First Light Living

Transform Your Health by Following Natural Rhythms

First Light Living

Transform Your Health by Following Natural Rhythms

first light living hero image, man meditating on top of a mountain, watching the sunrise
What is First Light Living? More on that below…

First, I have to tell you: not everyone is a good fit for First Light Living.

But...

If you’re dedicated to your growth, value your health, enjoy your early-morning yoga practice, honor natural wisdom, and you’re open to change, read on.

If you’re the kind of person, like Kelly H, who wishes “to develop better routines and habits to feel better and be more productive,” keep going.

If you’re a yoga enthusiast (like Christine W.) who’s curious to learn more about the yoga lifestyle off the mat and beyond the poses, then this letter is definitely for you.

In her own words:

I was interested in learning more about Ayurveda and I wanted to add more to my daily self care to support both aging, menopause, and my Ashtanga Practice.

If you see, or could see, yourself in the words of Benjamin Franklin: “early to bed, early to rise, makes one happy, healthy and wise”, then you may be an ideal candidate for First Light Living.

If you’re up for taking on your health challenges once and for all… whether you’ve let your health slide for years (maybe even decades…) OR you’re looking to sharpen your edges … you may be in the right place.

Let’s talk about what First Light Living is NOT.

If you’re tired of…

  • “New Year, New You”
  • “30 Day Challenges” and
  • “7 Day Detoxes”

…from the latest glossy magazines, or airbrushed and filtered social media “influencers”, then First Light Living may just be what you’re looking for.

Good health isn’t magic. It’s a habit.

You’re probably already aware of what’s in the way.

As one of my members, A.T., confesses:

“I just felt like I’m not tapping into my true potential and that my natural state has been interrupted by my mid-20’s habits. Such habits are very common: ...going to bed late, spending a lot of time on social media, drinking a beer or two on a daily basis. Over time, as I aged I realized I don't have much energy and am constantly being emotional. I needed to change.”
However, as entrepreneur Derek Sivers once said,

“If more information were the answer, then we’d all be billionaires with six-pack abs.”

So, what is good health?

While there are many factors outside of our control, three of the biggest levers are:

Diet

Exercise

Sleep

No mystery there, right?

But hold on...

It’s time to learn the importance of WHEN to eat, move & sleep (and just as important: when NOT to eat, move & sleep)

While there’s no shortage of experts that will tell you:
What to eat
What NOT to eat
the latest exercise routine, or...
the latest elixirs, supplements and superfoods...

There’s not much emphasis placed on when you should, or perhaps more importantly when NOT to eat, move and sleep.

Also, what works for your best friend, who’s been raving about keto, may not work for you..

This leads us to…

What a 5000 year-old tradition can teach you about healthy living, even today in the modern age...

According to Ayurveda, the world’s oldest health system (and “sister science” to yoga,) there is an optimal time for each of these daily activities. While our approach varies slightly with each season and according to an individual’s body-mind type, how we work with the consistent cycle found in every day is the main key to aligned health.

Moreover, recent scientific discoveries in the field of chronobiology are validating these millenia-old traditions and practices, that arose when humans first began to live in urban environments and started to fall out of sync with natural rhythms.

While we’ve probably all heard of circadian rhythms—those biological processes associated with jet lag, or chronotypes like night owls or early birds, few of us know just how these affect our health and optimal functioning.

As Dr. Suhas Kshrisagar — a noted Ayurvedic physician and author — writes in his book, Change Your Schedule, Change Your Life, our “clock genes” powerfully influence our physiology.

Tiny changes can make the difference between living at odds with our bodies and effortlessly managing markers of health, like:

  • weight
  • sleep
  • stress
  • inflammation

Another expert in health and wellness outside the Ayurvedic tradition, Dr. Rhonda Patrick, PhD, and cofounder of FoundMyFitness.com, shares this relevant scientific research finding:

“The exact same meal, consumed at different times of day, affects the body differently.”

first light living, well rested image, girl waking up from a great sleep in white comfy bed

What a 5000 year-old tradition can teach you about healthy living, even today in the modern age...

