Nearly everyone has aspirations to be healthy. Following diets and new and improved workout plans are popular behaviors at the beginning of each New Year, as many will vow to eat better and get more exercise.
A few months of eating fresh, high quality cuisine and hitting the gym makes a big difference in the way we feel. A slimmer waistline, clearer skin, and an overall feeling of health is worth it, so why is it so hard to stay the course?
Your lifestyle plays a huge role in whether or not your good intentions are going to stick. If you think your lifestyle might not be supporting your desire to be healthy, keep reading.
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The popularity of yoga has been on the rise for quite some time. From Bikram’s hot yoga to Anne Anderson’s snow yoga (Snowga), there are styles sure to assuage all types of desires.
Although there are an estimated 22 million people practicing yoga today, a large number of American’s have yet to give it a whirl. If you are in need of a little coaxing to join a yoga class, check out the following reasons why making it your New Year’s resolution might be of benefit to your health and happiness.
You will learn more about yourself
You might be 60 years old and seemingly privy to all of your nuances and inner workings, but there will always be just a little bit more about yourself you can learn.
The word yoga means ‘to yok’ or ‘to join.’ The true purpose of yoga is to unite mind, body and spirit. In the process of this yoking, we discover parts of ourselves that we had no idea existed. This awakening is worth the effort, and it is what makes yoga so much more than just exercise and stretching.
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With the holidays here and nearly at their peak, we can only image how busy and stressed most of you must be scrambling to finish all of your shopping and gift wrapping before you either hit the road or relatives arrive at your home. Stressed is exactly where we’re at, but we have a solution.
We often get so caught up in all the hustle and bustle that we forget to take time off and just relax. And working out? Is there really enough space on your to do list for that, too? Here’s an idea: Kill two birds with one stone by adding some yoga to your routine this Saturday morning (before hitting your ever-growing to do list). We promise it will provide both relaxation and a refreshing workout in one session.
Studies have found yoga to provide benefits such as stress reduction, increased flexibility, weight management, total body toning, improved balance, increased strength and decreased chances of injury. And that’s not all – it can also aid in managing chronic health conditions such as depression, pain, anxiety, cancer, insomnia and fatigue. It can even help reduce heart rate and blood pressure! Good luck with coming up with any reasons why not to give this extremely beneficial practice a try. Now, let’s get started.
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We all know get-rich-quick scams work about as well as weight loss from a pill. While these enticements are tempting for most people in this country, there is another camp of people who always seem to want to make things harder for themselves. Be it working, dieting, or exercising, the old adage “less is more” often takes a back seat to the preferred “no pain, no gain.”
For those of you who are tired of experiencing pain for your gain, an ancient yogic practice called Yoga Nidra may help loosen your fierce grip on your need to achieve your goals.
Yoga Nidra is essentially the yoga of sleep, but it is not the type of sleep we engage in while napping, or at night. It is a relaxation induced, conscious sleep.
The benefits of attaining a super-restful yet fully awake state of mind reach far beyond just putting your feet up and enjoying a cup of tea. Yoga Nidra settles the nervous system and slows brain waves for an overall feeling of euphoria and inner peace.
A typical Yoga Nidra class may involve some guided imagery, body scanning techniques, or gentle pranayama practice. To aid in relaxation, participants are instructed to lie comfortably with their eyes closed and listen to the teacher’s vocal directions.
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The holidays are undoubtedly a stressful time of year and many folks become highly vulnerable to anxiety and depression when the sleigh bells start to ring.
Instead of reaching for food, try rolling out your yoga mat. Studies have shown that a regular yoga and meditation practice can reduce stress and help fight depression.
The following is a short list of three must-do yoga poses that beat the holiday blues. Practice them at least once a day or as needed. This short series will help tame your tension and get you back in to a cheerful holiday spirit.
When you are ready to take a mental vacation from the mayhem, begin your yoga practice with child’s pose.
Come down on to your hands and knees, reach your hips back over your heels, and rest your forehead on the mat, your stacked forearms, or on a pillow. Close your eyes and stay in the pose for up to ten long, slow, deep breaths.
Child’s pose will instantly induce a state of calm and help get you feeling centered and ready to face any challenges that may lie ahead. When you are ready to exit the pose, do so slowly. Coming up too fast will negate the benefits of the pose and could be agitating to your state of mind.
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