Sunday, April 25, 2010

worrier or warrior?

what do you do everyday to keep your worries at bay?

every morning when we open our eyes we can make a promise to ourselves to be strong, to be happy, to be grateful and to be a warrior.

i'm still practicing daily gratitude and i make it non-negotiable to do something everyday to bring happiness and peace into my life... and that can be in the form of yoga, running, writing, blogging, reading... anything!

we can lose so much time getting caught up in the worry-cycle and we deserve better.  everyday we get a chance to shine, to make something happen, to move closer to our goals and to love ourselves a little more.  but worry just gets in the way of all that.  it holds us back.  its frustrating and keeps us bogged down with the weight of the world. 

so release your worries.  be a warrior and fight for the best life you can possibly have.  and when worries take over, consciously make the decision to mentally switch gears and remember how strong and capable you are! 

Yoga Warrior Sequence:

Saturday, April 24, 2010

happy weekend!

the weekend is here, the weekend is here!  granted it's only 7am, but how has your day been so far?  i have a feeling mine is going to be busy!

last night i had so much fun at yoga.  my first class on friday evenings is a teen class which is cool because i love to see yoga trickling into younger generations.  and how helpful would yoga have been if we ALL had it in high school, right?  i missed the boat on that one, but thankfully climbed on board soon after college.  the girls are great and we always have a good time.  my second class had a tiny turn out - 1! - because it was so beautiful out and its hard to make your way to the gym or yoga studio on gorgeous nights, so my student and i did a special rockin' yoga class that made us sweat our little hearts out. bliss.   i love sweat sesh's and yoga sesh's so combine 'em and i'm in heaven.  needless to say i slept like a baby last night after that energy release.

so hubby and i leave tomorrow for our little jaunt out east and we're super psyched.  its the perfect amount of time to kind of chill and regroup after some craziness.  we're taking our little puggle... so it's our first family trip! ha! 

something particularly cool about this trip - it's a road trip!  those words used to strike fear into my heart like no one's business!  long car ride?  yikes!  but now it just brings happiness and excitement.  i'm making a stellar playlist for the ride and picking up lots of snacks and drinks for us the cart with us because i never know what kind of food we'll find while we're away so i try to be as prepared as possible.  i'm planning on getting in some quality cardio with early morning jogs, yoga in the backyard and lots of walking. 

what do you have planned for this weekend?  hoping it's something fun!

and just to make sure the road trip stays as something fun, i'm going to indulge in lots of restorative and deep stretching yoga tonight to put me in a great mindset for the trip!  can't wait! 

Thursday, April 22, 2010


almost forgot to wish you a beautiful, happy earth day!

what can you do today for mother earth?

yoga class this morning was chock full 'o balances (for our grounding) and we did sun salutations in all four directions to honor the earth and our connection to it.

an awesome website to check out for tips on being GREEN : Gorgeously Green

some earth friendly things i do:
* recycle
*i have organic yoga clothes and an eco-friendly mat from gaiam
*i have reusable bags for food shopping and errand running
*i try to fit my purchases in my gym or hand bag rather than using the store's plastic bags
*i eat a high raw vegetarian diet (earth AND animal friendly!)
*i make my own household cleaners to limit my use of chemicals

when i have my own house, i'd love to compost and garden and hang dry my clothes outside. 

what do you do to be more green?

image source

manifest the best

hey guys - happy thursday!  its a beautiful spring day over here and i'm loving it!  been up since 4:45am and going, going, going.  i did sneak in a little nap though.  i'm a big fan of naps. 

i just finished a chocolate cherry protein shake and wanted to sneak in some blog action before heading out again to finish my day.  today's topic of choice: manifesting.  do you believe that you can manifest your own destiny or do you subscribe to the notion that everything is chance and coincidence?

i used to think about this a lot back when i was trying to heal from my panic attacks.  i wondered if i could just simply will it all away.  if i really tried hard enough, would i be able to just shift my mindset and make all anxieties go away?  nope!  i chalked it up to not having enough will power or mental strength and i forgot about it.  i hadn't thought about manifesting since i walked into a bookstore a few months ago (um, wow, months ago? way overdue for a B&N trip!)

