Man, two posts about sport in the span of a week…I’m clearly losing my mind…
While I’m not a very physically active person, I have tried lots of stuff in my life. Despite my failings as a figure skater and a gymnast, and my attempts at being a graceful dancer, yoga is one thing that I think everyone can attempt. Not everyone should try to throw themselves into crazy poses (god knows I have) because that could result in your muscles hurting (god knows mine have), but it is something you can get exponentially better at with daily practice. Everyone can start doing downward dog, the warrior pose and the sun salutation. You make it harder as you become better!
Yoga is relaxing for the brain – I know for me it makes me completely forget my daily worries – and can even give you time to meditate. It strengthens your muscles, improves your flexibility and circulation. So in general, it is great for the body and the mind!
While I was in St Andrews, I did yoga and some stretches every day (if you don’t count the beginning of the year where I insisted on doing nothing…). However, since I haven’t been doing much in the past few months (coughyearcough), I have noticed a difference, not only in my flexibility but in having some backaches, neck aches, etc. After working a lot in the winter months, since I have been off of work, I’ve tried to get back into daily yoga practice.
Here are 3 easy tips that really helped me motivate myself to do yoga every day:
1. Keep the yoga mat on hand.
It sounds silly but this made a considerable difference! When I moved home, I thought ‘yeah I’ll do yoga every day like I used to’ then I didn’t. I kept telling myself I would go get the mat the next day and it went on for a while!. It’s shocking! The moment the mat was nicely placed in my room, where I do my morning or night yoga, it became so easy to just pick it up and get going!
2. Make it part of your routine.
It might sound evident, but like anything, it is easy to give ourselves excuses – I know I have a gift for those – so making it part of the routine, like taking a shower or taking off your make up at the end of the day, will help. It’s also good to create a space where you’ll feel good doing your yoga every day(damn this should have been another tip on it’s own!). It will help you want to do it more often! Moreover, the more I did it, the more I was able to create a personal yoga routine and so it became like a choreography. I don’t know for you, but as a control freak, I like to know where I’m going and about to do.
3. Get some entertainment involved.
While some mornings or nights I like to sit in silence and focus on my thoughts or even try to empty my mind, other times, I just need a distraction to get through my yoga and stretches routine. I have a yoga playlist if I just want some light background music, or sometimes I’ll even go as far as put a TV show in the background (which I perhaps don’t recommend, because once I made the mistake of putting the most recent Game of Thrones episode on and so I ended up sitting halfway through my routine because I was so engrossed by the episode). However, music is a definite must for me! I’m sometimes pretty terrible at stopping some poses once I start to be a little tired (which I don’t do during yoga classes because I’m too proud and thinking other people are looking at me forces me to hold on as long as possible), but if I have music on, I can tell myself to try and keep the pose until the end of the song. It’s a good motivation!
Hope this helped and hope you enjoy pretending to do yoga sitting on your mat like me! 😉 Happy Thursday!