Sunday, 22 July 2018

Hello and welcome!

(Photo Credit: Jane Beadnell Photography (http://janebeadnellphotography.co.uk/)



Over the years I've loved sharing my knowledge of wellness and yoga with you all. I've wanted to share as much as possible, so I have been posting six times a week over the two blogs. However, I'm planning some new and exciting projects to share with you, and to give me the time to work on these, I won't be posting quite as frequently. I'll still be here though, and I look forward to continuing on our wellness and yoga journeys together.

Thank you for your support- sending my love to you all.

Please see below for my latest post!



Thank you


My dear friends, I am afraid that last week was my last post on flexiladiesyoga as I have had to admit that the blog is not working.  My views have been falling and I do not even cover the costs.  I will post some yoga posts on the wellness blog but there will be no more on this blog.  It has been a tough decision - it is often easier to continue with something that isn't working than give it up.  I really want to thank you for viewing the blog and wish you every good wish for the future. 


This week on 40plusandalliswell



Do you ever look in the fridge and think ‘What can I make with that?’ This happened last week when I found an aubergine in the fridge. We also had a glut of courgettes from the allotment so a ratatouille seemed an obvious recipe. Served in the aubergine ‘shell’ it went down well at home - hope you enjoy it too.
Recipe on my 'sister' blog-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/meatless-monday-vegan-ratatouille.html


You may experience some menopause symptoms in your 40s. This is known as the perimenopause.
On my 'sister' blog we look at some natural ways to deal with it-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/natural-treatments-for-perimenopause.html
If you are enjoying my blog posts please would you consider a small donation? Please note however this is not a condition of enjoying my blogs. Please see-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html


Thank you

Sunday, 15 July 2018

This week on 40plusandalliswell



We like a rice salad and often try new ways with them. This vegan no mayo coronation rice salad is the result of our latest attempt. It would make a good packed lunch or to make it a more substantial dish, you could add some chickpeas.
Recipe on my 'sister' blog- https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/meatless-monday-vegan-no-mayo.html


Plastic pollution – we can all do our bit to help reduce it.
Please see my 'sister' blog for some suggestions-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/plastic-pollution-we-can-all-do-our-bit.html


You might enjoy this meal as you are watching the 'World Cup' final ! 
https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/06/meatless-monday-vegan-socca-meatball.html


If you are enjoying my blog posts please would you consider a small donation? Please note however this is not a condition of enjoying my blogs. Please see-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html


Thank you

Yoga and essential oils - brain


Yoga and essential oils can help create mental clarity, improve focus and concentration and even in the case of yoga help create new neural connections. 

Yoga backbends open up the lungs bringing more oxygen into the body, and inversions and forward bends help bring that oxygen to the brain (the brain actually uses about 20% of the body’s oxygen).  Poses that involve cross-body positioning or movement such as balancing Cat or Eagle Pose can encourage the formation of new neural connections and balances improve focus and concentration. 

Essential oils such as lavender can be used to help you sleep well allowing for the rest and renewal that the brain needs.  Lavender also can help reduce stress and anxiety which creates cortisol which is detrimental to the brain.  Lavender also helps reduce inflammation and inhibits free radical damage.  Peppermint essential oil can improve focus and concentration.  Rosemary, clary sage, basil and peppermint help with mental clarity.


There are several ways you can use essential oils  - you can sprinkle a drop or two at the top of your yoga mat, or you can use a diffuser in the room in which you practice.  You can also use a misting bottle – these are available from essential oil suppliers.  These need to be dark glass – use a few drops of essential oils in a bottle of filtered water. 



Although using essential oils is generally safe, check with your medical practitioner if you have any medical conditions.  This advice is not intended for you if you are pregnant.

Try the following sequence using your chosen essential oil or blend.

Start in savasansa taking a few minutes to let go of your day and allow your breath to settle.

Bananasana – inhale take your arms overhead and shuffle your upper body to the left.  If this feels uncomfortable for your shoulders, hold your elbows and rest your arms on a bolster.  Hold for 2-3 minutes allowing the right side of your chest to open.  Repeat second side. 

Cat/Cow – make your way to all fours.  Inhale lift your head and chest, exhale tuck your chin, arch through your back.  Continue working with your breath.

