10 Tips How To Integrate a Yoga and Fitness Routine During Lockdown

Stefanie Grace plank pose in front of the laptop during lockdown

Building Healthy Habits During Lockdown

It’s been more than one year now, since we have experienced the first lockdown. Since then we had multiple ones, and had to adapt to these circumstances. We started with home offices and had to move the yoga studio and gyms into our homes. Some of us really enjoyed these changes a lot – others less.
What’s common on both sides is a struggle of building and integrating a home routine for yoga and fitness.

10 Steps to build healthy habits during lockdown:

1. Create your sacred space. 

One reason why it seems easier to do a yoga class or a workout in the studio or gym is the environment you are in. Everything around you is helping you to get into the right mood. When doing the classes in your own four walls it’s different and everything around you is a distraction. Suddenly you have to think about cleaning the floor, bringing the garbage out or simply relaxing on the couch to not miss your Netflix series.
To avoid all this, it’s crucial to create your own sacred space for your routines. A place where you have your mat, your equipment, speakers and maybe a candle, preferable in a room where you can be alone.

2. Plan ahead and fix a time – make it an appointment.

Only saying “tomorrow evening I will do a workout” is too unspecific. The time tomorrow evening arrives you realize that the grocery shopping took longer than expected and there is too little time left now for anything and in the end you just postpone it to “tomorrow evening”.
By planning ahead and fixing a time you create an appointment as you would, when going to the gym or to the yoga studio. So instead of “tomorrow evening” say “Tuesday evening at 19:00 I have a fitness class in my home gym”.

3. Do not question your time – question your priority!

Point 2 leads me to the question of time and priority. Who can relate to that: “I don’t have any time left for this half an hour training. I will do it tomorrow.” – 1,5 hour later: you find yourself on the couch scrolling on Instagram for 30 minutes. In most cases the question is not about your time, but about your priority. If your priority is given and high enough you will also find the time.

4. Do not question your motivation – just do it.

As the brand Nike already said: Just do it.
Whenever you start questioning whether you should or should not start your workout, just stop it and just do it. The more you question it, the more unsure you’ll get, especially if you have already set an appointment and a room.

5. Show up on the mat.

Of course there will be days where you don’t feel like giving 100 percent – that’s totally normal. All days are different or maybe you as a woman even have your days of the month. Don’t quit before you have even started – show up on your mat and see how much you can give. Maybe in the end it’s a restorative yoga class instead of a power yoga class or maybe it’s an easy mobility session instead of a HIT workout. Maybe it’s only gonna be 15 minutes instead of 30 minutes. In any case: it’s time you dedicated yourself to take care of your body and mind.

6. Create a challenge board or calendar.

As you have your calendar you can create a challenge board for your routines. If you like challenges you can create a challenge with a starting and ending time. “Starting Monday, the *date* I am doing a 15 minutes morning yoga session every day at 7:30 pm after drinking my coffee for the next four weeks.” Every day after you do it, you can tick the box and mark it as done. 

7. Set small goals and phrase your reward.

Whenever there is a reward involved it’s more likely you reach your goals. Important is to set your goals small enough to reach them and the reward big enough to stay motivated. Best is if your goals are matching your rewards. For example, if your goal is to get fitter the reward would be a great feeling in your body. If your goal is to be able to touch your feet the reward could be less back pain. If your goal is to meditate for 10 minutes your goal could be less headache.

8. Small steps – one after another.

You probably have heard this already ten times – never mind – I’ll tell you one more. Take small steps! Imagine you start a routine of meditating for 20 minutes each day. The first day you manage it somehow. The second day you break up after 10 minutes. The third day you question yourself in the beginning already if you should do it or not. And the following day, you just go back to your usual morning routine without meditation.
How about starting with 2 minutes!? Then you add 1 minute after a couple of days, and another 1 minute after a week and another 1 minute after a couple of days…. First build up your routine before you start expanding it. 

9. The “never miss twice and four out of seven” roule

There will be days where you just can’t do your routine. Maybe because you have to catch an early flight or because of a meeting. Maybe you are visiting your family and you already have plans… Whenever something comes your way, which hinders you to follow your routines, be ok with missing out and just give your best to not miss the following day. Aim to manage to do your routine more than 50 % a week which would be 4 days. Make it a habit to do your routine more often than not doing it, but always stay respectful towards your body. Theres no sense in doing a hard workout if you have a flue for example. 

