Start Your Life Today

Start Your Life Today

Last week, I was talking with my cousin as we walked across the Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis. It was a beautiful evening and there were a lot of runners, walkers, bikers and families out enjoying the evening.

Knowing that my cousin was interested in losing some weight, I asked her if she had ever been a runner. She replied, yes, but now her knees and a few other aches and pains were preventing her from running.  And, in fact, every time she tried to start getting active again, she injured herself! I, of course, recommended she try yoga, to which she replied . . . I don’t have a yoga body!

I don't have a yoga body!

People come up with all kinds of excuses for not taking care of their bodies and their lives for that matter.  It takes too much time.  I get too tired if I work out.  I get injured when I work out. It costs too much money. They think they need to join a gym, lift weights, or take an hour long fitness class. The reality is, you just need to start moving! Any movement will help you start feeling better, help increase your metabolism, and release stress. 

One of the first activities you can try is about as simple as it gets . . . breathing. Not that shallow breath that doesn’t go much further than your throat, but deep breathing like you do for the doctor. 

Just start moving and . . . breathe.

Think about it, how often do you really breathe in so deeply that you fill your lungs and expand your chest as well as your belly? For many, it may be never! Deep breathing will help you focus your mind and relax. 

Take a couple of minutes, close your eyes, and feel your breath as it comes in through your nose and then exhales out through your nose.

As you continue to breathe, eyes closed, slowly inhaling and exhaling, start to count.  Inhale through your nose . . . One, two, three, four . . . exhale through your nose . . . one, two, three four. It’s really interesting that as you count, your mind cannot focus on anything else.

When you breathe . . . it's all about you!

Breathing is one of the first steps in yoga, qigong and other mindful practices. The breath centers and unites your mind and your body. When you breathe, it is all about you.

That is one of the many things I love about yoga . . . your practice is all about you.  There is no competition, no judgement, no expectation. Each individual practices to his or her own ability and pace, and with every practice, you become more flexible, more balanced, and more relaxed.

Practice sitting in a chair, standing or in the car.

Yoga allows each one of us to breathe, move and grow our individual practice to fit our own needs and schedules. We can practice breathing and simple stretches sitting at our desks, standing in line, or riding in a car. If we are mindful of our free minutes, we can start building a stronger body and relieving stress starting right now.

Visit Yoga Treats to find some treats for you, your body and your mind.

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