The gym used to be a huge part of my life. From the age of 17-27 I went to the gym religiously several times a week, and I loved it. I couldn’t imagine my life without the gym. Going to the gym wasn’t something I had to force myself to do, it was something I did with pleasure, because it made me feel great.
Then, I discovered yoga. Over the past 2 years, yoga seems to have taken over from the gym. During the first year I was practicing yoga I still went to the gym on and off, but yoga changed the way I felt about the gym and it slowly started to take over.
The last time I went to a gym was over a year ago, and then today I went back. I had stopped going completely after breaking my elbow, and then going back too soon for my elbow, which was still giving me pain in the gym. When I tried to go back to the gym, I could still feel pain in my elbow so decided to give it more time. During this time yoga became an even bigger part of my life, and now I couldn’t imagine my life without yoga. Community is a very important part of life. Surrounding yourself with like minded people who share many of the same values as you is really nice.
Do I miss the gym? Do I get urges to go to the gym? Of course. I have been having urges on and off since September to go throw some weight around. And today I finally did it. It is funny to me that I did this around the New Year, a time when everybody and their mother decides to go back to the gym. Having been a regular gym goer for a decade, I have a lot of experience with the influx of people that gyms receive in January. Have you ever been to the gym the first weekday that everyone is back at work in January? Watch out.
My experience today was not that at all. I was actually the only one in the gym on a Sunday morning. I will go back and continue to go as long as I have the urge to do so. I am simply listening to my body and responding to what I feel it needs. I hope to find a nice balance between strength training and yoga. I know that my main focus will remain deepening my yoga practice and I know that as long as I continue to workout, my yoga practice will help me with this.
When I got home from the gym I made myself a smoothie before eating lunch. Although I am not a huge fan of protein powders, being an advocate of whole foods, I had some hemp protein in the fridge, so decided to make a protein smoothie of sorts. A healthy plant based post workout smoothie to help my body recover.
I tripled up on the hemp. Hemp protein, hemp seeds, and hemp milk. I also used maca powder, banana and vanilla. Needless to say it was delicious.
If you are wondering what Maca is, it is a root from Peru, which can be easily found in powdered form in health food stores these days.
“Maca is a nutritionally dense super-food that contains high amounts of minerals, vitamins, enzymes and all of the essential amino acids. Maca root is rich in B-vitamins, which are the energy vitamins, and maca is a vegetarian source of B-12. To boot, maca has high levels of bioavailable calcium and magnesium and is great for remineralization.
What is your exercise plan/ goal for the new year? What do you usually eat/drink after exercising?
Orange Hemp Maca Smoothie Recipe
1 orange, peeled
1 banana, peeled
2 tbsp hemp protein
3 tbsp hemps seeds (hemp hearts)
1 1/2 cups hemp or almond milk
1 tsp maca powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy.
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