Sometimes I get asked why I do so much yoga. I say it makes me feel good: my mind feels better, my insides feel better, my outside feels better, I feel better about the way I look, really my whole self is better. So I take 90 uninterrupted minutes a day for myself. 90 minutes without emails, text messages, students asking me for something, friends, family, even hubby. It’s 90 minutes for ME in front of a mirror working my booty off- I love it!
I like to think that investing 1.5-2 hours on my mind and body a day is going to make me a better person which in turn will help me to make a bigger difference in life. I can better serve my friends, family, even students!
I was first interested in working out when I was a sophomore in high school. My mom and I joined a gym. I pretty much had some type of gym to work out in from then till now. I can make myself go to the gym. I can jog on the treadmill or lift weights (I really REALLY don’t like lifting weights…. so boring for me!). Going to the gym doesn’t make my mind feel better- I pretty much dislike being there every minute. I go because I should and it makes me feel better about the way my body looks afterwards. But that’s all it really did for me.
My first yoga class ever was probably in college (maybe 2003?). I always liked yoga. But most normal yoga classes didn’t feel like a workout so I’d still do some cardio before or after class.
October 2006 marked my first Bikram yoga class. I liked it from the start. I loved it within the first month. The first 4 or 5 years was sporadic for me. The studio was across town and even when I was being consistent it was two maybe three times a week. I saw how it helped my mind and body. I didn’t have to make myself go. I WANTED to go. I still took a year off here and there. The year I was engaged I went consistently (gotta de-stress and fit into my dress).
We got married and I stopped making the trek across town to yoga and settled for forcing myself to the gym. When a different studio opened a location about a mile from my house I was excited and nervous to try a different studio. Would it be the same? Am I selling out not going to my original studio? A friend and I went and I LOVED it! The studio was spacious, had great carpet, and a humidifier! The first month I went about three times a week. That seemed like all I could possibly fit into my schedule. I then started a 60 day challenge (turned into 94 days). In that challenge I realized that I CAN fit yoga into my daily schedule. Starting January 2012 I’ve been going 5-6 times a week. And I LOVE it! My mind is better: I’m more calm and positive, I don’t spend time hating the way I look, and I’m better equipped to handle uncomfortable and stressful situations. My body it better: I have more toned muscles, my skin doesn’t need lotion and glows after class, I’m better at handling hot weather (I live in Texas).
Yesterday at school someone heard about my yoga practice and was a little shocked I spend so much time doing yoga. She doesn’t understand how it benefits me. She doesn’t understand that it’s a sport just like cycling or running (only I get more out of yoga than I would running or cycling….). I told her to try it. I told her about the donation class and told her to try. I know it’s not for everyone, but it’s DEFINITELY for me. Maybe she’ll see why I spend 10 hours a week in the hot room!