Wall Street Yoga [Book Review]

Wall Street Yoga
by GuruNanda

I’m going to admit, I skim a lot of the emails that come into my account to see if they are truly something that interests me. But the pitch when this book was suggested to me that caught my eye:

14 minutes to transform your life

Okay… I think I can do that. I do know that I am a bundle of stress, and that doesn’t do anything for my health. (In fact, it is negative on my health. Honestly, I’ve experienced very negative health outcomes from all this stress. If I ever fix it all, I’ll post on that.)

So the book Wall Street Yoga is supposed to help de-stress in a pretty short amount of time? It’s worth exploring, right?


About the author… yes, he is GuruNanda on the book. I’ll get to the “guru” thing in a minute. Puneet Nanda was an entrepreneur, he took over his father’s toothbrush company and renamed it to Dr. Fresh and proceeded to spread the business around the globe. He worked hard, put in long hours, traveled and let all of that take a toll on his health. From junk food to not enough rest, regularly overworking until one day, at the age of 38, he was having difficulty breathing and experiencing chest pains. He ended up in the hospital where it thought he was suffering cardiac arrest, only to determine it was a severe anxiety attack and thus serving as an awakening to him to adjust his life.

Now onto the “guru” moniker… we tend to use the word guru as if it is “expert” but the word guru means “teacher” in Sanskrit. And GuruNanda is teaching people on how to rebalance their lives through the use of yoga and breathing. He was the exact model of a person who needs this, the Type-A person who doesn’t ever shut off. And this plan worked for him, so he wants to share that approach with others.

There are yoga routines in each chapter, and each chapter centers around an area that one might need help with: depression/anxiety, career, weight loss, heart health, back pain, etc. And the things I love the most about these routines is they are straightforward and don’t include pictures of a beautiful, willowy young woman contorting herself into a pretzel. This is truly a book of yoga for anyone. And it emphasizes using yoga for exactly the things that attract me to yoga and are what brought me into it when I took my first yoga class nearly 20 years ago… yoga as a way to destress.


Yep… yoga can be great exercise. But whenever I practice with a mind of fitness, it never feels the same to me. But if I do a yoga practice with the approach that I am focusing in on myself and letting my mind “chill out already!!!”, that’s when it benefits me most.

I am doing a short course on meditation right now (I can post on that later when I complete it) and I’ve done a morning meditation each day for the past five days. It’s longer than 2 minutes, but it’s giving me some solid information to help get my headspace right. And obviously you don’t have to max out at 2 minutes of meditation, that’s the minimum. But as soon as my meditation course is done, then I’m going to replace that time with the Wall Street Yoga approach.

That also means I need to get back into the daily yoga routine, which I thoroughly enjoy when I’m doing it. And 10 minutes can be done. I can do 10 minutes after work before I go pick up my daughter from school. As desperate as I am to go pick her up because I miss her, she usually wants to keep playing with friends anyway.  Weekends will require a little finagling to get it in, but it can be done. Nobody should be in a place where they can’t carve out 15 minutes a day for themselves, especially when that (approximately) 15 minutes is scattered throughout the day!

Take a look at this book if you want to get into meditation and yoga for relaxation, especially if you’re like me and feel stretched for time and constantly “switched on.” It’s available on Amazon and as of this writing it’s only $5.99.

Also, I found the free app/website Calm. You can do short meditations using the timer in the app or on the website, it has lovely imagery and background noise to accompany, offers guided meditation AND has sessions as short as two minutes. So it fits right into this Wall Street Yoga paradigm.

Disclaimer: All reviews are my own opinion, this product was provided free for the purpose of review.

Disclaimer: I was sent this book for free. Thoughts and opinions are all mine. There are Amazon affiliate links in this post, so there’s the off-chance that I may get $0.12 cents or something if you happen to take any action from those links. 