while browsing the store a book on manifesting caught my eye. it was by dr. wayne dyer and it was all about manifesting everything you want in your life and having the power to attract things to you.  i thought it looked kind of cool so i tossed it in my basket.  since i have piles of books screaming to still be read, that one got pushed to the end of the line and once again, i forgot about manifesting! 

fast forward to this week.  the book caught my eye again!  coincidence? i think not! haha.  i grabbed it and started reading the first few pages.  i'm already intrigued.  i do actually believe you can attract 'like' power and things and people.  i do believe you can manifest your destiny.  and i think a lot of us are close.  i'm like a bossy back seat driver right now and i'm itching to just grab the wheel.  i kind of have control, but i'm not refined enough to truly be an active participant in this manifest thing. 

so i'm on the first of wayne dyer's 9 manifest principles and i'm eagerly anticipating how he lays out this game plan.  i love steps.  i love road maps for life.  the thing that i'm getting though is that these things can't be rushed.  so i plan to take my time and let the book absorb. 

what are your thoughts on manifesting your destiny and life?  are you a driver or passenger kind of person when it comes to life?  i think i'm so big on the control thing because i spent so much time not in control and just going along for the ride, accepting and settling for whatever came my way.  once i became an active person in my own life, things totally turned around.  i can only imagine the power of manifesting even more amazingness into your life!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

got gratitude?

confession time: sometimes i get so stuck in a rut that my days become automatic.  i watch the same shows, drive the same way to all my classes, take all the same classes at the same gyms/studios, eat dinner at the same restaurants and grab take out from my dependable faves.  when i'm in a jam i turn to the same dinners that i've made hundreds of times before and soon i realize that i'm in a rut and have mentally tuned out for a bit. 

ever happen to anyone else?  you just get so settled into a routine that you forget to shake it up? 

now don't get me wrong, routines can offer comfort to those of us that get shaken by change.  but when we initiate a little change into our lives every now and then we can really come to appreciate everything we're doing on a whole new level. 

i thought about this last night.  usually i watch a DVR'ed episode of Dancing with the Stars on tues night so i can fast forward all the commercials, i make a salad or some other quick dinner (because on tuesdays i've been up since 4:45am and am pretty much exhausted by the end of the day), curl up on the couch with said dinner and chill until i can't keep my eyes open anymore.  but i didn't want to get stuck in that rut.  i happen to have had the house to myself, so i poured myself a glass of vino, grabbed some delicious italian takeout complete with salad and wheat bread, lit some incense and tuned into Biggest Loser.  i felt so amazing just from those small changes that after i finished my dinner i put on PJs and relaxed into some deep stretching yoga.  i completely lost track of time and wound up practicing for 45 minutes!  something i never do anymore unless i pre-schedule it!  it was total bliss and i slept like a rock because of it. 

this morning i continued practicing this gratitude by choosing to make myself a healthy smoothie for breakfast but i got creative and tossed in all kinds of spices and fruit.  the outcome was fabulous.  i walked a different route with my pup and enjoyed the warmer spring weather and i played music while i got ready for a new yoga class i'm teaching this afternoon.  i'm feeling amazing and energized and happy with this mindset.  i'm newly aware of things because everything i did on autopilot i'm starting to sit up and take notice of... and then change!  and it doesn't have to be anything drastic.  just enough for me to be present in what i'm doing.  everything can be a treat if we let it.

here's some more things i'm grateful for:
* the time to practice so much yoga and free time to run, workout, do pilates...
* afternoons off to go to the park with my pup
* my hubby and our exciting jaunt out east this weekend
* adding more classes to my schedule and getting to meet new people at new gyms and studios, expanding myself

if a gratitude list isn't something you do, i highly suggest trying it out. journal it, write it on a sticky pad or if you have a TO DO list or agenda book just jot down one or two things each day that you're grateful for.  it really opens your eyes and cultivates a beautiful awareness that we sometimes lose as we're busy living our lives.  we all have responsibilities, we all have jobs and kids and spouses and houses and stuff ... and we owe it to ourselves to pay attention and be present and enjoy everything happening around us -even if it sometimes feels overwhelming.  think of how much stillness and calm you can bring to your life by practicing gratitude and being present. 

what are you grateful for today?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

does yoga cause you stress?

I talk so much about how great yoga is for stress and anxiety relief, but sometimes I forget to consider how stressful it can be to actually go to a yoga class - especially for those that are super new to it.

