Over the past 11 years I’ve had the pleasure of teaching some really inspiring students from NYC to LA to Chicago to Seattle – and several places in between – who make it all worth while.
Thanks for the memories everyone, and especially these kind words. Peace – R
“When I walk into Rich’s class feeling emotionally weak, without a doubt, every week, at the end of the hour, I feel stronger and more confident.” – Adriana R.
“Thank you so much for filling our little Seattle yoga class with such wonderful joy & skills. You are AMAZING and I have learned a ton!” – Sallie B.
“Rich is a master at sequencing poses. My body always feels great for hours after class.” – Lauren A.
“It’s very well-structured, plus I get a great full-body workout every time I take Rich’s class. He’s the best!” – Vika L.
“After 10 years, I took my practice to a new level when I started taking Tola Yoga classes.” – Rhonda C.
“Tola Yoga is effective in strengthening and stretching every part of your body, plus it’ll make you sweat!” – Ron W.
“Rich’s classes are transformative.” – Jeremy S.
“Thank you for your classes and training this past year. I spent six weeks after knee surgery without putting any weight on my left leg, and because of your super long standing sequences, my right leg was strong enough to carry me throughout. For that I am grateful.” – Ananya D.
“We’ll be very sad to see you go… I get RAVE reviews about your class.” – Manager, TRIBE Fitness in Seattle
You may not remember what you were watching on television 44 years ago today, but if you were about my age, say 2-5 years old, you were probably watching the debut of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. This first-of-its-kind “television visit” with Fred Rogers helped children develop their imagination, creativity, cooperation and self-esteem. The show was theme-based, slow and simple. However deceiving these qualities can be, the Neighborhood was a tremendous success. Interestingly, my 5 Minute Fat Burning Workouts are also theme-based, slow and simple. But don’t be deceived. Because you now have 88 different – and effective – workout themes to choose from, including today’s Screaming Abs II. So thanks for the memories & RIP Mister Rogers. – Rich
When was last time your friend called to say someone hasn’t called her back because she thinks “blah-blah-blah”? And the reason for “blah-blah-blah” is because what your friend thinks doesn’t really matter. Because if your friend is assuming, which is usually the case when our feelings get hurt, than she’s probably wrong. We all know what ass-u-me means, right? Have patience for the truth, it’s much easier to handle. Don’t make Assumptions. Like, with my 5 Minute Fat Burning Workouts. What the heck can you get done in 5 minutes, right? Well, these bite-size workouts are little gems because if you rarely exercise, than working out a little bit each day is priceless. If you do workout a few times a week, you’ll empower yourself with a DAILY fitness routine. A routine that’ll soon eclipse 5 minutes, as well as make you feel better about yourself, give you more energy and awareness, and increase your body image as your subconscious registers these daily workouts as wins. Or, as I like to call them, small victories in the war. Not to mention the preservation aspects of strengthening your muscles and bones. Because battling Mother Nature and Father Time is a war. So don’t make assumptions and get off to an easy start with today’s 5 Minute Fat Burning Workout #82 – Easy Abs. – R
If you could use some inspiration today, or any given day, watch the movie, Soul Surfer. Based on the true story of professional surfer, Bethany Hamilton, the film poignantly delivers a message of belief and inspiration. On Halloween morning 2003, Bethany was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark, which bit off her left arm and seemed to end her career as a rising surf star. One month later Bethany returned to the water; two months later she placed 5th in the Open Women’s division surf competition; one year later she won her first National Title; and in 2007, Bethany Hamilton turned pro. A dream come true for a young woman who never stopped believing. And when you watch the movie, pay close attention to the final credits as the real Bethany is interviewed soon after her attack. When asked if she thinks she’ll ever surf again, she responds, “Think? I know I’ll surf again.” Because this “knowing” is the true inspiration. Bethany didn’t just hope or think she’ll surf again – she knew it. So if there’s adversity in your life that needs some overcoming, take heed and know that you will succeed. Like Bethany Hamilton did. And enjoy knowing you embrace a daily fitness program with today’s 5 Minute Fat Burning Workout #61 – Tight Buttocks II. – R
