Sunday, 12 September 2010


 Created a scrapbook page on " WALK FOR HEALTH" using handmade metal embellishments.

Never knew walking could change my life!

After recovering from plantar fascitis at the end of last year, I was afraid to jog, walk and practically to  do any vigorous exercises just in case I hurt my foot again.  All I did was cycling in my gym. What a bore!

It was during last summer in London that I tried walking in the park.  I began to realize I could walk for miles and my foot was fine. I love to walk, it makes me feel good and I walk  in the morning, normally from 7 to 9 am.  Walking in pleasant surroundings like in a park is a pleasure to walk in and gives  me the opportunities for relaxation.  The fresh air, the greens, the flowers and beauty I find in the park has such a positive effect on my feelings of wellbeing. After a month's daily ritual of  brisk walking and some yoga stretches in between, my health has improved, I am more fit and most importantly it helps to take off extra weight and keep it off.  Without fail, I am still walking every morning and  it has become part of my daily needs and not wants!

Through some of my Facebook posts on my walks, I have received an enquiry from a close buddy of mine who is eager to know my 'technique' of brisk walking. I believed I have inspired her and I wish to encourage her to walk for a better health, walk my dear! Trust me! 

Walking is such a good form of exercise that I wanna share  the pleasure of walking with others and to inspire everyone, if you are  not into walking, to start walking to stay strong, fit and healthy.

Walking is actually a low pact exercise with numerous health benefits. It can ease you into a higher level of fitness and health.  Walking is one of our body's most natural form of exercise.  It is safe, simple, doesn't require practice and the health benefits are many.

Brisk is best!  A simple way to work out how briskly you should walk is to walk fast without overexertion and still able to hold conversations. At the same time I like to swing my arms forward and backwards, a chance to get rid of 'sausage arms', LOL.

If you can't walk far or don't have the time, just a 30 minute walk daily will suffice as recommended by experts for general health.  Did you know it can cut the risk of heart disease in women by as much as 40%  according to a recent Harvard Study?

Walking can:

*  improve circulation
*  helps breathing
*  improve your mood, combats depression
*  bolsters the immune system
*  helps prevent osteoporosis
*  helps control weight
*  helps and prevents control diabetes.

 And did you know that brisk walking has the same benefits you would get from aerobics, jogging and other vigorous exercises?

The only equipment you need to walk is a good pair of walking shoes. So before you set out, select your comfortable footwear with a well cushioned heel, good arch support and enough room for your toes to wiggle. Dress in loose fitting clothes and in layers if you need to adjust to changing temperatures. Choose clothes appropriate for the weather.

Warming up - this is a must.  I would normally start walking slowly for 5 minutes to warm up muscles.

Stretching - After warming up, I would do some stretching of my calf, quadriceps and hamstring muscles.  If you do yoga, sun salutation would give the stretch needed. Yoga-ing outdoor is fun!

Remember to cool down after each walking session by taking a slow walk for about 5 minutes.

Then it's time for a cup of tea, that's when I will make a beeline to the Lido Cafe at The Serpentine Hyde Park.

               I have 2 doctors, my left leg and my right.
                                ~ George Trevelyan, 1913

               I 've been through every diet under the sun and I can tell you that getting up, getting out and walking is always the first goal.
                                ~   Oprah Winfrey

Saturday, 10 July 2010


How do you like to see the world upside-down?
Well, you can do that with my favourite and recommended yoga asana which I practise daily without fail - its THE FORWARD EXTENSION LEGS WIDE APART
I personally find it very interesting, fun  and in fact natural like a newborn baby to view images - trees, buildings, people etc.. from a different angle, watching the world go by upside down!!  Try it and you will know what I mean.
Why like a baby?  Did you know that newborn babies see  the world upside-down?  They begin to focus only about 2 months and over a period of 8 months they learn to turn the images right-side up.
And...I am sure you do know that the images formed on your retina are upside-down too.  Your brain, the brilliant and fantastic tool , then works hard to make sure you see the images right-side up.

Forward extension legs wide apart has a great effect on your body, it helps to improve your posture and circulation. What I normally do is after the practise of this asana I would lightly pat  my face sort of massaging it. This helps to firm and tone up the facial muscles , giving the FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH!!
So why wait, get cracking and make it your  habit to incorporate this pose in your daily yoga practice to look a few years younger!!

I had a good laugh when I heard this reply from a cheeky guy who replied on my topic of seeing the world upside-down......

"I see upside down.....its great for looking up skirts!"  LOL


Tuesday, 6 July 2010


I belong to the group of people who have been introduced to meditation and would like to enhance my practice. I particularly love to meditate outdoors in the park on a seated position and I use the technique of focusing and listening to my breath.  For the health of my body and mind, and peace of spirit, I have started to incorporate meditation into my daily life. By meditating I learn to relax and quieten my 'monkey' mind. There is no doubt that meditation is the path to find my way to experience bliss and happiness.

Did you know of ' PARK BENCH MEDITATION'

If you like to watch 'the world go by' then Park Bench Meditation' will come easily to you. It's an interesting way of pulling back your energy and simply allowing the world to revolve all around you while you sit quietly for 30 minutes on a bench.
What a way to meditate!!  I tried in the park one morning and it works!!
'Plant the seed of meditation and reap the fruit of peace of mind.'

Monday, 5 July 2010


Woke up 5am this morning, walked towards Kensington Park and straight on to Hyde Park. I must  praise the city of London for having such beautiful parks to compliment it and for the locals and visitors to withdraw from the hustle and bustle of overcrowded London.  The lush green trees, plants, open fields and gardens are the lungs of the city .

