Once I make the true connection with Movement for You practice with my studying clients whether dancers, athletes, everyday people, friends, family, or followers the asking about nutrition and my personal training always comes up. I am happy to always share my love and passion for my movement training and for my natural real approach to food with others. As you all know my life has revolved around physical fitness and professional dancing the majority of my young life. And even at the vibrant age of 39, movement specialist, artist, wife, and mother of two I place the vibrancy of my life on the fact that awareness and mindfulness are present due to my Movement for You practice.
With Movement for You practice the Circle of Breath aspect and #1 key element with the physical and mental practice of MFY connects you to your deep abdominal core and allowing the breath to flow like a waterfall~ up and down into the lower abdominal core and then back up through the front of the body and out through the nose. This continual Circle of Breath in through the nose, down the back of the spine to the lower abdominal core, and circle it back up and out the front of the body, and back out the nasal passage (waterfall imagery going down and going back up in reverse) is what brings our bodies awareness and mindfulness. Awareness and Mindfulness is the connection we need to make in order to understand what our bodies need. Awareness and Mindfulness will allow our minds never to judge food or what we are fueling our body with again. We will begin to have respect with every element of substance that is placed in our bodies and nourishment and love will be the only focus.
I will take you back to around the rip age of 16 to 18 years of age. I was studying as a pre professional in the world of dance and my body was not the typical body for ballet. I truly was built for the modern dance world naturally. I fought this for years and heard many remarks about my physical build and strength even while growing up in the world of skating. Weight was always the focus in a lot of respects and dieting was spoken of in a lot of ways. This led me to an ugly road by the time I entered college years and as I was entering my main time training as a professional in the world of dance. I was very lucky though that I met my husband Brian at this time and he truly taught me the importance of “loving life with food by my side.” Yes, the dancer was won over by the awesome cooking and natural approach to food. There was a whole new understanding of food that happened at this time and with my yoga training that was going on, dancer training, therapy work, and also my new found love for my boyfriend at this time (now husband of almost 18 years) awareness and mindfulness came right into my heart.
It was a life altering experience when I started to understand how my Circle of Breath connection helped guide me to all my decisions with food, preparing food, the importance of correct fueling for the body, and how this would help me with my everyday living and also my training as a professional dancer. I will say right now I am not a registered dietician or nutritionist however with my training as a professional in the world of dance I have worked with many of those registered and trained individuals. But, I will share my experiences with food, with my attitude towards it, how I help others with eating disorders, and other disorders that need the circle of breath connection, and truly how I have learned to love food and eating through every single stage of my life whether it be as a professional dancer and athlete, to going through two pregnancies and getting back to my natural body weight with both children, or as being a wife who is married to an incredible guy who is awesome in the kitchen and truly has won this dancer’s heart with food.
This brings me into our major food topic for today INFLAMMATION AND HOW IT IS HURTING OUR BODIES. When our bodies are inflamed whether it be in our lungs (asthma and breathing issues), hormonal imbalances (PMS, pre-menopause, painful periods and cycling), injuries and flare ups with past injuries (pain in our joints or tendons that flares tendinitis issues), or overall autoimmune disorders (lupus, MS) Inflammation needs to be looked at in the face. Take notice to all body parts such as around your wrists, your ankles, your lower abdominal area where bloating can happen, even behind your ears in your lymph nodes and under your eyes. These are classic tell-tale signs that an imbalance is occurring in the body. Sometimes you will just feel puffy in the skin or when clothes are placed on the body when inflammation is present. This will not necessarily mean weight gain but feel similar to water tension that has been placed on the body similar to how we may feel after getting off of an airplane when traveling for hours in length.
I will share with you today a list of foods to start adding into your daily healthy eating plan that will help fuel your body to fight off inflammation and get you on track to thinking with awareness and mindfulness. You will find by following this list you will become more mindful and aware while walking through the grocery store and selecting your foods to when you hit your kitchen to prepare your meals. I shall list because if you only add in one to two of these elements of foods over the next month I promise you this~
You will become stronger, more aware, and be helping your body to fight off inflammation. When inflammation can be placed in rest mode we are more aware of our natural state of body weight and how our bodies should feel on an everyday basis.
