of love and divine joy, born to establish the Religion of Love

Lakshmi: the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity and fortune, an active energy source and wife of Lord Vishnu

Mala Tulsi: equal to the Rosary beads of India, these wooden beaded necklaces are made with sacred wood of the Hindu religion and worn by yogis and yoginis for protection and to worship Vishnu, Krishna and Ram

Metaphysical Counseling: guidance from a higher source of power to guide us through life

Om: the sound of creation, known as the first sound in Sanskrit, belief we are aligning with and connecting with the highest part of our consciousness

Parris Island: site of Marine Corps boot camp training since 1915 located within Port Royal, South Carolina

POG Life: U.S. Marine Corps terminology meaning Person Other than Grunt

Reiki: a healing technique based on the principle that the therapist can channel energy into the patient by means of touch, to activate the natural healing processes of the patient’s body and restore physical and emotional well-being

Raga: personal impurity or fundamental of character

Rose of Sharon: first appears in English in 1611 in the King James Version of the Bible in Solomon Chapter 1 Verse 2 speaker says, “I am the Rose of Sharon, the lily of the valley”

Sarcophagus: from the Greek language defined as flesh-eating or outer layer of protection such as a coffin or decorated body art containing representations of the deceased

Shanti: Sankrit for peace

Song of Solomon: celebration of sexual love, two lovers praising and yearning for each other

Tuefel Hunden: motivational nickname in the U.s Marine Corps translated to Devil Dog

22 Foundation: Non-profit organization and suicide-prevention program designed for military and former military members and their families coping with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries, Military Sexual Trauma, and Combat Stress Reduction

Josie is a former tv anchorwoman and award-winning journalist. She has USF course credit in Religions of India, studied Catholicism on the island of Islamorada and spent two years studying theology in the basement of Cleveland's St. John's Cathedral.
Josie is a former TV anchorwoman and award-winning journalist. She has USF course credit in Religions of India, studied Catholicism on the island of Islamorada and spent two years studying theology through Cleveland’s St. John’s Cathedral

Coming up on this International Yoga Day

“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency, and vibration.” – Nikola Te …

Hot Yoga Heats Up HWY 20 Village souls shift for an awakening in sleepy Woodville, Ohio

“In high school I was the girl who couldn’t run a lap around the track. I think people see on Facebook, ‘Oh, Jessie’s going to yoga?’ So many people have said to me, ‘What’s this Yoga in Woodville’, and a couple of people come once and didn’t come back,” Jessica Cable, a twenty-year veteran middle school art teacher explains candidly.

She’s one of sixteen yogis who have rolled our their mats in at the Legion Hall on Elm Street in the Village of Woodville. Woodville is the Lime Center of the World and is nestled west of the Lake Erie Islands with two-thousand residents, a Subway, McDonald’s community pool and now, two traffic lights and hot yoga on Sunday nights reminding everyone of who they are and the battles they’ll face in the week ahead.

“Sometimes in Yoga people the practice can be difficult to let go of the ego and here in Woodville people are very community oriented and they do that very easily. They come here with an open mind and without preconceived notions,” Yoga Brent acknowledges his observation.

 

Yoga Brent adds the Village of Woodville to his global tour teaching and studying the spirituality of yoga.

Outfit in non-skid full-toe grip socks, Adidas shorts, and a tribal scarf around his main, Yoga Brent, a Toledo native, is also outfit with a Masters degree in Health Sciences and Health Systems and a resume highlighting a global tour those toes have made.

“I’ve taught in China, Costa Rica, Thailand, Cambodia, and Spain,” Yoga Brent supplies humbly before he delves into why everyone has gathered here on a ho-him Sunday evening to enjoy their breath.

“When we exhale we’re exhaling fifty million cells and when we inhale we then have the opportunity to take in fifty million new molecules of energy.” Ujjayi Breath means victory. We’re bringing in 50 million thoughts and with this you can walk towards miracles in life,” Yoga Brent, who earned his undergrad at the College of William and Mary, shares.

Cable initially tried running and Jazzercise when she decided to paint a new chapter of health and wellness into her already slammed schedule of students, marriage, and taking care of three teenagers. Two of whom are twins! This following a dramatic back surgery just four-years ago. The running stuck. Jazzercise went to the wayside.

“I tried that and could still run afterwards,” she admits of the class,“but with yoga the poses definitely decrease the level of soreness and add flexibility. I think I get more out of it mentally now. A sense of calm has come over me and I feel less guilt about taking this time for myself. All I’ve done for the past 16 years is tend for everybody else, so at first this felt selfish. Now, I’m a better mom and better wife. They don’t want me stressed.”

