Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am, Fri at 10:15 am

    Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

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Archive for June, 2017

Hillside View

Posted by terrepruitt on June 30, 2017

I have this photo in a file and every time I go through the file I am attracted to this photo. It was such a beautiful day and the view was spectacular. I was driving up a little hillside road and I had to pull over at one of the buildings along the way and stop to take a picture. This is a shot overlooking Fremont (I think it would be Fremont). So, since I think this is a pretty view I thought I would share it for my Friday Photo today. That is what I started the Friday Photo series for: sharing shots I liked, but really hadn’t posted or wanted people to see. Some photos I have posted as a Friday Photo I might have already posted on Facebook or even Twitter, but most not. Most are just oddball shots. Here is one of those oddball ones.

This was taken on January 25, 2017.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Posted in Friday Photo | Tagged: , , , , , | 12 Comments »

I’m Clipping Coupons, Want To Join Me?

Posted by terrepruitt on June 28, 2017

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitDid you know you can send MANUFACTURERS coupons to Military overseas and they can use them? The purpose of coupons is to help “stretch your dollar” so imagine what a help it could be to Military families overseas. It is a program called Troupons. I heard, well, read about it on Plucking Of My Heartstrings blog back in May. I have been saving coupons since. We don’t get a lot of MANUFACTURERS coupons, most are store coupons, but I am still saving what I get and I am going to send them off. And, get this . . . they can be expired! Crazy, huh? Well, I really feel that people in the military AND THEIR FAMILIES sacrifice a lot if sending them coupons can help then I will do it.

In May Cheryl of the aforementioned blog said a package containing over $5,000 worth of coupons was sent off to a military base in Japan.

The Troupon page of the Support Our Troops website has all the information you need in case you are interested in sending them coupons. Mail the coupons to Florida and then they send them off to the troops. As I said they have to be manufacturers, not store coupons. When you send them they need to be sorted in separate baggies. A baggie for non-food, a baggie for baby, and a baggie for pets.

I was going to wait until I had a few baggies full, but I don’t get that many coupons and that just might take too long. Everything might be past the two-month-past-expiration-date window. Even though the military can use the coupons up to six months after expiration, the program recommends not sending ones that are two months past because it takes a while for the coupons to get where they need to go. So, I am going to send my coupons to Cheryl and let her add my coupons to all the other ones she receives. There was a time when I received stacks of coupons, now the coupons I receive are primarily from stores and those don’t apply.

Well, I thought I would just share this because I thought it was a cool program. I am grateful I ran across Plucking Of My Heartstrings and saw it there.  I am also grateful that she adopted a base and is helping collect coupons.  As I said, I don’t get many, so it will be better if they are added to others.

What do you think? Do you think it is a cool program? Do you get manufacturers coupons?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Just A Cat In A Box On A Friday

Posted by terrepruitt on June 23, 2017

There are some people (I happen to be one of them) who think there is no such thing as too many cat pictures. If you are one of those people then perhaps you might also think there is no such thing as too many pictures of cats in boxes. What is it with cats and boxes? So funny. And many of you know that the smaller the box . . . I mean, the more that it is less likely the cat will fit, the more they like the box. Well, our little cat has no problem fitting in boxes because, well, she is little. But it is odd to me that she just recently started sitting in this box. It has been on the bedroom floor for a long time. We (the cats and I) play with the shredded paper. But lately I will find Nessa in the box. Silly cat.

Cat in a box for the Friday Photo.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

 

 

Posted in Cats, Friday Photo, Teagan and Nessa | Tagged: , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Guidance – Not A Personal Attack

Posted by terrepruitt on June 21, 2017

In the two Nia Intensives I have attended, one of the things we cover first is the Energy Allies or more commonly known as the Four Agreements. As I attend many classes and teach many classes I am reminded over and over again how important these ideals are.  In this post I am talking mainly in reference to #3 (Don’t take anything personally). What must happen is there needs to be an unspoken agreement that students and teachers have when they enter a class, the student agrees to not take things personally — a correction or attention given by the teacher is not personal, the student is there to learn and improve so guidance is given as needed and as time (in class and holding the pose) allows.  Perhaps  it would be a good idea to remind everyone at the beginning of a session of classes or a workshop.  A yoga instructor has to have confidence and faith that the students know they are not being picked on or singled out for any type of personal reason. The teacher is there to help them do the poses to the best of their ability. If the student feels picked on then they will not be open to adjustment and guidance. So while it is “personal” in the sense that it is to help you personally, it is not an attack on your person.