10. Find a workout buddy

Everything is easier in community – together we are stronger. If you still find it too hard to build up a lockdown workout or yoga routine – reach out to your friends, family and partner to find someone who is joining or find an online yoga or fitness class where you have a commitment (like a live (paid) class). 

You are not weak if you need an external motivation kick!

You are just human!

Home yoga, all fours position in the living room
Downdog facing dog pose in the living room.

With these 10 steps I wish you all the best and lots of motivation in your home gym. Let me know in the comments which steps could work for you and which ones you would like to try. I’m also looking forward to getting feedback on the ones that worked for you. 


Thanks for reading. Share it with your friends, if you feel like they should read about it as well. 


Yoga During Pregnancy and After Giving Birth – Part II: Postnatal

Mum and Bub graphic

How Can a Woman Support Her Body and Mind After Pregnancy and How Much Is Too Much?

In my previous post I was writing about the benefits of yoga during pregnancy, before giving birth. Now I would like to share the benefits and beauty of a yoga class postnatally.

I haven’t experienced becoming a mother yet, but I am very grateful and excited to support new born mamas in their postpartum time with my knowledge and empathy.

Yoga After Pregnancy - Postnatal

After labour the body of a woman is changing and as Ina May Gaskin beautifully said: her emotions, mind and spirit also change for the rest of her life. These changes are wonderful, if the woman is able to accept them and adapt her practice and her life accordingly to them.

The postpartum period, which starts right after labour, is the time when the hormone levels and the uterus size are returning back to a non-pregnant stage. The time a woman needs to recover from birth, depends on how the baby has been delivered (vaginal birth, c-section…) and on the physical and mental condition of the woman before. In any case, the puerperium time is the most important time to rest. The puerperium or puerperal period describes the first six weeks after childbirth, where the mother should mainly stay in bed or around the bed to give her body the best conditions to heal, to recharge her energy levels in order to give energy to her newborn. 

During this time a woman can start bringing tone back to the muscles of the abdominal region and the pelvic floor, only with gentle awareness breaths. As soon as all the wounds are healed, she can start with gentle exercises of the deeper inner muscles. How the woman treats her body in the first month after birth is crucial for a long-lasting recovery.

Whenever and however you give birth, your experience will impact your emotions, your mind, your body, and your spirit for the rest of your life!  Ina May Gaskin

How Yoga Can Help With a Various List of Benefits 

Yoga is not only asanas, physical postures, yoga is so much more. Meditation, breathing exercises, relaxation, practice of devotion and surrender. There are so many new challenges a mum has to face. Yoga can be a wonderful tool to support and help to manage them with more ease and joy.

  1. Helps to relax, to find peace and calmness in body and mind.
    Especially in the early time postpartum the new mum is struggling a lot with her energy. Long nights with only a few hours of sleep and an overwhelming feeling are very natural. 

Yoga helps to: 

  • to decrease anxiety, fear and stress.
  • to relax, to calm down the mind.
  • to boost Serotonin and Dopamine.
  • to recharge the energy levels.

Tools: restorative poses, guided meditations and breathing exercises.

  1. Helps on a physical level

After labour the pelvic floor and the abdominal muscles are experiencing a lack of strength and muscle tone. This can increase the possibility for incontinence and pelvic floor prolapse (even months later).  It is very normal that the new mum is feeling stiff in the neck and experiencing shoulder pain or lower back pain due to the long hours of breastfeeding. 

Yoga can help: 

  • to find the tone of the muscles again. 
  • to decrease common pains of shoulder, neck and lower back.
  • to get back to the well-being weight in a gentle and mindful way.
  • to improve posture, balance and coordination.
  • to promote better circulation and can reduce high blood pressure.
Tools: stretching and strenghening poses and exercises.

  1. Empowers a woman in her new role as a mum

When a woman becomes a mum, her role changes. Change can be very uncomfortable a lot of times. Facing new challenges, dealing with a rollercoaster of emotions and an overwhelming feeling. 