IMG_5782
There is always room at the Legion Hall for another mat. Nicole Knepper (front left) shows her Eagle with instructor Yoga Brent to her right. Directly behind her is Jessica Cable.

On any given Sunday, Cable is joined by other former high school classmates and running enthusiasts. Sherri Watson is a devout Christian and hails the Sunday Hot Yoga sessions as her Sunday religion.

“After the first class I had such peace in my head that I’ve been here every Sunday since. “I think being in such a busy, hectic life: running kids, being a mom, and working full-time I’ve really taken to heart what Brent talks about.”

The talk is one directed at the subconscious. Somehow the strategy is this; when yogis such as Cable and Watson are transitioning from airplane to majorette most buried thoughts creep into the conscious mind.

Again Yoga Brent shares his knowledge, “Over time the subconscious is sometimes written in a negative fashion. For some people that’s not the situation. In yoga class it’s a chance for us to observe being very, very conscious of our subconscious. We check in with ourselves and proactively rewrite negative thoughts. There are no real expectations. I notice over time though teaching this changes peoples’ lives.”

IMG_5923
Sherri Watson shows her plank on stage before she Chaturangas to the next downward dog.

Watson, the community’s 1992 Homecoming Queen who now serves Elmore as a physical therapist has found a new pleasure in the Prana breathing, Chaturangas and non-competitive atmosphere.

“I’m a big advocate for this now,” she says. I just think about developing patience my kids and exhaling all of the negative stuff that comes during the week.”

“In here if the person on the mat next to you is 10-years younger it doesn’t matter. They found this new ‘thing’ that’s surprisingly amazing. I’m embarrassed about the past. Why didn’t I get moving sooner? I never pushed myself to do something like this. I thought you had to be born to do sports and be athletic and boy did I change my mind,” Cable solidifies.

In the Village of Woodville, where seemingly nothing changes, suddenly something has.

Sherri (Sorg) Watson and Jessica (Hovis) Cable both today just completed the Glass City Half Marathon along with classmate Nicole (Blake Knepper). All three are moms and Woodmore Alumnae from the 90s. Classes are every Sunday at the American Legion Hall at 5:30 pm. The cost is as tiny as the population. $10 buys a month’s pass. To learn more about Yoga Brent click here.

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Spring Snowstorm provides Landscape for Fitness Lovers exercise outside with snow shovel and a hike

There isn’t any strategy that thaws out residents in the nation’s Great Lakes Region more than a hot yoga session. Follow-up with a hot shower and sauna session and no one cares where the mercury lands on the thermometer.

That is, if you can make your way to the studio once the snow strikes. This time the flakes came in 1″ size adding up to 8″ in depth overnight and into the morning hours which stuck with wetness perfect for snowmen and stranding unsuspecting drivers, especially those who are partial to tropical islands.

Just making the way out of the garage and out of the driveway isn’t going to happen without first spending some vigorous time with a snow blower or snow shovel and incorporating some sweat.

This means replacing the Vinyasa Flow, mat and towel with a Toro dual auger snow blower, Carlisle 11″ ice shovel and all the gear to keep you comfortable so you can skip the studio sans the stress in the event of a well-predicted spring storm.

Snow shoveling burns three hundred to four hundred calories per hour depending on how much you weigh and how much muscle mass your figure already flaunts. Which means moving the white stuff manually so you can move on with your day is one sure fire way to fire up the metabolism. The outdoor movement reserved for northern climates incorporates all of the muscles in the back, arms, shoulder and legs. Most driveways take longer than sixty minutes. The more you move, the more you can indulge in marshmallows atop hot cocoa once you’re through and doesn’t everyone on the Coastal Ohio Trail just love to warm up to a cup of The Kroger Company’s Private Selection Cocoa when it’s cold.

Shoving the shovel aside for a snow blower still blows out about two hundred and fifty calories for a person weighing in at a buck fifty.

Now for the creme de la creme of a cold blast on the Coastal Ohio Trail in the spring: hiking. Oh what fun the event is when frolicking in all that’s frocked! Lace up your Columbia Bugaboot and head wherever the wonderment takes you on two well-insulated feet with an abominable snow pup in tow. Hikers will melt mega calories traipsing the back country in heavy footwear. The exercise takes more leg and heart work than walking. Talk about toning. This “wintry” activity incorporates the calves, quadriceps, hamstrings, obliques, abs, and the front and back of the thighs, plus glutes. Tack on another four hundred and fifty calories for the hour spent out wondering what exactly Old Man Winter is doing in the springtime on the Coastal Ohio Trail.

