Stretch IS Yoga

Being a “Yogi” is a lifestyle choice. But we all have our comfort zone.

On the extreme end of the spectrum is going to India for a year, getting up before the crack of dawn (which in my mind is night time and meant for SLEEPING), and participating in deep meditation; yeah, it’s not for me either.

Ok, now moving down the yoga mountain, a little further from Tibet and closer to home, you have those who are “off to hot yoga class”. Ughh, bye-bye. Some people just love the social interaction and all aren’t actually better than you or me, they just need some extra motivation. Sorry, not really a fan of the idea of everybody purposefully sweating as much as possible. However, I did do some special yoga events such as “Candlelight” and outside on the “Grassy knowles of the Farm” (in small groups and they were new experiences) — I ended up really enjoyed it, both times.

Another way that I have chosen to participate in the yoga practice is by bringing my mat with me for a two week visit with some family.  I did this in my designated guestroom before getting up and at it, to enter into the “Good Morning!!” chit chat over coffee. I would set my laptop on the floor and follow a 35 min  video. This particular routine has been with me through a lot of ups and downs in my life. It’s familiar, calming and I feel Engergized afterwards.

At home, I try to do this same routine either in my bedroom or living room. But honestly, I would be lucky to actually do it consistently once a week (lately it’s more like once a month). Yet, when I do it, I feel amazing. Same with going to the gym, I guess… the hard part is deciding then taking the first step to doing.

I guess I DO need help with finding motivation! One of the ways, for me to get this in a more unique and fun way was to join the “Yikers” (Hikers who do Yoga). My first experience was a on a beautiful Narnia-esque day. Most of the group had snowshoes, I was one of two with cross country skis. That was a neat adventure, warrior pose and then all of a sudden my front foot stated to slide in a forward direction, uh-oh!

But the crux of it is that we all need to be physically moving. Big or small, you and I presumably do yoga everyday and probably don’t even realize it! So let’s start to be concious of our every movement. No matter what you are doing, or where you are, if you feel a tiny stretch, hold that pose just a few seconds longer and slowly breath in and out of your nose.

Once I came to this awesome awakening, I have had some fun with it. Putting moisturizer, coconut or essential oils over your entire body (not your face though, there are separate routines for that special garden) is a wonderful way to stretch all muscles in a loving, caring and soothing way. Then when you blow dry your hair, do it with your head hanging upside down for as long as it takes. I have a Battoga (bathtub yoga) set that I do often and when it’s time to relax, I am already  conveniently in the most relaxing place in my home.

Some people need physio for special medical reasons but EVERYONE needs healthy living and wellness. Now, that’s a lifestyle choice that I can get on board with.

-Julie
Yearning Yoga

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