The Badwater 135 race kicks off today… For those of you who are unaware of this unique torture, the race takes runners on a 135-mile journey through Death Valley in the heat of the summer. There’s a lot of different stuff happening this year compared to previous years after last year’s event couldn’t even go through the park as it usually did. Some of the significant changes this year are: a new night start instead of a morning start so runners are running through the night hours so runners are above 2000 feet elevation by 10 am (to avoid the highest heat), runners can only have one support vehicle and the event has to take place during a full moon. [Change details]

Another change this year is the addition of title sponsor Nutrimatix. And since I owe you (and Nutrimatix) a review of their product, I figured the timing to coincide with Badwater was as good of time as any!

Disclaimer: This means I was a sent a product for free to review.

Nutrimatix is a vitamin drink packet.

Packet of Nutrimatix drink mix

When combined with a glass of water, it turns into a tasty orange beverage. Kind of like Tang. (Mmmm…. Tang. Like the astronauts drink!) Okay, I haven’t had Tang to drink since sometime in the 1980’s… so this is based on my vague recollection of what Tang tasted like.

Orange Nutrimatix drink in a cup

That makes it sound so simple, huh? But it’s pretty much WAY MORE than that.

So while yes, Nutrimatix is a vitamin drink packet, it’s also a CUSTOM blend. And how is that blend determined?

The user downloads the Nutrimatix app. (iOS and Android) The first step it offers is to connect a tracker/platform/app to share your fitness habits with the app. This step can be skipped if there is no tracker available. But the services you can connect to as of this writing: Strava, RunKeeper, Dailymile, MapMyRun, Fitbit, Jawbone, MapMyRide, Withings.

Next step is to add your basic measurements of gender, age, height and weight.

Then we move onto a questionnaire. It asks about your dietary habits/preference. It asks about your smoking/alcohol/caffeine habits. Do you have joint discomfort? Are you training for an event? Sleep, mental energy, physical energy, stress, and more… The questionnaire covers a wide range of topics, but it’s very easy to answer as the interface is easy to use, and the answers are all multiple choice.

So after all this, it evaluates everything and spits out results just for you. The app even took into account my location to determine that I probably don’t have a Vitamin D deficiency due to my “location below the 37th parallel” and it adjusted my formula to account for that. It gives explanations for why the questions were asked and how that can play a role in your health. And it delivers a list of nutrients that are to be placed in your blend, complete with an explanation of why that item was included, uses, and possible side effects.

Partial list of recommended custom blend of nutrients from Nutrimatix.

Partial list of recommended nutrients. Add on several more above this and you’d see the complete picture. There were a lot of them.


Honestly, the whole thing fascinates me. Both the sports nutrition nut and the geek sides of me are satisfied with this experience. I mean… it’s a drink that uses an APP to make a blend that is designed for an individual. And that app ties into other apps to gather a more complete picture. That just really makes my inner-nerd-girl giddy!

Once you’ve got your blend, it comes time to order. The packets are dairy, soy, nut, artificial sweetener and artificial coloring free. They are made in a pharmaceutical-grade facility in the US. They’re vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free… pretty much everything people might look for.

The price? $48 for a 4 week supply. But the more weeks you buy, the more you can save. (12 week supply, you save 6%, 24 weeks = 12% savings, 48 weeks = 24% savings). Although, my shipment came in a fancy-pants box. If they could chop some of the price off by sending the packets to me just loose in a box, or shoved in a zip-top bag… I would be fine with that! The box loses its WOW factor after the first couple openings.

I’m very tempted to purchase more… but my inner cheapskate is fighting that. I’m sure if I add up all of the costs of taking supplements and replace it with this it would balance out or possibly be more cost-effective. Also, it seems that perhaps you wouldn’t want to order too many weeks in advance in case your goals changed. What if you were training for a marathon, but then in 3 months you were going to be done with that and wanted to focus on weights? I’m sure the nutrients it recommends would change.

That said, I’m fascinated by this approach, and they’ve done a great job with their app, as well as with their product. With their new title-sponsorship for the Badwater 135, it appears they’re moving up in the industry and want to make themselves known with endurance athletes, especially those tackling the BIG stuff.

Check them out, download the free app and play around with it. It’s fascinating to see what is recommended and why!

Final Disclosure: I was sent a box of Nutrimatix drink packets for free to review on the site. The words posted here are, as always, my own.

