5 Tips for Creating a Successful At-Home Practice

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Photo by Abbey Matson

My daily workout routine often includes several hours of dance, Pilates, and yoga each day. However, I was inspired by one of my yoga teachers, Wesley, to start doing a “Morning Practice.”

Although my morning practice sometimes happens in the afternoon or evening, I have made a habit of doing a daily self practice which I enjoy. Each practice is different and I often work on a fusion of Pilates, yoga, and strength training exercises. I mix up each workout depending on how my body feels and my personal workouts often influence my teaching.

Here are my tips for you for creating your own at-home self practice:

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1 – Set a Time

In order to develop a consistent routine, I recommend setting aside specific times to practice. Make an appointment as if you are going to see your Pilates instructor for a private lesson or you are going to take a yoga class. By setting a time, you are less likely to skip your practice when work, family, or other commitments can get in the way.

2 – Set an Intention

Perhaps you would like to build upper body strength or maybe you have tight hips. Create a routine where you can focus on whatever issues you have on a particular day. If you have goals to strengthen a certain area where you have a weakness, do exercises that will improve that area. If you are feeling under the weather one day, you may decide to do a restorative practice. A great aspect of a self at-home practice is that you can concentrate on your own individual needs.

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3 – Challenge Yourself

We should challenge ourselves everyday! If you find that doing 10 push-ups is a piece of cake, perhaps you should do 2 sets of 10 and add more repetitions to each set when you get stronger. If you can easily hold a plank for 1-minute, you can place your legs/feet on an unstable surface like a stability ball to challenge your balance. Every routine does not have to leave you feeling exhausted and unable to walk, but you should always try to challenge yourself in some way in order to see improvement.

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4 – Use a Prop
There are several small and affordable props that you can use at home. Magic circles, yoga blocks, therabands, and small dumbells can all be purchased for under $30 and take up minimal space. Props can be both fun and effective and are a great way to mix-up your routines. If you are unsure how to use props, lots of free information is available online but you should also ask a qualified teacher to make sure you are executing correct form to avoid injuries.

5 – Be Creative
Just as you should set an intention, switching up your routine is also important. If you focus on lower body exercises one day, try focusing on upper body the following day. If you use a magic circle in one practice, perhaps you should exercise with a theraband the day after. You can even be creative by changing your environment. Maybe you practice in your living room on Monday then workout on the rooftop of your building on Tuesday. Mixing things up will keep you engaged and make your daily practice enjoyable.

So, what are you waiting for? Start your at-home routines today!

“Like” Pilates Angel on Facebook for more tips and follow me on Instagram @imyourangil to see my daily routines!

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My 5 Favs: September

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1 – J’adore Eau de Parfum ($70, 1 oz)
I absolutely adore J’adore, an iconic floral fragrance that is both feminine and sensual. I love this sexy scent so much that I also have the luxurious body cream version!

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2 – Black Onyx by OPI ($9.50)
Dark colors look great during the Fall/Winter season and this shade from OPI’s Classics Collection is my go-to black!

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3 – Olive & Green Tea Shea Butter Soap by Shea Moisture ($4.99)
I’m in love with this ultra-moisturizing soap made with organic Shea butter, olive and avocado oils, and green tea extract that hydrates and nourishes my skin. It smells amazing and my skin feels soft after each shower.

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4 – Skin Elixir by Khushi Spa ($16, 4 oz)
A delicious smelling combination of sweet almond oil, geranium essential oil, lavender essential oil, ylang ylang essential oil, and rosemary oil extract, this elixir nourishes the skin. I go through these bottles so quickly and often mix drops into my fav body creams and lotions.

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5 – What a Blast! Pro Longwear Lip Pencil by Mac ($20)
On a day or night out I often wear a bright red lip color to spice things up! This lip liner helps to finish my look and keep colors like Lady Danger by Mac on for hours.

“Like” Pilates Angel on Facebook to see more of my favorite beauty products!

KZP Clothing Line Ad

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KZP Clothing Line Ad by Justin Snyder.
It was such a blast doing this photo shoot in the Hamptons this summer.

KZP t-shirts and tank tops are now available for men and women. Get yours today!

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Photos: The Williamsburg Bridge

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The Williamsburg Bridge is a suspension bridge in NYC that connects the Lower East Side of Manhattan with the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn. Spanning over 7,000 feet long, more people ride their bicycles across this bridge each day than any other bridge in America.

Built 110 years ago, the Williamsburg Bridge has been featured in several paintings, books, and films including: James Bond: Live and Let Die (1973), Scent of a Woman (1992), and American Gangster (2007).

With so much history the bridge was such a fun place to do a photo shoot. See some of the images captured on the bridge below.

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Photos by Janina Marquordt

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Behind the Scenes: KZP Photo Shoot

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On my recent trip to the Hamptons this summer, I spent lots of time by the pool, at the beach, barbecuing with friends, and bike riding through the beautiful countryside. During this getaway, I made some time to model in a photo shoot for a new line of apparel by Kevyn Zeller Pilates.

Pictured are some behind the scenes shots of my work with wonderful photographer, Justin Snyder, on a private beach in East Hampton. See a couple of the final photos in the Pilates Angel photo gallery.

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Healthy Eats: Kale and Bok Choy Stir-Fry

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Prep Time:10min
Serves:4

Ingredients:
– 4 heads baby bok choy, trimmed
– 10oz bag of organic tuscan kale, stems removed
– 3 cloves garlic
– 1 tablespoon grated ginger
– 3 tablespoons olive oil
– 1 tablespoon soy sauce
– 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
– salt & pepper to taste
– green onions and crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Procedures:
1 –Heat oil, garlic, ginger, and green onions (optional) in large skillet over medium heat for about 1min.
2 –Add kale and bok choy, stir-fry until tender about 4-6min.
3 – Remove vegetables from heat, stir in soy sauce and add sesame seeds and red pepper flakes (optional).

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