Establishing a weekly workout routine can be a feat in itself. Maybe you’ve perfected your mix of strength training and cardio, or maybe you are still trying to work through the kinks to create your ideal routine. Regardless of whether you’ve adhered to the same workout schedule for years, or you are still playing around with it, yoga can be a wonderful addition to your fitness plan.
You may already be aware of the host of physical and mental benefits that yoga provides. Besides strengthening muscles, increasing flexibility, and helping with balance and posture, the biggest gift yoga offers is to aid in decreasing stress and anxiety. It can even help you get a better night’s sleep!
Yoga alone is wonderful for both your physical and mental health, but when you combine it with other forms of physical activity, you can truly maximize your physical wellness.
Note that if you only practice yoga, complimenting yoga with cardio work is particularly beneficial because experts have found that yoga does not elevate heart rate long enough, nor high enough, to protect against cardiovascular disease. So if you only do yoga, consider adding cardio work for heart health. Some of the benefits of combining yoga with other workout activities include:
Of course, we only have so much time to dedicate to fitness, and it can be tricky for people to figure out exactly how to fit yoga into their larger workout routine. While change can be daunting, there are creative ways to make it more accessible and fun.
When you start incorporating yoga into your routine, first look at your weekly schedule to identify a spot where you think the practice will support the rest of your activities and responsibilities. Yoga should not exhaust you. Quite the opposite, for most, the practice should leave you feeling more grounded, confident, and refreshed. Don’t feel the need to jump all in – you can just find one class that interests you, and schedule it into your week. Keep in mind that your schedule doesn’t need to be set in stone. Be open to mixing it up to find out what works best for you. Maybe you’ll find that you prefer ending your work week with a calming Friday evening yoga session, or that the best way to get through the mid-week slump is with an energizing morning class. Experiment.
Explore different yoga classes. There is a lot of variety out there. You may find that some yoga styles simply don’t work for you or for where you are in your life right now. Different styles land at different times in your life. Don’t let that muddy your image of yoga as a whole – take some time to explore different traditions and techniques. Have fun learning about the many varied facets of this practice.
Finally, take it slow and remember that you are learning something new. Don’t beat yourself up when you can’t nail a pose, or when you feel a bit lost in the Sanskrit names of postures. You are learning a new skill, and you won’t get everything at once. Enjoy the learning process (which will continue through the entirety of your yoga practice for your entire life – there is no end). Allow yourself to slowly but steadily experience the physical and mental benefits that yoga has to offer.
Here at Evolutions, we have helpful, pressure-free, certified trainers and yoga teachers to guide you in establishing a well balanced weekly fitness routine that nourishes your whole self. Plus, there are several combination classes to check out, like Cycle Yoga, Barre Yoga Flow, and Pilates Yoga Fusion. Stop by or contact us for an appointment!