Yoga can help: 

  • to be able to adapt to these changes in a respectful way towards yourself.
  • to release certain emotions and feelings rather than let them be stuck in the body 
  • to honour this sacred time, her body and to cultivate self-love during this whole process.
  • to learn to listen to your own intuition – what’s good for the mother is good for the baby.
  • to learn to surrender and to adjust in the best way you can in any challenges you are facing, without the need of judging.

“Compassion towards ourselves is the foundation for any compassion towards others. If we let ourselves become tired and run-down caring for others we have less to give everyone. We need to look after our own health too by making time for quietness and rest. In practising compassion we speak kindly to ourselves and notice whether our inner voices are supportive and friendly or judgmental and demanding. We are patient when we falter, for parenting makes amateurs of us all as we confront its never-ending new stages. It helps us cultivate self-awareness, not guilt.”

Sarah Napthali, “Buddhism for Mothers”.

Often the Question Arises: How Much Is Too Much? And Safety Guidlines

Golden rules of postnatal yoga and safety guidelines

1. Listen to your own intuition – you know best, what’s best for you. If something doesn’t feel right, leave it – if it feels good, go for it.

2. Listen to your body. I’m not in your body, I can’t feel it as you do. What I can do is to give you guidelines, instructions of the poses and share my knowledge, but whenever you feel you want to adjust a pose to make it more comfortable for your body, feel free to do it. Whenever you can’t find a pose, just rest in a child pose or on your side body, or back.

3. Challenge yourself in a respectful way. Do not force yourself in any position, but always keep in mind that you are stronger than you think. The body only gets stronger in challenging situations.

4. Breathe – there’s nothing more to add ;).

5. Allow and accept interruptions – there will be times, when you have the baby next to you while practicing. There will even be times when you will practice together with the baby. And the baby will get hungry at some point and the baby will cry… Don’t see these moments as a destruction of your practice – see it as a new part of your practice. You can always pause a video and go back in again. And during the live calls you can still be part of the class, even though you are feeding your baby – this is all part of the course.

Be careful with deep stretching/ overstretching:

The hormone ‘relaxin’ which is very important in the prenatal stage, in order to make the tissues, ligaments and muscles soft to create space for the baby, needs around six months after giving birth to decrease its level. Because of that it is important in the postpartum period to not overstretch the muscles but to find a nice balance. Stretching can help a lot to relieve stress in the body and mind and can decrease pain of the body due to long hours of sitting, laying and breastfeeding poses. 

Be careful with over strengthening:

After birth the body needs rest. No matter how the baby has been delivered, labour leaves wounds and they need time to heal. If a woman is forcing her body in this time to workout, she can damage a lot in the deeper tissues. 

It is important to start slow. To get the muscle tone back in the pelvic muscles and abdominal muscles needs time. Focusing on strengthening the deep tissues of the muscles can prevent and decrease incontinence and pelvic floor prolapse. The same counts for running, which depends if running has always been in the routine or not. 

When it comes to strengthening the abdominal muscles, it is important to clarify first if and how big the rectus diastasis is. When the belly grows during pregnancy, the abdominal muscles have to seperate in the middle to create space. After labour they need time to close again before starting work on strengthening them.

Thanks for taking the time to read – let me know in the comments your thoughts and experiences. 

Yoga During Pregnancy and After Giving Birth – Part I: Prenatal

Yoga during preganancy, Pregnant woman in Sukashana

How Can a Woman Support Her Body and Mind During Pregnancy and How Much Is Too Much?

After having completed my online teacher training as a certified pre- and postnatal yoga teacher (at the amazing and well experienced Bliss Baby Yoga School in Australia) I am exited to share my knowledge in theory as in practice.
I invite all the beautiful Mamas and ‘Mamas-to-be’ to read more about my thoughts and the benefits of Yoga during pregnancy and after giving birth in this article and I’m looking forward to welcome you in one of my classes

I am also very grateful for the learnings and the experience I’ve gained by already working with wonderful mamas-to-be in different stages of their pregnancy. It is truly amazing to be part of these journeys.  

Pregnant woman doing yoga, Lotus Sit

Yoga During Pregnancy - Prenatal

Yoga is so much more than only physical exercises to build strength and to gain flexibility. When it comes to yoga during pregnancy and postpartum, this understanding of Yoga reaches a whole new level.

