Anxiety and Holiday Blues: How to successfully host these unwanted guests this Holiday Season.

It hit me like clockwork this year. I attended my first official holiday party of the season - the classic Ugly Christmas Sweater Party. And it was great fun. And the next day I could barely get out of bed and it wasn’t due to fatigue or a hangover. It was that classic holiday anxiety just starting to take root. I felt just a little bit heavier, and a little less optimistic. I recognized it right away because it visits me every December like it visits so many others at this time each year. 

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10 Years of Steamtown Hot Yoga

I'm so grateful for this opportunity to thank you all for making 10 years of Steamtown Yoga a reality. I remember the very first class back on Nov. 1, 2007. Four students showed up. My best friend from DC drove up for the weekend and she took every class! I didn’t know if the studio would survive for even one year. 

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Spontaneous Zen?

I thrive on structure. It’s why I gravitate toward yoga and meditation. Having a daily routine keeps me grounded and feeling my best. But it does beg the question: Is it boring to be zen? Do you have to trade in excitement and spontaneity for peace of mind?  

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The Eternal Question: Simplicity vs. Drama

Many spiritual teachers profess that suffering is necessary only until it is not. I interpret this as drama versus simplicity. In order to write the next new chapter of our lives, we must be willing to let go of drama and embrace a new simplicity.

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Become the Architect of Your Body Mind and Soul.

I'm thrilled to announce the publication of my new book, Become the Architect of Your Body Mind and Soul. Here in print is a culmination of tools for daily living you can reference as often as needed. Easily apply the intangible lessons of yoga outlined in the book to create your life in the fullest expression of yourself! Appropriate for Yogis and non-Yogis alike, this book is for all who are seeking to live to their best potential. 

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But, why HOT yoga?

But, why HOT yoga?

The answer is different for everyone.

Once you experience a class or two, no more words are needed.

On the outside, hot yoga may seem like an extreme sport. Yes, it can be challenging, but the rewards are far greater than the initial push it takes to step on the mat for your first class. 

To Maintain the Engine

Everybody needs a maintenance plan. A steady routine that keeps you moving forward and feeling human. When we stop moving and become inert, that's when we start to break down. The beauty of a steady yoga practice, especially a heated one - is that it keeps you supple, allows you to maintain access to a healthy range of motion and increases your metabolism. If you have extra weight to lose, it will certainly help you drop a few. If you struggle with chronic stress or anxiety, hot yoga can help you to ease your symptoms, de-stress and feel more comfortable in your own skin.

But how does hot yoga help?

Hot yoga works on several levels. The first is obvious, it creates a challenging environment for your nervous system. The added "effort" it requires to thrive in the room, makes you body and mind adapt with more efficiency. Over time, the heat feels normal and you are firing on all cylinders. You become stronger and more resilient to external stressors. This translates to feeling more at peace, focused and productive.

Hot yoga stimulates blood circulation to your muscles, joints, organs, glands, and every system of the body—even the nervous system. We follow a therapeutic yoga lineage designed to heal the body bringing you into greater balance. During class, oxygen-rich blood sequentially reaches every organ, including any areas of injury (old and new), and any damaged cells. This class is designed to restore and strengthen, bringing your body and mind into balance and optimal health. With a consistant practice, the better you'll feel and the healthier you'll become.

The impossible, becomes possible: a note from Lara

I started my hot yoga practice because I needed to get moving again. I thought I began for physical reasons, but the deeper reasons I discovered are what keeps me on my mat year after year.

 Through my yoga practice, I first discovered new ways to move my body. Strength and flexibility that seemed totally out of reach for me at my first class soon opened up for me. I still tell my students: "Here in yoga practice, impossible things happen and the impossible becomes possible."

 I discovered that if I could make such great strides physically with my strength and flexibility and my focus and peace of mind, maybe the obstacles I faced outside of the practice room could be overcome as well. I approached my whole life with more energy, confidence and love. My whole life expanded with new possibilities.

Read more about Lara's incredible journey & feel the difference for yourself!

Source: www.steamtownyoga.com

A Look at Gratitude and Yoga

By Lara Alexiou

The Health Benefits of Cultivating Gratitude through Hot Yoga

As the season of gratitude descends, let's take a look within. No time to stop and reflect? It's time for yoga!

 

The season of gratitude is upon us. But if you don't actually take the time to stop, reflect and look inward, you lose sight of the joy, generosity and peace of the season. 

Inner peace is just that - inner, as in found within. With all of the externals that pull on you daily like work, family, and even social media, the importance of carving out specific time in your week just for you and your easily neglected inner-life is imperative. 

Committing to weekly Hot Yoga classes makes self-care a priority.

With regular practice, not only will you see the physical results from your Hot Yoga practice, like more mobility and less chronic pain, but you're mind will quiet too. So often our students tell us that taking class is the only part of their day where all stress falls away. They leave the Hot Yoga room relaxed and recharged. They enter the world again from that quiet internal space where gratitude, self love and compassion reside. Hot Yoga reveals your infinite capacity for compassion, patience, and peace.

Self-Care ~ Self-Love~ Gratitude

Enjoying a Hot Yoga practice is way of experiencing self love where everyone benefits. So many of our students say that through regular practice, they have learned to feel comfortable in their own skin and happier in their lives.You don't have to take my word for it - strike up a conversation out in the great hall where students gather before class and you'll discover that inner peace and gratitude are a natural part of this practice. The self care aspect of Hot Yoga keeps many of our students returning class after class and year after year.