USANA Health Sciences Product Sampling

A little while ago I got an email offering me the opportunity to try some products from USANA Health Sciences. I saw the email and immediately thought, “Where do I know that name from?” And then I remembered… “Oh yeah! I used to drive past their US offices every week on my way to work when I lived in Salt Lake City!” That was back in 1999-2001, so I’m granted a bit of a pass on temporary memory loss, okay? And even then, I saw the name USANA on the building and never knew exactly what it was. Now I know that USANA sells supplements, foods, and personal care products.

I was sent a box that contained two items to review. First up the Berry Nutty bar.

USANA Berry Nutty bar

These bars are built upon a foundation of cashews, almonds, cranberries and cherries. There are a few other ingredients involved (oats, flaxseed, coconut oil, agave, sea salt, etc.) but the ingredient list is pretty straightforward. Other things to note:

  • All-natural ingredients
  • Gluten free
  • Soy free
  • Dairy free
  • Low glycemic
  • No trans fats
  • Low sodium
  • Non-GMO
  • Prebiotic fiber

And if they are shipped to your house in Las Vegas during the hottest June on record… they kind of melt.


They’re tasty bars and I liked having a snack that seemed pretty wholesome and satisfying. I didn’t like the super sticky wrapper after it had melted. Woe is me…

These bars sell for $43.95 for a box of 14 on their site.

The other item I was sent was their probiotic. These are delivered via a little packet of powder (like those “to go” drinks come packaged) but the difference is these have no flavor. No flavor, no calories, no anything… except a bunch of little bacteria ready to be ingested. (Hey… that’s what probiotics are!) I’ve seen other powdered probiotics that require refrigeration. These ones are shelf-stable and last for up to a year.


They have foreign characters on the packet. I don’t know what those say. I’m not even sure what language they are, but I know it’s not Japanese because I can totally read Japanese. Or…. at least recognize it somewhat after studying Japanese for two years in high school.

I really can’t taste this when added to a drink, so you can pretty much add these to any COLD drink you may want. I’m not a scientist, but it does seem counterintuitive to add these live active bacteria things to a scalding hot drink and put them to death before consuming them.

These cost $28.55 for a box of 14.

Both products are of good quality, but they seem kind of expensive. I’m not sure that the bars are worth that price when there are other bars that have solid, whole food nutrition for less cost and easier accessibility. But a probiotic… if you find one that really helps you feel better then I guess it’s worth the price. I only tried these a couple of times so far, not long enough or consecutive enough to experiment to see if they help me feel better in any way.

I know they have some kind of sponsor/seller program for people who want to sell USANA products/make that their career or whatever. I am not interested in that so I didn’t look into that information. I also saw that USANA is a partner of the Dr. Oz show and that guy kind of seems like a nut to me, but I guess that could be overlooked if the products were life changing.

Disclosure: I was sent these products free for the purpose of review. All thoughts posted are always my own.

A book to help you maximize running performance [Review]

I was sent the book Running: Maximize Performance & Minimize Injuries by Dr. Donald A Ozello to review. Dr. Ozello is a Las Vegas Doctor of Chiropractic, and I know he is very interested in helping the local athletic community to keep active. Beyond the local community, Dr. Ozello shares his knowledge in various publications and on YouTube.


This book isn’t one that you sit down to read, absorb all the info and then move on. In fact… it’s a pretty handy tool for any runner to keep on hand.


Just taking a look at the table of contents, you’ll notice it mentions various ailments that runners face. Although, a runner could pick it up and read it straight through from about page 126 to the end to get an overview (or reminder) on several topics from stretching, strengthening, gear, etc.

But for the runner who frequently has trouble in a spot or for the inevitable pain that pops up, flipping to one of those topics gives you a short, easy-to-digest breakdown on what the issue is, symptoms of the problem and some ways to go about fixing it, as well as tips on hopefully preventing a recurrence.


There are a few areas that could maybe use a little more editing, but overall it’s a handy book. Since it’s available in paperback or Kindle, it’s versatile for however you prefer to have your reference books. If you feel a little twinge coming on, just grab the book and look for some self-treatment options to hopefully keep it from getting worse or find out if you need to seek more treatment.

