Happy Fri-YAY and first Friday of June! Summer is in full swing and it’s the perfect time add healthy lifestyle choices into your life. In May, I decided that I would start implementing something awesome into my weekly routine. I have been doing yoga on and off for the last few years, but never with any kind of consistency. I used to dance and do cheerleading in my high school days, so I am not stranger to stretching and yoga practices. Every week for the last month, I’ve been going to a yoga class at least 3 times a week (sometimes more). Let’s chat about it.
Yoga has a crazy amount of benefits, scientifically. Not only does it increase flexibility, but it also increases muscle tone, improved respiration, balances metabolism, weight loss, improves cardiovascular health, and protection from injury. And those are just the physical benefits. There are countless mental benefits as well.
The biggest benefits I’ve seen when adding yoga to my weekly routine are:
#1: Stress Management
Doing yoga the last month has done wonders for my ability to manage stress. I know that at LEAST 3 times a week, I get to take an hour to just breathe and let go of the things that are no longer serving me. I have found that I am more able to let things go, and focus on bettering myself and working on my goals with a clearer mind.
#2: Increased Concentration
Most of you know that I work from home, so I NEED to be able to concentrate. I have to be able to focus and get things done in an efficient time frame. When I have too many things I’m worried about, I don’t work as well as I could. After yoga, I feel more energetic and alert, and am able to sit down and concentrate for hours longer than I used to be able to.
#3: Increased Body Awareness
I am much more in tune with my body. This is huge for me. I suffered from back and neck pain, and most of that has pretty much gone away because I am understanding my body a lot more. I realize that I was ignoring a lot of the signals my body was giving me and now that I am more in tune with it, I can make little adjustments and my body is thanking me BIG TIME.
#4: Corrects Posture
This is a huge one for me because I have TERRIBLE posture and I sit leaned over at a desk for more hours than not. I have noticed a serious difference in how I stand and sit. Considering the only big change I’ve made in the last four weeks was yoga, I’m going to go ahead and give this one to yoga.
#5: Mood Booster
This one is bigbigbig. I noticed that I felt lighter and happier after yoga. The endorphins from exercising really helped me perk up during the morning. I am NOT a morning person, but after starting yoga, I think that I could say I am….kind of a morning person now.
#6: Improves Your Sleep
This one I had heard before but was super skeptical. However, I am now a believer. I have struggled with sleep for a long time. I have the worst time getting to sleep at night and often lay awake for hours before finally falling asleep. Recently, I’ve been falling asleep much faster and the best part is I STAY asleep (until my kitten licks my face so much I wake up).
PIN THIS FOR LATER:
If you are in the St. Louis area (and I know lots of you are), I would HIGHLY recommend Namaste. This is by far the best yoga studio I have ever been to. The owners are fabulous, and the yoga instructors are amazing. I’ve loved every class I’ve been to (in particular, the hot yoga). Your first month is only $40, so sign up here!
Yoga is something that everyone can do at EVERY age and EVERY level. You don’t have to be a pro to go to a yoga class. You just have to go with an open mind. I am NOT the most flexible person in the room. I can’t hold all the poses. I have to modify things sometimes. But NOBODY judges you for not being the best. They accept you for WHERE YOU ARE AT. Everyone needs something like this in their lives, I promise.
Do you do yoga? What is your favorite class? Let me know in the comments below!