According to Ayurveda, the world’s oldest health system (and “sister science” to yoga,) there is an optimal time for each of these daily activities. While our approach varies slightly with each season and according to an individual’s body-mind type, how we work with the consistent cycle found in every day is the main key to aligned health.

Moreover, recent scientific discoveries in the field of chronobiology are validating these millenia-old traditions and practices, that arose when humans first began to live in urban environments and started to fall out of sync with natural rhythms.

While we’ve probably all heard of circadian rhythms—those biological processes associated with jet lag, or chronotypes like night owls or early birds, few of us know just how these affect our health and optimal functioning.

As Dr. Suhas Kshrisagar — a noted Ayurvedic physician and author — writes in his book, Change Your Schedule, Change Your Life, our “clock genes” powerfully influence our physiology.

Tiny changes can make the difference between living at odds with our bodies and effortlessly managing markers of health, like:

  • weight
  • sleep
  • stress
  • inflammation

Another expert in health and wellness outside the Ayurvedic tradition, Dr. Rhonda Patrick, PhD, and cofounder of FoundMyFitness.com, shares this relevant scientific research finding:

“The exact same meal, consumed at different times of day, affects the body differently.”

Yes, Timing Matters.

On one hand, this seems like common sense, yet how many of us make an effort to simply observe nature’s cues?

Modern living is at odds with these natural rhythms.

You may even already know this, yet still struggle implementing healthy habits, as everyone who’s broken a New Year’s resolution knows.

(Indeed, as a Forbes article reports, “virtually every study tells us that around 80% of New Year’s resolutions will get abandoned” only one month in.)

So… at this point maybe you’re wondering how to overcome the obstacles and demands of modern life that get in the way of adopting healthy habits.

Introducing First Light Living...

First Light Living is my Yoga Health Coaching Membership.

Hold on for just a second…

Ah, you’re probably thinking:

“Who’s this Geoff fellow and why should you listen to anything he says?”

Because this is usually the part where I (reluctantly) have to uncomfortably brag about myself and my accomplishments so you keep reading.

I’ll let others do it instead…

geoff mckenzie headshot, first light yoga ashtanga vinyasa yoga teacher
Here are some of the benefits students have reported…
The gains are many, but the main takeaway for me is to be loving and nice to myself. To not go against the bad habits and put myself down, but to place the focus on the new habits and give them more and more attention to grow. The result was not something that I would notice overnight but rather something that feels more like a complete lifestyle change, as if I have closed a chapter of my book and opened a new one.
Arvand T.
I sleep better, I have more consistency to my energy levels, I feel more alert and on top of each day. I feel more relaxed. I believe I am living a balanced life. I prioritize myself, my family, my friends, and of course my cats!
Christine W.
I have been able to make a lot of really small changes that add up and have really helped me feel better in all aspects of my life. I have more energy and more focus. It feels sustainable as all the changes are so small that they are manageable to maintain.
Kelly H.

I’ll be brief

I’ve quietly dedicated 20+ years to learning and teaching yoga. I empower my students to take responsibility for their own daily practice.

I own and operate First Light Yoga, an early-morning assisted self-practice program I founded in 2015. It is modeled after the principles of the Ashtanga Vinyasa lineage taught by my mentors from Mysore, India.

My mission is to empower yoga self-practice and foster a love for the early morning: First Light!

first light yoga, first light living, logo icon in colour

With First Light Living, I will guide you through the implementation of Ten Body Thrive Habits: simple, effective practices grounded in the ancient Ayurvedic principle of dinacharya, or “daily routine.”

The Body Thrive Ayurveda Habits model has proven itself over and over in the past six years, generating positive change for hundreds of people.

