Yes It Can Be Done
I didn’t think much about it when I was younger. And when I was 40 my son’s autism was presenting new and difficult challenges for him and our family so the great fitness level I had until then fell to the wayside.
It wasn’t an easy climb back up the mountain either. Once I became better at stress management, I found myself smack dab in the middle of menopause. Ugh. I slid back down that damn mountain and gained 20 pounds. That’s a lot for a woman who has a normal weight range between 110 and 118 max. Seeing that scale pass 132 meant that nothing in my closet came close to fitting and that alone can make a lady feeling like screaming.
But, I took control once again, and this time I’m feeling stronger than ever. Literally. I take a prenatal vitamin every single day, amino acids twice per day, probiotics, and 400IU of vitamin E. I also drink 12 glasses or 6 bottles of water, exercise daily and that includes 20 to 60 minutes on the elliptical.
And that’s not the best part. I’m using free weights from a low of 5lbs to a high of 15lbs. My entire life, and that’s from age 18, I used weights that were 2lbs to 8lbs. I’ve doubled that without aiming to at all – it came naturally.
Yoga is a big part of my life and I believe it is one of the main reasons why I wear the same size jeans that I wore when I was 16 and feel amazingly healthy. Read on for more about why I love Yoga!
It’s A Long List
There are many reasons to practice Yoga, the main one being how much good it can do for your physical and mental well-being. Here is a description of some of the ways Yoga can bring better health into your life –
The practice of mindful breathing, or Pranayama, improves the quality of your breathing by heightening your awareness of your breath and increasing your lung capacity. By focusing on deep breathing in your Yoga practice, you can help to release tension and raise your body’s alkaline level, while lowering the acid level.
Higher alkaline levels promote bone and tissue health, help prevent or lessen the difficulties caused by arthritis, increase energy, prevent headaches and relieve problems associated with depression. Proper breathing does a body good all the way around.
Going hand-in-hand with improved breathing, increased circulation promotes the formation and growth of the healthy new cells are bodies are creating every moment of every day. Cell reproduction is the single most important function of the human body as this nature’s way of giving us a second chance at good health.
By increasing the flow of blood in our bodies, we flush out toxins and impurities, paving the way for more efficient bodily functions. Literally every part of our body benefits from good circulation – and raising that to a higher level can readily be seen in healthier skin, hair, nails, eyes and teeth.
Back pain is a common complaint these days as so many of us spend so much time in front of our computers. Sitting for hours at a time can put a lot of stress and strain on our bodies (far more than pushing that run an extra mile or two!) and Yoga is an excellent way to relieve the pain associated with lack of activity, as well as arthritis, migraine headaches, menstrual cramps and pain caused by tension.
Many Yoga poses help prevent injury and illness by strengthening your immune system, and teaching you to focus on taking better care of your body. The therapeutic benefits of Yoga are many, and there are a great number of asanas that target the back, neck and shoulders – and all other areas of your body as well.
Improved Flexibility and Strength
Most people who begin to study Yoga are impressed with the degree of flexibility they are able to achieve, and usually in less time than they thought possible. This is because of the way each asana is designed, as well as your own commitment to improving your level as a Yogini.
The practice of Yoga can improve muscle tone, extend your range of motion, increase your stamina, improve your posture and your balance. Some Yoga poses, in fact most of them, can help to build strong bones – which helps to prevent the onset of osteoporosis.
There is a wealth of benefits from practicing Yoga. By keeping Yoga in your life, you can regulate your metabolism, which can help you lose weight and keep it off. Yoga helps to balance your hormonal system, which is very important to women who experience problems with PMS or who are going through menopause.
In addition, the movement of many asanas actually massages the internal organs of the body, which improves bodily functions such as digestion and concentration.
Making Yoga a regular part of your life is one of the simplest, and most beneficial decisions you can ever make.
FEATURED IMAGE: Me, at age 58. Taken while staying in Ft Lauderdale, Fl for the Tortuga Festival 2015