There are so many things going on in people’s lives and I understand that a student can walk in and be in a tender state, but if they are there to learn the instructor cannot be concerned with the question of “will adjusting their form hurt their feelings?”  And believe it or not, there is also the other side of the coin. Where some students feel if the instructor doesn’t correct them or give them attention the teacher is slighting them. See how this type of “taking things personal” can just completely affect the effectiveness in class?

If a person is new to yoga and has never been in a class, unless they are at risk for injury, I might not say anything. Yoga is so much about sensing your body, that I believe it is important to let the person get a sense of things. If I say to move the left foot forward about a foot and have the toes point forward, I probably won’t correct a new student right away if they move up a few inches and the toes point off to the side. I want to give them a chance to learn how their body responds. But, if we do that same move multiple times in the class, I might see if they can nudge their foot forward and turn their toes. But I try not to adjust them much in a first class situation. It just seems more appropriate to let them learn some before starting to adjust.

It is very helpful when the instructor knows the students. If a student has been coming to class for a while often times the instructor will learn what that person is capable of. And it could be that someone walks into one of my classes and sees things that they would “correct” if they were a teacher. But perhaps they don’t know that the person whose toes don’t turn out all the way just had leg surgery. Or the person barely bending over has back issues. Or it could be that a student has been adjusted before, but it is just more comfortable for them to do it they way they are doing it. There are so many reasons why an adjustment may not be done.

I just wanted to remind people that teachers do not “pick on” students. We see potential and we are there to help a student reach it. Try not to take it personal either way (if a teacher adjusts you or not).  Hopefully you are able to learn as you go and enjoy what you are getting.

Do you like it when a teacher adjusts you (either verbally or physically)?

Posted in Yoga/PiYo/Pilates | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Cool Breath

Posted by terrepruitt on June 19, 2017

When I was young I remember waiting impatiently for my dad to get home one day. The second I saw his truck I was out the door running to it. I distinctly remember bombarding him with questions before he even opened the truck door. We had been assigned to do a little research. You probably did it too in school. You had to go home and check with your family to see if their ears were attached with or without lobes and to see if they could roll their tongue. I think that my mom could do it, but my dad could not. But I could be wrong on that. I don’t know about my brother. I don’t remember if I checked with him or if he wasn’t home or what.  Funny . . . I remember running up to my dad’s truck to ask him, but I don’t really remember the results.  Currently, it is almost summer, but the temperatures think it is summer and we are having unbearable heat. I was thinking about cooling asana and I came across a pranayama that I had not remembered studying, is supposed to help cool the body.

First of all, (back to the tongue rolling) when I was in school they taught us the ability to roll your tongue was genetic. But I am finding out now, that there have been many studies that point to it not being genetic. One family study in 1951 sampled a large group which showed “non-rollers” had “roller” children . . . they concluded that couldn’t happen if rolling was simply “a simple one-gene, two-allele genetic character, with rolling completely dominant to non-rolling”.

Now back to the pranayama. There are many pranayama and even more variations. Pranayama is a limb of yoga and is – at its very basic – breath control. They are ways of breathing in different ways. Each one said to help (and sometimes hinder) specific issues. There is one technique called Sitali, which is a cooling breathing technique.  As I mentioned, it has been hot here so I feel many of us could use techniques that will allow us to cool our body down.

This pranayama is easy and can be practiced by anyone that can safely practice asana.

A lot of instructions on pranayama instruct the practitioner to be in a specific position. I would recommend assuming the instructed position when possible, but also, since pranayama is used to target specific issues, I also believe it can be done when needed. Say the ideal way to practice a technique is cross-legged with your eyes closed in a calm place with no distractions . . . but you are needing/wanting to find some calm while stuck driving in traffic. I would encourage you to try the technique, but obviously you are not going to be able to sit cross-legged, traffic is not a calm situation, and you should not be closing your eyes, but Samavrtti or Equal Breath pranayama during traffic, might help make it more bearable.

