Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Things I am Grateful For...

This year my birthday falls on Thanksgiving, so I figured it was a great opportunity, especially with this month’s focus on gratitude, to share what I am most thankful for. My original idea was one for each year I’ve been alive, but then acknowledged that that would not only be daunting to write, but also to read! So I decided that in order to represent each year (yes, I’m divulging) I’ll do 4 for each decade and 6 for each additional year.

What I’m grateful for....

1. My Parents- for the foundation, unconditional love and ethical upbringing that they instilled in us every day.
2. My husband Doug- for believing in me, supporting my dream and vision and adding his own vision to it to help create what we have together.  Also for doing the work that is needed to keep it all together!
3. My children- for choosing me as their mother, bringing so much joy into my life and making it their job to teach me to be patient every single day. Yes, every single day.
4. My health- I’m grateful everyday for my body and mind and appreciate how they work together to allow me to experience this beautiful life.

1. My Dailey Method community of studio owners and teachers- for bringing their own passion to the Dailey Method and putting their hearts and souls into the class, the community and the company. I continue to learn and grow because of this amazing community of inspiring women and teachers.
2.My besties- (and you know who you are!) for being my sounding board, my support and continually keeping it real and fun!
3. My sisters- I love them both and am grateful that they also dove into my dream. I know that I always have their support and love, which feels incredible. 
4. My teachers- I have been so blessed with amazing mentors in my life, from my first anatomy teacher in college that made me LOVE this stuff to my most recent yoga teacher, Maritza. I continue to expand and realize how much further I have to go.  I promise to never stop learning!
5. For where I live- to be in a community of like-minded people, have mountains and sunshine around me every day and the best organic market in the whole world right around the corner. Yes, Good Earth could be a category all in itself but I don’t have enough room!
6. Music and dance- I love to dance, to watch dance performances, to listen to great music and to see live bands. These moments make me feel more alive and touch a part of my soul in a singular way.

I have loved having a month of reflection on gratitude; I practiced it in many ways and truly learned from it. I had a moment when the kids were all screaming in the car and I wanted to join in and I stopped myself and thought, “what am I grateful for right now?” and came up with “the chaos.”  The practice of gratitude this month taught me that there is something special, even in the most frustrating moments, if I just take the time to be grateful.

Finally, I am grateful for all of you. I know that the reason there are 55 Dailey Methods and that I get to do what I love most in the world everyday is because you appreciate the class, the culture and the brand. Thank you.


-- Jill

Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Healthier Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a holiday where it is truly hard not to over indulge. I won’t skimp on the pumpkin pie but instead focus on creating delicious and healthy side dishes to help maintain balance. Below are a few that I’ll be making next week that will hopefully inspire you!

Cauliflower Mash
I love using cauliflower instead of potatoes and honestly with this one, you may not even miss the starch!
Serves 4
Recipe courtesy of Detoxinista
2 Medium-sized head of cauliflower, chopped into florets (about 3 lbs.)
6 roasted garlic cloves
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
2 tsp fresh chives, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Fill a large saucepan with about an inch of water, and insert a steamer basket. Bring the water to a boil, and add the cauliflower florets. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cover, allowing the cauliflower to steam for 6-8 minutes, or until fork tender. 
2. Drain the steamed cauliflower, and transfer to the bowl of a large food processor. Add in the roasted garlic cloves and seasonings, and process to your desired texture. Add a splash of almond milk or water, if needed.

Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad
I serve brussels sprouts for almost every holiday meal, I love them and so do my kids. Until Chelsea and her inspiring food blog came into my life I never knew how incredible they were raw but now they’re a staple in our house. This is one of our favorites!
Serves 4 
Recipe Courtesy of Food-Life Balance
1 cup walnut halves
10 -12 oz (approx 3 cups) Brussels Sprouts, trimmed
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
Kosher Salt
6 Tbsp olive oil
3/4 cup (3 oz) coarsely grated Manchego cheese
Freshly ground pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Spread the walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast for 10 min. or until golden and fragrant. Transfer to a place to cool, then coarsely chop the nuts.
2. In a food processor, shred the brussels sprouts (I pulsed them). Transfer to a medium serving bowl. Toss the brussels sprouts with the lemon juice and 1 tsp kosher salt and let stand for 5 min.
3. Add the toasted walnuts, olive oil and Manchego and toss. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Turkey and Mushroom Stuffing
Thanksgiving is not complete without stuffing but there are certainly ways to make it a bit healthier. I am looking forward to trying this twist on stuffing this year!
Serves 6 
Recipe courtesy of Bethanny
1 large onion, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 Tbsp oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
4 pieces sage, chopped
6-8 pieces of thyme, chopped
1/2 pound turkey sausage (choose flavor)
Splash of good white wine
1 tsp butter
1 pound assorted fresh mushroom, sliced
1/2 cup dried morels
1/2 loaf regular size 9-grain or multi-grain bread, toasted and chopped
1 egg, beaten

1.Saute chopped onion and stalks of celery in oil in a nonstick pan. Add salt, pepper, and minced garlic.
2. Add sage and thyme. Break turkey sausage into small pieces and saute in pan. Add a good splash of wine and butter.
3. Add mushrooms and morels (soak and cover them in water until soft), then add them and the mushroom water to the mixture.
4. Add 9-grain or multi-grain bread. If the mixture is dry, add more mushroom water, chicken stock, white wine or another flavored liquid. Add salt and pepper to taste.
5. Add 1 beaten egg to bind.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes and put on broil for last 5 minutes to make top crunchy (make sure to keep an eye on it when broiling).

Happy Healthy Thanksgiving from my kitchen to yours!

