2014
09.11

Kish Modha: Retirement

Former VP of Administration and Human Resources at Mondetta Clothing, Kish Modha, has recently announced his retirement from the company though he will retain his role as President and Chairman of the Mondetta Charity Foundation, which he founded in 2006.

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As uncle to original partners, Ash and Prashant Modha, Kish was an early, and ardent, supporter of his nephews’ entrepreneurial spirit and could be relied upon to lend a vehicle, make loans/investments or provide guidance the young fellows, and their two friends Raj and Amit Bahl, so direly needed to make a go of the business they’d started. Plus, given his years of experience as a professional photographer, he was also able to ensure their first forays into editorial photography had the right look and feel the company wished to create.

Originally from Uganda, Kish, his wife, Divya, and the rest of his family was expelled from the only land they had ever called home. Prior to the dramatic events of 1972 under then dictator, Idi Amin, Kish had recently begun his career as a national parks game warden at Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda having realized his life-long dream of working with the animals he so dearly loved as a child. Although leaving East Africa was difficult, Kish embraced the challenge and ventured West as a humanitarian refugee eventually settling on the US Eastern Seaboard.

Those first few years were difficult, to say the least: Working odd jobs to make ends meet, he and Divya were suddenly thrust into a new world drastically different from their home. But they endured and, in 1975, decided to travel north to Canada where other family members had already settled. Upon arriving in Winnipeg, Kish was offered an opportunity to turn what was once a passionate hobby, photography, into a profession by opening a photo studio in the northern community of Thompson, MB where, against all odds, he found success as a small business owner.

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Several years later, he and Divya would return to Winnipeg where they would eventually open another three photography studio outlets, all of which flourished until the dawn of the digital age eventually forced Kish to shutter his last studio in 2005. Coincidentally at that time, Mondetta’s previous general manager was compelled to leave his position due to health reasons which allowed Kish to seamlessly transition to that role, a post that would ultimately become, as aforementioned, Vice President of Administration and Human Resources.

These days, Kish’s enduring passion remains the MCF, the achievements of which have been nothing short of remarkable. In Kampala, Uganda, the MCF has adopted a primary school in one of the city’s largest slums, Kamwokya Primary School. There, the MCF has made vast improvements to the kitchen, installed classroom partitions, constructed a play structure on the campus and, at present, is building an extra wing to provide additional classrooms for a rapidly expanding student body. In neighbouring Kenya, the MCF provides assistance to an orphanage in Lamu that currently tends to and cares for 52 children ranging in age from 1 month to 3 years old.

MCF Kish Picture

Locally, Kish continues to remain active across a wide variety of voluntary and philanthropic pursuits and was awarded the ‘Humanitarian of the Year Award’ by the Indo-Canadian Chamber of Commerce and the ‘Unsung Hero’ award by the India Association of Manitoba in recognition of his efforts to tirelessly improve the lives of others.

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Always affable and all too eager to offer a warm greeting to every member on our staff, Kish will be missed at the office. But of course, we wish him the very best as he embarks upon the next chapter of his life and realize that our loss will be to the benefit of both the local and international community.

Good luck, Kish!

2014
09.03


by Sadie Nardini, founder of Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga, author of the 21-Day Yoga Body (Random House) and MPG Ambassador

As someone who has lost 40 pounds doing yoga, and also created the exact style of yoga, Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga that often gives yogis more weight loss and fitness results a—than other yoga styles including a lean, toned body.

As an a anatomy and yoga movement expert, who travels the world at the top levels, I designed CSV Yoga to do a few things that are unique and, I feel, make it a more targeted approach when you want to optimize your body composition and get your Zen on too:

*Activates your Deep Core Body Muscle Meridian: a line of muscles that spark more calorie burn and usage during the yoga session.

*Stimulates more heat, better digestion and better detoxification.

*Builds more comprehensive lean muscle mass, so you burn more fat and calories, even while you sleep!

*Is anatomically optimal so you can move more strongly without as much risk of strain or injury.

Yes, yoga can be one of the worst ways to lose weight, but it can also be one of the best. It all depends on the type you choose.

However, though this yoga style will trim and tone you, I advocate that a smaller number on the scale is not always better, nor healthier. Fit is the new skinny! . I happen to be built like a telephone pole, but Iʼve been 15 pounds lighter than this, and I didnʼt look well. I invite students to become fit and strong and toned–and at a proper weight for their frame, juicy to beanpole, and everything in-between. This is always a part of any discussion about yoga as a tool for inner and outer physical fitness.

I am also not just about the superficial body and am interested in how to stimulate all our systems to get more circulation, nerve flow, lymph cleaning, anti-aging, immunity and healing. And, I’m definitely proponent of a physically-based practice that leads students into other life lessons as they move.

Thatʼs why if you watch my latest Yoga for Weight Loss, or any, video of mine, or sit in a room with me in person, youʼll always hear a full spectrum of benefits you can receive from the time youʼve joined me, from calorie burn and weight loss to weight maintenance and whole body tone, but thatʼs not all.

