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  • Dan Morgan / Q&A

    16th February 2017

    16th February 2017

    By Shivraj Bassi

    Dan is a full-time yoga teacher based in the UK who aims to help people find balance in their lives through his focus on the physical and mental benefits of health and fitness. We sat down with him to find out more, and to ask some nosey questions.

    “I remember my parents taking me to my first karate class when I was 3 years old, which was where my health and fitness journey probably began. Ever since I've always been involved in lots of different physical activities. Internal and external health is important to me, and my love for it has continued to grow creating a space for me to find clarity and focus. Yoga combined the love I had for developing physically and mentally, stripping away all of the “stuff” that seemed to get in the way. My focus on health, fitness and yoga has allowed me to build a strong, mobile and physically capable body, and allowed me to understand myself on a deeper level. As much as I love movement and physical activity, I also love to chill out. And as much as I love to fuel my body with nutritiously dense and whole foods, sometimes I like a little junk food! It’s all about striking a balance that works for you.”

    Favourite Innermost products, and why?

    The Strong Protein. Strength training plays a huge part in my training week-to-week, and this blend helps keep my internal vitality in check - beneficial for when I’m in the gym as I train, and also as I recover between workouts. The Detox Booster. My teaching schedule is full of late evenings and early mornings, and I always seem to be on the go. This is a great product as it helps support my general well-being, vitality and immunity. Keeping me fit and healthy throughout my week. 

    What's your hustle?

    I’m on a journey to help others discover their true selves. I’m currently a full-time yoga teacher, and training to become a transformational coach. I don’t think the journey will stop here. I have visions to combine these qualifications, and to transition into bigger things... watch this space.

    What does #liveinnermost mean to you?

    To me, it's about coming to truly understand yourself - your needs, your wants, your desires, your dreams. Then choosing to be unapologetic, and authentic in living the life you wish to lead. Living a life that aligns fully with your core identity, with your true values - without concern for what others may think or feel about it

    What do you do to maintain a healthy lifestyle?

    I teach roughly 16-22 hours a week of yoga and movement. This in itself keeps me moving a bunch! I also do my own personal strength and mobility training on top of that - a mix of yoga, calisthenics, mobility training and olympic lifting roughly three to five times a week. I also do asana (physical yoga postures), meditate, and do pranayama (breathing practices) daily. Nutrition and diet also plays a large part in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I eat a varied diet of nutritious whole foods, get six to eight hours sleep a night minimum, and drink plenty of water.

    Usual breakfast?

    Starter: Grapefruit, tangerine or figs, and a smoothie with plenty of fibre. Main: Two or three eggs (poached, fried or scrambled) with a whole avocado mashed with raw red onion, a couple cloves of garlic, and some diced cherry tomatoes finished with a side of some lightly cooked beetroot. Drink: Water. Plenty of it.

    What's your happy place?

    Cornwall - as close to Land's End as you can get. I have so many fond and nostalgic memories of being there. From way back when building sand castles right up to last summer, sat at the pub with my family in the sun enjoying a cool drink overlooking the sea. It's a place I return to regularly, and it feels like home. In fact, its been too long since my last trip...

    Who or what motivates you?

    There are so many people that motivate me, the list would be very long. I think it’s so important that we're also able to motivate ourselves, for ourselves - and this is something I’m practicing daily. Whenever I struggle with motivation, I remind myself why it is that I’m doing what I’m doing. I remind myself of the purpose. And I try to find greatness in the moment. This may not happen 100% of the time, and thats fine - all that matters, is getting back on track when I stumble.

    Book currently on your bedside table?

    I currently have two books on my bedside table. "The obstacle is the way" by Ryan Holiday and "Inner Engineering: A yogis guide to joy" by Jaggi Vasudev. Both amazing reads - I couldn’t recommend them highly enough!

    Current fitness goal?

    Currently I’m working towards a few things - full planche, one arm pull-ups, and a one arm handstand. These are ongoing projects, and have been for a while. They are requiring me to master patience but I’m really loving the challenge. And I’m absorbing everything that I’m learning about myself and the skills themselves along the way.

    Where do you see yourself in three years? Be bold!

    Developing my business "dcmlifestyle" on a larger scale - combining yoga, coaching, therapy, physical therapy and holistic development. I then aim to use my experience in these skills to create various workshops, trainings and retreats across the globe. My hope is to build a community of like-minded individuals that I can collaborate with to bring this vision to life.

    Need some more of Dan? Check him out on Instagram (@dcmlifestyle) and his website (www.dcmlifestyle.com). 

