Q and A with Valeria, born in Budapest, Hungary, living in Costa de Sol, Spain
“I will spend the rest of my life with myself, so self-care and wellness for “my time” both physically and mentally have become a focal point.”
Q: What are you passionate about?
A: Awe my passions! My passions embody different paths: First, about my and your health, functional fitness, and how we can all age gracefully…I know it is a huge challenge for all of us to stay fit, flexible, and healthy. I am an avid hiker with my puppers, and I love my CrossFit classes (both of which tighten and shorten my muscles and ligaments). My yoga really helps to balance it out and reverse the harmful effects of aging, but with that said, I am more interested in taking ownership of the health and aging of my body and mind (than nailing the perfect headstand or arm balance). I have been doing yoga for the past 25 years and teaching for the last 15 years and have been fortunate to have studied under Baron Baptiste, Ana Forest, John Friend, and my beloved teacher, Shiva Rea.
Teaching yoga led me to study to become an Ayurvedic practitioner. I owned a yoga studio in Vancouver, Canada (I lived there for 30 years), and after classes, I had students come up and talk about their health concerns. As a yoga teacher, I could only help so much, so I decided to embark on the journey to become an Ayurvedic practitioner. Ayurveda can be traced back some 3,000 years and is the sister science of Yoga.
My second passion would be about animals, by way of example my pets serve as a comforting escape like they do for so many of us…almost meditative at times. Lots of work, but also immense fun! And a third passion would be as simply articulated as “my time.” I will spend the rest of my life with myself, so self-care and wellness for “my time” both physically and mentally have become a focal point as does continuing forward with a work-life integration (more realistic than a work-life balance in my mind).
As far as what I’m working on, my focus has been to create affordable, accessible, and easy-to-follow yoga classes and Ayurveda recommendations that we can all do in the coziness of our own spaces. As the on-demand membership continues to grow on my website, I now continue “spreading the word” about my on-demand yoga classes (yin–restorative–flow) and Ayurveda articles to help you and me with a work-life integration; after all, “We are all in this together, stay strong, healthy and flexible.” Also, as I get quite a few questions about how to begin yoga as a counter-balance for training from runners, swimmers, cyclists, bodybuilders, CrossFit participants, physique contestants, I have started to bring together a six-part, three-video yoga series aimed at beginners, those coming off an injury, in rehab, or those who just want to revisit some of the fundamentals.
Q: What were your younger years like?
A: Growing up in communist Hungary meant we could not travel at all, but my dad was a diplomat and so, we were stationed in different countries (Russia and Iraq). We were privileged to see different parts of the world. I really think that was such an advantage compared to many of my friends living in Hungary. For this, I feel I had a very lucky childhood. I was privileged to meet and have fun with other children of different races and nationalities–a formative time of innocence to shape a young mind that has embodied my life to this date. That really opened my eyes and framed, I am sure, some of my passions and formed the yogic idea of acceptance in varied forms at a young age. My dad, now 91 and still plays tennis every day, is very open-minded and loving like my mother.
Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?
A: I got quite sick at the age of 45; that’s when I discovered Ayurveda. Ayurveda is preventative medicine. The great thing about Ayurveda is that its treatments always yield “side benefits, not side effects.” What I would like others to learn from my story is to stay fit, flexible, and healthy, and find for yourself your own work-life integration toward your own self-care and wellness in whatever form it takes shape–and remember to enjoy the journey despite the ebbs and flows.
Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A: To me, feminism is that we all need to find our own individuality. We can accomplish and enjoy a lot on our own, but of course, it is beautiful to be in a relationship to share your life with somebody.
Thank you for reading!
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