3 Realistic Ways to Get More Yoga into Your Life
Is ‘practice more yoga' on your to-do list? Take that vague intention and turn it into actionable steps that will get you on your mat more often.
Ann Pizer |
If you want to do more yoga, you can't rely on good intentions or willpower. The way to affect change is to make a habit of it, which means earmarking the time and making sure your routine is practical and fits your lifestyle,
More yoga means and happier, healthier you, so set realistic goals and then do the planning that makes those goal achievable. Taking a good, hard look at your calendar and writing your yoga times down in permanent ink is the first step. Don't let inconsistency be your downfall. Doing a class here and a stretch there is not going to improve your body, your mood, and your life the way that getting on your mat three times a week will.
1. Go to Class
If you like to go to class, pick a studio that is convenient to your home or workplace (you are less likely to go if it requires a special trip or long commute). Get out your planner, your calendar, your phone, wherever you write down the important stuff that you have to do. Triangulate until you have a workable schedule of three classes a week.
If you hate to get up in the morning, don’t try to make it to the 6 a.m. Power Flow class. You’re not trying to turn yourself into a morning person, you’re trying to do more yoga. Get a membership or class card. You will save money and be more likely to stick to your plan because it’s already paid for.
Don’t underestimate the value of engaging with a community by frequenting the same classes. Knowing your teacher and classmates are expecting you is very motivating. Getting yourself to the yoga studio on a regular basis is really the easiest way to up your yoga quotient. All you have to do is show up and the yoga will take care of itself.
Pro tip: Lunchtime classes get you out of your office, away from your desk, breathing new air. You will come back recharged for the afternoon like ingesting a limp little salad will never do. If your workplace offers yoga classes as a perk, go! Lots of wonderful instructors teach corporate classes for extra income so you will probably get a great class.
2. Practice at Home
If you prefer home practice, getting on a schedule is really the key. It’s nice to have a little space dedicated to your yoga mat because we all know how easy it is to get distracted by what's in the fridge or on Netflix, but don’t let your lack of the perfect setting become your reason not to practice. It’s not that big a deal to unroll your mat wherever you have room (and it’s a good exercise in flexibility).
You don’t have to do your yoga at the same time each day or put any rules on it at all once you have it on the calendar. Set up alerts to remind you to get over to your mat when the clock strikes yoga. If you can just flow freely for 30 minutes, go for it. If you need some inspiration, take advantage of one the many available apps or video services that keep fresh classes streaming into your home.
3. Restart When Necessary
Once you get in the habit of doing more yoga, you won’t want to stop. But sometimes there’s a bump in the road that throws you off your stride. If you wake up one morning and realise that you’ve let your yoga time slide, you can decide to fix that right then and there. It doesn’t mean that you’ve failed and should give up. Instead, be willing to constantly readjust as necessary to keep the yoga flowing.