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meditation, podcast, yoga
Episode 3 is with the wonderful Allie Vincent! I first met Allie about 6 years ago when we were missionaries for our church in the Southern United States. At the time, Allie was allergic to gluten, wheat, corn, and dairy, and was often too nice to say no when people offered her food that she was even allergic to. Ha! I remember one night having to drive us home from a dinner appointment down the backroads and Allie opening the door every couple minutes (while I was driving) and dry heaving. We were frantically trying to get her home and safe in bed.

Allie returned home from her missionary service so, so sick. She’d have good days and bad days, but a lot of restrictions nevertheless. Over the last few years she has opened up more to family and friends about childhood trauma. She has worked hard to recover emotionally from the trauma and simultaneously, as she did the emotional healing work, her body began to recover as well. It’s been incredible to see how far she’s come both physically and emotionally.

It was so interesting talking to Allie about this healing journey of hers. While Allie has always been bubbly and full of light, it seems that her peace has increased as well. She is healthy and strong. She is loving and balanced. The beautiful qualities she has always held are more pronounced now. It is just a joy having Allie in my life. I’m so grateful that I get to share her with you on this podcast episode, and I hope you feel her light.


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podcast, running, yoga
Sam Monsivais. Episode 2. Sam is legit. He’s not only a stellar runner, he’s also one of the kindest people I know, always willing to help out. I didn’t know him too well until last fall when I invited him to be on a Red Rock Relay team with me, and spending a whole day in a van with 5 other people just tends to bring people together. That led to “New Girl Nights” with me, Sam, and his roommate Dane (who we also mention in the podcast). And THAT led to a 6-mile run together down a canyon on a dark, rainy November night (which, at the time, was a long run for me) at the end of a really crummy day for me (or rather, in the middle of a really crummy SEASON for me). Earlier this year when I decided to really focus on running, he was there, assigning me training runs, talking nutrition and hydration, and offering encouragement. What a guy. I’m lucky to have him as a friend.

Thanks for letting me gush. Now onto the podcast: Sam has accomplished so much as a runner in just a few short years, and it was really fun to sit down and get the facts on how he went from carrying extra weight and losing his breath playing soccer with friends, to running ultra marathons. Sam also talks a lot about injury prevention and recovery, as he was hit with an overuse injury early on in his running endeavors and had to take a break for a few months (focusing on yoga instead!).

Our conversation was pretty long, so this was edited down. Purchase the whole Strong + Gentle program to get the full conversation.

Hydration supplements we we talk about: Skratch Labs, Nuun


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podcast, yoga

In the first ever Strong + Gentle podcast episode, I talk to Chantel Stucki about her journey through emotional trauma, and how she responded to it first by running (a LOT), then finding healing through meditation, and then how she learned to love yoga. She talks about how her body and spirit have needed different things at different times, and what she is doing nowadays in her workouts, especially having just had her first baby (you’ll hear a bit from her babe in the podcast 😉 So dang cute).


Chantel and I found each other in 2014, and she has been a light in my life ever since. She is one of the most resilient, wise, strong, AND GENTLE (see what I did there?) women I know. I’ve gone through some difficult things myself over the last couple years, and I’m so grateful for Chantel for being there to comfort me, guide me, and share her insights with me from her own similar experiences. I leave every conversation with her feeling edified and ready to conquer. It’s just who she is: she loves so fully, and you can’t help but feel it even just by talking about something completely unrelated.


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yoga

WHY I LOVE IT:

Downward facing dog stretches the calves, hamstrings, shoulders, arms… from toes to fingertips, this pose does it all. AND, there is so much you can do with it.


While there is value in holding the pose (deep stretch! endurance!), I love continuously moving in this pose—bending my knees, sometimes both at the same time, or peddling the heels back one at a time, sometimes going into a side stretch when I’m peddling each heel back… coming up onto my toes for a moment… dropping the forearms down to dolphin for a bit… dropping onto my forearms for dolphin pose… rolling into plank pose, then back into downward facing dog… there’s a LOT you can do here.


Outside of sun salutations, I love spending a few moments in downward facing dog before and/or after running. Try it out before or after your next workout.


Play around with this pose. I will say, I didn’t always like it as much as I do now, but I love it now. So play with it, keep moving and adjusting, and keep breathing.


TIPS:


Make sure you are “pawing” the mat/ground, distributing the weight through all the fingers to protect the wrists. Play around with this and find that feels good to you.


Start with your knees bent then work your heels toward the ground for a deeper lower body stretch.


Bend the knees for a deeper stretch through the shoulders.


Bend knees, tip pelvis forward, and straighten knees to go deeper into pose.


If you are pregnant, make sure there is enough room between your legs for your belly. (This goes for all forward folds as well).

