Being A Healthier Me: Yoga For Beginners

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Alright, I mentioned in my first introductory post that I’ve recently started attending yoga classes. I’ve now completed over 900 minutes of instruction and feel that I can give you a review of the activity.

I started doing yoga for a few reasons. I can’t count how many times I’ve heard that yoga helps to relieve stress and anxiety. I have really big issues dealing with my anxiety. Get a random call from my parents? My first thoughts are that something terrible happened such as a death. What did they really call for? To ask me to print off their taxes for them. Yeah, I have anxiety. I’ve also packed on a few pounds in the last year and have just felt generally unhealthy. I decided it was time to take action and make a change. I won’t fit into my old skinny jeans by wishing away the pounds, I have to exercise and eat better. Yoga seemed like the perfect way to relieve stress and ease into the fitness lifestyle.

I started researching some yoga classes and found one at a local community college. For 6 90 minute sessions, it only cost $55. For me, it was a no-brainer. That is one of the best deals I’ve found around here. Now, there are numerous different types of yoga. I read up on the classes and decided to try Hatha Yoga first. This is supposed to be more of a slow-moving class focusing on the stretch and gentleness of yoga. It is especially recommended for beginners and those looking to relieve stress. A perfect fit for me, right?

So, I started attending classes with one of my friends from work. At first, it was really hard. I don’t have any upper arm strength. It’s probably my weakest area and yoga relies on your arms A LOT. I had to take a few breaks into child’s pose (a relaxing yoga move to help you get some energy back) while women twice my age were rocking the workout. It was certainly a reality check. Don’t be afraid to take breaks, you can’t expect to be a yoga master in your first class. My instructor is constantly telling us not to push ourselves too hard, if it hurts, don’t do it. If you need a break, take it. There is no judgement.

I decided to keep with it and by the 6th week, I was longing for something that felt more like a workout and less like relaxation. Thus, I signed up for another non-credit college class for 6 weeks of 90 minute yoga. This time, I was going to be doing Vinyasa Flow Yoga. Vinyasa Flow Yoga is supposed to be a more upbeat, fast-flowing class.

The first night kicked my ass. I was in child’s pose more times than I can count. Again, there were people double or three times my age performing the moves like they were no problem. Around the time these classes started, I began doing the Blogilates workouts and tracking my calories on MyFitnessPal. Every day, I would do my Beginner’sCalendar workout and then do 20 Vinyasas to build up my arm strength for my weekly yoga class. It is working. I hardly have to move into child’s pose and I feel a lot better.

After I leave my yoga class, I feel so refreshed and happy. Happy that I challenged myself and made a decision to be a healthier me and happy because it is so damn relaxing. I can’t explain it. You just have to try it for yourself. I see improvements in my stamina and flexibility every class. Unfortunately, my last class is Dec. 4th and I haven’t decided where to practice yoga next, but I know I will continue.

Since starting this journey, I’ve lost around 5 pounds and I feel really happy with myself. I’m not where I want to be fitness wise, but I’m getting there. I deserve to be happy, healthy, and fit and that is what I’m trying to do.

If you have issues relaxing or want to start getting in shape but don’t know where to start, I highly recommend a yoga class. It will clear your mind and give you the motivation to keep pushing and challenging yourself. There is no satisfaction like mastering the half moon or crow pose on your tenth try… (still working on that crow pose)!

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Tree Pose, if I can do it, you can do it too!

Lastly, with one of my favorite quotes from Cassey (Blogilates), you do what you can and you do it well.

Namaste

About Cassie Conant

Cassie is a 24 year old working full-time in the marketing industry. In her spare time she likes to play video games, read books, exercise, and cuddle with her cat.

