I hate the idea of following a diet, so I don’t. I teach yoga but I am not a vegan. I follow a rather lenient “diet” for which I freely allow (and encourage!) myself to eat filet mignon, red wine, real butter, dark chocolate, creamy risotto, and full fat raw cheeses whenever I want, but all in moderation. I do, however, have a deep love for green juice, almond butter, big beastly salads, pomegranates, and raw bell peppers – with raw hummus. I believe being healthy doesn’t always have to come with enormous sacrifice or total overhaul of one’s eating habits. Food should be enjoyed and savored, so that when it’s consumed it honors the body instead of attacking it. We honor the body by not mindlessly stuffing it with trans fats, and by fully enjoying that slice of brie with your malbec (without caring if these are supposed to be paired), and instead of turning down the chocolate mousse, cheers to today and eat it with pleasure.
As a yoga teacher, my aim for my students has always been to encourage them to fully enjoy every aspect of their practice, their food, and their lives. I never ask my students to come in and be ready for a balls-to-the-wall workout, even though I teach a pretty intense class. I don’t preach the vegan or raw food lifestyle, the evils of dairy, or a laundry list of things you must do in “correctly” in yoga. I always ask just one thing: do not sacrifice the body for a pose or a diet. These things are here to serve us.
Like anything else, be it food, or yoga or anything in between, we are the masters of our domains, and we have the immensely powerful capacity to dictate how and in what manner we experience this world. So I choose choice, and I encourage my students to do the same. Are you sore? Take the easier option in class. Are you craving something sweet? I’ve got some pretty serious recommendations!
In my adventures, I like to explore the variety and deepest pleasures life will offer me. I’ll take it in food, travel, yoga, and almost anything else, so long as I have my health, my family, and my little notebook.
That is all! Now go eat a sandwich!