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wellness, yoga
Over the last few months my Instagram especially has been turning into yoga-run-hike, and yet is still entitled “alliebarnesyoga”. I’ve been thinking about that, and I’ve been thinking, maybe I should turn it into something more generic… alliebarnes… alliebarnesactive… alliebarneswellness… etc.

But, yoga is my profession. It’s the profession I want. Running and hiking are merely hobbies and where a lot of my recreational ambitions are. But yoga? Yoga is what I think about. Yoga is what tie those together, even in the process of breathing deeply, of pondering chakras while hiking, of meditation and stretching and all the things that tie energy together. Balance.

So, alliebarnesyoga! But I hope you enjoy hearing about the other things as much as I love sharing them. Any yogi-runner-hikers out there? Everyone has a niche, right? (Plus natural remedies and essential oils, occasionally. It all ties together in my mind, or at least I feel quite good with the balance in my life right now, and in what I share).

I had a conversation with a friend yesterday about this. We both have so many hobbies and at different times in our lives have felt like that’s a bad thing, that we need to find our one thing and stick to it. We both individually have had to learn that it is okay to do a lot of different things! I don’t need to just do one thing. I love that. She has a nice mix of the active and creative like I do. She’s someone I can talk for hours with because our souls are just so similar. It’s incredible. And speaking of…

I’m working on a new project and I’m quite excited about it. Part of it consists of interviews with very fascinating people (the friend I mentioned above is one of the interviews, so you will actually have the chance to witness some of those long conversations I have with her, haha!) — and people who are not only fascinating, but are wise and wonderful. Best of the best. I’ve done two interviews so far and it’s just the best. (Note: if you know anyone who is an athlete and cross trains with yoga, send them my way! I’d like to chat with them about their experiences).

Can you tell this is just a thought dump? But it sure feels good to just share.

It feels good to move forward, to do things. Honestly, a lot of things in the big picture of my life right now don’t feel right. It’s kind of the pits. But when I started remembering past ambitions and things that feel fun/good to do, and as I’ve begun pursuing those things… even if the big picture feels wrong right now, the little steps within it feel right. Or have begun to feel right. I have faith that they will lead to more— more ideas, more light, more joy, more connection, more life.

* I’d love to hear what projects you’re working on, what is bringing you LIFE right now. However, I’ve decided to get rid of comments on my blog— I got tired of getting so much spam! So find me on Instagram (@alliebarnesyoga) or feel free to send me an email (@gmail.com) to share your thoughts!
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yoga

I have taught yoga for university organizations, church women’s groups, at libraries, event centers, and substance abuse rehabilitation centers. I love teaching, and I love working with so many incredible people as they work toward their own goals in yoga and in life. Here are some testimonials from some past students. Want your feedback featured on this page? Send me a message and I’ll add it in! Want to practice with me? Find my teaching schedule at the “Yoga” link above.



“Allie’s ability to reach all skill and physical levels in yoga makes her a very effective teacher. Her kind and knowledgable demeanor put all at ease and invite a sense of wellbeing and trust in all the classes she teaches.” – Kylie B.


“I loved doing prenatal yoga with Allie! She really helped me feel relaxed and connected to my changing body! Her voice is so incredibly soothing, and I love her peaceful energy. I definitely recommend her!” – Chantel S.


“Allie’s prenatal yoga was amazing for my pregnant body! After I took her class, I felt rejuvenated and I had more energy. I absolutely loved the way her class was structured and would recommend it to anyone!” – Jeni B.


“Yoga with Allie is both fun and relaxing! She provides a friendly atmosphere for her classes and is knowledgeable about what she teaches.” – Mic L.

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wellness, yoga
There are a lot of things I want to build through this company, and sometimes it’s timing that prevents them from happening…


…and sometimes it’s just me, the situations around me, and I’m just trying to keep my head above water.


You know?


That’s been this season. Wins: I’ve been teaching two wonderful yoga classes a week (Mondays at noon at the Startup Building—which is WAY better than it’s original early morning time slot—and on Saturday mornings with BYU Women’s Services and Resources), have been asked to teach yoga more for student housing events or for Relief Society events around the Provo area, and have been given some opportunities to begin making an income with my doTERRA team. I was featured on the Braid blog [link], which was a huge honor. And there have been a few other little things that show me that I am right where I’m supposed to be.


But then there are the things that I want to do, but haven’t done yet: begin a monthly women’s hiking group, grow my Startup Building yoga classes to the point where I can start donating the $ from some classes to charity, and find ways to help individuals see how yoga can help them in their specific situations.


Then there are the things like realizing that I’m not good at daily blogging! I’ve always been a keep-it-to-the-point kind of person (usually…), as evidenced by my almost-always-shorter-than-requested college essays (why fluff it up?). In that way, I’m much better at Instagram. But even then, I could be better at it 🙂


I guess what I’m saying is…I’m learning to move through the heaviness. There are a lot of things I want to do, and I’m going to work to do those.