Dynamic Balancing Cat – come back to all fours.  Inhale stretch out right leg and left arm, exhale bend your right knee and left elbow bringing them together under your body.  Inhale and repeat several times then repeat second side. 

Extended Child Pose – come to the back of your mat, big toes touching, knees wide.  ‘Walk’ your hands forward and bring your forehead to the mat.  Keep your elbows lifted and simply watch your breath.

Dolphin Pose – come back to all fours and place your elbows where the heel of your hand is.  Form an ‘L’ shape with your thumb and first finger on each hand then rest them against the long edge of your block.  Exhale and lift your hips.  Hold for 3 breaths then inhale drop your knees.  Repeat or take an Extended Child Pose between repetitions.

Child Pose – sit back on your heels, bring your forehead to the mat and sweep your hands back to hold your heels.  Alternatively rest your head on your stacked fists. Rest here then when you are ready make your way to standing. 

Intense Side Stretch -  stand towards the back of your mat with your feet at hip distance. Either bring your hands into Reverse Namaste or hold onto your elbows behind your back. Step your right foot forward and level up your hips.  Inhale, lift your chest, exhale come to flat back.  Stay here if you have heart or blood pressure issues otherwise, inhale and as you exhale lower your head towards your right knee.  Stay for 3 breaths then on the inhale come up slowly.  Exhale bend your front knee, inhale step your feet together.  Repeat second side. 

Eagle – stand in the centre of your mat, inhale stretch your arms up, exhale swing your right arm under your left, bend your elbows.  Either bring the back of your hands together or bring your lower left arm in front of your left and join your palms together.  Softly bend both knees and take your right foot to the outside of your left, to the outside of your left shin or tucked behind your left calf.  Find a drishti, a gaze point to help with your balance and hold for a few breaths.  Inhale to release.  



Half Shoulder Stand with wall/Legs up the Wall – bring the short edge of your mat to the wall and sit with your right hip against the wall, your knees bent.  Swing your legs around so that they are up the wall.  Stay here if you have heart issues, blood pressure problems, neck issues or are menstruating, Otherwise roll the bottom of your feet to the wall lifting your hips.  Support your lower back with your hands and stretch out your legs  Do not turn your head while holding the pose for a few breaths.  Exhale release your hands, slowly lower your hips to the floor.  Whether you practiced Legs up the Wall or Half Shoulder Stand, roll onto your right side and draw your knees up towards your chest.  Rest here for a minute then inhale to come up.

Rest in Savasana to receive the benefits of your practice.





Sunday, 8 July 2018

This week on 40plusandalliswell



Last week we made a socca ‘meatball’ pizza using socca as a base. This week we are using socca as a flatbread to serve with kebabs. It certainly feels tropical here in Yorkshire where temperatures are soaring up towards 30 degrees and the kebabs could be cooked on a barbeque!
Recipe on my 'sister' blog-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/meatless-monday-caribbean-tofu-and.html


Happy 4th July to all our American readers!
Here are some vegan burger recipe ideas for your cookout! Enjoy!
Please see my 'sister' blog-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/happy-4th-july-vegan-burger-recipe-ideas.html


This week in part two of 'The 40plusandalliswell guide to fats and oils' we look at he benefits of fats and oils in the diet.
Please see my 'sister' blog-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/2018/07/the-40plusandalliswell-guide-to-fats.html


If you are enjoying my blog posts please would you consider a small donation? Please note however this is not a condition of enjoying my blogs. Please see-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html


Thank you

Yoga and essential oils – weight loss



At this time of year, when we cannot hide under jumpers and with holidays to look forward to, many of us like to shed a few pounds.  Yoga can help.  Yoga flows light the internal fire, stimulating metabolism and burning calories.  Strengthening poses can help build muscle which also burns calories.  Yoga reduces stress which helps emotional eating.  Yoga also increases awareness so that you are better able to assess the needs of your body. Finally yoga can stimulate the thyroid which controls metabolism.  

Essential oils too can help with weight loss.  Some essential oils are stress relieving and so help reduce emotional eating.  These include lavender and bergamot.  Ginger essential oil reduces inflammation which can lead to weight gain.  Please  also see my 'sister' blog, 'Superfood-ginger'. Cinnamon essential oil curbs cravings by balancing blood sugar.

