Anna’s Gift Guide for the Health Conscious Paddler

Ready to be the coolest gift giver this season? Give meaningful and fun gifts that contribute to your favorite paddler’s health, wellbeing and passion for paddling. Read on for my top picks  for paddlers who do (or would like to) take on their wellness with as much stoke as they take on the water! Under $25 Asheville Tea Company Pumpkin Pie Chai Delicious, hand packed tea by Asheville outdoor enthusiast Jessie Dean. Perfect for pre and post paddling, especially during the cool winter/spring months. Full of digestive spices that are also sweet and comforting. My favorite recipe for preparation: 1TBS 

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6 Secrets to Beat Holiday Bloat

Do you experience bloat, discomfort and lethargy from overindulging during the Holiday Season? If so, you’re not alone! I think we’ve all been there 🙂 The good news is that I’ve got some tips that will help you enjoy the good cheer and delicious foods of the season without the heaviness.   As an Ayurveda Wellness Counselor I’ve spent a lot of time studying and practicing effective strategies for boosting digestion, one of the key bodily functions responsible for our energy level, mood and nutrition. During this time of year it’s easy to let our digestive systems get bogged down 

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Top 3 Reasons to try SUP Yoga

I’ve been around paddlers and yogis for over 20 years and I’ve heard ‘hardcore’ paddlers make fun of SUP yoga and yogis treat it as a novelty fad. I always say: ‘Don’t dis it until you’ve tried it!’ BTW, why is it so easy for humans to dis stuff we haven’t tried? The health, body and wellness benefits of SUP yoga are many and below I share my top 3 reasons to try SUP yoga:   More Core, Fewer Imbalances SUP Yoga is an effective way to bring greater awareness to imbalances in the body and learn how to effectively 

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3 Easy Spring Cleanses that Work

The truth about cleanses is that they don’t have to be long, arduous or expensive to work.  And, yes, they do work. Some don’t even require that you go without food! Benefits of cleansing include clearer skin, more energy, reduced bloating/digestive distress, weight loss and enhanced sense of taste. I’ve had folks (including my Mom) tell me that they’re skeptical of cleanses because the body has the ability to cleanse itself. The body does do a good job of cleansing itself IF/WHEN we eat a simple diet, eat only when we’re hungry and only to 75% full, and lead a 

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Love and Discipline: The Art of Self Care

Everyone loves talking about love in February. Love is great and all, but my favorite part of Valentine’s Day is the ‘pink food’ I have an excuse to indulge in. Pink frosted cookies, pink cake and pink champagne are some of my faves. After all, love is associated with sweet taste, a taste, according to Ayurveda, that grounds us and offers comfort. That’s part of the reason sweets are so popular. In our busy, over-stimulated lives where our nervous systems are often stretched to the max, sweets offer us a taste of love and a sense of contentment. It’s way 

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Immune Boosting Winter Routine

Cold and flu season is upon us, but that doesn’t mean we have to surrender to getting sick. According to Ayurveda, when our digestive fire is strong our immune system is strong. With a little daily effort we can avoid having our lives disrupted by seasonal illness. How do I know it works? I haven’t had the flu or a cold in over 5 years. We each have a unique constitution so it’s possible that my immune system is on the tougher side giving me a natural immune boost. Having said that, through my Ayurveda Wellness Counseling practice I’ve witnessed 

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Warm up with Turmeric

As we enter winter the days are getting shorter and the weather can feel cold and damp. A great way to balance the dark, cold and wet qualities of winter is to feed our bodies nourishing, warming foods and spices that heat up our digestive fire. Turmeric is one such heat-generating spice, and it’s a powerful anti-oxidant that gives curry it’s beautiful yellow color. It promotes digestion, optimal cell functioning, and supports the immune system. Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric, and is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Low-level inflammation is a significant part of chronic stress, as well as many 

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How to Build Emotional Resilience on the Water

According to the dictionary, resilience is defined as, ‘the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties.’ A second definition is: ‘the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape.’ When you experience a difficult, disappointing or scary situation on the water how quickly do you recover? Are you able to let it roll off your back and feel empowered to paddle on? No matter your answer, know that you can increase your resilience with practice. In the past, when I performed poorly in a competition or got trashed on a river and swam out of my kayak I 

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5 Tips for Optimal Health this Fall

With the weather varying between hot, cold, windy, sunny and rainy, autumn can wreak havoc on our energy and our health. Do you trust your immune system to stay healthy during the variable weather patterns of fall season? If you know the ancient science of Ayurveda, then you have the tools you need to stay as vibrant as the color of the leaves in both body and mind. In the Ayurvedic tradition, fall season is the season of Vata (Air). The qualities of Vata include variability, movement, rough, cold and dry. This manifests in the mind as mood swings, anxiety 

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Ayurveda Tips for Staying Cool in the Heat of Summer

The hot summer months are considered the season of Pitta (Fire) in Ayurveda. The hot qualities of Pitta can lead to overheating, skin conditions such as rashes, digestive disruptions such as diarrhea and feelings of frustration and anger. According to Ayurveda, it’s important to incorporate opposite qualities into our diet and lifestyle to counteract the most prominent qualities of each season. By bringing in opposite qualities to the heat of summer, we help our bodies maintain balance, health and vitality. Here are my top 5 tips for staying healthy and cool this summer: 1. Enjoy the water! This season is 

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Meet Anna Levesque

Anna Levesque is the leading expert on paddling instruction for women and yoga for paddling, including SUP Yoga. Named one of the most inspirational paddlers alive by Canoe and Kayak Magazine, Anna’s twenty-plus years of experience as an accomplished international competitor, instructor, coach and author has landed her in mainstream publications such as TIME, SHAPE and SELF.

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as well as "Teachings from the River" by Anna Levesque

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