The cycle of domestic violence occurs when abuse or victimization is passed down from one generation to the next. More specifically, it’s when children learn destructive behaviors from their parents, and then carry these acceptable behaviors with them into their lives. It must be broken. Case in point: Last night a friend called me to talk about his 22 year-old neighbor who was being verbally accosted by her drunken boyfriend. He said the screaming and shouting from the jackass was so bad that he was concerned for her safety and wasn’t sure what to do. And this wasn’t the first time this has happened. In fact, he said it was a regular event. He also said that when he passes the young gal in the hallway, he feels her insecurity and lack of self-confidence as she always looks away, avoiding any type of eye contact or conversation. Why does she put up with that crap, and what can he do to help her gain the self-confidence to get rid of the bum, my friend asks? Breaking the cycle of violence begins with re-building one’s self-worth and turning acceptable behaviors into non-acceptable behaviors. Like choosing to respect oneself everyday by making healthy choices and by constantly strengthening your body and your mind. Because it’s all about the choices we make. And each good choice leads to another good choice, and so on and so on. So respect yourself and make the healthy choice. Because anything is possible…if you believe you can.
I recently read the average American gains 10-15 pounds during the holiday months. As crazy as that sounds, people who gain weight around the holidays seem to rationalize it with a New Year’s resolution to lose the weight well before those bikini months. But why not get “Zen in 10” and start now, two weeks ahead of time, by consciously choosing to eat and drink healthier and beginning a new daily fitness program today – one you can do from the comforts of your own home? Especially anyone living in the Midwest and on the East Coast – I certainly feel for you! So stop futurizing, as I often say, and keep your thoughts and intentions in the present. It’s much simpler that way, plus you won’t feel the pressure to perform in the future because of what you did to yourself today. And when I say get Zen it’s about finding your own personal enlightenment through your thoughts and actions – today. Not tomorrow because who knows what that will bring. I should know. I spent my 20s and 30s futurizing about a life that’s completely different than the one I enjoy today. So forget about getting back to your workouts and losing that weight in January. Respect yourself. And I’ll see you today (and tomorrow) – R
You’ll never hear me say that developing and maintaining a daily fitness program is easy. It just gets easier to keep it going. And more rewarding each time you workout, whatever you do. Like today vs. yesterday. Yesterday I felt like someone ran me over with a steamroller – you know the feeling. I barely made my 20 minute stretching and abs, but I made it. Today I felt like a million bucks! I hit the gym for an hour, then went for a 2-mile run at the Silver Lake Reservoir, then taught an 11a yoga class. And I’m 47 and lived a party lifestyle until I gave up alcohol three years ago. So change does happen if you really want it to. It’s never easy, but in the case of a daily fitness routine, it’s well worth it. So if you haven’t started one already, well let’s get going. Because with each passing day your body is not getting any younger, or firmer, or leaner, or stronger, or more flexible without doing something. So make that something the most important 1% of your life. See you tomorrow – R
Yesterday I went to San Diego to teach with The Boulevard Zen Foundation yoga teachers Carolyn and Jen. It was our monthly workshop class for everyone at the shelter including kids, moms and staff. Although our turnout was rather light, we spoke with one staff member who explained to us in one word why the moms were reluctant to join in the fun. Self-confidence. Most of us know a thing or two about self-confidence, or a lack thereof, when it comes to challenging the mind or the body with something new. And that’s exactly what a new fitness program does – it challenges the mind and body in ways that are unfamiliar to us. Thus making it hard and undesirable – at first. With the imperative words here being “at first”. Because it gets easier. It truly does. The hard part is just getting started. I explained to her that beginning a new yoga program with our teachers is like swimming in the ocean. At first you walk in with the water around your ankles. Then you wade a little further, up to your knees, then waist, and ultimately you’ll take the plunge and dive in. And if you’re fearful of those crashing waves, you may not take the plunge right away, but over time you will gain the confidence to go further, advancing to the next level, gaining momentum and confidence every step of the way. And that’s what it’s all about – gaining self-confidence through action and advancement that will certainly spill over and positively affect others areas of your life. So if you haven’t already done so, take the plunge and get started today with a new fat burning fitness routine. Because who doesn’t have 15 minutes a day to respect themselves?
FAT BURNING WORKOUTS TO BENEFIT WOMEN AND CHILDREN OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. – December 9, 2010 – Little did Rich Tola know exactly one year ago today he would premiere a film, start a foundation to help women and children of domestic violence, make a video encyclopedia of yoga poses throughout the streets of Hollywood, and release Rich Tola’s 15 Minute Fat Burning Workouts. And if you ask Tola, he’ll tell you that his fat burning workouts are fit for a King. Or a Queen. Or anyone else in the world, for that matter. “Anyone can do them. Whether you’re in shape or 50 pounds overweight”, states Tola. “Each 15 minute full body workout is filled with low-impact, core strengthening, fat burning exercises that are based on yoga principles and really easy to follow.”
10% of proceeds from Rich Tola’s 15 Minute Fat Burning Workouts are donated to his charity, The Boulevard Zen Foundation (www.BoulevardZen.com), teaching yoga to women and children living in domestic violence shelters. “Our teachers empower the kids and moms by using yoga principles to strengthen their bodies and self-esteem,” Tola said.
His movie, Boulevard Zen, the inspiration for the foundation, premiered at Hollywood’s Silent Movie Theatre a year ago today. Tola wrote, directed and starred in the one-hour drama about one man inspiring the lives of many while overcoming his own challenges. His video encyclopedia of 100 yoga poses, Rich Tola’s Yoga Survival Guide, was released in September and entertains audiences with Tola teaching yoga in the shower, stuck in traffic, at the LA Zoo, baking cookies, waiting for a bus, and watching “The Ellen Show”.
“15 minutes a day is all you need to establish a daily fitness routine that helps preserve your body and clear your mind,” states Tola. His motto, Strong Body-Clear Mind, permeates in his work and persona. And the proof is in the pudding: Tola has worked out daily for more than 30 years, the past five years practicing yoga and teaching 15,000 students. “There’s no question that everyone in the world who’s capable should be doing some form of physical fitness activity every single day,” says Tola. “Respect yourself. Especially around the holidays.” And for only $1.99 per workout, who can’t afford not to?
What does fat burning mean to you? Is it a specific thing, or action, or result? To me it’s a lifestyle. I know we hear that word a lot and in too many scenarios, but for the most part we all know what lifestyle means, right? Mirriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as “the typical way of life of an individual, group, or culture “. I define it as the way you choose to live your life. Yes, choose.
Because your choice of what’s “the typical way” for you impacts everything you do, and subsequently how you feel. And how you feel is what really matters. Because it permeates you, affecting your overall mental and physical well-being. It’s simple really. Lifestyle = Actions = Feelings. So where am I going with all this? I’m going to the three simple rules I reinforce in every one of my 15 minute fat burning workouts: think positive, speak positive and feel positive. And by positive I mean you can workout every day, you can make healthy choices about what you eat and drink every day, you can speak only positive words regarding any situation or circumstance – because there are positives in everything we experience, and finally, you can feel positive all the time by adhering to the first two simple rules. Trust me. It works. So forget about the potentially hazaradous lifestyle you think you currently have, because those are just thoughts you can change whenever you choose to. So choose to join me for a fat burning lifestyle, one that includes working out every single day for at least the next 30 years. And I’ll see you tomorrow.
Peace – R