Sometimes you just need some way to get out the stress. When I have the chance to run that’s a wonderful way to decrease the stress. Unfortunately, sometimes leaving the house for a run isn’t an option. It may be too hot or it may be storming. On occasion it’s actually too cold. When those things happen, I need an alternative. I’ve tried a lot of things but there are really only two that work. I’ll discuss the other one at another time. Today I’m going to talk about yoga.
I started doing yoga in January as a way to try and tone muscle. It works well for that. It’s also caused me to become more flexible and allowed me to listen to my body in a way that’s resulted in a developed sense of what is to much, just enough and not enough when it comes to effort. All of those things has been useful to me in my fitness journey. Especially listening to your body and learning what it can do and what is beyond your limit.
However, most importantly, yoga has given me the skills to relieve stress. It sounds a little silly because it’s exercise. Most people simply view it as a path to fitness. It goes deeper than that though. When you truly start to practice yoga, you listen to your breath. You learn to sync your breath to your body movements and different ways of breathing. You learn how to meditate in some practices. A good yoga session ends with a savasanna (which may not be spelled right), which is essentially a mini-meditation. Those skills have been crucial in allowing me to relax in moments of great stress.
When I’m at home, I can do a yoga practice on my mat, obviously. When I go out into the real world and can’t just start doing yoga (like during a test) I can still use calming breaths to relax myself. I can even take a moment to close my eyes and relax a little further. Those moments are great because it’s like a mini break for my brain. That is the best gift that I can get. Some of the situations that I’m in are high stress and being able to calm down in those moments is critical.
Learning stress relief is crucial for mental health. Otherwise I end up overwhelmed (and you probably do too) and when that happens, I can’t function as well and I can’t think as well. If you have a high stress situation that you need to deal with, I suggest yoga. I also recommend it if you have test anxiety. The ability to calm your brain could help (and it definitely can’t hurt!). Today is a short one lovely people. Consider a new way to relax, if you haven’t. Maybe you too start with fitness as the ultimate goal. I bet you’ll learn something new though. Until next time!