It’s taken me a really long time to find a yoga routine that works for me, and it’s still hard for me to fully commit to it. Because, honestly, working with teenagers all day is exhausting and even though I know I’ll feel really good after I practice, it’s really hard to want to change into my yoga gear and get my mat out and do the whole thing.
When I’m not honoring my commitment, two things happen. One, I feel grosser than when I am: a little more sluggish, stiffer and more achey when I wake up, more likely to react to something quickly instead of taking a second to process, a little less kind. Two, I start to convince myself that I feel the same as when I am practicing and that I can totally be ok without practicing. If I have a sparse, sporadic practice schedule for more than a couple of weeks, I’m way more susceptible to an episode like I had in December. I lose sight sometimes of the fact that I’m not doing yoga because it’ll make me more bendy or give me nice arms (though those are awesome). I’m doing it because I don’t want to end up crying for no reason. I’m doing it because I don’t want to feel like I need to throw up every time something stressful happens. I’m doing it because it helps me manage my anxiety; everything else is just bonus. But I forget that sometimes.
When I forget, I’m really good at talking myself out of doing yoga. Thoughts like oh, I did it yesterday, I don’t need to today and I can go two days without practicing show up in my brain a lot. And especially on a day that’s already long, like when I have to stay at work or when the boyfriend and I have a lot of social stuff happening, it’s really hard to talk myself into it.
But when I do, it feels good and I’m glad that I did. My typical practice is a vinyasa flow incorporating most of the poses below, with a warrior sequence in the middle for strength and endurance.