For my first real post here, I thought I’d write about the obvious: why do I love yoga? What is it about yoga that makes me want to devote 200 hours of my not-so-copious free time over the next ten months to learning how to teach it?
I love yoga because it feels great. Yoga stretches can be as simple or as challenging as you want them to be. When I’m practicing at home, sometimes I want a fast-paced practice that will get me sweating, and other times I just want some gentle stretching. When I’m sick or injured, I can scale back my yoga practice and still benefit from it. No matter how old or young or fat or skinny or flexible or stiff you are, you can still enjoy yoga. I love the feeling of stretching during a practice, and the slight soreness afterward reminding me that I still have more to do. I love the feeling of working on a particular pose for a while (sometimes years!), and gradually being able to move farther and farther into the pose. I love that moment when I’m suddenly able to do a pose I hadn’t been able to do before.
I love the physical benefits of yoga. I’m much stronger and more flexible now than I was before I started doing yoga several years ago. Then, a year and a half ago, I committed to practicing yoga in the mornings before work three days a week. I have firm, shapely Michelle Obama arms now, and what 30-something woman doesn’t want those? I’ve also lost weight and gained muscle just about everywhere. And after yoga practice, my body feels hungry for healthier food. Dunkin Donuts? No thanks, please pass the bananas. I’m in the best shape I’ve been in since high school, I’m happy with how I look, I have plenty of energy, and I feel great.
I also love the emotional and spiritual benefits of yoga. Yoga practice calms me and lifts my spirits – I almost always end with a smile and feel great for the rest of the day (or at least until I get to the office). I’m a busy person with worries and fears like anyone else, but yoga helps to make it all feel manageable. When I’m practicing yoga regularly, I feel like I can do anything. As trite as it sounds, yoga really does help me to be my best self. And bringing a calmer, happier me to my family and my friends and my job means that I have more to give to them.
I want to complete a yoga teacher training program partly for myself, to deepen my practice and continue to learn. But more, I feel like yoga has done so much for me, and, like a little kid with a cool new toy, I want to show everyone just how awesome it is. That’s why I want to be a yoga teacher. I hope you’ll follow along with my journey.