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    Strong Body = Youthful Appearance

    I’m the first person to extol the importance of regimented skin care and interventions like fillers and Botox as enhancements to youthful appearance. But, there’s more that you can do to help you glow from the inside out. In this and my next column I want to share with you a few more secrets to looking and being healthy and refreshed.

    One of the very best tools for keeping that healthy glow is yoga. In the very first blog post I wrote, I shared with you how yoga inspires and relaxes me. That was how long ago and as far as my personal health regimen is concerned, I’ve become more dedicated to yoga and more sure that it is an important key to my overall health, vitality and rejuvenation.

    Just the other evening while in class, my mind took me to thoughts of the personal discoveries I have made through my yoga practice. For three years I’ve been working to achieve the Crow pose. In brief, it has been a three-year effort to be able to balance in a squat with my knees resting on my upper arms and to hold that pose. A few weeks ago, I finally mastered this. The next progressive step out of this pose, is to transition to Chataranga; basically it means flinging my legs out, balancing only with my arms and ending up in plank position. I have discovered that I can improve physically with age – not just developing the cliché “wisdom of age”.

    Here is photo from Jillian of Flickr’ Creative Commons that shows Crow pose and its progression to Chataranga.

    I assumed it might take years to accomplish this transition – if ever – “at my age”. But yoga philosophy teaches that challenges are not competitions, but a path to personal wellbeing. We need only make our best effort, listen to our bodies, challenge our bodies to “our degree” – and rest if necessary. I thought: “Crow, without the Chataranga transition, may be sufficient for me.”

    Meanwhile, I decided to intersperse barre classes, just to change my routine and keep my workouts interesting. This type of workout trains muscles in different ways than yoga – presenting myself with new challenges.

    What I found, when I returned to Yoga was that my now accomplished Crow position was more stable. And then, much to my delight, Chataranga happened! Why? I think it’s because I allowed myself new challenges, leading to unexpected strength and growth.

    What does my yoga progression and success have to do with youthfulness? Everything! I haven’t been this flexible for decades! I’ve never been this physically strong. I have proven to myself that I can achieve a more youthful and healthier body. You can do the same with determination, perseverance and appropriate guidance.

    Remember, exercise rejuvenates the body but it also improves your overall appearance. Increased circulation from exercise contributes to wellbeing and a healthy glow. However, I acknowledge, that despite this positive change and the tightening of muscles with regular exercise, there are those areas where exercise isn’t enough. At the Aesthetic Skin & Laser Center, we are fortunate to have tools that can effectively improve those hard to target areas and can address the skin laxity that exercise can’t correct. Viora treatments are marvelous for tightening arms, thighs, knees, necks – as well as other problem areas. Viora is a great adjunct to an exercise program. And, with Viora you don’t even need to take a break from your busy life or your regular routines – in fact, exercise enhances the effect.

    In summary, one of the most important things I have learned for my personal wellbeing is the benefit of a regular fitness program – it provides the feeling of youthful renewal inside and out, face and body. I encourage you to get out and find the fitness activities that resonate with you – and be consistent; make this a lifestyle choice – even before your New Year resolutions! It will help you get through the holidays with greater energy, stamina and glow.

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