yoga

The poses don’t change, you do

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If you practice yoga long enough, you’ll begin to feel the magic of it all.  You’ll start to stand taller and friends will start to see this new glow that surrounds you.

You’ll attribute that glow to yoga, of course, and maybe a few green drinks.

On the surface, yoga looks simple. Warrior Twos, Down Dogs and Twists.  Each vinyasa class maintaining a similar flow, with nearly similar poses.  Every time you do a vinyasa or a full Sun Salutation, it’s the same exact thing. The same exact set of poses, one after another.  It might seem like you’d never learn anything new, never be able to test yourself if you have to follow the same movement patterns every single time.  And then you realize, oh, the poses are not different but I am different each time I do the poses.

Yesterday I was feeling frustrated in my balancing poses and today I’m as unflinching as the biggest boulder.

Yoga teaches us to enter the dark corners we try to avoid.  This causes me discomfort so I’m going to go around it.  Yoga makes you go through it. Yoga teaches you to say, “I don’t like this, I’m uncomfortable, but I’m going to work through it”. That’s when the magic happens. A candle is lit in that dark corner and that glow around you is already starting to grow.

lifestyle, Lifting, yoga

Be in this for the long haul

Change does not happen overnight. Change takes months of consistency and hard work. fullsizerenderYears of pushing yourself to your max and doing things even when you just don’t feel like it doing it. Nothing is easy and everything takes time.

We live in a world where we can get pretty much anything we want relatively fast. And it’s created this sense of urgency in everything we do.  We want to lose 10 pounds in 5 days.  We want to be able to do headstand after 1 week of practicing yoga.  Let me just tell you now, that life is not sustainable. It’s not real. The work and time has to be put in if you want long term success.  You could probably throw yourself up in a headstand after just a few yoga classes or drop a few pounds in a week but you wouldn’t have built the foundation it took to maintain that long term.  You would soon crumble down or throw yourself into a rut or worse, delay your progress because you did too much, too fast, and too soon.

It’s so beautiful though — when someone dedicates an appropriate amount of time to something and accomplishes it. Even more so to someone who has spent a whole year working towards it, grinding at it, relentless and determined.

When I fall in love with something, like yoga or lifting, I want to be able to do it for the rest of my life. So short term goals are fun but I’m in it for the long haul, I want to be able to do these things when I’m 70 years old. With that in mind, I set appropriate goals for myself, I listen to my body when it needs a break and I honor my edge.  I’m not scared to push myself but I respect that things take time. Foundation needs to be laid in order to build.

Build your foundation, trust your body and jump when it’s ready. You’ll know.

yoga

It’s not the pose, it’s the struggle

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Yoga is not about the pose. It’s not about holding handstand or doing some crazy arm balance or even being able to sit in pigeon comfortably for several minutes at a time.

It’s about the struggle along the way.

When I see someone take flight in their first bakasana, I’m so freaking excited for them not because they finally got the pose but because I know all the struggles they pushed through to get to that point. I know the hundreds of times they tried it, failed and tried again.  I know the time they put into it, the frustration they pushed passed and the countless times they might have told themselves they’ll never be able to do it.

Yoga is not about the pose, it’s about the struggle.

Lifting is not about the weight, it’s about the struggle.

It’s about finding something that is challenging for you and pushing yourself to 10 to get to where you want to be. Who cares what someone else lifts, who cares about all the crazy arm balances the person next to you in class can do.  Everyone has different struggles, everyone has different goals and as long as you can focus on yourself and push through the struggles, you’ll come out a better and stronger you.

Fitness Friday, Lifting

Fitness Friday: 20 Minute Full Body Workout

Grab two dumbbells and get to work! You’ll do this for as many sets as you can in 20 minutes, with 45 second rest in between each set.

  • 12 Squats with Dumbbell Overhead Press at the top
  • 12 Reverse Lunges with Bicep Curl (each side)
  • 12 Renegade Rows (each side)
  • 12 Skull Crushers
  • 12 Lat Pullovers
  • 12 Leg Lifts