So for this one, if you can . . . yes, sit in a calm distraction free area on the floor in sukhasana using whatever props you need to be comfortable. But if not, try it where you are able.

________________

Sitali

Relax your shoulders and lengthen your spine. Let your face relax.

Then curl your tongue and let it stick out from your pursed lips.  Just let it stick out, no need to jut it out far. Then inhale through your mouth letting air come through your rolled tongue. Take a full inhale.  Then bring your tongue into your mouth, close your mouth, and exhale slowly through your nose.

Repeating it at least 5 times. More if you want and you are able.

If rolling your tongue is not something you can do, just put your tongue up against your lower front teeth, purse your lips as if you are going to whistle, then inhale, allowing the air to pass over your tongue. Take a full inhale.  Close your mouth.  When you are ready to exhale do so slowly through your nose.

________________

As I often say, there are many variations on how to do asana, same with pranayama.  There are variations to this, but this is the basics.  Inhale through your mouth over the tongue, exhale through your nose.

Seems easy enough.  Did you try it?  Did it help cool you down?

Posted in Yoga/PiYo/Pilates | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

An Odd Perspective

Posted by terrepruitt on June 16, 2017

For a while we had this spider plant on our entertainment center. You might be able to tell that it was not entirely happy. I think it wasn’t getting enough direct sun light. It was in the sunniest room in the house, but I guess it needs direct sunlight. Plus it was being gnawed on by our little cat. She is the one that goes up the cat tower then hops onto a wall-mounted speaker, walks across the curtain rod to the entertainment center. We would find pieces of the poor plant on the ground. So it got deported to the office. This statue . . . I think it was my wedding present from John. I had forgotten what he had gotten me and I think this was it. I had admired it in a catalog for a long time. So it was the perfect gift!  It is somewhat difficult to see from this angle, but it is in the shape of a heart!

Just another random snap for the Friday Photo.

 

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Posted in Friday Photo | Tagged: , , | 6 Comments »

Aromatherapy Necklace

Posted by terrepruitt on June 14, 2017

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitAhhhh, essential oils. The claim is that they can cure many ills. Well, perhaps not cure, but help with many things. I haven’t looked it up lately, but I am not sure that there are very many studies regarding the benefits of essential oils. But to me it just makes sense that the oils from plants would be beneficial. Many medicines and therapies have been derived from plants, so it makes sense that their oils can have health benefits. The way the oils are used can give you different benefits. Some need to be taken orally, some need to be applied topically, and some can be diffused. I actually like to think they can all be diffused and in doing so you will gain some benefit. There are different ways they can be diffused. Some work well when a few drops are placed into a candle and then the candle is burned. Some work great in diffusers, the kind that get plugged in with water and the steam or mist diffuses the oil. I found a cool necklace that I like to use.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitI searched on Amazon for a diffuser necklace because I wanted to have the essential oil with me, right under my nose or not too far anyway. A place where I could smell the aroma of the oil. I found this really cool one. There are many reasons why it is cool. For one, it is pretty. I think it is described as “Golden Fireworks”. I think of it as flowers, but I think they call it Fireworks. It came with three different pads. I made the mistake of using a black oil (I didn’t know it was black, I had never seen a black oil before) on the white pad. So it turned the pad black. And it fades to a very unattractive color. But that doesn’t really matter (except when I am taking pictures of it for a blog post) because it is in the diffuser.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitAnother reason is, it is really heavy . . . as in it feels like very good quality. It is not flimsy. It is a very nice piece of jewelry. I was somewhat worried about what the quality would be like because it was a $15.00 necklace. I read the reviews and many commented on the quality and weight of the necklace, but you still never can be sure until you receive the item. But it a very nice quality.