A woman’s body is changing and with that her physical & mental, especially emotional condition. In order to that her practice needs to change accordingly. Pregnancy is not the time, where a woman should focus on bringing her physical condition (strength or flexibility) on a higher level – it is the time to show compassion towards oneself and to support the body the best way possible.  

Yoga Can Help With a Various List of Benefits

The benefits of yoga during pregnancy are truly amazing and can support a woman in order to work with her body and her energy rather than against it. By using props like cushions, yoga blocks, blankets and straps all of the positions are easy to adjust for each woman individually.

1. Promotes relaxation and overall well-being

A pregnant woman often feels tired, stressed and needs a lot of rest. A lot of times anxiety and fear arises. A calming and well-rounded practice is great for the nervous system and balances the hormonal system. It can increase Serotonin and Dopamine for more general joy in life and the energy levels get recharged.

Yoga can help:

  • to decrease anxiety, fear and stress.
  • to relax, to calm down the mind.
  • to boost Serotonin and Dopamine
  • to recharge the energy levels

Tools: restorative poses, guided meditations and breathing exercises.

2. Improves physical condition and prepares the body for labour

Even though pregnancy is not the time to level up the physical condition it is still important to work on strengthening important muscle groups, in order to minimize pain in the body and to prepare the body as best as possible for the challenges of labour.

Due to the growing belly, growing breast and often additional weight gain the body of a pregnant woman has to hold more weight. The weight distribution is pulling a woman into a higher arch in the lower back, which often leads to back pain, overly tight hip muscles and quadrizeps.

The right exercises can help:

  • to handle the weight better and to decrease common aches in the neck, the back, the hips and the legs.
  • to prepare the body for labour in terms of strength and stamina (especially in active birth position – to be able to hold an active birth position).
  • to tone the deep birth muscles (deep transversus abdominis, uterus walls, pelvic floor) for more support during pregnancy, during labour and faster a recovery postpartum.
  • to improve posture, balance and coordination.
  • to alleviate muscle cramps, constipation, swelling legs and ankles (because of fluid retention).
  • to promote better circulation and can reduce high blood pressure.
  • to relax the pelvic floor in order to prepare for labour.
  • the body to become juicy and soft (flexible and agile) to reduce pains and to prepare for labour.

Tools: strengthening exercises, stretching exercises, pelvic floor toning, breathing exercises

3. Improves mental and emotional condition and prepares the mind for labour

As mentioned in #1 the mental and emotional stage is changing due to a hormone cocktail in the body. The woman experiences mood changes, often feels vulnerable and emotional.

Yoga can help:

  • to balance the hormones.
  • to strengthen the mind – “you are stronger than you think” (e.g., holding a pose longer than to the point where the natural thought of “I can’t hold any longer” kicks in – you can’t just stop during labour either)
  • to become more flexible in the mind
  • to stay focused and in the present moment
  • to stay aware and conscious
  • to deal with unwanted circumstances and challenges that arises (e.g., in a worst-case scenario during labour, it is crucial that the woman stays calm and relaxed rather than falling into panic
  • to increase the overall emotional wellbeing so that the woman can enjoy the journey of pregnancy in a healthy mental stage which is so important for the mum and for the growing baby.  

Tools: Breathing exercises, guided meditations, visualisations

4. Empowers a woman in her power

Not only the body of a woman is changing – her energy is transforming as well. She becomes stronger in her feminine power. She becomes a loving mother.

Yoga can help:

  • to feel powerful, to trust oneself and one’s strength.
  • to awaken her full power and potential as a mother.
  • to learn to be able to speak for yourself and to be able to communicate what you need and you want or not.
  • to honour this sacred time, her body and to cultivate self-love during this whole process.
  • the woman to feel her body better, to tune in even better with the baby’s energy.
  • to learn to surrender and to adjust in the best way you can in any challenges you are facing, without the need of judging.
  • to learn to listen to your own intuition – what’s good for the mother is good for the baby.

During pregnancy teh body, mind and also the energy of a women is changing.
Since change can be hard on some points it is more important then ever to be compassionate with oneself. 

Often the Question Arises: How Much Is Too Much?

First golden rule: do not overstretch, strain or compress the belly – just leave the womb and allow it to become soft.

