Earlier this year I talked about my theme for 2017: Nourish. Nourishing not just my business and my family, but ME.
As a working mom, finding--or making--time for myself is a challenge. I'll bet most busy women will tell you that one of the first things that falls to the wayside when life gets crazy is personal care: eating well, exercising, and taking care of themselves. And I'm no different.
Here's the thing: I hate exercising. I mean, I love to go for a hike (as you can imagine, that's almost a non-starter with a 4yo and 2yo), take a long walk or jog in a beautiful landscape (NOT pushing a stroller, stopping every 5 minutes to doll out snacks or wipe someone's nose), or even bat the ball around (do we even have a baseball bat in a house with a mischievous 4yo? Nope.). But slogging through a run-to-nowhere on the treadmill, doing repetitive lunges and bicep curls, spending 30 monotonous minutes on the elliptical? Ugh. I really have to force myself. And I'll admit I don't do it nearly often enough.
I've played around with yoga occasionally over the years--I bought some DVDs and would pop one in a few times a week, stretch and pose and then life would get busy and I'd give it up.
But this year I resolved to really try yoga. So beginning January 1, I committed to Yoga with Adriene's 31 Day Yoga Revolution. I hoped if I could get my butt on the mat every day for a month, it might just click.
While I didn't manage to practice every single day, by Day 31 I think I was on Day 28 or 29 of the series, which isn't too shabby.
Perhaps what did the trick this time was not thinking of it as exercise. Yes, it tones, strengthens, lengthens and all that good stuff, but it's really a full person experience. A chance to slow down, focus, reset--time that's just for ME.
So I'm excited to share that I've kept it up! While yoga every day isn't realistic for me at this point, I'm on the mat 4 to 5 days a week. After I worked through Yoga Revolution, I tried Adriene's Yoga Camp series, and now I either do her recommended daily practice or flip through her channel and see what speaks to me. Some days it's easy stretching or practicing balance, other days it's power yoga or a strength-focused practice.
If you're interested in yoga and haven't checked out Adriene's YouTube channel, you really should, she's got everything (the other day I spotted "yoga for hangovers" and I really want to see what that one's about!). She's also very down-to-earth and charming--and she talks about Wu Tang Clan a lot more than you would expect in a yoga series . . .
I am not, as Frenchie might say, a "woo woo" person. Crystals, phases of the moon, connecting with the earth's spirit . . . these things do not speak to me. But I do feel that yoga is helping me feel more grounded, centered, focused and calm--if I miss too many days in a row, I can tell! I actually look forward to my yoga time, and I'm so happy to have it in my life.
And one of these days, I am going to nail that crow pose!
Have you found something new to nourish your mind, body and/or spirit this year? Share in the comments!