The Book of Awakening

One afternoon I was in my car listening to Oprah Radio and she was interviewing an author by the name of Mark Nepo.  He wrote a book called ‘The Book of Awakening’.  During the interview she accepted calls from listeners and one listener was a yoga teacher who reads this book to her students during Savasana.  She was a little emotional on the call and described how it affected her students and how moving each of the stories were.  This intrigued me so I immediately pulled out my i-phone and looked up the book for purchase on Amazon.  I was so excited to get this book and read it for myself and hopefully be able to share it with my students.  One of the most amazing things about yoga is the urge to want more of it whether that be spirtually or physically through the poses.  My goal is for each student to leave class feeling more in touch with themselves spirtually and physicially, ultimately taking those thoughts and feelings outside of yourself.  It sounds very deep but its really an experience hard to describe but it helps you create a greater appreciation for life.

If you want to learn more about the author here is a link to his website:

The Book of Awakening

The Book of Awakening

I love this Poem that he wrote titled ‘ Breaking Surface’

Let no one keep you from your journey,
no rabbi or priest, no mother
who wants you to dig for treasures
she misplaced, no father
who won’t let one life be enough,
no lover who measures their worth
by what you might give up,
no voice that tells you in the night
it can’t be done.

Let nothing dissuade you
from seeing what you see
or feeling the winds that make you
want to dance alone
or go where no one
has yet to go.

You are the only explorer.
Your heart, the unreadable compass.
Your soul, the shore of a promise
too great to be ignored.


Born to Run – Barefoot Running Part III

I finally finished the book and with some up’s and some downs’, I’d say overall it was a good read.  I didn’t care for the ending but nonetheless it got me thinking about the way I look at running.  I’ve been running since I was about 8 years old when I participated in a local cross-country team called Warriors, this only lasted one year and I moved on to play soccer which I enjoyed much more.  But little did I know that cross-country would soon be a part of my life again when I joined the high school team my sophomore year as a way to train in the off-season for soccer, I continued with track, and even earned my Varsity cross-country letter before the end of junior year.  I continued to find love through running in college where it helped me keep those ‘Freshman 15’ off and recover after a night of partying with my sorority sisters.  But it was after college when I trained for my first marathon through team in training when I really fell in love with running.  I enjoyed running miles while catching up with my girlfriends and recovering with a good ice bath and a long nap.  Unfortunately the outcome of my marathon was a 6-month hiatus from running due to an injury.  This sparked my interest in learing more about ‘barefoot running’ and after my husband read this book a few years ago I decided finally it was time to learn more about this phenomenon.

Let me start by saying this book is not 100% about ‘barefoot running’ but about a remote tribe in Mexico that makes running a part of their everyday lives.  This tribe of men and women run in a basic strappy leather sandal all over the surrounding mountains of their village.  A promoter got their interest in ultra-marathons (50+miles) and they started competing with people all over the world.  The end of the book brings together infamous ultra-runners from all over America to the tribes village for an epic ultra-marathon.  The bottom line is that these people do not run for exercise, but for the  joy of running.  It is more of a game than a competition between these athletes which they each have a strong passion for.

There is however, a few chapters dedicated to the evolution of the running shoe.  How Nike started off with a simple shoe and it has evolved into this billion dollar business idea.  When in all actuality, people are getting more injured with the ‘fancy’ shoes of today vs. the basic shoe of yesterday.  This in turn is why Nike developed the Nike free shoe which is their version of the vibram five-finger (bare-foot running).  It allows for easy on the feet but support from rocks and other textiles that your feet might hit while out on the road.  These tribal people do not wear any special running shoes and they have no injuries and run till they are elders.  And in some cases the elders are better runners than the younger generations.  Interviews with podiatrists within the book state that our own bodies are designed to be able to maintain balance without the support of shoes.

Toe Socks

As you already know, if you have been reading my blog, I started ‘barefoot’ running in the beginning of this year.  And I have now run up to 5 miles since I’m training for a 1/2 marathon in November.  I do feel like my body feels lighter and my feet feel more flexible over these past few months.   But I had to go out and get the special toe socks to go into my vibrams because they stretched so much that my toes were rubbing.  This has helped a little but I still seem to be getting blisters on my big toes.  I haven’t been as good as I vowed to be with stretching and I’m paying the price because my hips are starting to ache.  So I’ve incorporated my yoga into my weekly routine as well as stretching with a foam roller whenever possible.  I’ll continue to blog my barefoot running journey as I increase my miles each week… to be continued!

Santa Clarita Marathon - November 6th, 2011

Barefoot Running Part 1

Yes, I am now officially a ‘barefoot runner’!  For Christmas my husband bought me a pair of Vibram Five Fingers barefoot sports shoes.  He had been wearing them for over a year at the time and while they looked funny, I actually started getting used to seeing them every day.  We had much debate as to when I was able to return to exercise after having our son would I purchase a new pair of my trusty Asics running shoes or try the Vibram Five Fingers.  I have worn Asics since my days in high school as a cross country athlete.  Yes, I technically received a Varsity letter but I was definitely not the star of the show.   Asics fit my foot and seemed to last many miles.  My husband started using Vibram Five Fingers after reading this book ‘Born to Run’ (which I’m in the middle of reading myself) and it was about a tribe in Mexico with people that are the best runners in the world.  They are able to run without injury and even the eldest person in the tribe uses running as their main source of transportation.  Whereas in western society most people get injured from running long distance and use things like braces and more supportive shoes to mask the real issues.  I’ll post another blog once I have completed the book to let you know more about this concept and give my official review. 

Running is my absolute favorite form of exercise.  It relaxes me, and keeps me in shape.  I actually got turned on to yoga (my 2nd favorite form of exercise)because I ran the San Diego Rock N’ Roll marathon with team in training in 2007 and I was unable to run for months afterwards due to my injuries.  Yoga was therapeutic to me physically and mentally and I wanted to pass it on to others that I met.  Luckily today I am able to run and I plan to be consistent in my yoga practice as I increase my running mileage.

I have only ran up to 3 miles in my Vibram Five Fingers so far but I plan to train for the Los Angeles Rock N’ Roll Half in October with team in training.  As I begin my training program I’ll be sure to blog about my experience.

Vibram Five Fingers