My trainers and sweat-mates know that taking the time to slow down and focus on flexibility and stretching is far from my favorite thing to do. For the last few weeks, however, I have been forced to slow down, re-evaluate my workouts, and shift my workouts due to a shoulder injury. At first I was really upset by this news. I rely on my morning high-intensity and strength focused workouts to set the tone for my down and as a way to release the stress and tension from both my body and mind. I didn’t know what to do or how this forced change to my workout routine would affect me, physically or mentally. Truth be told I was really nervous about what this recovery would be like.
My physical therapist recommended that I use this time to focus on yoga (modified due to my injury, of course). This wasn’t necessarily the solution I was hoping for, but after some talks with loved ones, my trainers, and some serious self-reflection I decided that perhaps a lot of good could be found from adding regular yoga into my routine. I decided yoga would be a way to keep my body moving, increase my flexibility (maybe I’ll actually be able to touch my toes by the end of this month), and avoid future injury. After a few yoga sessions at Y7 Studio in NYC I was hooked, and I can promise you that this practice will remain a part of my routine, even once this injury has healed.
For those of you who aren’t so familiar with yoga, I wanted to share some of the (many) benefits to this practice that you may not be aware of. Obviously, many see yoga as a way to increase flexibility and calm the mind, but did you know that yoga also is proven to increase muscle strength & tone, improve respiration, energy & vitality, help you maintain a balanced metabolism, aide in weight reduction, improve your cardio & circulatory health, improve your athletic performance, improve your sexual performance, boost your immunity, help cure insomnia, aide in protection from injury, and provide a boost to both your memory and your emotional health! Yoga is even proven to help you get rid of a hangover after a (well deserved) night out.
In just a matter of weeks, I find that my flexibility has improved, I recover more quickly from my heavy lower body strength workouts, and I have 100% been sleeping better at night. Now I am so excited to see what else this practice can do for me.
Each yoga studio, and instructor, you find will approach yoga in a different way. If you need more zen, I promise you there is a studio for that. If you prefer less meditation or a faster moving class, there is a studio for that too. Find the vibe (and the tribe) that works for you and what you hope to get out of the practice. If you live in the NYC area, please reach out and I can help you find the right studio for you.