Monthly Archives: March 2009

Chocolate Whey Protein Powder and Oatmeal: FAIL

In the mornings I generally have chocolate whey protein powder with milk and oatmeal.  I like my oatmeal old school style so I make it with whole oats on the stove with water and a some raisins thrown in for a bit of sweet.  It is a yummy breakfast and it fills me up.  So this morning, I thought, I can cut out the milk (minus about 100 calories-yeah!) and just put the whey powder directly into the oatmeal which will make a lovely warm chocolate concoction that still has protein and and oats.

So into the pan all the ingredients went.  I added in some extra water to account for the extra dry ingredients and started cooking it.  It smelled lovely – kinda like hot chocolate cooking.  I was all excited and then I started eating it.  It tasted awful, well maybe not entirely awful, but as I worked my way through the bowl (cause I wasn’t going to waste it!) it become more and more chalky and gross in consistency.  So to all of you out there that think putting protein powder in oatmeal is a wonderful idea, I strongly recommend against it!  Now I am off to wash the taste of it out of my mouth!

My really long yoga mat: aka my running trail

In addition to being a baker and yogi I am also a runner.  Today, I had a revelation of sorts, but first some history of me and running that seems like a good thing to share with you my lovely readers.  I have been running ever since my freshman year of college when I realized that I wasn’t going to play tennis for 3 hours a day so in order not to pile on the pounds I should do something else.  So I started running.  I didn’t enjoy it at first.  It was hot and sweaty and involved really early in the morning to get it done before I went to class.  But over the years, I have grown to love it.  It has been one thing that I have consistently done for the last 11 years.

The problem comes is that all my crazy head issues come out in my run and seem to be amplified because in running you are supposed to be hard on yourself and the “better run” comes when you just beat the crap out of yourself.  But the victory is sooo sweet.  When I beat my personal best and have just a really good run, I feel like I am walking on air, like my whole body just flows together and it is lovely.  So I push myself and heavily criticize myself when I don’t measure up. This makes the good runs really good, but the bad ones just suck. I am working on having just ok runs and being fine with this, but it kinda a struggle.

Enter my wonderful new puppy, Sophie (pictures!), who is just wonderful and the cutest thing ever.  I always tend to shy away from running partners as my run is generally my time to just be.  Although in recent years, I have had really nice runs with Jake, Jane, my sisters and some adventuresome friends.  You see running is way more personal that you might imagine.  Everyone has a different pace and different way of going about the run.  I have always wanted a dog to run with though.  I had visions in my head of sprinting along the path with puppy at my side, tongue hanging out (off the leash of course because the dog would be very well trained) and the two of us  just being at one with the trail and lovely day outside.

Yeah, not so much.  It turns out that a dog has an even more different pace than humans which is further complicated by the fact that they have four legs instead of two.  This is further complicated by the fact that Sophie enjoys running, but she would just as rather go chase the nearby bird, squirrel, bike passing us, or bark at the nearby dog and starting lunging for him.  So a run with her involves me winding up the leash and not being able to use one of my arms to pace myself and then letting the leash go as she settles into the run, but being constantly wary of any approaching interesting object to her.  It doesn’t sound like much, but I am realizing that it has basically turned my run upside down.  My times are bad and it is much more tiring to run when you are constantly on alert and reigning in a puppy. So I have been a bit down on running and sad that things didn’t quite measure up to what I had envisioned.  I know, shocking, expectations not met.

But today, I was running along and I had one of those lovely “aha!” moments.  I realized that if I were to apply yoga philosophy to my run, then each day the run should meet me on my path exactly where I am that day.  If there are lots of things for Sophie to chase, then I need to take the time to address that and somehow let go of my need for a good running time.  Besides, there is no reason that I have to get good running times.  It is just my ego.  Theroeticallly I am running for the exercise for both me and Sophie and I would do good to remember that original aim.  Sophie needs me to be patient with her while she learns to be a good running puppy.  Perhaps she also trying to remind me that there are so many interesting things to sniff out there that I really should do some sniffing myself.  This won’t be easy cause a good run releases so many endorphins, but perhaps that is no longer worth the cost.

Practice: Yoga and Law

I have been studying for the California Bar for the last two months which would account for my blogging silence.  It has not been pleasant because law has never been particularly nice to me and being required to work on it full time was an interesting experiment.  In this intense studying period, I have notice something slight, but interesting to me.  In both yoga and law, it is referred to as a practice.  I have a legal practice, but I also have a yoga practice.

As I think about my yoga practice, I feel that it is a process of learning and discovery.  There are those “aha!” moments when I finally figure out exactly how to get into a pose or oft-repeated words of a favorite teacher finally make sense.  These moment are often followed in rapid succession by  having a completely off day where my body does not want to do what I want it to do or insists that it just wants to go into shivasna.  But overall, I feel that in yoga it is ok and accepted that you will gradually make your way through the asanas in whatever way you need to that day.  As a favorite teacher of mine said, “Yoga meets you on your mat each day wherever you are.”  It is encouraged that you should listen to your body and even rest when you are tired and not getting anything more beneficial out of the pose.  All of this combines together to make me excited and not afraid to try new things for fear of failure.  I almost need to fall over or do something ridiculous to really learn the new thing and incorporate it fully into my practice.

I say all of these things about yoga because the practice of law is so fundamentally different, but yet I wonder if it was more in the way of yoga would be a nicer profession for everyone involved?  Law practice is filled with fear.  It begins your first day of law school.  You inevitably have one of those stereotypical professors who feels it is his job to beat you into submission.  All in the name of teaching you to “think like a lawyer.”  It is furthered through a brutal grading process and jobs that only go to the top of your class.  Once you get out of school, you have to take and pass the bar.  This is a brutal two month study marathon followed by a test that is somehow supposed to measure whether or not you know enough law to practice.  Then once you actually get a job, the partner you work for reigns supreme and often he or she is not a nice person and makes the office environment toxic.  There is no room for learning from your mistakes, there is only harsh criticism for anything that goes wrong, because of course, it is your fault.  It has nothing to do with the fact that you don’t know what the hell you are doing.

I have such awful feelings associated with practicing law and such warm and fuzzy ones associated with my yoga practice.  I can’t help but think that lawyers would be a much happier group if law was practice like yoga.