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Some Hard Yoga, and Weeknight Indian Meat Curry

Posted: February 18th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

I love the fact that you can now sign up for yoga and fitness classes online, and pay with your credit card. This is really great for anyone who is tempted to flake out on their exercise classes, (erm.. me) because you can sign up for the class when you are feeling good and motivated, and once you pay, you can’t cancel.

After watching all of the recorded Dr. Oz episodes on my tv, I decided quickly that I should get off my backside and get in some exercise before I turned into a couch potato. So I immediately signed up online for an afternoon class at Yoga Tree in the Castro so I couldn’t make any excuses. It was misty, so I took the bus, getting me there a little early so I could chat with people, and take some photos of the studio.

I hadn’t taken a yoga class in more than a couple of months, so I was a little bit nervous as to what I was getting myself into.

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Despite several encouraging recommendations, I had never been to Yoga Tree, and I was a little apprehensive as I walked up the stairs. When I got into the warm and peaceful studio I was immediately assured that I was in the right place. The studio is a large room, with beautifully lit (unscented) candles around the perimeter. I’ve never actually seen candles studio, but I thought it was a nice touch. There is a raised platform which does double duty as both a little shrine, and an elevated space for the instructor to demonstrate poses.

There was also a good music selection, including some light Cat Stevens and music that might be on my indie/folk playlists! I can’t stress how refreshing this was – a big problem I’ve had in other studios has been when I can’t zone out or focus because I’m angry at what I like to refer to as “generic zen-elevator music”.

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My class was a community vinyasa class, taught by Erika, who was actually a sub, and doesn’t normally teach at the studio. She was great, and I’d love to take another class from her! The levels were mixed, and I definitely felt out of shape and creaky! A little bit extra downward dog and child pose time than normal!

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I got in a great workout, and left there a bit of a sweat-ball. Always a good thing! I decided I’d snap a post-workout photo to document that I actually got through it! And, I signed up for their $20-three class trial. I have to use it in the next two weeks, so hopefully it will motivate me to actually get in there and start a little yoga streak.

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After class, it was still misty, but not actually raining, so I took my chances and walked over the really big hill to 24th street, to stop for a drink and head to the market. I went to Starbucks and got my new favorite – a Tazo Refresh Tea bag, steeped in steamed soy. Usually I just get a large tea with a splash of soy, but a soy steamer is a nice post-workout treat.

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I like watching people study and work in this particular Starbucks. Everyone is so focused.

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I had a cookbook in my bag, so I whipped it out to join the fun. I took this book – ‘5 Spices, 50 Dishes‘ by Ruta Kahate – home a few months ago, but haven’t actually cooked anything from it, even though several of my friends have recommended it. I thought that this would be a good book to review, so I’m going to be cooking through it for the next week or so. I made my little shopping list, finished my tea, and then headed to the store.

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Ultimately, my first dish was an outstanding success. I made the Indian Beef Stew, with some grass fed beef stew meat I picked up. The dish is slow cooked, but largely unattended, and the result is this really unctuous meal, with really tender meat and potatoes, with classic Indian spices including coriander, ginger, and garlic.

I served mine over a heaping pile of baby spinach, because I was feeling the need for some greens, and a Trader Joe’s Tandoori Naan bread. There are a couple of good looking bread recipes in the cookbook, but they will have to wait for another day.

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All in all, a pretty great day. I took a new class, got in 6000 steps, and made a completely new dish that got two thumbs up from both myself and Devon.

And now, winding down time with the Celtics vs. Lakers! We are a mixed household – I’m for the Celtics, he is for the Lakers – it makes for an interesting time watching the two teams play head to head. We are being mostly polite, and nobody is doing any rude cheering. At least he isn’t a Yankees fan, I wouldn’t be able to deal with that one.

Good night everyone!

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