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    Finding Balance and Inner Peace with Brin McKinnon
    This month, we sat down with Innermost Insider Brin McKinnon to discuss inner peace, managing conflict and maintaining balance. Representing us in Australia, Brin is a true Innermost Insider, having loved our products since she was a London native. Funny, thoughtful and eloquent, even with the 11 hour time difference making the interview 1am for her; this one's definitely worth the read. Hey Brin! Tell us about yourself! Hi, my name is Brin, and I am currently studying a Bachelor of International Relations at the Australian National University, whilst also working as a management consultant and freelancing. I've been using Innermost products since 2018 when I used to live in London, and since then they’ve been my favourite products, specifically in terms of vegan products. I then became an ambassador this year, because I wanted to share my love of Innermost products with other people. My favourite platform at the moment is my YouTube channel where I actually recently spoke about Innermost and the products I’ve been loving. View this post on Instagram A post shared by B r i n 🌱 (@brindarcey) Our theme this month is peace. So, the first question I want to ask is, what does peace mean for you, in your own life? A lot of the time in the health and wellness industry, the focus is on the physical and specifically on aesthetics, but I think that it’s really important to understand our health as something that's part of a bigger whole. It’s not just physical - it’s mental too, and that’s why, personally, peace is such a big thing for me, mental-health wise. Mental health is such an important part of our overall wellbeing and I think finding peace is really central to looking after your mental health. I wouldn't say I'm naturally a peaceful person but it’s a process to find that sense of inner-peace and maintain it. What process do you undertake to cultivate your inner peace? What steps have you taken? Over the last few years, I've definitely been taking steps to improve my relationship with myself and I suppose, in a way, to relax a little. As I mentioned, I think that it's definitely a process, and how you cultivate inner peace depends a lot on the individual. For me, a lot of that is spending time in nature, taking walks and exercising outside. I also think that meditating can also be useful, but I think that something that can dissuade people from meditation a bit and definitely dissuaded me was the idea that there’s only one way to meditate. But I think that just finding something that's meditative to you can be really useful in cultivating inner peace and it doesn’t have to be sitting down with your eyes closed. It can be spending time outside with your family or your friends, or even just watching a television show that makes your mind switch off for a bit. The first step to cultivating inner peace is finding what brings you peace. How do you make peace with your mistakes or regrets? I think that I'm quite lucky because I'm naturally quite good at letting things go and I don't necessarily regret things. So unfortunately, that's not going to be helpful for everyone. But I think that, for anyone, letting yourself come to terms with your emotions and letting yourself feel those emotions, is the most important step in making peace with them. However, I also think it’s then important to not hold on to those negative thoughts and feelings for too long. Once you’ve let yourself feel those emotions, you then need to accept them. A lot of the time your ego can get in the way of this step, but you need to be humble and say “okay, I've made a mistake”, perhaps get advice from friends or family and then just take time to reflect on yourself. In the end, the most important step is letting go; it's so important to accept and then move forward, otherwise we let things that we've done in the past continue to hold us back in the future. Is there anything that disrupts your peace and how do you manage it? I’m a person who doesn't necessarily enjoy change. So any small thing that happens in my day could completely derail how I'm feeling and that's something I'm definitely working on. But as I mentioned, it's a process. It's not going to happen overnight. The way I deal with this is not over-committing, organising, scheduling and planning things, but also respecting that things change and that's okay. In addition to this, I've also been going to therapy for a few years and I think that's been really important for me as well. Therapy is typically seen as something just for people who are deeply suffering with their mental health but, I think that therapy can be for everyone. It's just a really useful tool to break down the way that you think and the way that you approach situations that can derail your inner peace. And its been really important for me in my journey to protecting my peace from those day-to-day disruptions. How do you manage conflict with other people? I think that these last few years have been particularly emotionally challenging for everyone. So I think that an increase in interpersonal conflict is something that's inevitable. I'm definitely naturally quite a combative person and I'm anxious-avoidant in my relationships, so I have felt this in my life too. Whilst I do think that it's important to stand up for yourself and for what you believe in, I also think that approaching people with respect, openness and honesty is the best way forward when you're having a conflict with someone. Of course, not all interpersonal conflict is going to be fixable but that's okay. Sometimes we need to let relationships go as well. Beautiful you’ve been open and honest with people then you can move forward knowing you don’t regret how you’ve handled the situation. View this post on Instagram A post shared by B r i n 🌱 (@brindarcey) Do you feel like your nutrition is important in being in that good headspace? Absolutely. I think that nutrition is incredibly important. There’s a massive connection between your physical and mental health so eating a balanced diet is really important. I don't believe in restricting certain food groups, because I think this can actually disrupt your peace. However, I think by listening to your body and viewing nutrition as fuel rather than something to be labelled good or bad, you can make nutrition benefit your peace. For example, for me eating protein is really important because I'm vegetarian. I find it easiest to do this by using a vegan protein, so it’s about finding ways to make nutrition work for you. I actually think that finding balance in our lives is probably the best way to cultivate inner peace, across the board. We can't always strive for perfectionism but I don't think we should be happy with mediocrity either. We need to be somewhere in the middle; striving to do the best for ourselves in the moment that we're in. That’s where you find peace. To keep up with Brin, check out her Instagram! Read more
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