I did it – YTT 250 over and out!

Yes! I did it, I finished my 250hr YTT at Yoga Tree in Toronto!! It was an amazing experience and although I was overwhelmed at first, it slowly just all made sense and I am so happy I made the decision to finally jump in and start training. My training was all day Saturday and Sunday, spread out over 3 months. I’m really happy I took it this way rather than the intensive one month program because with all the new things we were learning and the homework, weekdays were much needed to fully absorb it all.

I was grateful that my program covered many things: anatomy, ashtanga, hot yoga, restorative, yin, prenatal, philosophy, kids yoga. I had the time to go through each practice and have an experiences teacher guide me through it. I learned that kids yoga is actually really hard and probably not for me lol!


It was great to brush up on my anatomy as well. I did the basic highschool science and biology courses, but this experience was totally different than that. I was immersed in the body and how it functions, and completley drawn to learning more about it. We applied the things we learned about muscles and bones to yoga poses as well and the benefits of each. It was so helpful.

The main thing I loved about this program was all of the hands on adjustments and teaching they had us do. There were os many teaching exercises from the start, like day one, really! We had just learned Surya Namaskara A + B and were asked to try and teach it to the class. That would have been so nerve wracking but my classmates were amazing – we all clicked and and worked together well. The exercises became harder during the end, teaching a full class to someone, or guiding one person at the front into a pose. The best thing is that we really had the chance to see the growth in each person. By the end of the program, everyone was teaching so much better and our voices grew and sounded more confident as we added our own styles.

I’m amazed at how much I learned and how much I have grown mentally and physically. I have discovered a better me and one that makes me happy, and I’m thrilled to see all the opportunities that have come about already! My chaturangas are stronger than ever as well, so that’s pretty cool too. It’s a wonderful way to start off the new year.

I am scheduled to teach my first class at Yoga Tree, it is a hot yoga class at 3:30 on January 30th! Join me if you’re free 😉



New life changes with YTT

Isn’t it funny how different life can be in only 3 years? For me it’s totally different – a new lifestyle, new goals, new career changes, and it all has been slightly terrifying I must admit. Sitting at my computer working full time building website after website, I thought that was what I wanted to do forever. I loved it but at the same time, it was becoming static and my posture and body were also suffering for it. Developing carpal tunnel, bad eyesight and a hunched back, I was constantly in and out with my chiropractor who told me to take up pilates and yoga! I tried a few classes, and started becoming inspired by friends and people online to self practice as well.

I bought my first yoga mat and was on a mission to learn to do a headstand. I practiced prep postures and my headstand everyday, and after a month I felt it. That little burst of strength mixed into a sense of balance I have never felt before. Even though I toppled over less than a second after, I felt this intense feeling of joy, progress and accomplishment. Ananda : pure bliss. I was hooked after that. (I also learned to practice Aparigraha : non-attachment – because I didn’t get my headstand for a whiiiile :P) I was constantly practicing at home though, any chance I had!

I began my Instagram yoga page @asanavanessa October 2015 – so it has been just over 2 years since I started sharing my journey online. I was always pretty flexible, but never had an ounce of strength in my life – and hate lifting weights and working out at a gym. This huge community of global Insta-yogis made me feel comfortable and I ended up learning a lot about myself. To be more kind, patient, and change my lifestyle for a healthier way of living (I still indulge). But MAINLY deciding to put my full-time Web Dev career on hold for a more part-time position to take a chance and head into my Yoga Teacher Training!


@yogatreestudios where I am completing my training!

At first it was scary, waves of regret would wash over me, like am I making a huge mistake!?! But then this feeling of ease would overcome me and I would tell myself “no, you were meant to teach yoga, and maybe you can help someone else fall in love with the feeling of the practice too!” 

The date crept up pretty quickly and there I was, in my TT sitting there with 20 other people who also decided to take this huge leap in life. I haven’t posted too much about my first few weeks but so far I REGRET NOTHING! 😀 I can’t believe how scared I was to just listen to my heart – as cheesy as that sounds – and just believe in myself. I can do this, I can teach – I may suck at teaching now, LOL, but I am passionate to learn, and grow and challenge myself constantly to be a better teacher. And that is my current mantra to repeat to myself because wow, is it an overwhelming training filled with so much amazingness to learn.


My amazing yogi friend @queeniephair who inspires me everyday!!