Comments

  1. Way to go! I completely hear you, I decided to give personal training a try this past month because I don’t like where my strength has slid to recently. I have a gym that offers yoga but it’s not at a great time for me :(. I absolutely love the aspect of yoga and similar classes of no judgement. In high school sports and at some gyms there is such a feeling of you’re not good enough, whereas a lot of these adult fitness courses just want everyone to feel welcome to get into shape at their own pace. It’s so much easier to get my butt to somewhere with that kind of attitude!
    Anya recently posted..Top Ten Bookish Things I Am Thankful ForMy Profile

    • Oh wow, I would love to try personal training one day! My problem is that gym memberships are so expensive! I totally get what you mean. I just graduated college in May and I used to a see a lot of people tweeting stuff like, “if you can only run a minute, you should give up your treadmill to someone who really wants to work out.” I hate that kind of stuff. We all have to start somewhere with fitness. I completely agree! It also helps to motivate me seeing people older than me rocking the workouts!
      Cassie Conant recently posted..Allison: I Am Thankful For…My Profile

  2. Yoga is such an incredible thing; I’m glad you got to take part in it for such a good price! Alas, there’s nowhere near me that does something like that. My tiny little town has one (ONE!) yoga class, and it’s during my work day. 🙁 I need to find some videos or something online that I can do on my own time.

    The best class I was ever in was a combination yoga/Pilates class that someone did on base in Iraq. That class kicked my ass in the best possible way, but also it was fun to watch big burly dudes fall out of stuff that I could keep up with. 😛
    Whitley recently posted..Will of the Empress: Chs 14 – 15My Profile

    • Oh no, that’s terrible! 🙁 My hometown is like that too! Luckily, where I live now there are countless gyms and two colleges. I’m sure there are some great people to follow on youtube for yoga videos! I may have to go that route if I can’t find another inexpensive yoga class.

      Haha, that would’ve been such an ego boost! I need one of those classes! Have you tried Blogilates at all? I love doing her videos on the days I don’t have yoga.
      Cassie Conant recently posted..Allison: I Am Thankful For…My Profile

  3. THanks for sharing this, Cassie!! I’ve been curious about yoga but too chicken to try it and way too self conscious to go to a class by myself so I really appreciate you sharing your experience. I’m really wanting to try it out! I do Blogilates and I love it but it’s taken me a while to even feel like I can do half the moves. I get so discouraged but then I think back to how far I’ve come. Working out really is a journey and it’s fun to mix it up with new forms of work out — zumba, yoga, pilates, etc! You’ve gotten me motivated to try something new!!

    • You should definitely do it! Especially if a college near you offers a non-credit class, they are less expensive and a lot less judgement! Don’t worry, I was too chicken to do it alone too. I made my coworker sign up with me.

      I should thank you for the Blogilates inspiration. I was always seeing you and April tweet about it and that pushed me to try it too. I’m loving it! I have to use modifications in pretty much every video though. Also, ABC abs? I take countless breaks lol.

      Ohh, I’d like to try zumba one day too! I am totally not a dancer though so it would be a bit embarrassing. I’m glad I could motivate someone! 🙂 Definitely try it out! A lot of yoga places even let you go to a couple classes free to see if you really like it without wasting money.
      Cassie Conant recently posted..Allison: I Am Thankful For…My Profile

  4. I’ve been considering doing yoga for a while, but it was intimidating to even think about it. I’m happy to hear more about your experience with it, and particularly the news that if you stick with it, it really does get easier. I think I might have to give it a try! Thanks for sharing your story.
    Alexa Y. recently posted..Crash Into You – Katie McGarry (Review)My Profile

    • I was really surprised that I was actually getting better at it. I can’t lie, I was a bit discouraged at first but I’m really happy I stuck with it! It is seriously such a rewarding and challenging form of fitness. Please do give it a try and let me know what you think! 🙂
      Cassie Conant recently posted..Allison: I Am Thankful For…My Profile

  5. Great review. I keep planning on trying to remain more consistent with doing Yoga, but as more excuses, life got in the way. My sister-in-law has a tendency of doing back-to-back classes at one of the fitness centres here and it’s something she really loves. I don’t know if I’d go to that extreme, but what ever floats your boat, right?
    I especially like the fact that this review is so unique to the scene. You rarely get to read reviews about fitness activities. It gives people insight, and the fact that you’ve tried different kinds of classes and can vouch how much a few classes has changed your musculature should be convincing enough for anybody who’s been tempted to try but isn’t convinced to finally get around to doing it 🙂
    – Krys
    Krys recently posted..WoW: Teaching Fanboys to Live Long & ProsperMy Profile

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