Tag Archives: body

5 Years Goes By Quick!

Exactly 5 years ago today I purchased a one-way ticket and boarded a plane to Hollywood. Of course, I had a “Five Year Plan”, which you’ll read all about in Chapter 3 of my soon-to-be-released memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood. But when does anything go according to plan, right? Nevertheless, it’s been an amazing 5 years and I’m really looking forward to the next leg of my journey! Because, no matter if you’re “on-track” to meet your pre-determined plan, life always throws you a curve ball. And just like a batter expecting the fastball but gets the curve – relax, stay focused, keep you eye on the ball, and go with the pitch. And always remember, wherever you go, go with all your heart.

Here’s my Top Ten highlights of the past 5 years:

1) Produced, directed and starred in my first feature film, Boulevard Zen
2) Created and produced a video encyclopedia of 100 yoga poses, Yoga Survival Guide
3) Created and produced a yoga/fitness video for 7 days a week, 15 Minute Fat Burning Workouts
4) Created and produced 100 consecutive days of free yoga/fitness videos, 5 Minute Fat Burning Workouts: 100 Workouts in 100 Days
5) Founded a charity teaching yoga to women and children living in domestic violence shelters, The Boulevard Zen Foundation
6) Launched the Fat Burn America Tour: 100 Cities in 100 Days (albeit, I didn’t procure the necessary funding)
7) Quit drinking and my “player” ways (OK, that’s 2 but they go together)
8) Lived in paradise (Hawaii) for 3 months
9) Wrote my first book, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood
10) Moved to the most lovable and unique city in the country: San Francisco

Oh, did I mention I worked out every day for the past 5 years. I guess that goes without saying, because anyone can commit to a daily fitness program, if you set your sights and try. So for those of you not currently trying to fight Father Time on a daily basis, here’s another 5 Minute Fat Burning Workout to get you started. Enjoy – R

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Yoga can hurt you…so arm yourself with knowledge!

There’s been a lot of talk these days about how “yoga can wreck your body”. Well, there’s no question that practicing yoga with an inexperienced or bad teacher can lead to injury; I’ve been hurt three times in the past six years from so-called master teachers and their inappropriate sequencing of poses. Unfortunately, just like Glenn Black says in the NY Times article, “To many schools of yoga are just about pushing people”. Add to that, too many yoga teachers have no background in physical fitness and/or body mechanics, and voila, yoga can hurt you.

Proof in point: Last summer I read a GQ article and posted my Letter to the Editor in my July 22nd blog (click HERE to read). In short, a NYC studio owner prescribed a 15 minute yoga workout with three twisting and forward bending poses that made me cringe. Because there are certainly yoga poses that should never be attempted without the proper (and complete) understanding of how to come into and out of each pose, as well as properly warming up the spine and preparing your body. And if you’re new to yoga, be extremely careful with any teacher that’s pushing too hard or moving too fast – especially an overzealous one that’s new to the profession.

And if you’re someone who truly wants the benefits of yoga but are reluctant to take a class (for a variety of reasons), then try my 5 Minute Fat Burning Workouts that are based on yoga principles and employ my very precise teaching style that’s designed to minimize injury to any body part, especially the neck and low back. Or better yet, if you really want to arm yourself with knowledge, then watch my Yoga Survival Guide with 30 fun lessons teaching you the proper and safe way to practice 100 yoga poses. Enjoy – R

Set your sights…and weigh in!

Set your sights on new goals and opportunities, and weigh in. That’s right, it’s New Year’s Day so get on the scale and check your body weight. Because your weight matters, and having a known starting point for the new year is important. And the next thing you should do is workout. That’s right: weigh in and workout. Because preserving your body starts with a daily fitness program. So set your sights for 2012, and know that exercising every single day helps push back the hands of time – and unnecessary pounds of time.

Today I weighed in at 151, then did 30 minutes of abs and yoga stretches, then 30 minutes of weight lifting (mostly machines). Afterward I drove the amazing 5 mile stretch from Hawaii Kai to the Makapuu Lighthouse, hugging the shoreline around the southeast corner of the Island as the waves crash into the rocks below. The certainly challenging but very do-able uphill run starting from the Kalanianaole Highway up to the Lighthouse, well, it ranks second only to my favorite – Runyon Canyon in Hollywood. Not that the 1.5 mile loop around the Reservoir in NY’s Central Park, or the beautiful West River Drive and the Philadelphia Museum of Art steps aren’t great runs too! But the breathtaking ocean views along the narrow blacktop road leading to the Lighthouse are incredible. Not to mention the energy you feel as you pass the lookout for the Humpback whale sanctuary. Totally awesome. And worth running or walking – at least once in a lifetime!