Course originator, author and wellness expert – and my mentor – Cate Stillman, describes the year-long evolution as follows:

Body Thrive Season 1

Get It

(Learn the habits and method)

Body Thrive Season 2

Work It

(Lean in to make massive progress)

Body Thrive Season 3

Live It & Be It

(Deepen your momentum, Awaken to flow)

First Light Living Members invest ONE YEAR together learning, practicing and adapting the habits leading to profound health transformations.

Members go through the Body Thrive habits not once or twice, but THREE times — dividing the year into three extended seasons.

By marrying modern behavioral science with these ancient practices, using a step-by-step approach, they become an automatic feature of our daily lives.

Though we’ll talk more about the science later, automating these Body Thrive habits aligns us to optimal health.

If you're looking for:
  • Less Stress
  • Better Immune Function
  • Stronger Digestion
  • More Energy
  • Peace of Mind
  • Greater Resilience
  • Higher Quality  Relationships
  • Deeper Nourishment
  • True Rest
  • Clarity of Purpose
  • Easeful Living
  • …and more

You’re in the right place.

So you're probably wondering...

What Are The Body Thrive Habits?

Here are some of the foundational habits that make up the Body Thrive curriculum:

Rhythmic Eating

As we already covered — circadian rhythms, the science of chronobiology and “clock genes” — timing is important.

An easy rule of thumb is to consume most of your calories while the sun is up and leave plenty of space between your meals.

Starting the Day Right

The inspiration behind the name First Light Living: those sweet daybreak hours of the day come around only once; and they hold infinite potential for shaping our lives for the better: body, mind and soul.

Care for your Senses

Just like the body and digestion needs rest, so too do the senses. Light is a powerful signal for the circadian rhythms, but so is darkness. Taking the time to put mentally stimulating electronics away to wind down the mind is vital. Matching the environment for the time of day or night is essential for optimal health.

Plant-Based Diet

Surprisingly, this is NOT about becoming vegetarian or observing any particular diet.

It’s about being in relationship to our locale and the seasons via our relationship with plants.

Also, you’ll learn about the healing and harmonizing properties of the different plant parts we eat: root, stem, leaf, flower, seed, etc.

Self-Massage

Soothing touch helps many important body functions including:

  • improving circulation
  • maintaining joint health
  • stimulating lymph
  • strengthening the immune system.

It can also help promote sleep and relaxation through increased parasympathetic tone — the “rest and digest” part of the nervous system we want to be in most of the time.

Meditation

As the Buddha once said,

“Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought.”

Calm mind, calm life.

Calm breath, calm mind.

We’re in the middle of a mindfulness revolution. You know it’s good for you, but maybe you’ve yet to get it to stick.

With First Light Living, you’ll learn how with cutting-edge habit science. More on that later.

The Wisdom of the Breath & Body

In the world of survival training, there’s a simple Rule of Threes. Humans can typically go:

  • 3 weeks without food
  • 3 days without water
  • 3 hours without shelter
  • 3 minutes without air.

So, how important IS breathing?

If you’re at all familiar with yoga, then you’ve probably heard of Pranayama, or yogic breathwork — a whole component of yoga is dedicated to it.

We nail down the how, when and how much, of breathing and movement practices.

Early to Bed

The importance of sleep cannot be overstated. We spend one third of our life asleep. As Shakespeare waxed poetic, sleep is “chief nourisher in life’s feast.” He wasn’t wrong, even if science was in its infancy back then. Here are some sleep stats:

  • 36.5% of U.S. workers receive less than the recommended seven hours of sleep. *
  • An extra 60 to 90 minutes of sleep per night can make you happier and healthier. *
  • People who get 5 to 6 hours of sleep are 4.2 times more likely to get sick over people who sleep 7 hours or more. *
  • People with consistent sleep schedules are 1.5 times more likely to feel well-rested during the day. *

Living with Ease

This is the culmination of all the other habits.

How much disease is chronic stress related?

According to one source, The American Institute of Stress:

  • 77 percent of people experience stress that affects their physical health
  • 73 percent of people have stress that impacts their mental health
  • 48 percent of people have trouble sleeping because of stress

Stress is part of life. Having a creative, generative relationship with stress is everything.

