Thank you Seattle…until we meet again!

Top of Denny Way in Capitol Hill looking West

Thank you Seattle, for a wonderful six months of teaching yoga to well over 1,000 students in exactly 136 classes. Because as you may already know, I’ll be returning to my beloved Los Angeles (aka Home) where I first began teaching my fitness style of yoga in 2007 before it was even known as Tola Yoga.

And who says you can’t have a blast walking around and exploring Seattle in the rain? Plus, you never really get those torrential downpours like Chicago does, so who needs protection? Seattleites with an umbrella, that’s something you rarely see. I guess that’s why people would always ask, “You’re not from around here, right?” With my black leather jacket and biker boots and carrying a red umbrella, go figure. Or maybe it was just my California tan 🙂

Relaxing in Martin Luther King Jr. Park looking North

And what a great place to stay in shape and to keep moving forward, or I shall I say, upward…on the plethora of hills that traverse the Emerald City.

No doubt your butt works overtime in this town. I should know, I’ve walked more neighborhoods than Oprah has houses (well, maybe not) and loved every minute of it!

But what I’ll miss most – other than my yoga students, especially Charisma, Jodi and Sallie who never missed a class – are the amazing views of downtown Seattle you get just by walking around or lounging in Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park, including my three favorites you see here.

40th & Stone Way in Fremont looking South

So thanks Seattle, and until we meet again I wish you the very best. Continue growing and providing your good citizens with more great buildings, parks, restaurants, culture, grunge-free fashion and of course, a Tola Yoga studio in the near future.

Hey, ya neva know!

Peace – R

 

Live What You Love

Live What You Love and happiness will follow you everywhere.

I wrote this in yesterday’s blog and I’ll reinforce it again today. Because no matter what your current profession or your life’s passion – hopefully they’re one in the same – living what you love to do is something everyone can accomplish. That is to say, if you’re willing to make some sacrifices in order to achieve it. Because just like it was nearly 300 years ago and succinctly articulated by renown Scotish economist Adam Smith, there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

Case in point: 12 years ago I fell in love with Yoga and soon thereafter I became a certified teacher. Since then I’ve taught more than 25,000 students in over 2,000 classes throughout the United States, produced more than 30 hours of instructional videos including my Yoga-inspired film, Boulevard Zen, created my own style of Tola Yogaand posted exactly 500 blogs since I started my website on December 9, 2010 (with Welcome to a new Fat Burning lifestyle!). 

It’s also my birthday today, so here’s a little Tola Yoga treat to help center yourself and improve your balance. Enjoy and keep rockin’ your passion everyone…and live what you love! Peace – R

 

Welcome to…Seattle

Iseattlen addition to my fitness mantra, another day – another workout, how’s this for my new travel mantra, another month – another city!

That’s right everyone, if you didn’t catch me in Las Vegas last month, you can now find me in Seattle.

With a plethora of historic landmarks and cultural attractions including the futuristic Space Needle from the 1962 World’s Fair, the Seattle Great Wheel – one of largest ferris wheels in the United States, the 24-day Seattle International Film Festival held every year since 1976, the Bite of Seattle – one of the largest Gay Pride festivals in the US, to the uniquely striking Seattle Public Library featuring 11 stories of glass and steel, the “Emerald City” is quite a city!seattle_central_library_seattle_washington_-_20060418 Not to mention Seattle is also home to business legends Amazon.com, Starbucks and Nordstrom – with Microsoft and Costco a stone’s throw away, five professional sports team including baseball’s Seattle Mariners, and of course, my favorite rock-and-roll band of all time, Pearl Jam. And don’t forget Seattle is considered the home of grunge music, having produced legendary artists such as Nirvana, Soundgarden, Alice in Chains and Mudhoney.

So why not bring my fitness style of Tola Yoga as well as my desire to create entertaining and inspiring content, whether it be a Reality TV series or a Radio show, to one of the most liberal cities in the nation – even surpassing its “weird” neighbor, Portland, Oregon, another cool city.

Have an amazing December everyone…and hope to see you in the Pacific Northwest! Peace – R

Another Teaching Milestone…600th Class in Chicago

Rich Tola 600th Chicago ClassI Just taught my 600th Yoga class since arriving in The Windy City last September.

And what an amazing time I had teaching thousands of yogis and yoginis in 12 different neighborhoods including Lincoln Park, Lincoln Square, Lakeview, West Loop, Uptown, Andersonville, Wicker Park, Bucktown, Highland Park, Evanston, Streeterville and the South Loop.

Have an awesome week everyone!

Peace – R

500th Yoga Class in the First 50 Weeks: Chicago

Rich Tola - One Armed PinchamayurasanaI’m heels over head for teaching my 500th Yoga class since arriving in Chicago last September.

I’m grateful to my courageous students, fellow teachers and managers, and the owners of Chicago Athletic Clubs for giving me the opportunity to spread my passion for fitness & yoga, and specifically my style of Tola Yoga.

Looking forward to inspiring the world with YogaStyles of RICH and the Almost Famous.

Peace – R

Rich Tola – Mindie Music Videos (2 min Compilation)

Fun, challenging, invigorating and very tiring at times yet always a blast to film – one video required more than 50 takes – we filmed 18 Mindie music videos throughout the streets of Hollywood during the summer of 2014…every one of them using popular movie theme songs.

Can you guess the name of every movie, every theme song and every Yoga pose? Enjoy – R

Next Stand-Up at Flappers Comedy Club on April 24th

flappersStand-up comedy is the most condensed form of all comedy, and for the really good comics, it’s simply a conversation with the audience. A really funny one at that.

Over the past six weeks and on the heels of our 150th episode of Tola Talks, I’ve been studying this rather frightening art form – for most entertainers, that’s for sure – and honed my skills at writing stand-up as well as performing in front of a large crowd…twice at Flappers Comedy Club in Burbank, CA. On my first attempt I “didn’t bomb” as one friend so eloquently put it. On my second attempt I definitely heard some roaring laughter and felt the exhilarating rush comics feel when the room gets going. I can see how stand-up comedy can be frighteningly addicting. Albeit, very challenging, to say the least.

With concepts like attitude, topic, premise, act-out, mix, turn, set-up, and punch, not to mention there’s no one up on stage to help you do anything, stand-up is hard. Whatever that means. But it’s also super gratifying when you get it right, i.,e, make people laugh. Or as legend Whoopi Goldberg once said, make them laugh and think. Because good comedy is not just funny, it’s also insightful about something everyone can relate to. Or should be, if you want laughs.

They say the third time’s the charm, so come check me out next Friday, April 24th at Flappers Comedy Club in Burbank – we’re in the YooHoo Room from 9:30-11p. Should be a blast! – R