Common things that run through the beginner's mind:
* what if I look stupid doing a pose
* what if the instructor goes to fast and I can't keep up
* what if the yoga is beyond my level
* does it matter that I can't bend into a pretzel and flip my feet behind my head
* what if people laugh at me

And that's just a glimpse! I've heard every question imaginable about yoga before someone new takes a class and I've asked myself some of these as well in the beginning.

What we're forgetting is the heart of yoga. Its about you. Its about connecting your mind and body. Its about stretching out of your comfort zone, but not out of your boundaries.

The only thing you need to make sure of is that you're in a class you'll feel comfortable in. If you want stress relief and you're a beginner, you wouldn't pick a power vinyasa class. Find beginner and gentle classes by calling your local studios and gyms and never feel intimidated to ask the instructor about the flow of the class. Then roll out your mat and trust yourself.

I saw a student the other day struggling to find comfort in a pose. I approached and asked if she was feeling alright. Turns out she had some tightness in her legs and felt better not sitting crossed legged. She asked if it was ok to stretch out straight. My answer: OF COURSE. I'm just a guide in class, your body is your teacher. That's why we practice - to enhance that level of connection and awareness. After class that same student commented on how, even though she modified poses, she didn't feel judged. That's how everyone should feel! Its YOUR yoga! If an instructor pushes you past your limits and makes you feel uncomfortable, go to a different class. Yoga class shouldn't cause you stress, it should do just the opposite.

Don't be scared to experiment with different classes and teachers to find what you most connect with. Keep an open mind, go to a class that is appropriate for your level and what you're looking for and enjoy it! Ask for modifications if you need them. You wouldn't go to a new hair stylist and just let him or her cut and dye your hair without you giving any input, right? When I teach a class, I rarely create sequences beforehand anymore because my students don't fit molds. I need to draw on their energies and their abilities to create my class. Because actually, its not MY class, its always theirs!

Have you ever been stressed out by trying a new yoga class or had any of those "what if" thoughts creep in while downward dogging on the mat? Ever have a really positive experience and connection with an instructor that changed you?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

the sniffling yogini

good morning!  hope everyone is having a wonderful start to their sunday!  i definitely am.  its been officially over one week (8 days) since i caught strep throat and i'm FINALLY starting to feel better!  so fabulous.  i slept through the entire night last night and had minimal coughing both last night and this morning.  and for those of you that have had terrible colds and coughs this winter, you totally know what i mean when i say that that cough obliterated any chance of a full night's sleep.... for days!  my eyes turned a sexy shade of bloodshot around thursday.

so anyway, i decided this morning to start turning back to my old routine of eating and smoothie sipping, yoga and (super light) cardio.  gotta ease back in slowly.  so as i type this i'm sipping on a chocolate coconut hemp protein smoothie so i can gain some energy back in my beat up body and i have a date with my yoga mat at 10:30am.  i'm actually teaching the class, but its a super gentle one and i plan on indulging myself in some deep arse stretches right along with the class.  whenever i'm sick i tend to resist making adjustments on students as much as possible because i hate the idea of my germy little hands on everyone as their trying to relax.

hubby and i had kind of a crazy week and lots of things are changing so i'm calling on my yogic practices more than ever.  especially nadi sodhana.  and since we have lots going on and both of us have been on-and-off sick for the past 2 weeks we decided that we're going to spend some time together out east.  next weekend we're packing up the pup, the truck and our bags and treating ourselves to some much needed time away.  i can't wait.  visions of wooded jogging paths, fireplaces, bottles of wine and outdoor yoga dance in my head.  i'm hoping for some nice weather too.  that would be blissful.  but no matter what, i'm so pumped for this week to hurry up and go by so we can jump in the car and just go! 

what are your plans for the rest of your day?  how was your week?  i pretty much slept through mine, so fill me in on what i missed =)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

sick days

i've been battling strep throat since saturday and am steadily feeling worse.  i've been trying to push through and teach some classes, but after each class i'm pretty fried and my throat aches and burns from all the talking.  i've unfortunately had to sub out and cancel some classes.  i hate having to do that.  and it actually causes me a lot of stress.  do i cancel?  do i try to push through?  will everyone at class be let down? 