I also mention that if you need to lose weight, then you can do it with this style. If you donʼt, thereʼs always “weight” to drop on other levels–stress, tension, old constrictive stories, toxins and anything else blocking you from being in your inherent state of healthy vitality and inner balance.

And, by the way, when I began yoga, I came for the workout, and I left before savasana. I wanted my body to look like the yoga body. Period. I would no more have meditated or read the Sutras than the man in the moon.

Of course, as I became more strong in my body, and transformed it, I also became more healthy, happy, confident, and calm. I started with a deep concern about my outer shape, and progressed into a profound interest in my own well-being and living the other beyond-backfat principles of yoga.

 

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And yes, I learned to meditate, and (usually) like it.

The physical gateway got me into yoga. Then yoga seeped in, and here I am today, teaching millions of people about the whole enlightening, empowering, transformative enchilada that a Hatha yoga practice offers them.

If you peruse my over 300 free videos on YouTube, youʼll see all sorts of topics, from how to breathe more deeply, to insomnia, quick meditations, power smoothies for energy, the meaning of OM, Core Strength, and–yep–weight loss.
I hear from virtual viewers all the time that they never thought of trying yoga until they found a video they needed for some issue or ailment, like dropping some unwanted pounds or de-stressing.

I havenʼt covered every doorway in, but I full well know that some people are attracted through the body. And–why the hell not?

In my opinion, to try any fitness program, yoga or otherwise, for the sole purpose of losing weight, in a country whose obesity and diet-related illnesses are skyrocketing, is something we should all encourage.

If you are seeking a powerful weight loss routine that has additional benefits, then yoga can be a perfect fit!

Just the act of coming to the mat, whatever oneʼs intention, shows a spark of self- nourishment, a seed of self-esteem and the root of courage that we as teachers have committed to help grow, whatever the surface desire might seem at first.

Not to mention that being sick and depressed, too-overweight and out-of-balance are some of the first obstacles that we as practitioners must aim to improve if we want to be able to optimally focus on the deeper layers of our being.

Itʼs not always possible, but, when it is under oneʼs control, when oneʼs habits are causing dukkha, or suffering, anxiety and stress on the system, then it is quite appropriate to target those areas, and shift them into more sukha, or ease in the body, mind, and heart—outside and in.

Here’s how!:

Try a 10-minute Yoga for Weight Loss video practice with me that gives you the benefits of 20 minutes of most yoga in just 10!

Or my 20-Minute Yoga for Fatburning & Weight-loss Yoga Sequence with 3 million views and counting!

2014
08.08

By Colin O’Brady

Five years ago today I was on a beach in Thailand when disaster struck and my life was forever changed. Would I ever walk again?

Growing up I always dreamed of traveling around the world. Through high school and college I worked every summer painting houses so that when I graduated from college I could take a year to travel around the world. It was 2007 and I headed off on what was to be an epic adventure of wandering and self-exploration. My budget allowed only the basics; peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cheap hostels, and hitchhiking to save on bus fare. The first few legs of my trip took me to Hawaii, Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Brunei, Malaysia, and then, five months into the trip came Thailand…

David and I watching the sunset go down on that fateful night. Little did we know at the time, life was about to change forever.

I traveled alone before I hit Thailand. My childhood friend, David Boyer, had been traveling in Southeast Asia, and so we decided to meet up for a couple weeks of fun together. After experiencing the hustle and bustle of Bangkok for a few days, we decided to head for the more relaxed and pristine island of Koh Tao.

We’d been on the island for a few days, and on the fateful night of January 14th, 2008 we were having dinner with some fellow travelers at a beachside restaurant. Each night on the island we had watched the Thai people fire dance and entice the travelers to play various fire-fueled games on the beach. Hindsight is 20/20, of course, and in retrospect I would have never made the same decision, but with fire dancing being commonplace, I thought nothing of it when the restaurant staff set up a 20 foot long flaming jump rope, soaked in kerosene and set a blaze to entertain their patrons. I followed the crowd of intrigued travelers as we all tried our hands at jumping this flaming rope.

Lying in bed in Koh Samui, David in the background keeping a watchful eye on me

Lying in bed in Koh Samui, David in the background keeping a watchful eye on me

One second I was skipping rope, carefree as a kid on a summer day, and in an instant I was face down on the sand engulfed in flames to my neck. I felt the burning of fire all over my body, and in a moment of pure instinct and adrenaline, I picked myself up and ran full speed into the ocean extinguishing the flames. Still not quite comprehending what had just happened, I made my way back to the sandy beach. Even though the flames had been extinguished the burning sensation seemed to be growing in intensity. As I stepped out of the water I looked down for the first time and I saw the damage. Charred and dead skin hung off of my legs as the salt water dripped down my unrecognizably bloody limbs.

“David, I’m going into shock…help…please do something!”