He’s supplying us with breathtaking views.

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All of this compares to about 585 calories burned in a sweaty session of Vinyasa Flow at your favorite studio.

Stay posted for more on Outfit for a Winter Adventure … in the Spring !

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Power Yoga Packs plenty of Potency Pigeons, Birds of Paradise and inversions make up this fitness flurry

“When I first came to It’s Yoga I was like, ‘Ummm no. I really don’t want to go upside down.’ Through coming and watching other people I was like, ‘Maybe I can do them.'” Michelle Zydorczyk puts out there –  what pulls her to Power Yoga.

The ninety-minute session on the mats at It’s Yoga on Toledo’s Central Avenue is where Zydorczyk zones in on her zen. She’s a substance abuse counselor at the Zepf Center. She uses the practice as a tool to pry her pupils off of harmful “medication”. Medication they can get chemical free on a mat.

Zydorczyk, who accented her black and red hot yoga gear with gold hoop earrings nods her head, “It’s mind over matter. It’s not your body that won’t go upside down, it’s your mind.”

“Look up at your thumb even if you don’t normally. Just take a look, breathe and don’t worry about falling,” instructs It’s Yoga manager and fitness model, Sydney Parker.

“This class makes you get lost in the flow, and it’s like moving meditation,” David Schmenk, a Toledo website designer sweats the class out with a headband around his spiked hair.

Schmenk strips off his tank ten minutes into the flow to reveal a string of Chinese symbols tattooed down the top of his spine.

“I honestly don’t know what they mean. I got them when I was 16-years old,” he admits honestly. “This class to me is just about being present and focusing in and applying the same thing in life. Like stuck in traffic. Instead of freaking out and getting mad, I just take a couple deep breaths, focus in, try to be present, try not be caught up in everything going on.”

Schmenk is one of four men making this date with the mat. Mustering up all the muscle and mind power they can to power through the sixteenth Chatarunga.

“This is a lot of Chatarungas,” Sydney coaches “we want strong shoulders!”

“The class is dude-friendly,” her boyfriend Scotty Williamson from Michigan points out. “It’s definitely a lot harder than I thought it was but I love it. I realize the transformation from where I was before. This Power Yoga class gets you stretched out and heated if you keep pushin’ through, and breathin’.”

A Glass City girl from birth, Parker points out the class concept. Power Yoga is designed to empower from within. Yogis are encouraged to find inner-strength and bust any limiting beliefs through the breath.

This powerful practice eventually showcases a dream dance, the arm-balancing split, translated in Sanskrit to Eka Pada Koudinyasana, and Parker is demonstrative that breath can take a person to new dimensions. She teaches Restorative Yoga at this location three days a week and Power Yoga two times. Though the sequence has everyone in a sweat she surprisingly urges beginners to come in regardless of Ahamkara, otherwise known as the ego.

“I would myth bust that this is for advanced only. My friend Michelle just unveiled to me this was her first time ever coming to a yoga class, and she just did amazing with her hair down. I would say that anyone could do yoga even if you’ve never tried it.

Parker hits the Paradise feed with her Bird of Paradise. She began her practice with meditation during her formative years of high school and earned her yoga certification just six months ago. She's bounced around the nation and believes an energetic pull keeps bringing her back to Toledo.
Parker hits the Paradise feed with her Bird of Paradise. She began her practice with meditation during her formative years of high school and earned her yoga certification just six months ago. She’s bounced around the nation and believes an energetic pull keeps bringing her back to Toledo.

Yoga at home is nothing compared to a studio. You have a room full of people, there’s an energy here and you never know what to expect. When you’re being pushed and challenged a little bit you don’t know where you can go,” Parker points out.

Donning fuchsia leggings, an Om tattoo on the nape of her neck and a white tank printed with, Live Your Practice, Parker says simply set your mind to the mantra, “Everything we do on the mat is how we’re showing up off the mat, too. Stay in inquiry and stay in your breath. Anyone can start to have natural realizations.”

Zydorczyk tilts her head, covered in bobbed, high-lighted brown hair, and reflects on her inversions, “I haven’t mastered them. I still very much need the wall.”

In time, patience, persistency and self-compassion partnered with breath will bring her to the precise place she needs to be. It’s Yoga Toledo is located at 4324 West Central Avenue. Check the schedule for Power Yoga and other class times.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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