25 Hours of Yoga in 31 Days

This is a follow-up to the post I wrote in January- Just Do One Thing– the title was inspired by a yoga class I took and was about setting S.M.A.R.T.  goals.  My single goal: an hour of yoga every day for the month of January.  Looking back, I think that an hour a day was a bit over ambitious (me? Never!) but overall the challenge I set for myself was really beneficial.

Sun Salutation

Sun Salutation

I feel like I reached my goal even though I didn’t quite practice every day in January because I learned some valuable lessons and improved my health as well.  Progress, not perfection, said the recovering perfectionist!  I skipped 2 days out of 31.  And then there was one day where I got through about 7 minutes of a class and decided I was really NOT in the mood for this!  So I went for a run instead and felt much better.

Lesson learned: Practicing yoga everyday, just to do it, is not necessarily a good thing.  I actually really enjoy finding the yoga in my everyday life on the days that I don’t do a practice on my mat.  Climbing the stairs aka Warrior pose, bending down to tie my shoes aka intense forward bend.  Doing the dishes, yup, there’s yoga in there!  And some days it’s just not the right thing for me to be putting my energy into.

I did about 25 hours of yoga practice in the month of January.  Most days it was easier than I thought it would be to find the time and follow through.  Of course, there were also some days when it was really tough for me to get through a 30 minute practice.  What I realized was that just sitting down on my mat, for those first few minutes, was an incredibly valuable self check in.  How am I really feeling?  Is my mind busy, scattered, calm?  How’s my energy level? And so on.  Now I know, even if I only have a couple of minutes to practice, those can be an invaluable 120 seconds that will surely improve the entire rest of my day.

Another lesson: Most of my excuses for not doing yoga are total bull shit.  Seriously, our minds are the first place to offer resistance.  Our brains try to protect us, which is a good thing, but I realized that I need to examine my resistance a little closer to see if I’m just avoiding a challenge.

Another insightful little surprise was how much I wanted to distract myself from my one goal with other goals.  It was hard for me to maintain a single focus, I had to keep reminding myself that doing this one thing was effecting so many other things in my life, in a big, positive way.  By having just one goal I was able to catch myself when I tried to sabotage my own efforts.

After my month of yoga I am continuing to aim for a daily practice, taking into account everything I’ve just learned.  I noticed that my mood, energy and sleep all improved as well as my upper body strength- many of the things I wrote about in a post from last August: Why Yoga?

So now I am ready for a little spring cleanse: basically just sticking 100% to the Candida diet, it’s always good to go back to the basics at least once a year.  I started my simple, pared down diet the day after my birthday which I think is a pretty nice present to myself!

Did any of you try out the S.M.A.R.T. goals?  How did it go?!  It’s never too late to pick something and go for it, one good thing really does lead to many others!

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rachel
    Feb 19, 2013 @ 20:01:56

    I would love for you to share what the strict Candida Diet will look like for you. I was on the strict diet for about 5 months. I have only added back a few things to my diet (which do not include many carbs and no sugars). However, adding these few foods back has made life enjoyable once more. I would love to have more guidance on a maintenance Candida diet. There is not much information out there past the strict Candida diet.

    Reply

  2. Amy Huebner Health Coach
    Feb 21, 2013 @ 14:20:30

    Hi Rachel,

    A strict Candida diet is low carbohydrate green veggies (and other veggies that are low carb, no carrots (maybe a few raw ones only) no tomatoes, ect) nuts and seeds, coconut, healthy oils and fats like raw milk goat and sheep cheese, high quality organic protein: I eat a lot of eggs, some organic local meat, tempeh and tofu are fine too. Lots of herbal teas like Mate, Peppermint, Catnip, Pau d’arco, Camomile, also Ginger juice, Aloe Vera Juice. I sweeten only with stevia. I am working on a cookbook and Candida guide so stay tuned!

    Reply

  3. Diane
    Feb 24, 2013 @ 00:32:48

    I’m so excited to hear you are working on a cookbook and Candida guide. It will be well received, I am sure, and I will happy to be one of your first to make a purchase! Also, congrats on your Yoga success – wonderful lessons learned. I share your passion for this wonderful exercise of mind and body!
    I was not as successful on my dietary goals. I seem to be able to last about a month before veering somewhat off course, if ever-so mildly. After 3 months of starting over 3 times though, I have been able to recognize a pattern of my own self-sabotage. I allow outside influences to get inside my head instead of staying true to what I know about myself. Hopefully I will be able to move forward with greater success from this more enlightened place…

    Reply

    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Feb 24, 2013 @ 17:39:55

      Diane, thank you for your feedback : – )
      Always remember how many times and how many days and meals you DID eat and do what was best for your body! You are doing an amazing job of taking care of yourself and putting your health first!!

      Reply

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