David’s first instinct was to get some ice, but with nearly every inch of both legs and feet burned, we were well beyond the point of ice being of any use. A Thai man from the restaurant appeared on a motorcycle and told both David and I to get on. Gingerly, David lifted me up on the bike, and wrapped my bleeding legs around the driver’s waist. David sat behind me and the motorcycle drove us down a bumpy dirt path. I was assuming he was taking us to the hospital, but when we arrived ten excruciating minutes later in front of a small hut I was not so sure. It turned out there was no “hospital” on the entire island, and this small nursing station was the closest thing Koh Tao had. They carried me inside and laid me on a table to assess the damage.

My face says it all. Pure pain each day as they rewrapped my legs in new bandages.

My face says it all. Pure pain each day as they rewrapped my legs in new bandages.

I was barefoot and just wearing board shorts and a tee shirt when the flames engulfed me. Not only were my legs fried, but also the synthetic material of my clothes was melted as well. The Thai nurse reached for a pair of scissors to cut the fabric off of me. As the cuts were made David and the nurses braced themselves. They expected that my entire body from the neck down looked just as bad as my legs. As the clothes came off the first look of hope registered on David’s face. My legs were in bad shape, and my right hand was burned, but the rest of my body had somehow been spared.

As I’ve relived the memory, the best assessment I can make is that I tripped on the rope while I was jumping and as a result the rope got wrapped around my legs and feet. The rope had been soaked in kerosene to then be lit on fire, and the impact of my body sprayed the excess kerosene all over me from head to toe. I grabbed the rope with my right hand to free myself, which explains the burns on my hand. People who saw the accident confirm that when I was running toward the ocean I seemed to be engulfed in flames up to my neck. However because of my haste in getting to the water, my torso was spared from burning, and as a result my life was saved. Had the water been even a few more seconds away, or my shirt burned through the statistics show that 50-75% burns to the body in a developing country have an extremely high mortality rate due to infection. As it was I suffered what they call “deep mid-dermal second degree” burns to 22% of my body, primarily on my legs and feet. My left foot suffered 3rd degree burns.

The small nursing station on Koh Tao had only enough resources to bandage me up, keep me alive overnight and get me ready for a transfer to the hospital on Koh Samui, a neighboring island two hours away by boat. Unfortunately, they informed us that the next boat did not leave for 12 hours and that we had no choice but to wait. Thankfully they had penicillin and morphine to get me through the night. I was scared beyond belief as we awaited the boat. Even though David must have been scared out of his mind himself, he never showed any sign of weakness. Instead he did everything he possibly could to get me through the ordeal, including holding me in his arms that first night as I writhed in pain and fear. I am forever grateful for the bravery of my dear friend.

Riding in the tiny medical airplane. Only enough room for me, the doctor, my Mom and the pilot.

Riding in the tiny medical airplane. Only enough room for me, the doctor, my Mom and the pilot.

The next morning, with both legs bandaged from my toes to my hips, I was carried into the back of a pickup truck, and then loaded onto the boat headed for Koh Samui. This was not a special medical boat, it was just the normal transfer boat full of everyday passengers. We knew my situation was critical, but having no context for the seriousness of burn accidents, we did not realize that when I checked into that hospital in Samui, I would be living out of a hospital room without the use of my legs for the next month.

Although the Koh Samui hospital had much more infrastructure than the nursing station in Koh Tao, it was quite honestly not sufficiently equipped for handling this serious of an injury. The hospital informed us that they primarily deal with immediate care for scuba dive accidents on the island and injuries related to motorcycle accidents. In the first week I was there, I was put fully under for a procedure conducted eight times so they could scrub and treat the wounds. Each time I woke up in the intensive care unit, there was a cat running around my bed. The pain and medicine kept me from thinking clearly, and I imagined that I was getting proper care.

My mother arrived on the fifth day and brought a much needed maternal fresh perspective. She immediately saw that while the hospital team had kept me alive, I was spiraling downward. She surveyed all of the available options and although I could not fly internationally due to my condition, they figured I could fly to an international hospital in Bangkok. It took days of fighting with the insurance companies but she finally won my release and I was transferred via a medical aircraft to the Bumrungrad International Hospital in Bangkok.

Finally things began to look up. The standard of healthcare at the Bumrungrad International Hospital in Bangkok was as good, if not better than any western hospital. I had my own room, the doctors were highly trained, and my Mom was allowed to sleep beside me in a cot as I lay there and recovered.

Making good on my pledge, I asked the hospital for some weights to begin my training, while still stuck in the Bangkok hospital unable to walk.

Making good on my pledge, I asked the hospital for some weights to begin my training, while still stuck in the Bangkok hospital unable to walk.

Nearly a month passed by and I still had not taken a single step. I passed my days lying in bed talking to my Mom. She was amazing, keeping my brain occupied as my body tried to heal. One day we got on the topic of what I was going to do after I got released from the hospital and was allowed to fly back the USA. I told her “I am going to race a triathlon.” Keep in mind I had never raced a triathlon in my life up to this point, I hadn’t walked in a month, and my leg muscles were so atrophied my calves were the size of my wrists. The doctors had been telling me that they didn’t know if I would ever regain full range of motion in my legs, and thus would have a hard time walking for the rest of my life. As my mother told me later, she just nodded kept me talking about triathlon and thought “Oh baby, I just hope you walk again.” We talked more and more about how I was going to train, and get my body back to 100%. I fixated on this idea, and visualized myself strong again swimming, biking and running.