even though i feel like i'm swallowing glass, i try to be there for every class i can.  do you ever feel like that?  you're sick or having some other pressing issue you need to tend to, but you push it aside and soldier on because you're concerned with what co-workers, your boss, a friend or a student might think of you? 

doctor's orders are to stay in bed and not teach so as not to stress or hurt my throat anymore.  i'm trying not to be consumed with the "but what if everyone hates me for canceling class??" thoughts.  i'm sick.  people get sick.  things happen.  so i'm taking care of myself and making sure that i get back to 100% as soon as possible so i can once again rock my classes.  if i don't take care of myself now, i'll just get worse and wind up having to cancel or sub out more classes.  sometimes you just gotta put your health first so you can get back stronger.  -and not stress about it too much!  :)

Friday, April 9, 2010

sequence for a rainy day

i was so enjoying the warm weather and sunshine we were having - and then this morning i woke up to chilly weather and pouring rain.  i know some people totally dig the rain and find it relaxing, but i'm not one of 'em!  my morning started off with a wet walk around the block with the pup (who dislikes the rain as much as i do) and then taking care of my sick hubby.  he caught some kind of bug from all the traveling he's been doing so i made him some soft boiled eggs and loads of herbal tea to help get him through his day. i was hoping to get myself to my bikram class, but i had other things to tend to and my morning kind of slipped away from me. so i'm aiming to grab a bikram class tomorrow afternoon after i teach my morning classes. 

to make me feel better i whipped up one of my fave breakfasts ... the breakfast sundae! 

and a big 'ol mug of coffee :)

now i'm off to beat the rainy day blues with some killer cardio and yoga.  on the agenda is TurboKick (which is a sweat-fest like no other) and then some deep, restorative yoga to stretch out all the kinks. 

i'm going to start teaching TurboKick soon so i'm super pumped about that.  and the more practice i get doing it the better! 

i hope you aren't having a wash out day! 

here's the restorative sequence i'm going to enjoy:

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Present Moment Workshop™ Announcement!

Good morning loves! I'm very happy to announce the details for my next Present Moment Workshop™!

The upcoming workshop will be held on either Saturday, May 15th OR Sunday, May 16th. The studio is going to determine the date by what suits the most people signing up. Sign ups are happening now! So if you're free that weekend, I'd love to see you there! Contact and detail info for the studio, Harmony Yoga and Dance, can be found here:

WHAT: Present Moment Workshop™ - learn how to alleviate stress and anxiety by utilizing yogic practices and principles in your daily life.
WHEN: May 15th OR May 16th; time will be determined based on day
WHO: presenter Bonnie Schmidt, RYT, fitness instructor, stress + anxiety coach
WHERE: Harmony Yoga and Dance, Wantagh
COST: $60

if you're interested in learning more about how yoga can help you deal with stress and anxiety, come join me!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

gotta get GROUNDED

Hey guys! I'm currently hanging out in bed and starting to wind down from a busy day. My pup is glued to my side, resting against me and already snoring. I heart this little man!

So this morning i whipped up a raw strawberry protein smoothie and ran out to catch a spin class before my hectic day began. I was pleasantly surprised to see a new instructor. Yikes! Has it been that long since I've popped in for my (usually) normal wednesday AM spin sesh? And because its a pet peeve of mine when people walk out of a class when a new person is there (all us instructors gotta start somewhere!) I stayed and wound up having a totally killer sweat-fest. It put me in such a good mood for the rest of my day.

I wanted to share what I've been focusing my classes on this week: grounding. Whenever we're feeling stressed, anxious or just out of place we can turn to a grounding practice to help us feel connected and stable again. My classes and I have spent time creating an intention to be aware of our grounding and connections to the earth.

Some poses to help keep you connected:

I love to add balancing poses to challenge me when concentrating on keeping still and stable within my practice. Think about spreading your toes, rooting down through your feet and breathing deeply.

Try it out the next time you feel out of sorts, disconnected or anxious. See if it helps!

reason 294 why i love yoga and working out

i was just emailed this article from science daily about a recent study showing the positive effects of exercise on depression and anxiety: 

Mental Health Providers Should Prescribe Exercise More Often for Depression, Anxiety, Research Suggests

ScienceDaily (Apr. 6, 2010) — Exercise is a magic drug for many people with depression and anxiety disorders, and it should be more widely prescribed by mental health care providers, according to researchers who analyzed the results of numerous published studies.