It goes deeper than the sparkle of a good sweat.

In Taoist Philosophy and Traditional Chinese Medicine, emotionally, the Fall Season can be associated with depression. It's a great time to cut away excess, reflect on what is really important to us and reap the benefits of a personal harvest. A regular yoga practice provides the quiet time to help you put things in perspective to see what habits in your life are serving you and what habits are no longer serving you and need to fall away. 

Hot Yoga to Ward off the Chill

 

  • Keep the body and mind supple as the cold, contractile & brittle effects of winter approach
  • Bring your emotional state into balance: let stress fall away so you can enjoy the season!
  • Gratitude! Go within for inner peace- give yourself the pace and time to appreciate where you are in this moment
  • Connection: group classes keep us social as the days darken.
  • Our classes are for all levels, making today a great day to get started or return to your mat!

 

 

Source: www.steamtownyoga.com

New Year Keys to Success

 It's a New Year and here are some Keys to your Successful Wellness Lifestyle! 

by Lara Alexiou

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Motivation: 

     Small, daily successes keep you motivated on your way of wellness. Find positive, little consistent routines within your day to keep you grounded and focused in the chaos life inevitably brings.

Use the SHY App to check into your class ahead of time. This not only ensures your spot, you can link it to your calendar to remind you that class is coming up. Finding a routine and being accountable - like checking in ahead of time - allows you to thoughtfully plan your Hot Yoga routine in advance.

You'll enjoy keeping the commitment you made to yourself to attend. After all, the promises we make to ourselves are the easiest to break, but also the most rewarding in their followthrough.

Over time, seeing your progress and feeling your best will be motivation enough and class will become a favorite part of your day! 

Foundation:    

   When you attend your class, you're building a solid foundation for your mind and body that reaches outside the Hot Room.

Try your best every time. Don't expect to understand every piece of every posture when you begin. Just do what your strength and flexibility allows as you understand the posture. Our trained staff is keeping eye on your alignment and will help you make necessary adjustments to maximize your personal potential. 

A Hot Yoga practice builds not only your body, but your determination and confidence. Improvements in your postures really will extend to your whole world. Hard to believe? Just ask anyone in class with you to share their story!

 Be Consistent:

Familiar with the fable about the Tortoise and Hare? The fast Rabbit doesn't win the race. The Tortoise perseveres with his slow and steady behavior. 

Choose a schedule you can maintain. Being consistent and committing to yourself creates lasting transformation.

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 Every Class Counts:

    Need a little more motivation to keep up your healthy lifestyle? Now, every class you attend at  Steamtown Yoga not only benefits you and those around you, but also those less fortunate. 

How?

We've partnered with Sweat Angels who connects us each month with a specific charity. 

When you maintain your practice and "check-in" to Steamtown hot yoga on Facebook or use our location tag in Instagram, you help someone in need.

Our December charity is #toysfortots and using the unique hashtag #books4kids when you checked in to Steamtown Hot Yoga, every 15 check-in donated a book to a child.

By the second week of December, we collectively through the orginazation contributed to more than 15,000 books for kids.

More about the program can be found at: www.steamtownyoga.com in the events tab.

In January it's cold out! And many people lack the resources they need to protect against the winter weather. Our January charity is Soles4Souls to help those in need stay warm.

Every 10 check-ins helps along with #keepamericawarm, provides a winter coat to someone in need.

If you are reading this and already are a member, please help grow the SHY community and introduce a friend to your yoga lifestyle. 

If you are new and are thinking about getting started, navigate to the new student tab, sign up, and get ready to step into your best self!  

Namaste

Yanni & Lara

Source: www.steamtownyoga.com

Now Every Check-In to Steamtown Hot Yoga Donates to Charity

Starting December 1, every time you check-in on our Facebook page or tag our location in Instagram, your check-in will generate a donation to a great cause. The donation is made possible by our new partner, Sweat Angels. Sweat Angels exists to help more people experience the joy of doing good. And together, we can make a major impact in the world, just by checking-in! This month we are supporting Toys for Tots. Every 15 check-ins provides a book for a child in need.

 

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The best time to plant a tree was 10 years ago. The second best time is now.

What a humbling feeling. It's hard to believe that 9 years ago there was one student in the very first class at our original location on Moisic street. 6 years later with savings, help from all of you in this wonderful community and our families - Lara and I married and relocated Steamtown yoga into the heart of Scranton.  

Lara's first student Martha Wells still maintaines her 3 time a week practice as do many of the original members who followed. Since then the SHY community has grown into a thriving yoga culture now based in the heart of this beautiful city. SHY now has a wonderful staff and offers 28 classes a week plus workshops, advanced programs and international yoga retreats.

We stay true to our hot yoga lineage rooted from Bishnu Gosh combined with Taoist forms and philosophies steeped in the Eastern Healing Arts.

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It can't go without mention to also thank all of the local community and business leaders who work hard for this renaissance and revitalization of Scranton. We couldn't ask for better neighbors. thank you all for your continued support and loyalty to the SHY practice and this beautiful historic city. 

It is an honor to be among you.  

Love and blessings to all of you past, present and future yogis! 

Namaste

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Lara & Yanni  

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Source: www.steamtownyoga.com