It is a definitely a journey…a never ending journey that has lots of hills and valleys.
I want to share my journey over the next few weeks regarding my health and fitness. I am of the mindset that each person has to figure out what works for them. I believe we can all find our way to improved health, but there is not a cookie cutter “diet” or exercise regimen that works for everyone.
If you have read any of my past posts, or if you know me, you know my life made a major transition about five years ago. Since that time, I have been on a quest to feel better and make life and longevity a priority. At the time of my divorce, I was about 45, so I was making big changes in my personal life and my physicality.
One of the major ways I made change was to add yoga to my life. It actually started about 6 years ago, and began before my divorce, but since that time I have made it a part of my lifestyle and I cannot tell you the difference yoga has made to my physical and mental self.
I was the poster child yoga skeptic. Like, you cannot be as skeptical about something as I was about yoga. I mean, c’mom, so woo woo and flaky, right?
I will admit it took several sessions before I really bought in and before I could tell it was doing anything for me. I was of the mindset that to get fit, you had to burn tons of calories, sweat, pant, and be exhausted after a work out. Now, don’t get me wrong, I definitely do all of those things after some of my yoga sessions. However, this was different.
At the time I started yoga, I was actually doing some HIIT, strength training, weights, and running. I was in an unhappy place at the time so working out and going to the gym became my escape. Let’s just say, I was past the point of having sore muscles after a workout. You know what I mean? That soreness from when you first begin a new fitness regimen. I was doing all the things very regularly.
After my first session of yoga, I was sore in places I didn’t know could be sore! However, after a few sessions, I sort of found my groove and had the biggest sense of satisfaction afterwards, It was weird.
It was like I could not wait for the next time.
After awhile, I was really beginning to see the benefits of this ancient practice that I had dismissed and had the typical preconceived notions about. You know the ones! (TRUST ME, you do not have to be flexible to do yoga!)
I can tell you one fact about yoga: It WILL make you flexible. I have been amazed at the flexibility I have gained from practicing regularly. I have never been a flexible person, even as a child; but here I am in middle age and I’m as flexible as I have ever been in my life.
Also, it is one of the most mentally satisfying things I have ever done. The active meditation and breathing that is involved with yoga is such an awesome benefit. In fact, that alone has helped me in my other fitness practices.
I will tell you I practice mostly at home, but I have been to some amazing yoga workshops and even attended a yoga retreat in Italy last year (crazy, right?) I can tell you that the yoga community I have been exposed to is one of support. Some of the best people I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know.
So, I hope I have been able to convince you to perhaps give it a try for yourself. If you are skeptical, I get it! I really do. However, sometimes you just have to step out of your comfort zone and try new things. My advice is to find a good instructor; or start where I did and still do frequently: Yoga With Adriene.
I have been doing her workouts from about the time she started her channel. She has several free 30 days challenges. I would tell you to find some beginner videos to learn some of the basics as well as proper form. Then dig into one of those 30 day challenges. You will be amazed at how differently you feel at the end.
I cannot say enough about the health benefits of yoga.
Also, as a taller woman (I’m 5’9″) I HIGHLY recommend investing in a quality yoga mat. I have this 85″ Manduka Pro mat in purple and I cannot tell you what a difference it makes. (If you use my link to purchase you are supporting my content. It doesn’t cost you anything and it helps me continue to grow The Happy Kim to reach others.)
I will continue my fitness journey next week.