The final chapter discusses chiropractic care and how it can help an athlete. Do you visit a chiropractor? I used to see a chiro (way back in 2008?) but I haven’t been to one in a long time. I’m sure I’m all out of wack… I mean, I had a pregnancy and a have been raising a child since that time. That’s rough on the old skeleton! I’m always more interested in a chiropractor who has a sports emphasis because it seems like they are working to help with function I understand more. Prior to becoming a distance runner, I honestly thought chiropractic care was all about cracking someone’s back and neck. I hadn’t realized how it could help more aspects of the body.


The book retails for $13.50, and you can pick it up on Amazon. You can also follow Dr. Ozello on Twitter: @drdozellodc where he shares all kinds of interesting information so you can maximize running performance.

Disclaimer: I was sent the book for free, but thoughts here are always my own. Actions taken from links on this post may result in a couple of pennies being thrown my way via Amazon.

Yummari Bars

Bars… nuggets… whatever you want to call these little things I received to review. I’ll call them tasty. That’s what Yummari is: tasty.


So here’s the story behind the bars: Founder Catherine Walsh was diagnosed with Celiac disease. She started training for a half marathon, read the book Born to Run and learned (as so many of us who read the book did) about the wonders of the chia seed. She had wanted something to fuel her training that was made from more natural ingredients and finally just created her own. Thus Yummari came to life. (That’s the extremely condensed-in-a-nutshell synopsis! You can learn more at their site.) These three-bite nuggets are built upon a foundation of hemp and chia seeds, superfoods that can help fuel an endurance athlete for the long haul.

I’ve been on the lookout for a new pre-long-run fuel that will last. I used a different product for my Boston Marathon training, but I’m at the point where I can’t even choke that stuff down anymore. So learning of Yummari came at the right time for my current needs. I ate one of these things before my 10-miler this past weekend and I felt great the whole time. Appropriately energized without feeling weighed down.


They come in 5 flavors, I had the cranberry before my long run and I ate a coconut one before a #runch (lunch run) and both times they tasted great and set well in my finicky stomach.

Other important details: Organic, Non-GMO, gluten-free and peanut-free.

Right now they are crowdfunding to bring their product to a wider audience. You can support their campaign at many different reward levels. There’s even a reward level that could get the person supporting the campaign a big discount on Newton running shoes. (And if you’re a fan of those… you know they aren’t cheap!)


Overall, I’m impressed. I will try a different flavor again this weekend and probably before my August 1 half. But I really wanted to get this post out there to help promote their fundraising.

I was sent some bars for free to review, but the thoughts/opinions here are all my own.

New KT Tape Product – PRO X Patches

KT Tape Pro X patches are a convenient way to target pain.

I was sent some KT Tape PRO X patches to try, they’re being introduced this month to the market.  They’re designed to provide targeted pain relief for muscles. The beauty is that they don’t require any cutting or complicated application. They’re basically peel, stretch, stick, flatten. They can also be used in conjunction with regular KT Tape for more support.

I like them because they’re super easy to apply… unless you need it on your back. In which case, someone has to help. I slept funny and tweaked my back. I had my husband apply a patch. He didn’t really apply it with enough stretch, but even what he did helped support that spot.

Peekaboo @kttape for the spot that appeared in my back that is making breathing painful.

A photo posted by Jill (@jillwillrun) on

I like that these are pretty obvious if you’re having pain, X marks the spot for application. It’s pretty straightforward. They come in a small, hard travel case to keep them all neatly together. They’ll be available in drug stores and sporting good stores beginning this month (July 2015) and will retail for $19.99.

Disclosure: I was sent a pack of the PRO X patches for free to try and to review on my blog.

Relieve Foot Pain Naturally


Whether you experience foot pain (or just tired feet) from running or being on your feet, it’s nice to have a natural way to get some relief. Of course, my usual steps would have probably been to just take some ibuprofen and then prop my feet up. But I do like the idea of using something that isn’t introducing more chemicals into my body, regardless of how safe they may be.

