How to Enjoy Yoga Even When You Think it’s Boring
My yoga routine is not what I ever would have pictured just a few short years ago. I do 10-15 minutes first thing every morning, and 30-45 at least twice a week. But, the biggest difference is that I look forward to it. Like, I NEED it.
When I was primarily endurance running, with a side of strength training, I did yoga about once a week. I liked it, but it for sure wasn’t a priority or something I deeply needed.
I’ve heard more than once from women I coach, that they know yoga is amazing for them, but they just can’t get into it. It’s too slow. It’s boring. I get it! I remember the first class I went to, expecting some type of euphoric experience, and was a little let down at the slow movements and all the breath work.
Still, I stuck with it (although, I did take many months between classes in the beginning!) and I am so glad I did.
Read This: 8 Yoga Poses to Increase Fertility
If you’re wanting to actually get into a yoga routine, instead of trying and low key hating a class every few months, this post is for you my friend!
Don’t think of it as a workout
Here is where I think a lot of people go wrong. When you like a good sweat and feel a workout is a workout when your heart rate is up, a slow moving class is frustrating.
Change your expectations and think of yoga as a meditative practice verses a physical endeavor. Go into it for a mental cleanse, to focus on different movements than you’re used, rather than trying to master the physical part of it.
Find an instructor(s) that you like
OK, this will make or break your experience. Yoga is unlike a strength or cardio workout where you’re so focused on the technical things you’re doing – how many, what weight, etc. The pace of the practice, how much the instructor talks (I prefer minimal), and even the sound of their voice, plays a much bigger role.
If you’re going to in person classes, try a few different instructors and see what feels best. It’s really easy to do this at home on YouTube. Try 5-10 minutes of multiple yogis and you’ll quickly see who you gravitate towards.
The world of online yoga is insanely overwhelming so here are my favorite channels to give you a start!
Like with everything in life, consistency is what will make this a regular thing. Consistent will mean different things as your practice cements, but for not, whatever feels easy to commit to, just commit.
Once you look forward to it, you won’t need to put much energy into keeping consistent, but until you feel in a flow (Puuuuuuuun intended) do whatever helps you create a habit. A sticker in your journal, telling a friend or joining a challenge to put your goal out there, anything to keep you on track.
I suggest starting small to get hooked. You don’t have to commit to a full hour class to count as doing yoga. It will become regular more quickly by doing shorter stints more often, so 15 minutes every morning or 30 minutes 2 times a week versus a full hour once a week.
10-15 minutes of yoga has become a staple in my morning routine. Click here for a playlist of 5-15 minute flows to start your own morning yoga routine!
Go for active flows
I still don’t love breath work. I meditate everyday, but I want my yoga to be an active flow. That’s just my preference, but going back my first point of not thinking of it as a “workout”, staying in motion does help bridge that gap.
Styles to look for are: Vinyasa yoga, Power yoga, Ashtanga yoga
Styles that are more breath and gentle focus: Yin yoga, Hatha yoga, Kundalini yoga
Remember every body is different
The beginning of my yoga practice was frustrating because my hamstrings were so tight from all the running I did. More than that, I had many poses I didn’t like because I simply could not get my body to do what the instructor was.
It wasn’t until years – YEARS – later that an instructor I really enjoyed took us into pigeon pose, one that I loathed. I could never get my shin to go parallel with the mat and it was uncomfortable when I forced it. I will never forget the a-ha moment when she said
If your hips open up, your leg will do this, but if not, it may be bent at an angle. That’s ok!
Finally, I stopped trying to do what the instructor did, and settled in to what felt best for the way MY body moved.
Take the instruction as a guide, not the only way to do a pose. When we follow strength moves, form is very important. However, with yoga, it’s more of an art versus a science. Get comfortable with not being able to do every pose, look at it as a place to grow from and enjoy moving in a way that feels good for you at that moment.
If you need help slowing things down and getting into a stress-free routine, I offer free 30 minute Mindset Jump Start calls where you will leave with a few small goals to work on, and get clarity on your biggest worry right now!