30-Day Spiritual Yoga Cleanse: Pillars of the Program
ZenSpot's Spiritual Yoga Cleanse has begun! The pillars of the program should be done each day for the next 30 days.
1. Meditation: Take 5-10 minutes daily to sit quietly alone with no distractions. It is recommended that you practice meditation first thing in the morning after your bathroom routine but before you get showered and dressed for the day. If you struggle with meditation (like most of us) and need a helping hand, ZenSpot's "Come Meditate With Me" guided meditation CD can be made available to you in advance of its final release date in February 2016. In other words, if you want one, we can provide for you an advanced copy for $12 via electronic download. There are 4 meditations on the CD so it provides variety for your practice. Each of the meditations are longer then 10 minutes but very helpful as you are looking to get started.
2. Pranayam (Breathing) Practice: There are several pranayam exercises that ZenSpot has taught in yoga classes over the past several years. The purpose of pranayam is not only to increase lung capacity and create balance but to calm the mind, the physiology and to create space in the mind and the body for the spirit to emerge. It is recommended that you practice one pranayam daily independent of your yoga asana and/or meditation practice. Spending 2-5 minutes is an easy and do-able amount of time and you are welcome to do it either before or after your yoga asana or meditation practice. If you would like to spend more time doing your pranayam practice we encourage you to explore that. Examples of pranyam exercises will be available in the Facebook group established for this program.
3. Yoga Asana Practice: Practicing yoga asana daily will assist in cleanse the body, moving ama (stuck energy and/or toxins) as well as bring mind and spirit together through the messages the body has to give us. In many ways, asana is a "moving meditation" where we literally meditate with the body (as Vajriana Buddhists do) and have the opportunity to check-in with ourselves away from the distractions of daily life. We encourage daily practice at the studio in order to be with other sangha (community) members and connect with their energy. However, we also know that daily practice in the ZenSpot studio may not be available so we therefore can provide a few alternatives. ZenSpot has several DVDs that you can use for a home practice or you can lead yourself in a practice based on your personal experience on the mat or you can look into a variety of online options if you choose. If you would like to purchase one of the ZenSpot DVDS you will receive a 10% discount as part of being a participant in this program.
4. Nourishing Diet Rooted in the Principles of Ayurveda: Food is a wonderful gift that when selected carefully and prepared appropriately according to the seasons is medicine. As one of the four pillars of the program, nourishing food is one of the most important due to its ability to have the longest lasting effects on our health and well being. Many of us have struggled with food over the course of our lives and so the Ayurvedically-based diet principles here will support vibrancy and vitality and hopefully create new patterns of positive behavior and relationship for you. In the Facebook group you will receive cleanse and seasonally appropriate food lists that will be kept simple as well as several recipes for each of the food times that you can select from. There will be 3-4 recipes provided for breakfast, lunch and dinner- choose one each day and stick with it. As mentioned, Breakfast should be a nourishing one but not large, Lunch should be the largest meal of the day and Dinner should be the smallest meal. Please prepare your meals yourself or have someone you know and love prepare them. It is important that you make a connection with your food on a regular basis as this helps establish new patterns and new relationships. Try not to eat out for the next 30 days. In the even you are traveling and cannot make your own meals please select choices that have the elements of the recipes in them or choose the default of rice and steamed or sauteed veggies. You can ask as many questions in the Facebook group that you would like if you are unsure or have questions. We also encourage you to share ideas as we will be sharing many.
5. Water, Bedtime & Daily Reflection: Make sure you are drinking your daily allotment of water and try to make it alkaline. Alkaline options are Fiji and Essentia as well as a variety of other companies where the Ph is 7.5 or above. Water is a key component to replenishment and cleansing. Please do not drink your water cold or with ice- room temperature or warm. This process alone will strengthen your Agni (digestive fire) and nourish the dhatus (tissues) of the body. In terms of sleep please try to not stay up late or rise late. Cleansing and transformation is directly tied in with the body's need to rest and receive time to process the day's events. You need rest so please try bedtime around 9:30/10pm with lights out. Finally, daily reflection- write down your thoughts in a journal or on your computer or other space you enjoy. The purpose is for you to capture the process you are undergoing- it is a wonderful way to get out what is in your mind and body. Who knows, it could turn into your next great personal novel!