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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

Celebrate The Journey

  • Parvrtta Utkatasana: Revolved Fierce Pose

    Utkatasana is popularly known as “Chair Pose.” But I can’t imagine that ancient yogis—who had never seen, let alone sat in a chair—would have invented a word for “chair” just in case. Truth is, they didn’t. Instead, the root word—utkata—means “fierce.” Utkatasana, a pose that strengthens the legs, feet and abdominals, is a staple in my healthy hips regimen. It strengthens muscles that can help stabilize hypermobile hips. In addition, it strengthens the core. The revolved version, Parvrtta Utkatasana, adds a thoracic spine rotation that can help soften shoulder tension. One of the keys to releasing upper body tension is...

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  • Meatless Monday: Pesto-Quinoa Bowl

    I’ve enjoyed making one-dish meals for years. Soups, stews, meal salads, grains and beans, and the like have been staples in my diet. In the past few years, bowls have become a thing. Bowls are basically one-dish meals that combine grains, protein and veggies. You can find tons of recipes for vegetarian and vegan bowls online these days. I found the bowl I’m sharing in this post on a site called namely marly. I made a few modifications, for example, using fresh peas instead of frozen. It’s much more labor intensive to pull the peas out of their pods than...

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  • Meatless Monday: Chameleon Tortillas

    I love spending an hour or two in the kitchen making food from scratch. But weeknights don’t usually afford me—or most people—that kind of time. So I like having a menu or two in my back pocket that I can whip up in 20-30 minutes. I got the idea for what I call “Chameleon Tortillas” while on a 30-day silent retreat at The Last Resort in Duck Creek, Utah. The retreat chef, Abhilasha Keays, invented this one-dish meal. They are chameleonic because you can add lots of different ingredient combinations to the basic tortillas to make different meals. One thing...

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  • Dekasana: Airplane Pose

    Right off, I’ll say that the chances that Dekasana (Airplane Pose) is one of yoga’s ancient staple poses are slim. Unless an ancient yogi sage predicted the invention of airplanes thousands of years ago, this pose, or at least its name, has to have arrived recently. That’s no problem, however, as many of yoga’s most popular asanas actually derive from British gymnastics. When the British occupied India, they introduced many of the more acrobatic asanas to yoga’s existing collection of poses. While not traditional in the strictest sense, these poses—such as backbends and standing poses—confer benefits that can help us...

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  • Meatless Monday: Sorghum and Arugula Bowl

    Thirty years ago, when I first stopped eating meat, brown rice was the go-to grain. A few others, such as millet, bulghur, couscous and buckwheat appeared in occasional recipes, but brown rice—short-, medium- and long-grain—was ubiquitous. In recent years, while different types of rice are still an important source of complex carbs, the whole grain field has blown open. Recently, I came across some recipes that used sorghum, a gluten-free ancient grain that originated in India. Curious to try it, I started with this recipe for a sorghum bowl that I found online at The Healthy Apple. The recipe’s author...

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  • Yoga for Hiking: 4 Asanas to Help You Wind Down

    A while back I wrote about specific yoga asanas that can support your hiking practice. Hiking requires good balance, and the ability to negotiate uneven terrain. Asana practice is replete with poses that build stability and balance. But what comes after your hike? Often, sore, tired muscles and achy joints follow. Hiking—especially when there’s lots of uphill and downhill trekking—can tighten muscles and jar our joints. Winding down with a few choice asanas after a hike can help restore your legs. Yoga for Hiking: Winding Down There are lots of yoga asanas that can help you wind down from a...

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  • Meatless Monday: Black Bean Polenta Cakes

    Most of the time, life necessitates that I make quick meals. But once in a while, I have a few hours to try something that takes some time. I saw this recipe in Forks Over Knives magazine, an offshoot of the documentary of the same name. When I saw the photo of these little polenta cakes, I knew I had to try them, although I was a bit apprehensive when I read the subhead, “Ready in 2 hours and 15 minutes.” But as I read the recipe I realized that much of that time is inactive, for example, waiting an...

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  • International Day of Yoga: 4 Ways to Celebrate

    Depending on where you live in the world, today may be the longest day in the year. Summer solstice can fall anywhere between June 21st and 22nd. Here in Salt Lake City, solstice occurred last night at 10:24 pm. In Mumbai, it happened this morning at 9:24 am. The year’s longest day is reason enough to celebrate. But on December 11, 2014, the United Nations gave us another reason. At the request of India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, the UN designated June 21st as the annual International Day of Yoga. Modi requested summer solstice to honor the yoga tradition because...

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  • Yoga Poses for Hiking: 3 Asanas to Prepare You for a Trek

    Here in Utah, the time is ripe for getting outdoors. The creeks and rivers are raging with runoff from winter’s voluminous snow. As temps climb into the 90s in the Salt Lake valley, mountain air remains crisp and crystalline. Down south, the slickrock desert beckons too. While it’s considerably hotter, the red rock and contrasting royal blue skies, along with the deep silence, provide much-needed solitude. No matter where you choose to spend time outdoors, it’s time to hike. The benefits of being in nature are well documented. Studies have found that spending time in nature promotes sleep, increases vitamin...

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  • Meatless Monday: Herbed Farro with Asparagus

    Everything tastes better when you eat it outdoors. Whether you’re coming back to camp after a day of hiking or gathering with friends at a picnic site, dining in the great outdoors is somehow festive. A few weeks ago, I was invited to a potluck picnic. Picnics can be tricky because food often sits out for a period of time. I like to bring food that tastes good at “room” temperature. As a vegetarian, I never know if others will bring substantial meatless dishes—or any meatless dishes. So I bring a dish that, on its own, will satisfy my nutritional needs in...

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