Second golden rule: listen to your intuition – you know what’s best for you. If something doesn’t feel right – leave it, if it feels great – go for it.

Be careful with deep stretching/ overstretching:

Due to the hormone Relaxin the body is already getting soft on its own. Too deep stretching can lead to overstretched muscles, ligament, tendons and joints, which can lead to less support and weakness in the body, especially in the pelvis floor. This can cause incontinence (especially postpartum) and aching hips or pain in the lower back.

Still important: supporting the softening of the body in gentle stretches (See #2)

Be careful with over strengthening:

As already mentioned, the woman’s energy is changing and so does her practice.
How much you can work out during pregnancy, is of course a question of how much you did before. The other question which arises is – is there a need to work out like before? If the body feels tired, sore or weak – why should you force yourself through a workout? (This also refers to non-pregnant women!)

During pregnancy the body becomes softer in order to allow the baby to grow. The abdominal muscles, especially the 6-pack muscles, are opening in order to give space for the baby. Their function is changing. By toning these muscles, you would actually work against nature.


Still important: maintaining strength and stamina to support the body with the additional weight it is carrying. (See #2)

Thanks for taking the time to read – let me know in the comments your thoughts and experiences. 
And always remember the Golden Rules of Yoga during pregnancy. 

Comming next: Yoga During Pregnancy and After Giving Birth – Part II: Postnatal
How can I support my body to recover after giving birth and when can I start again?
How can I include a Yoga practice in my new daily routines? (I don’t have time…)

What Does Yoga Have To Do With Veganism? Interview With Rahel

Rahel Lutz drinking tea and eating a cookie

The Vegan Lifestyle and Yoga
Interview with Rahel

In the last interview special Rahel from “Don’t Waste Your Taste” asked me questions about Ahimsa, Veganism and Yoga. In today’s post Rahel will answer the questions I asked her and she will explain what the vegan lifestyle and yoga have in common.

A few months ago, I asked Rahel if she would like to cook for my group during the Women Retreat, which will take place in Ibiza from May 14-20, 2022. Happliy she said yes, because there is really hardly anything she enjoys more than cooking delicious vegan food for other people. In combination with the daily yoga practice, the group process and the sea in front of the door, the whole thing is of course even more beautiful.

So that the readers of my blog can get to know Rahel better and her readers can get to know me better, we thought we would just interview each other. 

Rahel Lutz vegan foodblogger auf dem Hof Ring mit Grace

Since When Do You Live Vegan?

“In the spring of 2016, I decided to go vegan. At that time, primarily for ethical reasons. I could no longer justify to myself my contribution to the suffering of animals that the consumption of animal products entails. Especially not after I realized that I could live a perfectly healthy life even if I lived vegan.
Since making the switch, I’ve realized that I live a fulfilling life BECAUSE I live vegan.
This life-changing decision triggered a wave of self-empowerment for me and led me onto the path of mindfulness. An incredible number of doors have opened since then, inside and out.”

What Made You Want To Do What You're Doing Now?

“My enthusiasm and joy for vegan cooking and baking has been huge since the beginning of my vegan journey. I just love to spend hours trying out different dishes, inventing new recipes and bringing smiles to others’ faces with my creations. In 2019, the desire to share my enthusiasm with my fellow humans became unmistakably loud and I founded my blog “dontwasteyourtaste.com”. Since then, I have been able to learn a lot as co-host of the vegan YouTube cooking show of the channel “Zentrum der Gesundheit” and have achieved my first small successes as an independent food blogger. After more than two years as a food blogger, I still do what I do because I love it and it always inspires me. There’s really little that makes my heart delight and dance more than when someone tries one of my recipes and reports back that it tasted really good.”

Rahel Lutz doing the prayer pose. Interview with Ligaya

What Does Ahimsa Mean To You?

“Ahimsa for me means not causing suffering to sentient beings, both humans and animals. If I want to live Ahimsa, it is an empathic and also logical conclusion for me to live vegan. I came to this conclusion before I found myself on the path of yoga in 2017. So it was all the more beautiful for me to realize then that my vegan way of life in this respect is in line with what I consider to be a very basic tenet of yogic teachings.”

What Does Health Mean To You?