Being grounded in healthy, habitual routines is essential for dealing with stress positively.

You’ll also learn the habits in a sequence that makes complete sense; and the importance of “Keystone” Habits — a concept borrowed from The Power Of Habit, written by Pulitzer-prize winner and New York Times bestselling author, Charles Duhigg.

I’ll share even more on the science of habit formation that went into First Light Living in just a moment.

And while each of these habits alone could change your life and be their own course…

First Light Living covers TEN of the most distilled, highest leverage, 80/20 selection of practices from Ayurveda adapted to the challenges of modern living.

Mark Hyman, MD — medical director of the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Functional Medicine — has this to say about the Body Thrive model that’s at the core of First Light Living:

“This is the next frontier of Ayurveda.”

Now, while information is great and I hope you’ve learned something new, it’s virtually useless unless applied and integrated into your lifestyle.

Above all, First Light Living is about PRACTICE and RESULTS in your LIFE.

Real, lasting change takes time and is not to be rushed. Easy come, easy go.

In the words of some of my students:
I keep coming back each quarter because the group holds the space I need to grow. At times I felt like a failure and wanted to quit but the group reminded me that there is no need to be an A+ student and I am accepted in the group with a B- . Slowly dropping the all or nothing attitude and doing what I can, as little as it may be. This was the biggest support I received in our meetings.
Arvand T.
Clear guidance and support to do as little or as much as works for me in the program. The group is great for accountability and support, really a sense of community.
Kelly H.
Every quarter more layers are peeled off and one goes deeper.
Carina R.

We all know how the race between the Tortoise and the Hare went.

Simplicity and consistency are the keys that, over time, unlock massive progress.

Finally…

Modern Habit Science Meets Ancient Wisdom

While we’ve talked about the WHAT, it’s the HOW that sets First Light Living apart from other books or courses on Ayurveda.

You’ll learn about — and apply — the work of researcher and habit expert BJ Fogg, PhD — founder of Stanford’s Behavior Design Lab and bestselling author of Tiny Habits — that features prominently in the core design of First Light Living.

You’ll learn the three things and their relationship that determine whether or not you’ll follow through on any habit. (HINT: If you think discipline has anything to do with it, you may be surprised to find out the answer.)

Again, there are two other features that set First Light Living apart.

First,

It is a 12-month journey — we repeat the Body Thrive Habits three times — once per season.

After all, in the words of personal growth legend Tony Robbins: “repetition is the mother of skill.”

Second,

We take the journey together, in a peer group.

Why a peer group?

As the African saying goes:

“If you want to go fast, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together.”

Apart from folk wisdom, there is real science to support that group coaching is more effective than individual coaching.*

Benefits of First Light Living dynamic group coaching include:

  • Group wisdom: if two heads are better than one, how about a dozen, twenty, fifty?
  • Like-minded and supportive community with shared health goals.
  • Access to LIVE weekly group calls (…and recordings if you can’t make it or need to review)
  • Access to abundant course materials via an online hub, filled with video tutorials, classes, workbooks, exercises and more.

The process stays fresh as new members join each season and become more dynamic as we progress through the year.

first light living, group training, picture of a group sitting on floor in a circle at a course
In the words of some of my students:
Geoff has a fun, engaging approach. He works hard to include all, he appreciates input from others, he is excellent at making the material both interesting and digestible. He is also very good about supporting the group ‘to go to your edge.’ It is a supportive environment for making positive life changes. I really look forward to our weekly gatherings, and I come back each quarter to continue to work the habits and to be open for continued growth.
Christine W.
The group dynamic is powerful. One realizes that others struggle with similar issues and/or have solutions to issues. Geoff is a GREAT listener. He is able to hear what you are saying. He then has wise input.
Carina R.

Together,

we support one another through the challenges and changes we experience while evolving our daily lives, and we connect more clearly to our authentic selves and to the world we live in.