I am going to write a separate post about my experience in the training – COMING UP SOON. But all I can say is I can’t wait to see what the next 2 years hold.

I bet it is going to be life defining.


Recharging with Pranamat ECO

After practicing intermediate bends quite frequently through the week my muscles and body get quite sore and stiff. I love to roll out my muscles on a cork roller first and then use my Pranamat ECO, which is a therapeutic massage mat with tiny little lotus shaped points that activate fatigued or tense areas of the body. I was so excited to try this mat out and I have been using it for about a month now, with my partner using it too!


I like to use it before or after my yoga workout because either have different outcomes depending on how I am feeling. I use it before my practice if I need some energy and want to feel awake and loosen up my muscles! The second I lay down on it I am aware of all the points that are touching me, and my skin starts to tingle a bit. It is kind of like a pleasure and pain when you first start using it, and then your body sinks in and you can relax.

After a workout is a different story because usually I am feeling relaxed and soft already, but since I practice so many bends, sometimes my back really slightly sore. If I lay on the Pranamat for a few minutes it activates those sore muscles and helps ease the circulations around them to feel better faster.

I also love to stand on the mat too and can last for about 5 minutes. The key is to even out your weight on the mat, if you are ticklish then it might be a bit harder for you at first! My preferred method to use it is always on my back and butt though, it seems to benefit these areas more for me and the feeling after is just so amazing. I can relax on my back now for about 15 minutes, only 2 when I first started. My back definitely feels much less tense and more relaxed before and after my work outs and I feel like my skin looks tighter and happier. These little prickly lotus points are speaking to my skin cells, pushing them to wake up and work! You can see the shapes it leaves behind on my back, it looks like star constellations in a far away galaxy.


My cat seems to like it too… or maybe he just loves the box 😉 which I must say is a clever design because I can tuck my mat right back into it. It is also really cute to see the little lotus flowers and the turquoise colour I choose when I look at the front of the box.

Check out Pranamat ECO at pranamat.com to read more uses and features of the mat, and you can see their Instagram to see the mat in action!




Phair : BROGA at PeterPan Bistro

Of course when my friends Jonathan and Queenie Phair said they were teaching a YOGA + BRUNCH at a restaurant I had been dying to go to, I said YES immediately. Mostly because… food – but also mostly because I had done an hour of the Phair’s yoga sesh before and it was intense and a new experience for me! Anyone who has taken this class will know what I’m talking about. This one was the same, from the first ten minutes, they had us warming up our wrists in the hardest ways possible! We fully just jumped right into it doing high planks on the flip side of our hands, a warm up I will be using from now on because even though in the moment it hurt, they feel so much stronger the day after already and feel like they can handle a lot more impact!


We flowed to some amazing music, a more chill electronic style. It was amazing because there were a lot of familiar faces there including lovely Su and Mike, and also THE Brian bchanwarrior and lovely Arin who I had the chance to meet at the BYOGA community collective event! I brought my B-Mat which was perfect for this practice because it was a sweaty one. So many warrior flows, I sure felt the burn.



We did a little partner work too, supporting the others ankles while they are in a plank, teaching them to lift up into a handstand. My wrist were beat by this point to be honest but we all pushed through it because there was too much to learn and absorb in such little time! Also I just need to mention that Queenie and Jonathan are beasts and can do crow pushups – they just effortlessly float into handstand – GOALS for real!

We took a little savasana at the end and Su explained a little about her KEY Education project which is incredible and I will have to write more about it in another post but for now you can learn about it here


Then the smell of food started to waft in as the doors opened. I smelled potatoes. There were potatoes. And also the most amazing assortment of unique dishes like Shakshuka, Lebneh, Frittata, Latkes, French Toast – it just goes on – scones, quinoa salad – SO GOOD! I also had to have a Mimosa with Brunch because it was well deserved! We all sat down and ate, chatted, learned more about each other until it was time to go home!

Most people went home but I stayed behind with a few to take some photos in the beautiful PeterPan space. To say I wish this was my apartment couldn’t be more true. I would live there in a heart beat. My bf martin stopped by to say hi to everyone and snap a few pics of some extra stuffed yoga bellies before we all walked home together.



What a lovely event, I love when I get to connect with so many amazing people and we can all flow and eat in the same room! Can’t wait for the next!!!