I am very fortunate to be staying  around the vicinity of both parks and  so to  ignore the greens  and not  to breathe in the fresh air  in the park is a great shame.

There I was this morning and as I walked interacting  with the beautiful greens, flowers, birds, ducks wading in the lake, I felt so so good to be part of nature.  You know I discovered that connecting yoga with nature is a gratifying extension of my current practice. Since my last yoga retreat, I began to realize  my enjoyment and connection with the outdoors having in mind that yoga emphasizes on creating a more mindful existence.

I stood still ,secured and steady as a mountain. I focused and listened to my breathing, expanding my lungs as I breathed in.

I stood tall interacting with the tree behind me




I breathed in and looked forward..

I bend with palm flat and head relaxed towards ground..

Nowadays I feel at ease practising this asana...

Hyde Park, if you have been there you would have seen the little tiny furry squirrel- like animals.
Well, I had a surprise companion this morning  who joined me for my yoga practice.....who ???   only this cute little squirrel ( its not squirrel , not sure of its name) who was totally so unafraid of  humans and welcomed my presence...have a look...perhaps it was watching me all the time and not wanting to lose out my little companion performed 2 poses with pride  to show off.......LOL

Is there such a posture  haha!

Fusing yoga with nature is one great way to escape stress, invigorates the body and nurture the soul.

      ~     by William Wordsworth

Sunday, 4 July 2010


My yoga path started 2 years ago.  The initial one and a half years I attended classes irregularly due to my many travels. It was the beginning of this year, Jan 2010, that I finally decided to have private yoga sessions on a one-to-one basis at least thrice a week.  These private lessons are good in the way that they are taylored to fit my life experiences and my personal yoga instructor's approach to teaching, allows me to develop a practice that is relevant to my body.

I believe in yoga and its wonderful benefits. The testimonies of self realisation and seeing the physical transformation of friends who are serious yogis have inspired me to learn about, practise and understand more the art of yoga. I must say that yoga did help to reduce my body aches, stress and tensions, increases my awareness, calms my mind and liberate my pains and miseries.

As I practise and makes progress I feel my flexibility, my arms and legs strength increasing.  Some days I feel supple and other days as stiff as a stick. I have been advised to choose my poses or sequence with sensibility to my needs and abilities.

Is yoga an art?
Yoga is not merely an ancient science which leads to healthy body, peaceful mind, joyous heart and liberated soul.  It is an art and I like to relate it to  the art of sculpture. My body is the support - the stone, the marble, the clay, the wood etc... and I the sculptor who passionately and joyfully, slowly and steadily, sculpts and transform the support/body through the various asanas to a beautiful toned body, to realisation and happiness, to a positive attitude towards life and to an overall wellbeing both physical and mental.  Sounds beautiful yes? 

So I decided to share the first blog post on my yoga experience via this art blog while the rest will be in my holistic blog ( in the making  !!)

Recently I was flattered indeed to be offered a suggestion by my instructor that some of  my poses can be photographed not only for my blog but more importantly to review the achievements I have perfected to a certain extent ( quite a good standard that was what she told me, I guess only an A grade no distinction, LOL
These pics were taken during my lessons by Janet ...

This is a standing pose that improves balance. It is indeed challenging to stand on one leg. Helps to stretch inner thighs, groins, shoulders and strengthens thighs and calves.
This pose helps to tone, slim and shape the waist and legs.  It also builds strength and flexibility in the legs.
Very often I do use props like cushions, blocks, straps, chairs, blankets  etc... to practise some movements.
This is an exhilarating posture that firms, tones and strengthens the arms, shoulders, spine and abdominal areas. It relieves fatique, stimulates the flow of vital energy and slows the heartbeat.
I do this pose daily as it takes away the stiffness in my ankles, heels, the back of the legs and the shoulders.  If you do not have the time, do this pose and its good enough, better than not doing at all.
This posture will assist to stretch the legs and to expand, extend and rejuvenate.  I bend  at my hips, reach forward and relax downwards with head towards the floor.  Breathing is important and the stretch is at the back of both legs.
I do this pose almost daily as it increases the flow of blood to the brain thus relieving my headaches,
anxiety, irritability and my sleepness nights .  It also firms the back of legs and thighs.  So ladies take note, if you still wanna go for short skirts/shorts do this pose. LOL.
This asana gives youthful body ' the fountain of youth'.  It is beneficial for spine, improves flexibility and strength.  Relieves tension in the shoulders and lower back and it opens the chest.
Being a beginner, the best way to do this pose safely is to practise supported shoulder stand initially. This posture improves the circulation of blood and stretches the shoulders, tones and strengthens the buttocks, thighs and back of legs. It also strengthens the spine and can help to prevent varicose veins.  These 2 pictures are for behind the scene to review my progress.  I certainly need to work harder to strengthen my back to lift my body upright for the perfect shoulder stand.
During the past 3 to 4 months, the emphasis was planned on my posture alignment and stability and building up my strength and suppleness. It certainly entailed lots of effort and willpower to get my asanas right. For instance my downward dog pose is an inverted 'V' now but not before. Though I have mastered some of the postures fairly well but there is still a need to do over and over again to perfect them and practise with ease. Nowadays I make it a point to practise daily, 20 mins in the morning and in the evening before bed  5 to 10 mins, only light stretches like the forward bend to ease tensions.

My ladies, please do not worry how we look in our yoga gears or how unfit we are , we just have to roll down our mats and get moving.  And never rushed, better to do less and practise with grace and ease.

A word of thanks to Janet my personal instructor for her effort, dedication and patience.