"Exercise has been shown to have tremendous benefits for mental health," says Jasper Smits, director of the Anxiety Research and Treatment Program at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. "The more therapists who are trained in exercise therapy, the better off patients will be."

Smits and Michael Otto, psychology professor at Boston University, based their finding on an analysis of dozens of population-based studies, clinical studies and meta-analytic reviews related to exercise and mental health, including the authors' meta-analysis of exercise interventions for mental health and studies on reducing anxiety sensitivity with exercise. The researchers' review demonstrated the efficacy of exercise programs in reducing depression and anxiety.

The traditional treatments of cognitive behavioral therapy and pharmacotherapy don't reach everyone who needs them, says Smits, an associate professor of psychology.

"Exercise can fill the gap for people who can't receive traditional therapies because of cost or lack of access, or who don't want to because of the perceived social stigma associated with these treatments," he says. "Exercise also can supplement traditional treatments, helping patients become more focused and engaged."

The researchers presented their findings March 6 in Baltimore at the annual conference of the Anxiety Disorder Association of America. Their workshop was based on their therapist guide "Exercise for Mood and Anxiety Disorders," with accompanying patient workbook (Oxford University Press, September 2009). For links to more information see

"Individuals who exercise report fewer symptoms of anxiety and depression, and lower levels of stress and anger," Smits says. "Exercise appears to affect, like an antidepressant, particular neurotransmitter systems in the brain, and it helps patients with depression re-establish positive behaviors. For patients with anxiety disorders, exercise reduces their fears of fear and related bodily sensations such as a racing heart and rapid breathing."

After patients have passed a health assessment, Smits says, they should work up to the public health dose, which is 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity activity. At a time when 40 percent of Americans are sedentary, he says, mental health care providers can serve as their patients' exercise guides and motivators.

"Rather than emphasize the long-term health benefits of an exercise program -- which can be difficult to sustain -- we urge providers to focus with their patients on the immediate benefits," he says. "After just 25 minutes, your mood improves, you are less stressed, you have more energy -- and you'll be motivated to exercise again tomorrow. A bad mood is no longer a barrier to exercise; it is the very reason to exercise."

Smits says health care providers who prescribe exercise also must give their patients the tools they need to succeed, such as the daily schedules, problem-solving strategies and goal-setting featured in his guide for therapists.

"Therapists can help their patients take specific, achievable steps," he says. "This isn't about working out five times a week for the next year. It's about exercising for 20 or 30 minutes and feeling better today."


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

facing our fears

my early morning yoga classes have been going really, really well and i've come to look forward to them each week.  i kind of love waking up so early, before the sun and the hubby, and having my time to get ready and prep class or walk my pup or just relax on the couch with a mug of tea.  this morning, i found that i had 20 extra mins on my hands and i took some time to reflect on how i used to feel so much anxiety in the pre-dawn hours.  i remember when i was first asked to teach these classes and how i spent some time debating. 

would i feel anxious before every single class?

would i always dread those mornings?

would my anxiety become overbearing?

most people would wonder why i said yes!  but i said yes for a very specific reason - i love to teach.  and just because this class was early in the morning wasn't going to scare me away.  i refused to make a decision on the chance that i'd feel some anxiety.  i conquered so much... why stop now?

and i could have said "i'll teach the class after i make sure i don't have any morning anxious feelings."  but that wouldn't work, because i can't overcome something if i don't face it.  it's kind of like what i call the 'monster under the bed' situation.  as little kids, we might be petrified of a monster under our bed, but our parents know its our little kid minds in overdrive.  just like our anxiety.  we tend to feel fear sometimes over things that don't warrant such an intense reaction (like my anxiety over long car rides).  but if we don't face our fears and check out what's under the bed -which is nothing!- we'll never conquer the fear.  we'll never see that the monster that resides in our minds really doesn't exist and is just fueled by our fears. 

but we do need to be prepared.  we wouldn't just leap off the bed and take a look if someone didn't say to us "there's nothing under there, take a look for yourself."  just as you wouldn't run head first to confront something that causes you anxiety if you didn't know how to yet work through your anxiety. 

we always need to take baby steps to confront our anxieties, but we also need to know how to calm our fears and stress before we have the ability to face our fears and ride out our anxiety.  we need to understand what a panic attack is and why it won't hurt us before we feel confident enough to work through one. 

so i'm glad i said yes to teaching these classes because i'm having a blast doing them.  and every class i teach and don't feel that tiny little itch of anxiousness is a success for me.  granted, i've had a lot of practice working through things that make me anxious!  (the list was long!) but even if i did feel intense fear when having to teach this class, what better way to alleviate it than to teach it and see that i can do it! i have the ability to work through my feelings, face my fears and come out on the other side even stronger. 

i always like to celebrate a success! 

always consult a physician or professional before introducing something new if you have any questions or concerns. 