Here is the list of foods I truly live by and they all fuel me for my everyday work with Movement for You and all my life adventures that come before me! Wishing you great success in the discovery of MFY Circle of Breath and making the first steps to discovering the importance of Awareness and Mindfulness in fueling and nourishing your body. Keep following MFY and I promise to continue sharing my passion for movement and life with all of you! Movement for You is truly A Way of Life practice on and off the mat. http://www.movementforyou.com
Blueberries (2 servings a day especially in the morning)
Highly recommend mixing this in with your cooked whole grain oatmeal (no packaged oatmeal; make from scratch). And frozen blueberries in smoothies or in your water throughout the day is a great way to get the 2 servings in.
Walnuts (2 servings a day morning and snack)
Walnuts are a great source of energy food! Walnuts have helped me to beat the inflammation with my past injuries such as tendonitis and past stress fractures. I love to mix walnuts in with my oatmeal and in trail mix (walnuts, sunflower seeds, raisins, whole grain cereal, and dark chocolate pieces; make your own trail mix).
Kale, Kale, and more Kale (2 servings at least)
Kale is a huge super food with helping with hormonal imbalances, mood booster, inflammation fighter, and with beating those sugar lows that some of us may feel in the afternoon hours. I recommend Kale (lightly blanched) mixed into your eggs in the morning hours. I have also placed lightly cooked Kale on top of a piece of whole grain toasted bread with hummus and a touch of Parmesan Cheese for an added flare. This is an awesome high energy booster for those ballet dancers out there hitting technique class in the morning. Kale is fantastic in all soups and a way to hide getting it in if you don’t like the taste or look of Kale. You can cut the Kale up in shredded pieces very small and toss into your soups on the last 10 minutes of simmering. Remember to not overcook the Kale. In order for the nutrients in Kale to hit our systems and benefit us in the long run it’s best to eat it lightly cook or in raw state. Live for the Kale!
Rock out the Beets this way in your Kitchen. Simple, simple, simple and even better if you can grow them like we do and place them on your table to eat. As I stated before I fell in love with my husband who loves food and naturally is a talented gardener. You will all be hearing more about this over the next year since our dream plans for my businesses and more are in the making. Stay tuned. But, until then Roast those Beets in a 350 degree oven till tender wrap in aluminum foil with beets, a good olive oil of high quality, hot pepper flakes, sea salt, and pepper. Even tossing some garlic in there to roast alongside the beets gives the beets an amazing smell and fuels all of your senses. To Movement and Farm to Table attitude being passed to the Lehigh Valley and beyond in the near future. Stay tuned!
Cinnamon in morning and night helps to comfort and fill our bellies. Great on toast, oatmeal, over fruit, in smoothies, and even mixed into our dark chocolate desserts and snacks. Great dessert is Cinnamon Ice Cream make your own or sprinkle your Vanilla Ice Cream with Cinnamon. Don’t stir clear of Milk Product with inflammation since the Vitamin D in Milk helps to beat off Asthma issues and even at times helps to regulate our womanly cycles when taken in moderation.
For my fruit lovers out there Pineapple is the go to fruit for smoothies, on top of Pancakes/Waffles, or eating by itself for beating inflammation and getting you in touch with awareness and mindful fueling for the body. Pineapple is even really lovely as an evening snack with some dark chocolate drizzled on top of it and a dash of cinnamon on top. Great mood booster and Mind Cleanser in my eyes before rehearsals and meetings too!
Some other great sources for the list are Fish, Fish Oil, and Coconut Oil.
Grilled salmon is my go too and if I can’t hit that source of fuel then mixing fish oil or fish sauce into your stir fries or vegetable sautés will work also. Coconut Oil can be used quite often as a substitute in your baking instead of using butter or other oils.
Please visit all of Lindsay Schaefer’s work via the following sites. A great way to learn more about Lindsay Schaefer and all her work with Movement for You Practice and Artists in Unity is by picking up a copy of Lindsay’s book The Process~ The Practice~ The Artist available on Amazon (See link below). Lindsay Schaefer is the creator and founder to Movement for You practice and Artistic Director of Artists in Unity. www.movementforyou.com and www.artistsinunity.com