After over a month in Thai hospitals, I was released in a wheel chair to fly back to the USA, where I was treated at the Legacy Emanuel Burn Center of Excellence under the care of Dr. Joseph Pulito in Portland. It would still be another month at home as an outpatient before I relearned to walk, and a full year of rehab before I gained proper range of motion. I was treated at the Legacy Emanuel Burn Center of Excellence under the care of Dr. Joseph Pulito. Through this entire time, I never stopped thinking about my pledge to race a triathlon.

On the one-year anniversary of the accident, I was working in Chicago as a commodities trader. I decided I was ready to begin my training. I joined a gym, and set my sights on racing the Olympic distance Chicago Triathlon in August 2009 (only 19 months after the accident). I slowly got stronger, and enjoyed the process of seeing my leg muscles respond from their atrophied state.

Race day came around and I was feeling great. Finding myself at the start line, I was about to complete the pledge I had made to my Mom in Thailand. I was proud to have never given up hope even when I couldn’t walk. The results of that day were beyond anything I could have imagined. I surprised myself and many others as I won the overall amateur title at the 2009 Chicago Triathlon, beating all 4257 other racers.

Brian Gelber, CEO of Gelber Group a Chicago based trading firm, had become a mentor of mine while I was working in Chicago. After my success at the Chicago Tri, and also qualifying for the Age Group World Championships in Budapest, Hungary the following summer, Mr. Gelber encouraged me to pursue the sport full time and got on board becoming my first sponsor without whom I wouldn’t have had a chance at pursuing my dream of racing as a professional.

A shot of my legs upon my return stateside. It was over a year until my skin was stable enough to be exposed to sunlight.

A shot of my legs upon my return stateside. It was over a year until my skin was stable enough to be exposed to sunlight.

As a swimmer growing up I had always dreamed of competing in the Olympics. To me representing the USA on that great stage is the biggest accomplishment possible in sports. Triathlon has given me a new avenue to pursue my lifelong goal of competing in the Olympics. This year will be my third year racing triathlon professionally, now representing the USA on the international ITU circuit.

I would never wish the pain and suffering I experienced with my burns on anyone. However I often wonder if perhaps it was a blessing in disguise for me. It would have been easy to give up in the face of such adversity, but instead having my strength and health taken from me, made me appreciate my body and life so much more. Having overcome that obstacle, I don’t see any setback in my life being insurmountable. When my body is exhausted on the racecourse and everything hurts, I remember the pain of the burns and tell myself this pain from running hard is not so bad. Perspective is everything.

My legs have healed well, and after five years there are only faint traces of the scaring. The human body is truly amazing.

My legs have healed well, and after five years there are only faint traces of the scarring. The human body is truly amazing.

My goal of representing the USA at the 2016 Olympics is paramount in my life. Everyday I wake up and train with the goal of reaching that end. However, with the fifth anniversary of my accident passing, I have spent more time than usual talking and thinking about the events that changed the course of my life.

As a result I have a new aim to run parallel to my Olympic goal: I plan to give back to those who have experienced this type of trauma, and feel that life may not be worth living. I know firsthand the depression and doubt that can come from this type of tragedy. However, I also have experienced the resilience of the human body and spirit. I have been in contact with several burn foundations and groups, in hopes of sharing my story to inspire those who feel like giving up. It gives me more strength than ever to know that not only am I racing for Running Burn Blogmy own goals, but also I am racing to encourage those whose lives have been derailed by pain and suffering.

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2014
07.28

MPG Fall 2014

Women’s Collection

The MPG Fall 2014 Women’s Collection continues the previous season’s approach by dividing the line into activity-specific capsules including RUN/ACTIVE, YOGA, DANCE/LIFESTYLE and COMMUTER. As always, inspiration has been gleaned from fashion runways to ensure MPG remains at the forefront of creating collections that are infused, and elevated beyond the norm, with cutting edge design and styling.

RUN/FITNESS

Intended for running and medium to high-intensity workout such as CrossFit, PDX, Spinning and myriad other activities that push the human body to its limits, the RUN/ACTIVE capsule features embossed python patterns, mesh accent details, concealed reflectivity and a striking mottled, non-pattern conforming plaid/geometric print. The palette includes on-trend black and white with an apple green for strategic high-contrast pop accents.

LT47-Push-green-F  LT54-Soul-Mandarin-F LT98-Select-White-W
LT80-Zoey-front-charcoal  LB99-Strut-Front LO15-Jasmine-white-F

YOGA

Pieces in the YOGA capsule, as expected, are loose draping for relaxed silhouettes, ideal for studio classes in any form of yoga. The print story features a first-time foray into a captivating and majestic landscape print that integrates the capsule’s three main hues: zinfandel, mandarin and text blue. The result are pieces that are not only comfortable to wear but are also interesting and unique. Cover-ups are constructed from a wool blend for added warmth perfect for traveling to and from class.