Most immediately:


– Yoga classes are still happening! We’ve had some new faces at my Monday noon yoga class at the Startup Building and it is the best. First class is free, $5/class after that. (Employees in the building + DevMountain students attend for free always, as a perk!)


– Essential oil BOGO’s this week with doTERRA. It’s a great time to enroll with a wholesale account with my team if you haven’t already. For today’s deal at least—buy an OnGuard and get a Lavender free—the free lavender itself usually costs $28 retail. A wholesale account costs $35. It just about evens out, and that’s awesome. There’s a new BOGO every day this week. Check out my Instagram stories for details, or send me a message to chat about essential oils. I use them every day (and happened to have used both OnGuard and lavender yesterday!). To read about why I finally decided to dive into oils and home remedies, click here.


– Next Wednesday, March 1 at 10am MST I’ll be teaching a Facebook Live class, Essential Oils for Emotional Trauma Recovery. Whether you have experienced emotional trauma, betrayal trauma, etc., know someone who has and want to offer them some love, or simply want to know how to use oils to help you feel good every day, this class will be full of information + my own and others’ experiences. If you join me live, you’ll also be able to ask questions at the end. On the Daily Essential Co Facebook page [here].


– And I do intend to host a local hike for women soon! It’s been something I’ve wanted to do for two months now, and I just hesitate to do so when the weather and trail conditions are sometimes so unknown with the ever-changing Utah weather. But this will happen soon. Follow me on Instagram for the latest updates on this, and all my other endeavors!


Let’s keep moving forward. <3
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yoga

photo by gary barnes


When I was first starting out practicing yoga, an hour and a half of practicing yoga seemed like a really long time (truth be told, it still does. I still gravitate toward shorter classes, even 75 minute classes). I was that student sneaking out early. Sometimes it would be legitimate—I had to get back for a commitment. But more times than not, I was probably just feeling insecure in my practice, tired, and/or bored. BORED. And yet there were these incredible yogis twisting and bending in insane ways next to me. They were loving it. They were soaking it up.


The thing I realize now, after practicing yoga for about 10 years and training/teaching for about 2, is that I don’t need to twist and bend in insane ways to get the most out of a yoga class—though I could if I wanted to. (And, if I absolutely have to leave a yoga class early for a legitimate reason, I let the instructor know. Otherwise, if I’m not feeling the practice, I take it easy, do my own thing, or just spend more time in child’s pose or corpse pose). The point is, the poses don’t matter. The students next to me don’t matter. The instructor kind of matters (you want to appreciate who you’re listening to for 1-1.5 hours), but still, the instructor isn’t the practice. It is inside of me, and it is inside of you.


Yoga can either be a vacation from the chaos around me, or it can be an excruciating time where I am only with my thoughts (and my tight, stressed body). It really just depends on what I’m focusing on.


Things to focus on:


My breath, focusing on the inhale and exhale, perhaps even thinking the words “in” and “out” with each inhale and exhale.


The tightness in my body, but not in a judgy way, just in a recognizing way. Where is that tightness? How does it react if I consciously relax that part of my body? Or if I relax this other part of my body? What if I focus my breath into that area? Can I go a little deeper?


Lingering. What if I take my time in this transition?


Movement. What if I move my body in a different way in this pose? What if I sway, soften, loosen? How does that change the experience? How does that deepen my practice?



And now my question to you: What do you focus on when you’re practicing yoga (or running, or doing any other solo physical activity)? Tell me in the comments!
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yoga

It feels like there’s not a lot to say when I’m not doing much. Between being sick, a period of depression, and crummy winter weather, most of my physical activities have been on hold—and those physical activities have a lot to do with my business, Allie Barnes Yoga! The silver lining to these last few weeks, especially with being sick, is that I’ve had time to explore other things, like experimenting with cooking more, working on my chakra therapist training, and building a new website. Things were happening, but a piece was missing.


This week, my cough and congestion have lessened significantly. I’ve incorporated a bit of gentle yoga here and there. And this morning, for the first time in over a month, I taught a yoga class! And it was wonderful. 


I forgot how incredible I feel after I teach. Today was particularly beautiful. Noticing the rapidly falling snow outside, I shifted the layout of the room so that I taught in front of two large windows looking out into the winter storm. The students practiced yoga by the glow of the white world outside. During savasana, I turned my head and watched the snow falling on and around the tree just outside the window. I felt peace.


I also felt immense excitement and requested that the attendees joined me for a photo after class! They humored me, because they are a wonderful group of individuals. They did not know, however, how much that class meant to me. After weeks of a tired body and a relentless cough, teaching again felt incredible. This class meant so much.


I’ll be teaching again on Monday at noon, this time at the Startup Building in Provo. Everyone is welcome. First class is free, $5 for each class after. Employees and students working in the building always attend for free.


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