I had asked for and received it for a wedding anniversary. My hubby was a little annoyed because he didn’t think that a $15.00 gift was “enough” . . . so I made him feel better by having him buy a few other items. 🙂

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitAnyway, I really like this. I love having the aroma of whichever oil I chose to put in it, float up throughout the day. I have different discs (pads) for each oil I use. The said thing is, when I wear it my little cat won’t come near me. She is so sensitive to smells. She hates most fragrances . . . perfumes, lotions, sprays, etc. And when I bend over to hug and kiss her the necklace invariably swings right at her and she is assaulted with the aroma. Then I take it off, but she is annoyed and won’t come near me.

But other than my cat not liking it (again, she doesn’t like any strong smell), it is a great necklace.

I just saw the other day on Facebook (I think, must have been because that is where I see everything) a bracelet that is a diffuser. It looked kinda cool because it was lava beads. You just put the oil on the lava beads and it gets diffused that way.  I think that is niffy.  But I wonder how you changed the oil?  Perhaps the it needs to be washed to get the oil out.  Oh, I just thought of that.  So I think having separate discs/pads is much nicer because you can just switch therapies really quick.

Do you have a favorite way to diffuse essential oils?  Every thought of jewelry to do it?

Posted in Essential Oils | Tagged: , , , , , | 10 Comments »

An Additional Responsibility You Might Not Have Been Aware Of

Posted by terrepruitt on June 12, 2017

I want to share something with you that I imagine not everyone thinks about. But when you attend a training — at least the ones that I have attended — it is part of the training. Many people will easily admit to knowing that an instructor or teacher of an exercise class is responsible for instructing the students on how to do an exercise correctly. In Nia we talk about the Body’s Way . . . the way in which the body was designed to move and also YOUR body’s way . . . the way in which YOUR (each individual) body moves. So we encourage people to move in their own way, but we also keep in mind the general safety guidelines. In keeping with the way the body was designed a lot of safety is built in. As an instructor in a class we instruct the students on how to move and exercise safely. Part of our jobs as instructors is to watch the participants to make sure they are doing things – moving – in a safe way. That is something that all of my trainings have included and something that most people are aware of. Another thing, the thing that some might not think about, is that we are responsible for the students’ safety in other ways. We are responsible for ensuring that other things and other people do not affecting the safety of our class. So in other words, when someone comes into the room where the class is being taught to grab equipment. The instructor is responsible for making certain that the person does not drop equipment on or in the path of a student. So we have to adjust our attention away from teaching and away from our own students to keep an eye on the person that has come into the room. We are responsible for what goes on in the class we are teaching.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitI feel that some people don’t think about that or perhaps they don’t understand it. Perhaps they have never taken a class where you are concentrating on what you are doing, so they don’t realize what a distraction it is when someone comes into the room. Also, they might not realize that the teacher is responsible for the students and their safety so the teacher gets distracted from their teaching when people come into the room to get equipment for another class. It happens often when an exercise room is also where the equipment is kept. I’ve even taught at places where there has been Audio-visual equipment kept in the room and it – apparently, needed to be retrieved during the middle of the class.

In many cases the instructors are instructed to not let people just take equipment out of the room, so not only are we responsible for the safety of the students, but for the safety of the equipment. Most venues don’t want people just walking in and removing equipment from the room. We, as instructors, are asked to keep that from happening. So not only is the teaching being interrupted, but the teacher is supposed to not let the person who has entered the room take equipment. It is completely disruptive. In addition to interfering with the class that is being taught, it puts the students safety at risk. The teacher has to turn her attention away from what the students are doing in order to give attention to the person that is removing equipment from the room. Even if it is a staff member it is completely disruptive. Despite the fact the person entering the room has authority to do so AND is allowed to move equipment, the instructor has to refocus away from the class onto the person that has entered the room.

One thing I am pretty certain about, the students in a class that is continually interrupted, they know. They know that the instructor has to stop teaching them to figure out what it going on. They know that the person entering the room is disrupting their focus and their class. It could all be chalked up to a lesson in living in the moment and focusing, but when it happens all the time they feel disrespected. They have paid to be in the class, they have taken time out of their schedule to be there, and then it gets interrupted. They know it is not right, because they too refocus, but for different reasons than the instructor.

