AC4me Week 14

What Is Yoga?

                The following information is from the Activity Center Brochure entitled “Yoga Made Easy” Strength, Stretch & Relax, Fitness for Every Body!

                Yoga means unity or oneness.  It is believed that the body is related to the breath; both are related to the brain.  In turn, yoga is a mind/body experience.  Yoga’s “five sheaths of existence” – in essence, are the body, the breath, the emotions, the intellect and the happiness of the yoga practitioner.  What yoga reflects is the need for balance between the internal and external forces of our day so a great yoga practice lies in a simple but important word: balance.  What is the alternative?  Finding yourself out of control.

                Yoga involves asanas, or special poses, to stretch, strengthen and relax the body. There are three main things to keep in mind: posture, breathing and mental focus.  It is the intentions, not the poses that make the practice of yoga work for you.

                Yoga is user friendly.  Anyone – at any fitness level and with a wide range of personal and fitness goals – can benefit from beginning a yoga practice.  Yoga is for everyone.

                Please pick up one of the brochures, there is a lot of beneficial information in it, including; What are the benefits of Yoga? Ten Great Reasons to Practice Yoga; and Why Try Yoga?  I made a few phone calls to some of the guys and dolls who attend the Yoga Classes on a regular basis and I wanted to share their stories with you.

                One common thread in my conversations were the delight class attendees have in their increased flexibility.   As we age, decreased flexibility is a problem.  Bob Linsenmayer said he feels like he is 60 again.  Bob indicated he has seen improvement in the strength of his core, better posture and better balance.    Bob is a self-attested “workout nut.”  He does water aerobics, swims and bikes, in addition to yoga.  We need all of our residents to be as active as Bob.  I will let all of you guess how old he really is, I’m not going to tell.

                Mike McClain has been doing Yoga for about 3 years.  Mike has a couple of fused vertebra, which made his back somewhat stiff.  By doing Yoga faithfully he has gained flexibility and strength not only in his back, but all over.  Mike indicated that Yoga is not easy, once you start you need to stick with it and the results will come over time.  Everyone reaches their goal at different times and he wanted others to know that you keep working at it and you will see results.

                Breathing and overall improvement in her posture were the two wonderful benefits Joann Aufderheide was pleased with.  Joann indicated that her focus and awareness of her breathing has been a pleasure, since it has allowed her to learn how to relax.  With improved posture, Joann stands a full inch taller.  Now, that is quite an accomplishment since most people at our age are going in the wrong direction.  Good for you Joann.

                Sherry Stein and I got into quite a conversation about cross-training and all of the benefits of exercise.  In addition to doing Yoga weekly, Sherry is a runner.  Sherry said the breathing technique she has learned in the Yoga class has helped her with breathing when she runs.  Further, Sherry’s increased flexibility and workout from Yoga has improved her muscle tone for her whole body, a big improvement over working only those muscles you use during a run.  Sherry is another cross-trainer, and an advocate of exercising for life.

                It is our hope that reading the successes of some of your neighbors will get you off the couch, out the door and headed to the Activity Center to attend a class.  Remember, find the workout routine that works for you, you will only stay motivated if you love what you are doing.  But, whatever you do, stick with it, consistency is the key and you will see results.

                Here is another easy and terrific recipe for you to try:

Chicken Parmesan


This recipe makes a delicious sauce that tastes great over noodles.

1 cup spaghetti sauce (less than 4 g fat per 4 oz.), divided

1 lb. skinless boneless chicken breasts

½ green bell pepper, sliced

½ cup sliced onion

8 oz. fettucini noodles, dry

2 oz. grated part-skim mozzarella cheese

Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Spray an 8” x 8” pan, with non-stick cooking spray.  Pour ½ cup of sauce in the pan.  Place chicken in pan and top with vegetables and remaining sauce. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30-40 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare noodles according to package directions, omitting oil and salt.  Top chicken with Mozzarella cheese and return to oven, uncovered, until cheese is melted  (about 5 minutes).  Serve with noodles, Pass the Parmesan cheese.

Yield: 4 servings

One serving: ¼ recipe

Per serving:  407 calories, 50 grams carbohydrate, 37 grams protein, 6 grams fat

This is a terrific and easy dinner dish.  Enjoy!


  1. Theresa Bryan:

    Anita, the last time I saw you I could really see the difference. You are getting very solid looking. Keep it up, you are inspiring to me.

  2. Anita Passofaro:

    I go to yoga since last October and my body is getting stronger and I lost inches at the waits and around my hips. My breathing is stronger and relax. I want to thanks Linda our teacher that is doing a great job teaching the postures and make it so interesting every day. It is always something I don’t want to miss, Tuesday and Friday for me is important. I also do stretching on Monday and sometime water aerobic when it is not too cold….

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