(Disclosure: I was sent one bottle of “The Runner’s Choice” for free for the purpose of review on this site.)

When I was sent a bottle of The Runner’s Choice I was kind of unsure how to review it. I didn’t actively have any foot pain and I don’t feel that my feet get exceptionally tired. I am usually barefoot while I work all day and I don’t wear really constricting shoes. I do run, but that doesn’t usually make my feet hurt either. But then one day after a run, the top of my foot started to ache just a little. So I figured, “Now must be the time to try it.” So I rubbed a few drops into my foot and then got swept up in my day… not remembering until several hours later that, “Hey… my foot REALLY hurt earlier today, to the point of me being constantly aware of it but it doesn’t hurt now.” Could it have just needed some time? Sure. But it could have been due to this concoction.

You don’t have to rub it in intensely to get the benefits. Just coat your feet and ankle in the oil, wash your hands and go about your day. The smell isn’t intensely overpowering like some topical remedies and it also doesn’t have an intense cooling/heating feel, just gently relieving tension in the feet muscles. I also like that it isn’t really oily, so it doesn’t stain or transfer onto anything else.

The Runner’s Choice is formulated with 100% natural botanical oils: almond, eucalyptus, eucalytol, wintergreen, peppermint and spearmint. The concept is that these oils are well-received through the epidermis and can put them to use quickly and effectively. So… it’s basically right in line with the whole essential oil madness that is all over right now.

What’s not in line with that essential oil madness? It’s way more affordable than many of these special blends floating around. You can buy a 2oz bottle of The Runner’s Choice for $19.97.

Or… you can get it for FREE.

Free is always nice, right?

Well, basically you have to pay a $7.95 shipping fee. But still, that’s pretty cheap. It’s only one free offer per household, so you can’t go trying to cheat the system by having your spouse order another bottle. ;-)

Do you have any essential oil blends you swear by? Do you get foot pain? Do you just want to say hi? I’m going to be picking 3 winners to receive a bottle from the comments here, so drop some words in the comment box!

Disclaimer: All reviews are my own opinion, this product was provided free for the purpose of review.

SweatBlock: 7 Days of Protection?

Is it heating up where you live? Here in Las Vegas we topped 100 recently and we should be pretty firmly planted in the 100’s most of the time until October-ish. (But always remember… it’s a dry heat!)


I was sent a sample of SweatBlock. Instead of rubbing on the traditional stick/roll-on/gel/etc. formulas we’re used to SweatBlock is a little towelette in an individual packet. After a shower, you open it up and press the towelette against your skin. Don’t rub, just press it in places. And here’s the beauty… after you do that you’re wearing antiperspirant for a week.

One application lasts up to 7 days!

Sure, you may want to apply a little deodorant (Did you know there was a difference? Some people don’t realize that you can buy something that is just deodorant vs. the deodorant/antiperspirant combo that is more prevalent.) because the pits are a dark area that doesn’t get much air and are thus prone to bacteria, but you could use one of those crazy hippy crystal deodorants or something equivalent.


A lot of the literature on the SweatBlock site says it is for those with excessive underarm sweating, but it’s not just for those individuals. I certainly wouldn’t say I have an excessive level… but I do live where it’s hot and I notice an increase in sweating as the summer temps rise. In addition to underarms, there are a lot of anecdotal recommendations from users that have had success applying it to other spots.

  • Got super sweaty feet? You could try it there.
  • Sweaty palms? Yep, that’s another spot you could try it.
  • I had a friend who said she got sweaty inner thighs during summer here. Maybe TMI? But she could try applying Sweat Block there.

The company states that it was formulated for the pits and their guarantee is for underarm sweat protection only, but they’re pleased with the feedback from customers who have had other success!

It has a slight clove scent when applying, but that disappears pretty quickly.

If you are a person who shuns all aluminum in antiperspirants, then this probably isn’t for you. The active ingredient is 14% aluminum chloride hexahydrate. But if you’re one of those people, maybe you’re used to just wearing deodorant and being a little sweaty. Personally, I’ve become accustomed to not liking the feel of sweat and until there is some kind of truly definitive information telling me to not wear an antiperspirant for medical reasons, I’m going to keep being anti-perspiring. Well… except when I run. It’s inevitable then, but this keeps me fresh much longer!