Together,

we use the kaizen approach, or “change for the better”: small steps in the right direction over time.

And together,

instead of biting off more than we can chew and falling flat on our faces, kaizen sets us up for assured success while we ask for and lend helping hands.
first light yoga, first light living, logo icon in colour

Here’s What’s Inside First Light Living

When you join the First Light Living Yogic Health Coaching Membership, this is what’s included:

You’ll get access to the entire Body Thrive Habits Evolution Course:

  • Your own digital copy of Body Thrive by Cate Stillman
  • 12+ hours of video library covering the Ten Habits
  • Body Thrive Workbook to help you practice the Habits
  • Better Habits Guide to help you evolve your identity
  • Master Your Habits E-Book
  • Body Thrive Recipe Book to transform your diet.
  • And much, much more…

Plus… at the core of it…a 90-minute Live Virtual Workshop:

  • delivered EACH week (like a semester’s worth of college over an entire year — on the most important topic: YOU & YOUR HEALTH, according to Ayurveda)
  • LIVE Online via Zoom… (so you can access it anywhere, at your convenience)
  • Recorded and Archived… (for those that either can’t make it live or want to review the call)

Bonuses

While that’s plenty of value already, in the spirit of abundance and service, you’ll also receive:

Monthly 1-1 Coaching:

Time for personalized attention, guidance, and troubleshooting on your unique, individual challenges.

“Office Hours” Calls:

Group Coaching on any of each season’s Workshops.

Private Member Forum:

Accessible on Facebook to stay connected and be supported with community

What's Next?

First Light Living isn’t for everyone.

Not everyone is ready to change.

I also physically can’t help everyone, or even just anyone.

There are only 24 hours in the day. Time is limited.

However, if you’re:

  • serious about your health
  • willing to invest in yourself
  • curious about the yogic lifestyle off the mat
  • open to change
  • looking for like-minded community
  • committed to your growth

I am willing to meet you where you’re at.

Your Special Invitation

I would like to offer you a FREE 30 minute Insights Session to discover if First Light Living is a good fit for you and answer any questions.

Book a call with me below to talk about your health goals, challenges and First Light Living.

Remember, First Light Living only accepts a limited number of new members each season to preserve the integrity of the community, so book your call now to avoid missing the enrollment window.

No one should care more about your health than you.

“When health is absent, wisdom cannot reveal itself, art cannot manifest, strength cannot fight, wealth becomes useless, and intelligence cannot be applied.”

-Herophilus

Given your current lifestyle habits, where will your health be in a year? In five? In a decade?

If you don’t like the answer to that question, this is your opportunity for change.

Will you just be one year older, or will you dedicate this one year to heading towards a healthier direction?

“No matter how far you have gone on the wrong road, turn back.”

-Turkish proverb

And while nothing is guaranteed and we’re all mortal, how do you wish to spend your remaining and very finite time in your one and only body?

first light living, call to action image, girl sitting in a comfy chair in soft lighting, drinking healthy tea

Your Special Invitation

I would like to offer you a FREE 30 minute Insights Session to discover if First Light Living is a good fit for you and answer any questions.

Book a call with me below to talk about your health goals, challenges and First Light Living.

Remember, First Light Living only accepts a limited number of new members each season to preserve the integrity of the community, so book your call now to avoid missing the enrollment window.

No one should care more about your health than you.

“When health is absent, wisdom cannot reveal itself, art cannot manifest, strength cannot fight, wealth becomes useless, and intelligence cannot be applied.”

-Herophilus

Given your current lifestyle habits, where will your health be in a year? In five? In a decade?

If you don’t like the answer to that question, this is your opportunity for change.

Will you just be one year older, or will you dedicate this one year to heading towards a healthier direction?

“No matter how far you have gone on the wrong road, turn back.”

-Turkish proverb

And while nothing is guaranteed and we’re all mortal, how do you wish to spend your remaining and very finite time in your one and only body?

Where do you WANT to be in a year from now?

I’m at your service. Book your Insights Session today.