“When I feel physically exhausted or ill, or perceive my mind as very unbalanced, I lack the resources to truly enjoy my existence. I believe we are here on this earth not to be free of disease, but to learn to love life in its fullness and infinite, inexhaustible generosity.”

Rahel Lutz doing a crow pose at the riverside.

What Do You Think Man Should Change/Should Change About Mankind and for What Reason?

“In a Vipassana meditation course I learned to observe my inner world with a meditative attitude. What I learned in the course of the very intensive ten-day course is that everything changes. Everything comes into being and also passes away.
My time on this planet is finite. So what do I do with the very limited time I have here? Do I want to contribute to more suffering, or do I want to do my best to act more and more out of compassion every day?
When we ourselves get to the point where we understand that we have a choice about how to answer this question, new perspectives open up. The vegan movement, in my opinion, is a result of us becoming more aware on a collective level that the suffering we do to others always comes back to us in one way or another. That more and more people are choosing the vegan lifestyle and making a strong case gives me confidence that we want to end this cycle and we’re ready to make compassion-based choices.”

What is your motto/phiosophy of life?

Don’t Waste Your Taste” – Don’t waste your taste! This saying can be applied not only to food. Life may be tasted and enjoyed in its versatility and boundless abundance.”

Don’t Waste Your Taste

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed. 
Let me know in the comments – What does Ahimsa means to you? 

What Does Yoga Have To Do With Veganism? Interview With Nini

What does yoga have to do with veganism?

Interview With Vegan Foodblogger Rahel

In this interview special with Rahel from “Don’t waste your taste” you can get to know me better and find an answer to the question “What does yoga have to do with veganism?”.

I asked Rahel a few months ago if she would like to cook for my group during the Woman Retreat in Ibiza I’m organizing from May 14-20, 2022 – and she said yes.
So we are looking forward to a week together doing yoga enjoying the sun and delicious vegan food.

With this interview I would like to give you the opportunity to get to know me a little better. In the following lines I talk about my personal path, my vision, what Ahimsa means and also about what yoga has to do with veganism. Have fun reading through.

Health Coach Ligaya Yoga and Fitness

Who Are You and What Do You Do?

“Hi, I’m Nini and I’m a health coach. The areas I work with are yoga, fitness and nutrition. On the one hand I teach group classes, private classes, workshops and retreats on the other hand I coach people who are looking for a lifestyle change in 1:1 coachings.
My coachees come to me for different reasons, some want to get fitter, lose weight or build muscle mass, others long for more peace and tranquility in their lives and still others come because they want to change their eating habits or are struggling with an eating disorder.”

How Did It Come About?

“I had a lot of problems myself years ago in terms of my diet. I was fighting bulimia and myself at the same time. I couldn’t accept myself as I am, was never good enough and had no peace when it came to eating right and exercising. I started therapy, yoga and worked a lot on my mindset and was able to turn my views on many areas 180 degrees. I got to know myself, my triggers better and learned how to deal with them. So I found back to self-love and more joy in my life. I know that many women (as well as men) feel the same way. Many feel trapped in this mindset and can’t find a way out. I have made it my mission to help others who feel the same way to make the change.”

What Is Your View of People? What Do You Understand by Health?

“Under health, or a healthy person I understand not only the freedom from disease, but a person who feels physically and mentally completely well. Whether a person is healthy I recognize above all by the charisma of the person. It is therefore not only about the physical condition, but much more about the mental, because in many cases this is the origin of complaints. Only when a person has “cleaned up” mentally and emotionally, the body has the possibility to unfold in a healthy way. That is why I like to work in all areas. Fitness, to strengthen the body, explore the limits and grow beyond them. Yoga and mediation, to strengthen the mind, become mentally fit, get to know yourself better and change certain perspectives and nutrition, to learn what the body needs to function at its best, to learn to listen to the body and feel what foods are good for us, in what quantity and when.”

Ligaya Yoga and Veganism

What Is Your Vision?

“My vision is my why and my why is what drives me, what gives me joy in my work. I inspire and support women to find self-love and joy, to tap into their power and live to their full potential.”

Ahimsa - What Does It Mean in General, How Do You Integrate It Into Your Life?