You can buy an 8 week supply of SweatBlock on Amazon for $19.99 or $18.99 if you do Subscribe and Save. I am going to buy more to get me through the summer. Honestly… I like the way it works!

Serial Racing

If you’ve been in the running/racing community long enough, you’ve heard about the special breed of runners that does a ton of races throughout the year. The people who race every weekend or even multiple times in the same weekend. And I’m going to be honest… whenever I have heard of these people I always think what a great adventure that must be and then I wonder “How do they manage that?” And when I think manage, I am literally thinking about the logistics… from finances and organization and traveling.  I suppose I should think about how they physically manage the accomplishment, but since I’m a tightwad I always think of the monetary side first.

Thus the book Serial Racing: Planning For And Affording A Lifetime Of Endurance Events intrigued me. (Disclosure: sent to me for free to review.) I have no aspirations to do this kind of endeavor at this point in my life, but this book helped me realize and appreciate all the effort that it takes to do something of this nature.


The author, Andrea Herrmann, is speaking from experience here. She completed the 10 Moon/Sun level in the Half Fanatics club… doing 52 half marathons in 365 days… TWICE and wrote this book after doing so to share the knowledge she’s acquired on the subject.

She dives into information on how to make sure you are saving money on your race registrations (early registrations are key… which means planning your calendar out in advance is key!), tricks to get free flights, saving money on accommodations, how to find a variety of races and generally how to keep your self organized when you are doing this many events.

So what if you have zero interest in doing as many events as the author? Well… if you’re doing one race a month or so (something I know a lot of people can easily do locally) there are tips in here for you too. There is one that I don’t want to giveaway (you’ll have to check out the book) that has to do on saving money on an Active Advantage membership that I want to look into further.

The other really cool thing is the author volunteers with Medals4Mettle, a nonprofit that collects earned donated finishers medals and presents them to individuals battling cancer and other illness. A portion of the book proceeds are used to fund medal presentations.


The book is available in paperback and kindle format on Amazon. Definitely check it out if you want to find ways to keep your racing habit in check or figure out how to take it up to a new level!

Disclaimer: All reviews are my own opinion, this product was provided free for the purpose of review.

Clif Organic Energy Food

So… a little while back I was sent some pouches of the latest and greatest(?) from Clif – their Organic Energy Food pouches.


The ingredient list impressed me… nice simple food ingredients. The flavors intrigued me… the fruit ones sounded decent enough and well… Pizza Margherita is definitely unique and deserves some kind of attention, right?

Let’s get to the fruit ones first, okay? I thought those were great. They tasted wonderful, they went down easily and they stayed down. The problem is the size of the pouch. It’s actually convenient so you can carry it and sip on it a little bit while running without worrying about it getting all over as much as a gel pouch might. But… it’s just big. And the cap is big. And the whole thing makes for a bulky bit of cargo. And it would be really annoying to try to haul multiple packs in a waist belt. (And seeing as how I’m running Boston soon and no back packs are allowed on course, I had to stick with a waist pack.)

This was consumed on my run today, I REALLY liked it! @clifbarcompany #organicenergyfood

A photo posted by Jill (@jillwillrun) on

So onto the other flavors… I admit, I was both excited and terrified to try these. The positive: they contain nice ingredients.

Now for the negatives… The pouch is even bigger than the fruit flavors. They contain a lot of fat which could be harder to digest, provided you get them down. Which I didn’t. On two separate long runs I took one of the savory flavors with me. On each occasion I tried them around the 15-mile mark. Each time I got one sip (bite) and promptly spat it into the rocks.

Soooooooo baaaaaaaaaad…….

I’m sorry Clif. I love you, I think you’re swell and I like many of your products. My daughter thinks your Clif Kids Zfruit+Veggie are candy. But these Clif Organic Energy Food pouches… I can’t even! (That’s what they say these days right? “I can’t even!”)

Apparently NPR can’t even either.