yoga

Fitness Goals: Trying To Get Upside Down

A few posts ago I wrote about the things I wanted to leave in 2017 and the intentions I was setting for the new year. Number 4 on that list was to get inverted and I won't lie... I waited a full month before doing anything about it. It happens.

Then a few days ago I realized it was almost February and I'd made no progress, so in the middle of the night I brought a yoga mat into my room and got started. Word on the street is that it takes 2 weeks to make something a habit but it's been a daily practice ever since. Here's to hoping I haven't jinxed it.

THE WEEK IN REVIEW

Conquering my fear of being upside down took more than I thought. On the first day I could barely get my feet off the ground. Google suggested a "Wall T-stand" was a good beginner yoga inversion so I tried it. I also experimented with moving my legs in space from this position. Let's just say it's harder than it looks. 

AE1A92F4-BFD1-4842-9AE2-F22F2E835DB9.JPG
09B851D6-75AD-4607-A4FD-D966AB26537D.JPG
E0A2CC6A-610E-49DA-A239-01EB616AA8A2.JPG

One thing's for certain: consistency is key. Only 3 short days after getting my feet in the air for the first time I started feeling like I was actually getting better. I'm not walking on my hands or anything crazy just yet, but the head- and Wall T-stands are coming along.

MY TIPS FOR GETTING STARTED

  • Invest in a decent yoga mat (like this one or this one)

  • If you have an irrational fear of being upside down, practice against a wall and use yoga blocks to help you get into an upside down position. You don't have to do anything fancy. Just hang out and remain calm.

A7F6C6E1-7968-447E-98F7-48E16A4A3C06.JPG
  • For working on headstands:

  1. Start in a table top position and drop onto your elbows.

  2. Pike up, keeping a slight bend in your knees and inch your feet forward.

  3. Lift one leg up, and then try the other. At first you might need to use momentum (I was practically jumping into it!) but over time try to keep your core tight and the movement slow and controlled.

BF65F2EE-D062-4D4A-8758-5016B51DA55D.JPG
D89A190F-7901-4D35-90A4-947A9FCC540E.JPG
DCB458E1-75CB-4146-9B06-84442E1833A1.JPG
ABBEAD07-316D-4147-A957-AFED6EBF2107.JPG
D018CEB2-5475-4A58-BEEF-66A792544188.JPG

It's not perfect but the girl who was once afraid of getting inverted is well on her way. I hope you will be too! Keep me posted on your progress via Instagram by using #MOTMgoals. xx

// Get my monthly 'On The Move' newsletter here. //

// Follow along on Bloglovin' and never miss a post here. //

4 Reasons To Do More Yoga

IMG_8409.JPG

Happy Friday! After nearly 3.5 months away from my mat I'm slowly (& finally) getting back into my practice. But don't get it twisted! I'm very much a beginner yogi and I've never been well-seasoned or consistent. 

If I'm being honest, I've never even practiced yoga with the intention of "getting really good". I just love what it does to cleanse my soul and that's enough to keep me coming back...

But just in case it isn't for you (I get that), here are 4 more reasons why you should be getting your YOGA on:

Ommmmmmmmmm .

Ommmmmmmmmm.

1. Flexibility is fleeting and everyday we get older.

You know that saying, you'll never be as young as you are right now? That's the first thing I thought when my instructor tried to get me into full-blown camel pose (that and not gonna happen sis) .

But here are two undeniable truths: (1) without flexibility, daily activities can get really difficult, and (2) yoga is a great way to relieve the stresses of our daily lives. So  s t r e t c h  it out hustler, like your strength and mobility depend on it. Because they do.

 2. Crunches do NOT build strong cores.

My first day back on my yoga mat I found ab muscles I never knew I had. Don't take my word for it though. Swap your current ab-routine for an hour of yoga each week and experience the burn for yourself. It's no joke.

3. It's ok to just BE, and you should make time for it.

If you've taken a yoga class, then you've probably found your body in a position that your mind wasn't too happy about. The same sort of thing happens IRL. So, if you're constantly feeling like you could and should be doing more, then YOGA . It's a mental, physical, and spiritual affirmation that we are enough as we are, at any given moment. A reminder to just show up. I'm into that. 

IMG_8410.JPG

4. Because sometimes you need a reminder to breathe.

When things get hard you've always got two choices: work through it or get out of it. And no matter what you decide, in yoga and in life, you've got to remember your breath. You are alive. You are here. Your quads are burning but you are breathing. K e e p breathing.

IMG_8412.JPG

I really can't recommend yoga enough! Invest in the essentials and just do it. This yoga mat is hands down my favorite but you could also opt for a quality affordable option. Yoga blocks were so important for improving my flexibility and this combo lets you get two blocks and a yoga strap for less $ (thank the Lord) . My third and final essential would have to be a nonslip mat towel. If you're not a super sweat-er (like me), then you can get away with passing on this one. But if you do sweat and want to avoid turning your mat into a slip-n-slide, you should probably invest. You can't go wrong with Manduka- they play no games when it comes to yoga- but you can also find other mat towels (like this one or this one) for less.

So you see.. you don't need a $30 yoga class. You don't even need to leave the comfort of your home.  Just get your mat, lay it down, search for a "yoga flow" on YouTube, and get started.

And if you're still not ready to practice alone... you can buy 2 of everything and drag your mom's best friend's cousin into it, or your unsuspecting roommate. That's my favorite. Wishing you a wonderful freakin' weekend! xx

 

 

// Get my monthly 'On The Move' newsletter here. //

// Follow along on Bloglovin' and never miss a post here. //