The last time I wrote, I gave a really nice introduction to Uplyft Wellness and the journey I call my own. Unfortunately, there were some holes that I felt like I needed to patch up and add to to complete my story. My hope is that today’s post will do just that – well a part of it.
Yoga. What is it and why did I choose to make it a part of my life?
What is Yoga?
Yoga is a Sanskrit word that means “union.” A union of what? To me, I see Yoga as the union of the Mind, the Body, and the Spirit of the individual. This union of Self, ultimately, leads to the union of the World where, instead of seeing our differences, we come together to celebrate what makes us the same.
Why did I choose to make Yoga a part of my life?
This kind of leads me into a few separate puzzle pieces that I hope will fit together to answer this question.
My Fitness History
I’ve always loved moving my body. When I was a kid, I enjoyed biking, playing outside, and jumping on the trampoline. My dad started running and I even joined him for a bit training for and running a few 1 mile races. During the winter, I would get how to/workout video’s (not DVD’s <– they didn’t exist quite yet) from the library about ballet and dance.
In my teenage years, I didn’t like the way my body looked. I always felt like I looked chubby, and that I wasn’t very pretty. I thought that some kind of diet would help me, and I flirted with the idea of an eating disorder. I was afraid to workout or exercise because I was self conscious of how I looked. And I also knew that my mother and sister were aware and somewhat concerned with my distorted body image. I felt trapped between what they expected and perceived of me, and what I expected and perceived of myself. This changed my senior year, when I decided to run a half marathon (13.1 miles) with my dad.
After graduating, my family was introduced to Zumba which I fell in love with and did regularly. I loved the movement and the music, and I loved ending the workout feeling sweaty and accomplished. Moving away to college was no different as I ran often, used the elliptical in the dorm gym, did YouTube videos, and went to a Zumba class with friends. I also took a beginner ballet class and danced in two of the dance studio’s productions.
Even to this day, I still enjoy putting together little workout routines using hand weights and my own body weight as well as walking, running and biking.
My Yoga History
My yoga story is a little different. I was first introduced to yoga at a teen girls church activity. I liked feeling strong and flexible, and I felt calm, at peace, and okay with my body for the first time in a while. It was short lived, but not forgotten. For Christmas, my family gifted me a Yoga DVD that I could use. (I’ll be honest I didn’t use it that much tho because I felt that it was boring and you know…*see My Fitness History*)
I wasn’t introduced to it again until 2016 when I took a Yoga class at BYU. (I also took a Pilates class at that time too, but my insecurities from high school had returned, and I hated feeling like I didn’t match up to the other prettier, skinnier, stronger girls in the class. I dropped it soon after.) This yoga class at BYU was incredible! It was a basic beginners yoga, but it still pushed me to be better. I felt loved and wanted. My mind, body, and soul were connected to that class on a spiritual level that I can’t even begin to describe. I just knew it was where I was meant to be.
This yoga class really fueled my love for yoga and pushed it into gear.
I researched where I could take a yoga teacher training course and eventually found one in Provo. And let me just say – The month that I spent 4 or 5 days a week practicing and teaching yoga, learning about the different poses, learning a little bit about meditation, and really exploring myself… it was THE BEST MONTH OF MY LIFE! And, I learned SO much.
And from there, I started teaching yoga once a week at church. I began researching how and where to begin my own yoga studio, I learned about the yoga community on Instagram and started participating in yoga challenges, and everything in my life just blossomed.
So honestly, I never really chose yoga as much as yoga chose me.
Where has my yoga journey taken me?
That’s a great question!
I am still absolutely in love with yoga. I no longer teach yoga at church or anywhere for that matter. <– And it KILLS me! I’m having the absolute hardest time finding a place to teach that I can rent for free or for a very minimal cost (maybe even trade massage for it.) I am flirting around with the idea of doing private classes, but I haven’t really opened this idea up for public discussion. I am also considering doing YouTube yoga classes, but I don’t have all the right equipment yet.
I don’t practice yoga as often as I would like to which is completely and totally my fault. I’ve hit a rut and haven’t felt inspired or even worthy to practice. Some of it is me just being lazy, and some of it is a mind game of self talk that I need to conquer.
I still love putting together yoga music playlists on Spotify (isiann93) and participating in Instagram Yoga Challenges (@uplyft.wellness), although, I haven’t been as active in that department as I could be.
So yeah, that’s me. That’s my yoga journey.