“Ahimsa is the second point of the Niyamas, the 8-limbed path of Yoga (described by Patanjali) and means “no violence, harm no one”. It is moral values of us towards the environment, towards other people, animals, nature. 

To be able to fully integrate Ahimsa in life, it requires a vegan lifestyle. But also that we do not harm any living being, no matter how small and seemingly insignificant to us, such as mosquitoes or lice. 

Ahimsa in my life: I have been a vegetarian for a few years now and have also started vegan a few times. However, never with the really strong intention of Ahimsa. Recently, I’ve been feeling the call of Ahimsa very intensely, and so I dedicated myself to a vegan lifestyle at the beginning of March.” 

If you hear the calling of Ahimsa – Follow 

In my next post you will find out more about Rahel and her story. 

Let me know in the comments – What does Ahimsa means to you? 

Why It Is the Perfect Time?

Stefanie Grace sitting and gazing at the ocean.

Why It Is the Perfect Time for a Retreat and How Fear Is Holding Us Back...

The last year has been challenging for all of us in different ways, we had to face a lot of difficulties and had to cut back with leisure activities and vacations. 
Especially the long lockdown during the grey and cold winter has drained on our energy reserves. There is no better time to recharge the body battery than with the arrival of spring. For this reason, I would like to dedicate this blog post to the next up-coming Retreat in Gran Canaria in an interview with performance coach Renato Montañés, from Toa-Toa, who is hosting this retreat together with me.

Picture of Renato and Nini (Stefanie Grace)

Interview With Performance Coach and Retreat Host Rentao Montañés

“Why do you think, it’s the perfect moment for a retreat?”

“I feel we all are in a form of retreat since the pandemic started. But sharing this isolation and being guided through practices that help us develop, especially in times like these, just seems like what many looking for, whenever tired of their homes and circumstances.”

“What’s your opinion regarding the current, global situation? Is it safe to travel?”

My own experience travelling right now, as well as all safety measures that are
in place, are minimizing risks to an extend where I feel completely relaxed
traveling. I perceive eventual PCR test requirements and masks rather as something
like extra visa regulations than something that actually hinders me.”

“Where do you see fear holding people back from such experiences?”

“Since the current circumstances are quite uncertain and changing from day to day, many of us feel like walking on eggshells in terms of decision making. Should I do this? What if everything changes again and I lose?
Fear of loss, making mistakes and/or having to deal with uncertain developments are very normal nowadays. The danger however comes from being impaired of this fear to a point where we don’t move at all and stay paralyzed with decreasing hope that one day we might move freely and without these fears. But there is always something to fear if we succumb to it. 
We can practice fear or courage. The more we feed one, the weaker the other gets.”

“What does personal development/ personal growth mean to you?”

“2 Things. Digging up and resolving restraints and patterns that keep me from flow. And the commitment to play with what I love to do to an extend where I am getting better at it with every time I invest into it lovingly.”

“How this retreat can provide personal transformation and change?”

“I feel It is the perfect playground where I can learn, work and connect dots around my topics and immerse fully into clean routines and healthy living in a safe and knowledgeable environment, at least for the time of the retreat.
This way I have the chance to practice what can sustain me when I am back home.” 


Investing into Personal Growth is like watering a plant! 

Information Regarding the Retreat and the Current Situation in Spain...

The Growth Retreat – from the 3rd to the 11th of April – will take place in the north of Gran Canaria in a beautiful villa with the view over the ocean. These 7 full days of practice are the perfect kickstart into new routines and into a healthy lifestyle to keep yourself mentally and physically fit.

Spain has been removed from the quarantine list for many different countries and to enter you just need to provide a PCR-Test. Restaurants, shops and public outdoor spots are open under the restrictions of a mask.


For more information and booking contact me via E-Mail connect.ligaya@gmail.com

Or use the sign up from below.


What Previous Retreat Participants Have To Say

It was a great opportunity to learn from others, share thoughts, eat delicious meals. There was enough time to relax and explore beautiful places around. Sometimes it was challenging but it was so worth it. All in all it was very inspiring and it feels like it opend doors to myself.
More than expected. All my stress was gone, I haven’t felt that great in a long time. Additionally, I made a lot of new experiences regarding my meditation practice. Amazing.
It was challenging, but I got a kickstart for my own Routine! Really nice Group and Renato & Nini gave ther best and opened a playground of opportunities to grow.»
I have immensely enjoyed this well structured space to take time for myself and at the same time sharing this experience with a group of lovely people.