Yesterday I taught a one hour fat burning class to the children and moms living at the domestic violence shelter in San Diego. My charity, The Boulevard Zen Foundation, has been teaching yoga there since last July. I especially wanted to teach the families exercises from my fat burning workouts. The moms loved it and the kids were awesome. What was most significant, though, was my interaction with one particular boy who I first met in July. I’ll call him Alex. When I first offered to shake his hand, Alex reached out with a limp hand as he cowered away. Thus, my first lesson was to teach Alex how to shake hands. “Stand tall, use a really strong grip and look me in the eyes”, I said. Which he did without hesitation. But the real test was whether or not Alex would continue with his new handshake. That’s why interacting with him yesterday was so significant. He shook my hand just like I had taught him. And I congratulated him for it. Because little things can make a big difference. So enjoy looking for the little things that can make a big difference with today’s 5 Minute Fat Burning Workout #59 – Beautify Your Butt II. – R
By the time you reach 48 there’s not much hoopla about your birthday, right? The true celebration is in the continued evolution of your soul. Which also applies to your body. And with that evolution of your body brings new challenges each year. Challenges that include dealing with a slower metabolism rate, a weakening of muscles and bones, and an increasing waistline. Go figure, right? So what can be done to counter these challenges? This: what I’ve been doing everyday for the past 32 years – working out. I hate to blow my own horn here, but maintaining a daily fitness program really works. Yesterday I met a 20 year old gal who thought I was 33. That’s 15 years younger folks. Plus, I’m not a fanatic about what I eat – just smart – so I must attribute my success to working out. Everyday. Trust me, it works. Here’s a few of my favorite abdominal exercises in today’s 5 minute fat burning workout #34 – Birthday Abs. Enjoy – Rich
I had dinner with a friend last night who said she wanted to do my 5 minute fat burning workouts but couldn’t use her work computer and her laptop was down. Then I said, why not do them on your phone. Watch it first, then set your phone aside and follow along with my voice. Today she called to say it worked great. So there you go. If you’re not currently on a daily fitness program, start small with only 5 minutes a day. Believe me, these simple workouts will challenge you. Just log on to my butt, thighs and heart opener Workout #23 – 5 minutes of fat burning you can truly do anytime and anyplace. Now playing on blog.richtola.com, Vimeo and YouTube. Happy Friday! R
What does it mean to Blast your Abs? Simply put, it means to exercise and fatigue your abdominal muscles until you’re too tired to do another set. And why Blast your Abs? Because when properly exercised strong abdominal muscles improves your breathing, posture, balance and flexibility, as well as reduces the likelihood and severity of back pain and protects against injury. Not to mention a leaner waistline and much tighter belly. A mere 5 minutes a day is well worth the effort – for anyone. And with my fat burning video series workout #6, you don’t even have to get out of bed! Enjoy your workout – R
In my opinion, this is the most important lifestyle and yoga principle that everyone should embrace. And I truly dislike that word should because it implies that one is projecting their personal standards and opinions upon another. But in this case it applies. Because whether or not you did or didn’t do something, like shirking a responsibility, or not working out, or partying too much, or being mean to your parents or your dog, well, forget about it and don’t judge yourself for doing it. It’s in the past and every new moment gives you a new beginning. No reason to waste energy, effort and feelings on something you can’t change. Especially when it comes to other people. Because for sure we can’t change what others do or say. And why should we or even want to? That’s what makes life interesting. The uniqueness of people we meet who impact our lives and help us evolve in whatever subtle or major way. All this coming from a guy who was once the life of the party who also judged. Believe me, anyone can change at any given moment, if you really want to. Or like my father used to say to me in baseball, “you gotta wanna bunt”. So let go of any judgment you may have for anything you did today or this holiday season. And I’ll see you tomorrow. R