Our guest this week is a mother of two boys, a wife and an athlete. She has a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience in the fitness industry, please welcome Rachel of Fitness for Mommies. She shares a chapter in her journey with us, yoga…..

My first trip to Italy, I experienced more new things than I ever had in my entire life put together. I drank red Italian table wine every night, I attempted to speak in Italian by asking for a cookie and the old Italian ladies kept saying” uovo” and I kept saying “cookie”. They said “biscotti” and I said no “cookie”…crazy. Didn’t understand a word they said but it was a fabulous trip. Our time in Italy consisted of 6-8 hours of bike riding daily plus a siesta and mounds of home cooked Italian food. Amazing.

On this trip I met Linda Hampsten, married to Andy Hampsten (Professional Cyclist who won the Tour of Italy in the 80’s), whose passion it was to cook and teach others how to cook. She showed up for our cooking lesson with BUNDLES of basil, sage, walnuts, and Parmesean cheese. She described basil and herbs as “LIFE”. “These are like life!”, she said so passionately! My husband at the time said, “well, I have a spice jar at home.” She said you might want to throw those out. That day, we made fried sage leaves, pesto, walnut sauce, and a Castagneto Carducci cake made from chestnut flour. My cooking has never been the same since.

So, how does yoga and basil go together? Yoga is LIFE! You can experience more of your true self in a yoga class than any where else. You can find yourself on a yoga mat. Yoga has internal and external challenges all together in each and every pose. When connected to the breath, and your body is listening only to the breath, you could have a” ZEN- like” experience. If you’ve ever heard of an athlete being in the “zone” in a race, then you know what I’m talking about. A place where only your body knows where it can go. Being grateful of the time you have to go to a yoga class, whether their is a good teacher or not, can be a totally amazing experience.

Already active? Yoga will balance your body. Not active? Yoga will engage your mind and body and you will get fit doing yoga. I’ve found that when I am really breathing correctly, I am improving my cardiovascular strength as well as my strength and flexibility. As a runner and cyclist my whole adult life, yoga has been the GLUE that holds my body together. As far as I am concerned (and as time allows) I would rather be on the mat, than running. It’s more of a mental challenge, yet, I can achieve the same results in my body that I want by doing yoga rather than running.


Sage Rountree Podcasts (free)

Yoga Today (free)

Yoga Journal (free)

I have been recently including yoga into my routine and have been very impressed! Go ahead and give yoga a try!

Visit Fitness for Mommies for a good read along with fitness tips and more!