If you’ve left a class and accidentally leave something behind and have to interrupt the next class to get your item, that is understandable. Ya run in, ya look apologetic, ya grab your item, and ya run out. That happens. We all forget things. It is when someone enters to remove equipment – even if it is quick, but especially if they have to move things and decide what they are taking – that the disruption occurs.

Sometimes it can’t be avoided that equipment is stored in the class.  Often times there are classes that use the equipment, but when the equipment is needed for a different class than is being held in the room, the equipment should be removed from the room beforehand.  The students deserve the respect of an uninterrupted class.  They also deserve to have the teacher watching to make sure they are moving safely for the entire class.

What do you think?  Have you ever had a class you were in be interrupted? 

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Peacock Bird Bath

Posted by terrepruitt on June 9, 2017

Oh, I saw this on Facebook, I think. It was from that animal rescue site where your purchases help feed animals. I thought it was so pretty so we got it. It was pretty. It was small, but pretty. I think a bird or two even bathed in it. But it didn’t even last a year. It faded to barely even recognizable and the metal that secured it to the rod that goes into the ground rusted. So the glass bath broke off it’s holder. A little disappointed because it was about $24.00. At least the purchase of it went to feed some animals. And it was pretty while it lasted (about four months).

Peacock Bird Bath for today’s Friday Photo

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Posted in Friday Photo | Tagged: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Be Careful What You Eat

Posted by terrepruitt on June 7, 2017

Whoa . . . so crazy the things you can’t eat when you are taking certain medication. If that alone isn’t motivation to try to stay healthy and off medication, I don’t know what is. I would probably end up accidentally killing myself if I had to keep track of what I couldn’t eat when taking certain medication. The worry isn’t really just causing direct harm to oneself but making the drug less effective, so causing harm in that manner. Eek. Since I have been going through my dad’s stuff, I am finding all kinds of different information. I had first experienced this type of information years ago when someone told me that their husband was having a specific symptom and I suggested eating more leafy greens. She said he couldn’t because of the medication he was taking. There is medication that is used that actually makes eating leafy greens bad for you. Some highlights I discovered regarding what you shouldn’t eat when taking certain medications are:

Avoid Fish Oil Supplements when taking blood thinners.
It is ok to eat fish because the amount of oil one gets from eating fish is not that much. It is the fish oil supplements that might be too much. They thin the blood so added to the medication it could be too much.

Avoid red wine, hard cheese, and chocolate if you take certain anti-depressants.
These foods may raise the blood pressure and the chemical used to help break it down is one that is inhibited by certain antidepressants. The ones that are monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI).

Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice if you are taking certain statins for high cholesterol.
The grapefruit and grapefruit juice interfere with the way the body metabolizes some of the drugs so the dose might end up being wrong. The drugs that may be affected are Lipitor, Zocor, Altoprev, and Mevacor.

Avoid too much cinnamon if you take medicine for diabetes.
Your blood sugar could end up being too low if large amounts of cinnamon are consumed because both the cinnamon and the medication lower blood sugar. Just like with the fish, normal amounts like what you would use in cooking is fine, but it is the large amounts found in supplements that could pose a threat when taking diabetes medication.

Avoid too much calcium if you take certain heart medicines.
If the heart medication you are taking is a calcium channel blocker consuming too much may work against the medication. The information I saw said to limit the amount to 1,000 mg.

Bananas and high-potassium foods should be limited if you take certain high blood pressure medication.
If you are taking an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor and eating too much potassium if could be harmful. The ACE inhibitor causes the body to retain potassium so you could end up with too much in your system.

You have probably heard all this before . . . especially if you are taking any of these medications, I know I have. But this is just a reminder. Also . . . do listen to your doctor and follow his instructions as this list is just a general list and doesn’t get into everything you need to know when taking medication.  I know that not all medicated medical issues are ones that can be avoided, but this list helps remind me to work to avoid the ones that are.

I found this information in my dad’s copy of the AARP Bulletin where they were talking about a new AARP book by Madelyn Fernstrom and John Fernstrom – Don’t Eat This if You’re Taking That.

How does one keep it all straight?

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