February…We Must Love Thyself First

February 13, 2019 by simpilates
February snuck up on me! I don’t know about you all, but I don’t know what happened to January. With that being said, it is time to love ourselves. Love is in the air this month and we have to remember that in order to love another we must love ourselves. In this month’s issue of our newsletter I will highlight some ways to love yourself and some fun recipes and movements to share with a loved one.

Healthy & Loving Hugs, Tania

A MOVE TO REMEMBER

A move for a little self-love…The Short Spine Massage!

Short Spine Massage

Start Position: Lie flat on your back, and place both feet onto the footbar. Press out and carefully place the leg straps over one foot and then the other. Then press both arms firmly into the carriage. Legs start in frog position, with both heels together, knees shoulder width apart.

Movement: Reach the legs out to a 45 degree angle, straight and together. Fold at the hips to bring both legs towards you, still straight and pressed together. Once the carriage comes into the stopper, use the abdominals to roll through the spine up to the shoulder blades. Reach your sitsbones to the ceiling to create a long spine and lift from the abdominals. Both arms are pressed firmly into the carriage throughout. Bend both knees towards the shoulders, opening them shoulder width apart while keeping both heels glued together. Keeping the feet where they are, roll down through one vertebra at a time back onto the carriage until the legs are at about a 90 degree angle. Press the tailbone into the carriage and return the legs to the starting frog leg position. Repeat two to four more times.

Precautions: Ensure that the headrest is flat prior to starting this exercise. This is an intermediate/advanced exercise that should not be performed by anyone with neck or spine injuries.

Source: Pilates Anytime, Pinterest

A few body scrub ideas for your bath time.
RECIPE

The BEST Chocolate Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour (205g)
  • 1 cup brown sugar packed (200g)
  • 1 cup sugar (200g)
  • 3/4 cup natural cocoa powder (75g)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted (113g)
  • 1/2 cup canola oil (may substitute vegetable oil) (118ml)
  • 2 large eggs + 1 egg yolk room temperature preferred
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk*
  • 1/2 cup hot coffee** (or 1 teaspoon instant coffee dissolved into 1/2 cup hot water) (118ml)

Silky Chocolate Buttercream***

  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (170g)
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature (226g)
  • 2 cups powdered sugar (320g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons heavy cream (30ml)
  • 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips optional

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350F (175C) and prepare two deep 8″ round cake pans**** by lining the bottoms with parchment paper and lightly greasing and flouring the sides.  Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, whisk together flour, sugars, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Add melted butter and oil, stir well.
  • Add eggs and egg yolk, one at a time, stirring well after each addition.  Pause occasionally to scrape down sides and bottom of bowl.
  • Stir in vanilla extract.  Gradually add buttermilk and stir well.
  • Add hot coffee, stirring until ingredients are well-combined (be sure to scrape sides and bottom of bowl again).
  • Evenly divide batter between prepared pans.  Bake on 350F (175C) for 35-40 minutes (toothpick inserted in center should come out with moist crumbs).
  • Allow to cool for 15 minutes before inverting onto cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

  • In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave chocolate chips at 15 second intervals, stirring between intervals, until chips are completely melted. Set aside and allow to cool slightly (about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally).
  • Cream room temperature butter with an electric mixer.  Stir in slightly cooled chocolate and beat well.
  • Gradually add sugar, scraping down the sides and bottom of bowl occasionally.
  • Sprinkle in salt and vanilla extract, stir well.
  • Gradually add heavy cream, increase speed to high and beat for 1 minute.
  • Spread a thick layer of frosting over the top of one cake round and sprinkle with mini chocolate chips.  Top with second cake round and evenly frost cake.  Slice and serve.

Notes
*If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, please see my post on making an easy buttermilk substitute!**You can substitute with hot water if you don’t have coffee, but do make sure it is hot! See the post for more information on why I use coffee and why it is important that the liquid be hot.

SOURCE: Sugar Spun

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Sunday: 10am
Monday: 8:30am 5:30pm
Tuesday: 7:30am, 8:30am, 2:30pm, 5:00pm
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Saturday: 8:30am 9:30am 10:30am

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