Monday, December 6, 2010

The Blog Has Moved

I moved my blog this Fall over to my business website

Read what I've been writing since October!

In Health and Happiness,

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Born To Run

The Chicago Marathon is around the bend. A big cheer to old and new friends and to clients who are running, jogging, or walking marathons this weekend. These two quotes really sum up the a marathon.

To describe the agony of a marathon to someone who's never run it is like trying to explain color to someone who was born blind. ~Jerome Drayton
A marathon is like life with its ups and downs, but once you've done it you feel that you can do anything.  ~unknown

My clients are keenly aware of the assistance their acupuncture treatments bring to their training and recovery. Acupuncture is one way to hasten the recovery from pain and inflammation that comes from running injuries and facilitates the body's recuperative powers.

Acupuncturists can utilize various styles of techniques from needling to cupping to gua sha to herbal remedies including plasters. An herbal plaster is a natural medicinal patch adhesively applied to the affected area. Any of the techniques will help to vitalize and move the blood that creates the stagnation causing the pain sensation. 

Massage can help heal injuries as well. Many acupuncturists incorporate Tuina, a Chinese style invigorating energizing massage. Regular massage or myofascial massage are highly beneficial as well.  

Yoga employs specific stretching that is much needed for any level of athlete, increasing flexibility, core strength, balance and a calm centered mind.  

Moving the energy and blood with a combination of preventative and intervening modalities like acupuncture, massage and yoga will help you bounce right back from injury and fatigue right back into your running shoes.

If you are in Chicago, Allyu Spa is just one of the spas that has a great special for the marathoner in your life. Check their current promotion.

Monday, September 6, 2010


Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts. ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
Breathing. Seems simple enough, but most of us do not breathe correctly or efficiently. We all know breath is needed to live but do you know what it does for a body? for a mind? for a spirit? I shared correct breathing in my teleseminar in August. Here is the condensed list of benefits:
  • Gives you more energy
  • Reduces mental and physical fatigue therefore reducing the need for stimulants and drugs
  • Eliminates toxins and waste
  • Improves blood circulation, relieves congestion, increases supply of blood to muscles and bones
  • Increases oxygen and nutrient supply to all the cells of the body. The brain and eyes need much oxygen!
  • Correct breathing (depending on technique) can calm or stimulate the central nervous system and balance the brain hemispheres
  • Better breathing opens up and balances the subtle energies of the body
  • Using the diaphram with proper breath massages the internal organs improving their function.
  • Facilitates the movement of the lymph throughout the body which eliminates toxins and improves the immune system
  • Shallow breathing puts stress on the organs of elimination
  • Along with a balanced alkaline diet, toxic carbon dioxide will be eliminated more readily through the breath
  • Improves the appearance of the skin, reduces wrinkles thanks to better blood circulation
  • Relax deeper
  • Recover faster from stress, exertion and injury
  • Reduces muscular spasm, tension, adhesions, and fibrosity 
Feel like improving your breathing? Here are three options to activate relaxation and  quiet your mind. 
The yogic breath  Sit with your neck, head, and spine in alignment. Place your hands on your chest and breath in and out through your nose, feeling your chest expand. Repeat 3-4 times. Now place your hands on your belly and inhale through your nostrils, letting your belly expand with air. Exhale through your nose and press in slightly with your hands. Repeat 3-4 times. Next, place your left palm on your chest and your right palm on your belly. As you inhale through your nose let your belly expand and then bring your breath up into your chest, feeling your ribs expand. Exhale through your nose, releasing your breath from your chest, then your stomach. Repeat 3-4 times. Now close your eyes, rest your hands on your lap, and repeat 10 times. 

Alternate nostril breathing  Place your right index finger and middle finger on the bridge of your nose. Close the right nostril with your thumb, inhale and at the top of the inhalation, close your left nostril with your ring finger. Release your thumb and exhale through the right nostril. Inhale through the right nostril and at the top of the exhalation close the right side with your thumb. Release your ring finger from your left nostril. Repeat 6-12 times.

Left nostril breathing Close your right nostril. Breathe in through your left nostril and out through your left nostril. Repeat this 10-20 times.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Garden Trout

I had a smoked trout salad a couple weeks ago which reminded me that I really like trout. I rarely eat meat, but when I do it is something I crave and works well with my body which would be trout, turkey or duck. In the company of others, I may deviate from those.

No, the trout was not grown in a garden, but the rest of the ingredients were! So after buying a large bag of veggies at the farmer's market, I stopped by Whole Foods crossing my finger there was fresh trout in the case. YESSSS!

Even though the temperatures here have been hot and humid, I turned on my stove and baked my trout while I minced veggies. The veggies and herbs filled 2/3 of the bowl and I was still mincing so I had to nix some of the veggies to keep room for the fish!

I minced:
1 medium raw orange bell pepper
1 small raw red onion (size of maybe 2 golf balls)
1 small thumb of fresh ginger
1 Tbsp or so of fresh Italian parsley
15-20 steamed green beans

I julienned:
5 leaves of raw swiss chard, stems removed

Tossed in leaves from several sprigs of fresh thyme

Added a few dashes of Himalayan sea salt, a splash of coconut oil, juice of half a lemon

The trout was on 375 til done, maybe 15-20 minutes. I let it cool while I continued to mince, julienne, toss and squeeze; then I added it in large pieces removing any missed bones.

I like the sweetness of the bell pepper, green bean and trout against the pungency of the ginger and thyme with the slight bitterness of the chard and parsley. Nice harmony of flavors!

Dinner for the hot, humid week is served!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Squash Blossoms

The squash blossoms I picked up from the farmer's market Thursday were on my mind when I went out for Italian last night. I didn't want to batter and fry them and I didn't want to make a summer soup.

I decided the flat, square homemade noodles that accompanied the abundance of everything else would be amazing with a chiffonade of blossoms and a little cheese. I headed out to Saturday's farmer's market on a mission for local cheeses! Not my usual food of choice but I was inspired!

Here is what I did:
Olive oil
1 Tbs unsalted butter
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 stalk of celery, finely chopped
2 patty pan squash, finely chopped
small handful of Italian parsley, finely chopped
10 zucchini blossoms, quartered from stem to tip
Himalayan sea salt
5-10saffron threads
2 cups vegetable broth, preferably homemade
1 egg yolk
½ lb. pappardelle
Pecorino Romano, finely grated
Small wheel of chevre

Heat a large pot of salted water over high heat for your pasta.

In a large skillet, warm a small amount of olive oil and the butter over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, patty pan squash, and Italian parsley, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are translucent. Add the zucchini blossoms, a pinch or two of salt, and the saffron, and stir gently to mix. Add about ¾ cup of broth, and stir to combine. Raise the heat to medium-high and add the rest of the broth a splash or two at a time, taking about 5-8 minutes to add it all. Stir frequently. Allow the sauce to simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated and only a small amount of thickened broth remains in the pan. Remove from the heat.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk slightly with a fork.

Cook the pasta until tender but al dente. When the pasta is almost ready, place the zucchini blossom sauce back over medium heat. Use a small measuring spoon, scoop up about 3 Tbs of pasta water and, whisking constantly with a fork, gradually add the hot water to the egg yolk: together, they should make a loose, pale yellow liquid. Pour this mixture into the sauce in the skillet, add small pieces of chevre, stirring well. Using tongs or a spider, scoop the finished pasta from its pot into the skillet, and toss with the sauce over medium heat for about 30 seconds.