LT52-Flow-Blue-F  LT55-Jiva-f LT99-Annex-Zinfandel-F
LB02D-Perspective-LandscapePrint-F  LB96-Reach-RunPlaidPrint-F LB96A-Reach-YogaPlaidPrint-F

DANCE/LIFESTYLE

Our most casual and versatile capsule, the LIFESTYLE collection features featherweight tanks accented with burnout lace for an added touch of playful femininity in addition to lightweight and airy rayon-terry coverups. The pieces herein are meant to be mixed and matched with both the active pieces found in other capsules as well as with casual items such as jeans, blazers or your go-to fall boots. The palette herein is comprised of zinfandel, blue grass, oatmeal and heather charcoal.

LT75-Fiona-HeatherOatmeal-F  LT73-Portia-Zinfandel-F LT68-Epiphany-f-bluegrass
LT19A-Kate-coral-f  LB77-Carouse-HeatherCharcoal-F LB30-Maia-f-ink

COMMUTER

For the woman on the go, the COMMUTER capsule remains subtle above all else: reflective accents have been cleverly obscured and the palette remains true to that theme with black, charcoal and dark olive tones. Outerwear pieces are element resistant while the bottoms feature a herringbone jacquard and tops a warm thermal brushed jersey.

LO09-Lane-Black-F  LT89-Tempest-olive-F
LB38-Explore-Black-F  LB24-Urban-Black-Front

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

BURNOUT WASH

Lazy Sundays, to and from the gym or other relaxed environs, the BURNOUT WASH styles adopt the Comfort is Key ethos in its approach. Slim-fit sweatpants, which have exploded over the past year, are prominently featured while tops are ruched, slouchy and possess an innate wearability.

LT96W-Esprit-f-zinfandel  LT91W-Innocence-HeatherOatmeal-F1 LT74W-Illusion-f-black
Lb60P-Scrunch-Black-F  LT62-Temerity-HeatherCharcoal-F LB94-Patience-HeatherCharcoal-F

SEAMLESS

Jacquard and pigment dye is the story for seamless this season with colours that are elegantly mixed in combinations of purple cactus, text blue and charcoal. Intended as underpinnings or paired with cover-ups, the tops could also be used for hot yoga. Seamless construction, as always, allows for maximum comfort in any setting or during any activity.

LT59J-Mist-F  LT91J-Panorama-f LT90J-Vivacity-f
LB45J-Exist-Zinfandel-F  LT60J-Cosmo-Blue-F LB46J-Bijou-Black-F

Men’s Collection

Our Men’s 2014 Collection builds on the steps forward made in Spring by continuing to remain performance-oriented yet infused with even more stylistic flourishes and a dash of gentlemanly flair. The result is a complete collection, divided among activity-specific capsules, that is sophisticated, functional and fashion forward. The palette has been updated with two strong blue tones, prince and deep navy, zinfandel and orange. Silhouettes have been refined to be slimmer and streamlined, echoing prevalent market trends, and provide a tailored approach to men’s active. Especially exciting is the inclusion of slim sweatpants which have exploded on fashion capital runways and continue to be at the forefront of both active and casual men’s wear. Capsules this season include RUN/ACTIVE, LIFESTYLE, COMMUTER and CORE.

MT20-Command-Navy-f  MT21-Mandate-Grey-F MT52-Fore-Blue-f
MT17-Dominate-Navy-f  MT74-Exeter-Oatmeal-F MT73-Richmond-Zinfandel-f
MB27-Actuate-navy-f  MB29-Physique-Navy-F
MB18-Weston-f  MB25-Broadway-black-f
2014
07.07

The following is a guest blog written by MPG Messenger and Yoga Instructor, Britta Trubridge.

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“Every flow has its ebb.” – French Proverb

Life ebbs and flows and we all find ourselves in the lower vibration of an ebb from time to time. An ebb can be something as simple as a period of introspection or recharging or something as soul shaking as the loss of a loved one and the mourning thereafter. There is nothing wrong with periods of low vibrations, and it is important to remember that there is beauty and wisdom in all of life’s tides and often it is when we struggle against them that we cause ourselves unnecessary pain. However, it is not uncommon to find ourselves subconsciously recreating a pattern of low vibration, in turn getting our energies “stuck” in an ebb and as a result creating unnecessary long-term mental, physical and spiritual discomfort.

You know this has happened when you recognize the desire to reconnect and get the energies flowing again but seem to have forgotten how. If this has happened to you or someone you know remember first and foremost not to judge or be angry at yourself (this will only perpetuate the cycle) and rather bare in mind that you are not alone in this and there are steps that you can take to begin to regain your power. Below are a few techniques I have found that if actively applied really help to raise the inner energies and improve mental well-being.

Get into nature

Set your intention to connect, release and recharge through nature. Go for a hike, lay on the beach, sit in the garden. Just make sure that your body actually touches the Earth (no side walks, concrete pool decks etc.). Kick off your shoes, turn off your devices and give yourself a minimum of 30 minutes of silent communion with nature. Focus on the way the sun feels on your skin, the way your body feels being gently tugged against the Earth, observe the intricacies of a leaf, the behaviors of the animals or bugs, or the brilliance of the moon. You could even plant a flower or some seeds, do a little weeding, sink your fingers into the Earth, swim in the sea – the possibilities are endless here.

