First off, get inspired! Get moving! Set goals for yourself! Hell yeah!
This post is not tryin’ to slow your roll, but instead to deconstruct some of the underlying hindrances to the January gym rush. Here's a some simple ideas to keep you going.
Don't try so hard!
It's December 26, and I'm already seeing ads like this one smattered all over my Facebook feed.
”Yoga every day" is a grand and lofty goal, but let's get real; going from zero to 30 is not only unlikely, but stressful. I'm a full time yoga teacher, and the idea of yoga every day sounds stressful. We have all experienced that over committing leads to burn out. Besides, forcing yourself into something that's good for you takes out all of the inherent joy of doing the thing.
The key to consistency.? Find something you like, with a teacher you like, and people you like to see. Start small. Commit to 1 class a week at the same time.
You are enough!
You know what's just as revolutionary as yoga every day? Looking in the mirror and loving yourself each day. We can underestimate the power of our self-talk. Missed yoga today? That's cool, I've got your back self, I love you anyways! Let's take a walk and do better tomorrow.
It’s scary to start something new. The underlying fear of not wanting to be “bad” at something can stop you before you even start. Let’s reframe this idea: rather than I'm "bad" at something, I'm "new/gaining experience/getting better" at it. Allow yourself the compassion you would offer to a child learning or someone new at your job. Its cool, you’ll get there with persistence!
Forget exercise, Play!
Yes, yoga is an ancient system for relaxation, meditation, and ultimate enlightenment, but have you seen those images of laughing Buddha? Let's lighten up, y'all! Do you remember as a kid running just
because it was more fun to run!? I fought against myself in so many exercise programs, and only became more consistent because acro yoga and slackline are super fun to me, it's something I really enjoy doing.
Here's a secret: you can enjoy your work out! The definition of exercise is greatly expanding, along with an ever wider array of opportunities to move your body. Maybe you're the 8 reps of 10 kind of exerciser, or maybe you're a aerial silk, hoola-hooping, dance party by yourself kind of mover. What sounds fun? Is your personality structured, or spontaneous?
If going to yoga is stressing you out, then we're kind of missing the point. Sure, some days getting to yoga class is the hardest part. Are you looking to de-stress and unwind? Many forms of exercise and movement will actually jack up your nervous system, the opposite of the effect you’re looking for. The best ways to calm your nervous system are breathing, meditation, and yin yoga. If you want to feel different, try something different!
The big idea here is the personal growth takes time, commitment, and love. Rather than a big bad resolution, what is one tangible step you can take today towards your goal? You've got this!