Is Yoga Enough or Do We Need an Additional Workout?

Lunge Pose Ligaya Is Yoga Enough

Is Yoga Enough or Do We Need an Additional Workout?

I love doing yoga – since around 10 years now – but at the same time I always loved / and still love to workout, to go to the gym, for a run or do any other exercises. It’s not the first time, that I faced the question, if yoga is enough. I already had plenty of conversations with people of different movement backgrounds, so here I want to discuss the topic again.  

Stefanie Grace Ligaya is doing Yoga oudoor

What Do We Need for a Healthy Body and Mind?

Before answering the question if yoga is enough, let’s have a look first on what the body and mind needs to be healthy and balanced. There are 7 primary movements or fundamental human movements, natural motions of the body, on which we should pay attention to stay fit. 
1. Pulling motion: to pull an object towards the body or the body towards the hands, e.g., you hang on a tree and pull yourself up.
2. Pushing motion: to push an object away from our body or our body away from our hands, e.g., you fall down and you need to push yourself up again.  
3. Squatting motion: to bring the hips closer to the heels and away again, e.g., you jump up or down an object.
4. Lunging motion: to step one leg far to the front and bring it back in again, e.g., you catch something need to make a step to the front/back/side. 
5. Bending motion/ Hip-hinging: to bend down forward and coming back to standing, e.g., you pick something up. 
6. Rotating/ Twisting motion: to rotate or twist the body, e.g., you throw something, also walking/running requires a twist in the torso.
7. Gaiting motion/ locomotion of the body:  to walk or run, to spring, to crawl, e.g., you move long distance/ endurance.

Now we know, what’s important to balance out the body in a physical way, just to mention, besides of the usage of the primary movements it becomes more and more important in our society to also train the mind, to learn to calm down the mind, to reduce stress and anxiety. 

Where Do We Find the Primary Fundamental Movements in Yoga?

Most of the fundamental movements are easy to find in a yoga practice. We have Chaturangas when we push ourself away from the ground – pushing motion, squatting motions in a Utkatasana, chair pose as in Malasana, deep squat and other poses. There are a lot of lunging motions in a yoga class in different varieties, Virabhadrasana, warrior poses, crescent lunge… and depending on the class and the teacher, they vary between dynamic repetitions or static holding. Of course, we always find twisting movements in different poses and in each sun salutation we do the hip- hinging/ bending motion, when you get up from Utthanasana, a full forward fold into a half forward fold and all the way up.

But now there are two movements missing, the pulling motion and the gaiting motion. 

In a pulling motion we need the muscles on our back, like the latissimus, trapezius, the rhomboids, as well as the posterior deltoids and the biceps to pull oneself up. And even though we control the back muscles in Shalabasana, in the superman pose on the ground, there is not pulling motion in yoga, except you practice aerial yoga. 

What we miss as well is the gaiting motion. Walking/running long distance to train your endurance/cardio is an essential tool to keep the cardiovascular system healthy. 

Picture of Stefanie Grace while running


Let’s put it all together and get back to the main question: Is yoga enough or do we need an additional workout?

Even though, yoga offers a huge range of benefits for the body and the mind, there are some things missing. Best way to go is to find a balance between yoga & fitness to keep the body and mind healthy all around. Here’s my personal experience: both sides benefit from each other. My yoga practice gives me mobility and flexibility which is beneficial for me in a lot of other sports and exercises. And of course, it plays a huge role in my recovery with the meditation and the stretching. My fitness practice is providing the strength and the endurance, which again is beneficial in my yoga practice. 

Since I took care to give both of them the same importance, I was able to improve so much in both of them.

It’s the balance between yoga & fitness that keeps us in balance.

(1) https://www.asirecreation.org/recreport/ask-trainer/63-ask-a-trainer-archive/302-the-fundamental-human-movements#:~:text=There%20are%20seven%20basic%20movements,muscle%20groups%20in%20your%20body. (19.02.2021)
(2) https://www.builtlean.com/primal-movement-patterns/ (19.02.2021)