Move your body

Yoga is wonderful but sometimes it can be hard to find the inspiration for a practice, in this case take a brisk walk or go for a swim. Don’t even think of it as exercise and don’t push yourself. Simply focus on getting your blood, oxygen and lymph flowing. Think of it as a little treat from you to your body ;)

Give…

To Yourself

Take a scented candlelit bubble bath and use those fancy suds you’ve been saving. Pick or buy some beautiful flowers and take a little extra time to arrange them. Dry brush your skin, massage your own feet (or go get a professional massage if you can!) Read an indulgent book (or a book designed to support your well-being!) put on that song that makes your heart blossom in smiles on your face. The list is endless. Take the extra time to do something extra loving for yourself.

*Side note: chocolate and champagne don’t count, sorry ladies! …Though these things might feel like “treats” they aren’t actually going to rejuvenate and nurture your body! Don’t think immediate gratification, think of something that is enjoyable but will also nourish you in the long run.

To Another

Make a point to give something to someone else today. Buy or make a “just because” gift or card for a loved one. You could simply make a commitment to smile or give a compliment to three people today. Whatever you give, it’s the act of giving that feels good and opens up the energetic flow of abundance.

Talk about it

Opening up to a confidant, someone you trust unequivocally, can allow you to unburden yourself and perhaps gain a different perspective on the matter at hand.

Write about it

Writing your feelings out forces you to think about them differently and perhaps see things in a different light.

Get creative

Take 30 minutes to nurture your creativity. This doesn’t mean doing something that you are good at, it just means what it says “nurturing your creativity.” Try something you’ve never done before…make up a short fictional story, paint your cat, draw your husband, cut up some old clothes and make them into something new, try out a new hairstyle, make a new piece of jewelry out of something old, paint your nails, bake a cake (try a new healthy recipe then give it to someone as an added bonus!!).

The idea behind all of these suggestions is simply to take you back to the basics. Breath, movement, nature, creativity, giving and receiving –all forms of energetic “flow” to help you tap back into just that…the flow :)

BIO:

Britta Trubridge (B.A. Psychology), creator of B. Tru Yoga and the TruBlue Foundation, is a 500h RYT, a 300h certified Ayurvedic Counselor and a Reiki Healer with specialties in acupressure, crystal and chakra therapies. Britta is also an AIDA3 star freediver and is the yoga specialist for the elite Vertical Blue freediving school. Britta teaches a Vinyasa flow laced with Kundalini, energy healing techniques, internal flexibility maneuvers and pranayama. Her synergistic work in combining yoga, freediving and energy healing has allowed for a beautiful infusion of the more subtle aspects of yoga into a well-rounded physical and spiritual practice.

Britta currently holds Caribbean Yoga Retreats Fall through Spring, European Workshops and Retreats in the summer and offers Ayurvedic Consultations year round.

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2014
06.28

We recently became friends with Ithaca, NY-based Vinyasa yoga teacher, Melissa Weiner, who has over 14 years of yoga experience, which she delved into after running injuries forced her to find alternate methods of treatment. A consummate athlete, she is also a USA Track and Field Level I coach and has received certifications in Spinning, Red Cross and Bigger Faster Stronger.
Here she shares some of her thoughts on a very special ‘Summer Solstice’ class she taught last week.

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Today is the summer solstice, a time to celebrate the longest day of the year and the shortest night. I like to think of it as the turning point of the year where it slowly begins to grow darker. We should savor the longest day and the energy of the sun by being outside and taking in the energy of the sun. I was very fortunate today to teach two yoga classes outside in the grass. My first class was a Power Vinyasa class at Cass Park in Ithaca and my second was 108 sun salutes at the Plantations at Cornell University. I wore my MPG outfit to both classes, keeping me stylish and comfortable for three hours of teaching.

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People often ask why 108 sun salutes and why on the solstice. People have worshipped the sun for years. The summer solstice is a great time to reflect and reconnect with yourself and your breath with a moving meditation. It truly is a turning point of the year, as the days grow darker. Here are some of the reasons we chose to do 108 sun salutes at the Plantations:

COMMUNITY CONNECTEDNESS

What better way to celebrate a community of friends and family in a circle with yoga and a moving meditation? Being part of a community is one of the reasons I love teaching yoga. I even had a ten year old help me keep count of the 108 sun salutes.

MALA

There are 108 beads in a Mala Prayer necklace and the number is supposed to be sacred to Hindus and Buddhists. As a math person the number 108 is sacred to me (I look at the number 8 and think of the infinity symbol and of endless possibilities in our choices in life).

MARATHON

I have run 16 marathons and two ultra marathons. This is the ultimate marathon of yoga. It’s mind over matter, as you move through the 108 sun salutes. Just like a marathon, you truly have to dig deep within yourself through the last thirty. You find the comfort in the discomfort and move on. When you finish it feels like you crossed the finish line in Central Park and there is a great sense of accomplishment and pride.

