We had the good fortune of connecting with Cat Valadez and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Cat, let’s start by talking about what inspires you?
I’m inspired by life! Life experiences have been my greatest teacher, and the teachings of yoga philosophy have been gifted to us all so that we can use them OFF the mat in every day life. When I’m struggling with something in my relationships, business or life journey, I use those struggles as inspiration to use the teachings of yoga and bring those moments back to my students to share it with them so they can do the same in their own daily life. 

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
As I’ve grown in my yoga teaching, it became very apparent when I shifted to teaching full time that I was suddenly the CEO of a business! I never before imagined that I’d see myself as a business owner, but that’s changed and I’ve really embraced life as an entrepreneur bringing yoga to people’s lives. At this point, I could never see myself working for someone else again. I love it. Though I do still teach some studio classes locally, I’m focused on offering yoga education online through an on-demand library of classes alongside weekly livestream classes, to students worldwide. My style of teaching also really focuses on teaching anatomy, biomechanics, and resilience practices. So, what I’m really excited about are the yoga education courses I’m creating. Last Fall I successfully launched my first educational yoga course, Free Your Hamstrings. This year, I’m offering it again in early February, plus a course on how to build a yoga practice for yourself in April, with more exciting courses to come later in 2021. Beyond being a student of yoga and entrepreneur, I see myself as a yoga educator, not merely an instructor. I’m here to help dedicated yogis dig into their own practice and truly understand it inside out so they can tailor it to be something that works WITH their body and their lifestyle for life. I want people to know how to be their own teacher in this practice. Creating a home practice and tuning into my inner wisdom changed everything for me, and that’s what my courses are ultimately all about.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I have so many favorite spots in the city. The Encinitas meditation gardens at the Self-Realization Fellowship is a regular meditation and journaling spot for me, whether it’s resting among the beautiful garden or watching the surfers and tides from the cliff overhead. Swami’s and Beacons Beach are other spots like this and I always bring out-of-town friends around to see these beautiful places. I also can’t let my friends leave without stopping at Leucadia’s Coffee Coffee for a drink, and Encinitas’ Good On Ya for a delicious, organic, GMO-free lunch. The vibe of Encinitas and Leucadia is amazing, and just walking around or exploring their streets makes me proud to call North County San Diego my home.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I wouldn’t be the teacher I am today without my teachers and the studio they opened, where I truly committed to my practice. Lisa Salners of Just Yoga Corona and Damien McVey, now of Phoenix Rising Yoga in Lake Elsinore, are my primary teachers. I did my 200HR with them and will always be grateful for their guidance and support on my journey, not to mention their encouragement to always think critically about how and what I’m teaching my students. Beyond these two amazing ladies, I would be nowhere without my students who continue to practice with me. I am perpetually inspired by and taught by those who walk into my classes.

Website: https://www.catvaladez.com
Instagram: @catvaladezyoga
Linkedin: Cat Valadez
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/catvaladezyoga

Image Credits
Karma Captures Media

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