I never imagined I would be traveling this lovely Hawaiian path when I first set my sights on publishing my memoirs less than six months ago. So believe in yourself and believe that you can. Then get on the scale and get started with your daily fitness program. Wherever you are! And if you don’t know where to start, how about strengthening your core with my 5 Minute Fat Burning Workout #81 – Plank Crunches. Happy New Year – R

Easy on the Splurge

Happy Labor Day everyone! Today my Cookies and Ice Cream friend and I can splurge. But I caution everyone like us who’s celebrating today to go easy on the splurge, because no sense in undoing all the good work you did over the past week or so. And don’t forget to get your workout in with today’s 5 Minute Fat Burning Workout #89 – Chair Legs -R

Domestic Violence Permeates

By the time you’re 10 years old your subconscious has formed and thereafter differentiates between acceptable and unacceptable behaviors. For example, if you grew up with a mother or father who was a big drinker or smoked cigarettes, then your subconscious considers these activities (or bad habits) as acceptable behaviors. Behaviors that are more easily adopted by you because they’re acceptable to you. Thus, if you experienced or witnessed domestic violence in your youth – like more than 10 million children do in the United States every year – then domestic violence has permeated your subconscious and has become acceptable. Not good. Actually, it’s pretty pathetic that a child unknowingly accepts domestic violence at no fault of their own. It’s also pretty pathetic that a child has to identify the concept of LOVE with such traumatic visual and emotional experiences. And it’s horrible on the child’s mother (or father in some cases), to experience the physical, mental and emotional poison of domestic violence. Poison because domestic violence permeates a victim’s body, mind and spirit, oftentimes causing irreparable damage. Damage to the victim’s self-confidence and self-esteem.

That’s why my charity, The Boulevard Zen Foundation, is striving to bring the benefits of yoga to women and children survivors of domestic violence – everywhere. To help rebuild their SELF, because yoga is all about the SELF, and to teach these women and children how to respect their minds and bodies with the amazing physical and lifestyle benefits of yoga. Our compassionate and well-trained teachers also lead by example and serve as a living testament to how anyone can better themselves with the help of yoga.

Over the past year I have personally taught more than 100 women and children living in domestic violence shelters. I know that look in their eyes that says “I’m not good enough” and “I can’t do it”. A look that I’ll always counter with, “Yes, you can do it, and yes, you can believe in yourself”. Because I do and I know they can. Be well, believe & achieve! – R

Get Comfortable with Feeling Uncomfortable

The other day I met a bodybuilder who said he tried yoga and hated it because it made him “feel uncomfortable”. I responded with just one word, “exactly”. Simple put, yoga demands you to get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable.

If you ever tried yoga and immediately began to fidget and squirm your way out of your first downward facing dog, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Because the physical practice of yoga (the asanas), put your body into challenging positions that will QUIET your MIND and get rid of all that mind chatter. Of course we know what mind chatter is, right? It’s that inner conversation you’re having with yourself about anything and everything that’s going through your mind. Including the discomfort you’re experiencing in a particular pose – including the simplest of down dogs.

When the ancient yogi’s practiced 6,000+ years ago, yoga was embraced as a culture that included the art of positioning their bodies into asanas (poses) for long periods of time to cleanse themselves and to reach a higher enlightenment, aka, nirvana. Yoga was revered as a lifestyle seeking union with the Supreme. Yoga also enabled it’s male practitioners – since women weren’t allowed to practice – to quiet their bodies and their minds while focusing on one particular object for an extended period of time. No matter the feelings of discomfort. Today most people think yoga is either just stretching and meditation, or some kind of body-twisting exercise that’s really good for you but really hard to do. And the really hard to do part usually has something to do with not wanting to endure discomfort – for any period of time.

So if you’re anything like our bodybuilder friend and don’t like feeling uncomfortable, keep your yoga workouts short and sweet with just 5 minutes a day. Soon you’ll get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable, and you’ll truly begin to experience the benefits of yoga. And always remember that pain is bad and discomfort is good. So enjoy some good discomfort with our upcoming FAT BURN AMERICA TOUR: 100 Cities in 100 Days, Hollywood Walk of Fame Preview! – R

Benefits of Yoga

The Boulevard Zen Foundation teaches the benefits of yoga to women and children living in domestic violence shelters. That’s why we’re going on the FAT BURN AMERICA TOUR: 100 CITIES in 100 DAYS, to inspire Everyone to workout with us Everyday for 100 straight days at historic sites in all 50 states! And to help The Boulevard Zen Foundation raise funds to teach women and children survivors of domestic violence, Everywhere.

YOGA
– Builds physical strength & flexibility
– Builds mental strength & focus
– Builds self-esteem & self-respect
– Builds energy & stamina
– Builds courage & self-love
– Reinforces proper breathing & posture
– Improves internal health & circulation
– Improves self-confidence & creative thinking
– Increases concentration & self-discipline
– Promotes relationship building & trust

And you don’t have to take a yoga class to get these benefits. Keep it simple and practice a little each day. And here’s me teaching the women and children living at the domestic violence shelter in San Diego. Enjoy and don’t forget to get your workout in! – Rich