MOVING MEDITATION

Instead of sitting and meditating, we are taking our asana practice into a moving meditation. Just like a long run, we get into a flow and keep moving. The rhythm is felt as we link our movements to our breath. We get out of our heads and mind chatter and into our bodies. You can relax and give in to the sun salutes.

OFFERING

I break down the 108 salutes into 9 sets of twelve. I have each set be an offering. For example the first set was offering our focus to something in our life or for someone who needs it. Another was offering love, while another was prayer for someone who needs it. I changed it up each set.

UNITING WITH NATURE

What better way to unite with nature then to feel your feet on the grass, hear the birds, and the bumblebees and practice yoga outside. I love being able to reach my palms toward the sky and salute the sun. It makes me feel grateful to be alive and receive energy from the sun and the earth, and those around me.

I kept count with bracelets and pennies. I broke the 108 salutes into 9 sets of 12. I had nine Satya bracelets and 12 pennies. Each time I forward folded I moved a penny from one side of the mat to the other. After I did 12 salutes, which was one complete set, I moved a bracelet to my other wrist. Each set I had students offer something different up such as love for someone that needs it. We paused with our hands at our heart in and closed our eyes, reconnected and reflected to ourselves using our breath.


Did you do 108 sun salutes on the solstice? Are there reasons you did it? Who did you do it with and where? How did you feel after? Would you do it again? Please let us know in the comments!

2014
06.17

MPG recently opened a new showroom in Los Angeles in an effort to bolster and grow our presence in the West Coast Market and has simultaneously hired on Lauren Ricca as our sales manager for the region.
Scroll down to read Lauren’s bio and check out some exclusive pics of the showroom:

Lauren Ricca is the US West Coast Regional Sales Manager for Mondetta Performance Gear, operating from sunny California out of the brand new MPG Los Angeles Showroom. Lauren brings with her 10 years of experience working within the fashion industry in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. She has cultivated a unique outlook and diverse skill set by working with some of the world’s most innovative apparel brands. Lauren began her career under Ralph Lauren, and spent 4 ½ years managing sales and merchandising for Diesel.  She is also a trained educational speaker on behalf of FIDM, the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. Lauren holds a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies and Popular Culture from Lafayette College in Easton PA. Out of the classroom she enjoyed a successful career in Division I Collegiate Athletics as a member of the Women’s Lacrosse team.  In her new role at MPG Sport, Lauren looks forward to combining her sales and industry expertise with her passion for health and fitness. She resides in Venice Beach with her husband Joel, where you can find her cavorting in the sand, cruising on her bike or paddle boarding in the marina.

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I am excited to be part of a brand that is paving it’s own way in the market and making their presence known with exceptional product that speaks for itself.  It is inspiring to be on the verge of such growth through innovation and determination. I love this process and I am thrilled to be along for the ride.
- Lauren

 
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MPG SHOWROOM

THE GERRY BUILDING

910 S. LOS ANGELES ST. #808

LOS ANGELES, CA 90015

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2014
06.09

MPG is passionate about passionate people: People who, with their movement, their fashion, and their leadership, inspire us and keep us moving. Now, we’re taking our fusion of fashion and function a step further, and chatting with our Messengers about everything from guilty pleasures to what gets them up in the morning. Ready to get motivated? We asked yoga instructor and free diver, Brittany Trubridge, about her favorite healthy snack, most-loved way to move, and more…

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Photo: Daan Verhoeven

What MPG piece can you not stop wearing?

I’m obsessed with the Maya smoky rose print tank top. I wear it out and about and also on the mat.

What is your favorite way to sweat?

It’s a toss up between yoga and gardening

What is the inspirational quote that gets you out of bed in the morning?

What gets me out of bed isn’t a quote; it’s the feeling of gratitude.

Favorite healthy snack?

Plain yogurt w/ pumpkin and flax seed seeds, hemp hearts and a splash of maple syrup!

Favorite guilty pleasure?

Mojitos with fresh mint form my garden

Quick, someone needs motivation…what do you say?

Choose a feeling you want to feel…and feel it. Happiness, peace, freedom, joy…it’s all a choice and we have the power to consciously tune into any vibration our heart desires. Clarity is important though, that’s why it helps to think about how you want to feel. Step two is action – embodying the feeling is easier than you think. If you stay with it long enough, or revisit it enough, it becomes a habit. We often do this unconsciously so reminding people that we have control over our reality to a certain extent is very empowering.

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2014
05.23

At MPG, we know fitness is a journey, a way of life, with the power to change people’s lives, transform them, and inspire others along the way. However, it wasn’t until we read the story of Natalie, who lost her brother Frank (US Army Cpl.) when he was killed in action in Afghanistan on July 16th, 2011, that we realized the true power of fitness. Frank was the only solider who lost his life in his unit, and he was Natalie’s only sibling. In the aftermath of her brother’s passing, Natalie battled depression, anxiety, and excessive drinking, trying desperately to self-medicate and fill the void left by Frank’s death. Despite the darkness of a life lost in the most noble sense-serving one’s people-Natalie’s journey is one that ends in triumph: She took her passion for fitness and allowed it to heal her, entering her first fitness competition to, in her words, “honor not only my brother, but myself.”