There are several ways you can use essential oils  - you can sprinkle a drop or two at the top of your yoga mat, or you can use a diffuser in the room in which you practice.  You can also use a misting bottle – these are available from essential oil suppliers.  These need to be dark glass – use a few drops of essential oils in a bottle of filtered water. 
Although using essential oils is generally safe, check with your medical practitioner if you have any medical conditions.  This advice is not intended for you if you are pregnant.

Try the following sequence together with an essential oil or blend.

Start with 3 rounds of Sun Salutation A and 3 rounds of Sun Salutation B to light your internal fire and boost metabolism.  Please see 'Yoga Pose Gallery'.

Extended Child Pose – come to the back of the mat, big toes touching, knees wide.  Walk your hands forward bringing your head to the mat or a block.  Keep your elbows lifted.  Allow some time for your breath to settle, your heart rate to return to normal.

Thread the Needle in Extended Child Pose (twists are detoxing and help get rid of belly fat)– inhale lift your head, exhale post your right hand through the gap made by your left arm.  Bring your right cheek and shoulder to the mat or to a block.  Hold and breathe.  When you are ready inhale and come back to Extended Child Pose then repeat second side. 

Cat/Cow (alternately stretches and compresses the abdomen which encourages elimination of toxins which can cause weight gain) – come to all fours.  Inhale lift your head and chest, exhale tuck your chin, arch through your back.  Continue working with your breath.

Cobra – come back to all fours then come to lying on your belly.  Rest your forehead on the back of your hands, tuck your right toes under and press your heel back.  Release and repeat second side.  Resting your forehead on the mat now place your hands at your armpit level and tuck your elbows in.  Inhale lift your head and chest using your back muscles, exhale release.  Repeat then if you are not feeling any pinching in your lower back lightly press into your hands.  Exhale to release.

Child Pose  - press back into a Child’s Pose.  Take your bottom back to your heels and sweep your hands back to hold your heels or rest your forehead on stacked fists.  


Downward Facing to Standing Forward Bend – when you are ready, inhale back to all fours, exhale tuck your toes and lift your hips into Downward Facing Dog.  Hold for 5 breaths then walk your feet forward.  If you need the floor to be nearer either softly bend your knees or use a block, otherwise be on your fingertips. If you suffer heart or blood pressure issues etc bring your hands to your shins and have your head no lower than your heart otherwise release the crown of your head down. Hold for a few breaths keeping your hips over your heels then inhale to come up standing.



Dancing Warrior Series – stand in the middle of your mat and take your feet wide, hands to your heart. Turn your right leg to the right and the toes of your left foot in.  Inhale take your arms out to shoulder height, exhale bend your right knee, look down the fingers of your right hand, Warrior 2. Inhale raise your right arm up towards the ceiling, as you bring your left hand to your left thigh, for Reverse Warrior. Exhale come back to Warrior 2.  Inhale bring your right elbow to your right thigh, turn to face forward, exhale circle your left arm down and up by your left ear, for Extended Side Angle. Inhale windmill your arms up to shoulder height, exhale straighten your front knee, turn your feet forward and bring your hands to your heart.  Repeat second side.  Repeat both sides twice more.


Reclined Twist (encourages elimination of toxins) – come to lying with your knees bent, your arms out at shoulder height.  Inhale, exhale and bring your knees over your chest, take your legs to the left and if you have no neck issues turn your head to the right.  If you find that your right shoulder is lifting, support your legs on a block or bolster.  Hold for several breaths, enjoying the twist. Inhale to come back to centre. Repeat second side.

Shoulder Bridge (stimulates the thyroid gland) – come back to lying with your knees bent, arms by your sides, palms down.  Inhale lift your hips and bring your hands under your body to support your hips, thumbs facing out.  Hold for 5 breaths then release your hands and lower your hips.  Hug your knees in.  


Savasana – rest back in savasana for 5-10 minutes to receive the benefits of your practice.




If you are enjoying my videos and blog posts please would you consider a small donation? Please note however this is not a condition of enjoying my blogs. To make a donation please see-https://flexiladies.blogspot.com/p/support-this-blog_44.html

Namaste,