-- Jill

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Pre and Post Dailey Method Workout Tips

We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s about the journey, not the destination.” Well, the same is true for your workouts. It’s not just about the workout because what you do before and after are just as important as the 45 minutes or hour that you spend at The Dailey Method studio. While we gain so many physical benefits during class, the mind-body benefits actually happen outside of the studio! So, below I have created a few pre and post workout tips that will help you both in and out of class.

Pre- Workout
1. Come Hydrated.
A healthy body is a hydrated body so be sure to come to class hydrated. This is where you’ll be able to practice at your optimal level and get the most from the work we do, both strengthening and stretching. I try to begin each day with a full glass of water that I leave next to my bed the night prior. This gets me off on the right foot so I am not constantly trying to keep up throughout the day. Also, while you can probably go a whole class without any water, fill up a cup and have it near you. If it is there, you are more likely to drink it!

2. Come to class with an intention.
Some days my intention is to get the most I can from seat work, other days, my intention is on stretching because I am sore from a previous class and other days, I just want to focus deeply on listening to my body and practicing my alignment. Coming to class with intention allows you to be more mindful in class. I certainly work harder in seat work when that is my focus and soften further into the stretches on the days where that is what my body needs.

3. Leave everything outside the studio.
This includes cell phones, to-do lists or that disagreement you just had with your child. Allow your time in the studio to be about you and your body. When the outside world starts creeping in, bring your awareness back to your breath and focus on the cues your teacher is giving so you can come back to the present moment. This is your gift to yourself, so get the most out of it you can!

Post- Workout
1. Don’t skip the stretch - or do it at home if you do need to run out early!
Don't skip the stretching because you're short on time. I know we all have very busy lives so if you do need to leave class early, be sure to stretch at home. It helps prevent soreness, but long healthy muscles are also less prone to injury. If you do need to stretch at home, give yourself a hamstring stretch, a spinal rotation (either seated or lying) and a chest opening stretch - I like bow pose because you get a spinal extension stretch as well!

2. Find a healthy post workout meal or snack.
My go to is a green juice because I generally workout in the morning but if you take a lunch time or evening class, follow it with a nice big salad or a healthy dinner. You nourish your body in class so continue that nourishment with a delicious and healthful meal afterwards.

3. Try to bring the stillness you found at the end of class with you into your day.
One of the reasons we love to end class in savasana is because it allows your body a moment to absorb all the benefits of the hard work you’ve just done. It also gives you a moment to find stillness in the mind. When leaving class, try to take this sense of stillness of mind and body with you. You may start to notice that it helps you react better to stressful situations or make more sound decisions. But regardless, it will allow you to find a few more moments of calm before you enter the storm of work or your daily life!

I hope these tips help you get even more from your Dailey Method workout.

With love,

-- Jill

Thursday, November 7, 2013

The Benefits of Juicing

I started juicing a few years ago for the health benefits, several of which are listed below. At first the taste was new and somewhat difficult for me but over time, I came to love it and now my day is not complete without a fresh green juice! My current favorite is the Glow from Urban Remedy. I’ve also listed a recipe below that you can make at home.

Health Benefits 

1. By removing the plant fiber during the juicing process, you get a direct shot of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, proteins and oxygen without your body having to expend the energy to digest. This helps nourish your cells and restore the immune system.

2. When you juice, you use more fruits and vegetables than you could actually eat. As a result, you are drinking a densely packed amount of vitamins, minerals and other plant-based nutrients, which are responsible for promoting health, vitality and energy.

3. Vegetables (especially green ones) are alkalizing. Many of the things we do in our daily lives (certain foods and drinks, stress, etc.) create an acidic environment (it is MUCH easier to become too acidic than it is to become too alkaline) so by juicing you help bring your pH levels back into balance.

4. Additionally, juicing helps to reduce inflammation leading to many benefits including: cleansing the body, improving the look of your skin and regulating digestion.

At Home Green Juice Recipe

2-3 cucumbers
1 head romaine
3-5 stalks of celery
3-5 stalks of kale
small bit of ginger
1/2 or whole apple or pear (if you want to sweeten it up a bit)
1/2 lemon

Juice. Sprinkle with turmeric and cinnamon. Squeeze lemon on top. Enjoy!

Happy Juicing,

-- Jill

Friday, November 1, 2013

November Word of the Month: Gratitude

November is the perfect month to focus on feeling and expressing gratitude. While it is important to be grateful on a daily basis, there is no better time to do that than when surrounded by family and friends during a holiday about giving thanks!

Having gratitude for myself and for others is my intention this month. It's amazing the difference I feel when someone thanks me or tells me they are grateful for something I did, even the little things that I just naturally do. But equally amazing is how much more positive and supportive my relationships become when I remember to tell others how much I appreciate them. It creates a sense of bonding that lasts much longer than the word.

Gratitude for self begins with the simplest of things. Our bodies are incredible machines that function every single day without us even having to give a single thought towards it. If you find yourself struggling to be grateful, start with that – the fact that we wake up each day and our hearts beat and we breathe without any conscious effort. 

Gratitude for others begins with taking the time to stop and appreciate. When we are rushed or living outside of the present moment, we don’t allow ourselves the opportunity to take in what is happening right here and now. Just like a Dailey Method class, gratitude is a practice. It takes time to change habits and remember to thank your children when they do something without being asked versus getting upset with the things they are not doing. I recently found this phone app called Gratitude Journal to be a great addition to my practice, as it is a daily reminder to be grateful.

Take a moment today (and hopefully everyday this month!) to be grateful for your health, your body, your mind, your community and your loved ones. Gratitude really can change everything. It brings focus to what you have rather than what you don’t and allows what you have to be enough.

With gratitude,

-- Jill