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Natalie not only overcame an onslaught of despair prompted by her brother’s passing, but also self-doubt, something athletes of all kinds can relate to: “This was a huge step for me because I had always said to myself “I could never have enough willpower to do one of those,” she said. She did more than enter-Natalie is constantly experimenting with a new fitness craze or sport (CrossFit, Snowboarding, and Wakeboarding rank high on her list of favorites) and also began work as a personal trainer to share her passion and make it possible for others to experience the transformative power of staying active.

In regard to her brother, Natalie is confident that she’s honoring his memory and making him proud: “Frankie would always laugh at me because I would work out so intensely and then have pizza! I truly believe he is up there smiling and laughing and puffing up his chest with pride that his big sister was able to accomplish something that seemed absolutely impossible for me.”

Transforming pain into healing power has changed the course of Natalie’s life, and there is no greater journey than one out of severe darkness into light. Remarking that she hopes people in similar situations know they aren’t alone, Natalie said: “It is proven that exercise increases endorphins and serotonin to the brain, therefore increasing your “happy levels” per se. If you force yourself to go try new things, meet new people, each day, you’ll notice you get a bit stronger. You may even find that something that once terrifies you becomes a place of joy within your life. The pain will always be there but the choice to change lies in your hands.”

Natalie’s pain will be ever-present, but even stronger is her newfound drive and her brother’s memory. Together, they have created an athlete and individual who inspires many as she redefines the word “hero.”

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2014
05.06

Following what was a truly fantastic Messenger Search Contest that had us receiving hundreds of terrific entries, we couldn’t be more thrilled to announce the winner of our MPG Spring 2015 Messenger Search, Kelly Fuston, who is a blogger over at Fat Girl Gone Fit.

Kelly’s fitness journey, she let us know after we had the distinct pleasure to let her know she’d won our contest, transformed not just her body, but her life as well. Going from, in her own words, the kid that played sports and “got the ‘thanks for trying’ trophy,” Kelly is now training for her first figure competition and recently celebrated the completion of her first half marathon.

After entering MPG’s Messenger Search on a whim, Kelly did quite a bit in between her initial entry and making it to round two: After getting married and leaving for her honeymoon, she received an email announcing that she was officially through to the second round. She credits her incredible following, those who have shown their support and provided the gift of motivation every step of the way, with her victory. “I hope to be able to spread my message of self-love no matter where someone is at in his or her journey. I want to help spread that hope,” she remarked on what she hoped would come of her MPG entry.

Kelly’s goal is to spread possibility: The hope that every individual has the power to transform his or her own life. She believes that accomplishments, such as entering competitions and running, has more to do with weight loss or getting caught up in the numbers. Her message is more about lasting memories, such as becoming confident in one’s own skin, loving her body and hitting goals like her first unassisted pull up.

Looking forward, Kelly hopes to start a family with her new husband, and continue inspiring people to tackle their goals and (literally) chase their dreams. Personally, Kelly is planning to bring her best self forward to the figure stage in August when she competes. Even now, to Kelly, the emphasis isn’t on appearance, but on leaving it all at the gym and surpassing her personal bests. Kelly has been embarking on her fitness journey for nearly three years, and though she admits we all love a good finish line, she suggests that learning to enjoy the process goes a long way: “Win each daily battle and eventually you win the war.” Another major focus? In between hitting it hard in the gym, Kelly encourages everyone to love themselves, regardless of where they might find themselves in their own experiences.

In fact, inclusivity is one of the aspects that first drew Kelly to MPG: “My favorite thing about MPG is that they embrace everyone, every body, every aspect of what make people beautiful – their differences.” When asked about the advice she’d give to those hoping to get healthy, Kelly had the following thoughts to share:

Eat to be healthy & ditch the diet. You need to properly fuel your body and nourish it. If you don’t eat, you are only harming yourself. All these fad diets and tricks don’t work in the long run. Just eat healthy food.

Keep it simple. People always try to make weight loss harder than what it really is. You don’t need a million supplements and machines to lose weight. There is no magic pill or secret – just eat whole foods and move more. In regards to exercise, you don’t need to start your journey bench pressing 300lbs; if all you can do is walk, do it! That is where I started out.

Don’t freak out. Even though you are trying to lose weight, life still happens. Unexpected situations arise, holidays happen and treat meals occur. Enjoy yourself and remember you worked hard for it.

It’s easy to see why Kelly is our fan-picked Messenger: With her fierce determination, incredible example of perseverance and success, and body-positive message, she is a role model in the gym and beyond. Welcome, Kelly – we couldn’t be more excited to have you representing MPG!

Kelly will officially become a Messenger following her photo shoot which should be taking place in the next few months. Stay tuned to see what promise to be some truly spectacular images as part of our Spring 2015 editorial campaign!

And scroll down to see some of Kelly’s inspiring transformation images and messages:

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