Friday, April 2, 2010

serving up some green

good morning loves!  we're having some awesome weather lately... we were waaay overdue! 

i'm so excited - hubby comes home tonight!  he's been away all week and the casa has been fairly quiet without him.  however, i did get treated to lots of meals from mom and dad and definitely had a blast with girls night in (margaritas and champagne!).  so all in all i kept pretty busy.  i have a date with a friend at the dog park today so i'm quickly checking in to see how your friday is going and then head out to run some errands.  need to stock that fridge back up!

so this morning i went to breakfast with my dad and before we left i whipped us BOTH up a green smoothie. 

                                                                                                   in went:
2 heaping handfuls of spinach
1 pear
1 apple
tsp agave
hemp protein powder

i enjoyed a huge glass of the green stuff and dad managed to down half a glass.  he actually admitted that it wasn't so bad.  he was a bit turned off by the green, thick looking liquid, but i pumped it up with so much sweet fruit that he didn't mind drinking it and said he would (if it was pre-made for him!) continue to drink them.  small victory!  i doubt he'll be making 'em at home, but hey, he still tried it - and liked it.


and today has also been the first week of my super early wake up calls.  when i have my early yoga classes i'm up at 4:45am and on all the other days i'm up at 5:30am and i've felt little to no stress in the mornings.  i revamped my routine and it worked beautifully.  why didn't i think of this sooner!  i'm so glad i took the time to really commit to figuring out what it was about the morning that still caused me some anxious feelings every now and again.  now mornings are laid back and stress-free and i'm loving it!  did you dissect any anxieties this week or take some time to think of ways to help ease your stress when faced with something that causes you anxiety?  if so, do tell! 

so what's on your weekend agenda?  i'm looking forward to QT with the hubby, possibly hitting up a bikram yoga class, getting my sweat on with turbokick (i start teaching it soon!) and massive amounts of choreography and sequencing for my yoga classes.  i have lots 'o playlists to tend to.  sounds like bliss to me. 

by the way ... anyone read gabrielle brick's article on raw food? anyone try the smoothie? or want to??

Thursday, April 1, 2010

happy april!

Ah spring weather is around the corner and I'm starting to get really excited about it! Visions of flip flops and tank tops dance in my head.

As I am getting ready to head out to my 7am yoga gig, I like to check up on blogs via my life line (aka blackberry) and I came across a super interesting one I wanted to share with you. Its brought to us by gabrielle brick, a rockin' raw food guru that I was introduced to through a TV show on "extreme" diets. I feel the need to include quotes because I don't think raw food is really, terribly extreme... But I digress...

So anyway - love, love, love this chick and I saw her guest blog on Crazy Sexy Life on raw foods and superfoods (if you don't know what a superfood is she explains it in the blog). What made me want to post it is that she mentions raw, superfoods that aid in relieving depression. I know I haven't touched on it a lot, but depression and anxiety go kind of hand in hand. I don't know which one comes first -if anxiety causes you to be depressed or depressed feelings cause anxiousness - but either way depression can hit too close to home for some of us going through anxiety. Gabrielle credits raw food for helping her overcome her depression and I'm the first to say a high raw diet helps keep anxious feelings and stomach issues away for me, so I wanted to share. Its brief, but informative - and there's a superfood, raw smoothie recipe in there to boot! Now who doesn't love that!? AND depression-relieving superfoods are in it.

So check it out and see why I'm kinda in love with raw foods. And while I'm not 100% at following the diet, every little bit counts. To obtain the benefits of a raw diet, one should be at least 60% raw. I try to use that as a guide (moderation!) And kickin' off my day with her smoothie sounds awesome. I can't wait to try it. Let me know what you think if you try it too!