I came across the best fitness article I've seen in a long time where Will Gadd (whom I've admired for quite some time) says, "Doing something physical, pretty much every day, kicks ass on not doing something physical"
See article full article here
What a refreshing read. It's true, doing something always trumps not doing anything. Often we get so preoccupied with choosing the "right" or best exercises we lose sight of what's really important- moving our bodies. Same goes with yoga, there is no shortage of advice on the internet telling you what time of day to practice, what to eat (or not eat) before and after, which style is best, what to look for in a studio, bla bla bla. Like Will says, doing something physical [practicing yoga] kicks ass on not doing so. I used to get so worried about scheduling a precisely sequenced practice, at the same time each morning (because I heard you must practice before 6am), before breakfast, but after a warm lemon water, before checking my iphone, but after pooping... you get the point; and when things inevitably didn't line up I would end up skipping the practice all together. Sure, there are days and times in our life we we can orchestrate the ideal regime, but other times it just aint happening.
A few years ago someone gave me the most simple yet useful ever, which was just to sit on your mat every day. It seems too straightforward, but giving myself permission to do a quick 10-minute sequence consisting of nothing more than a balasana (child's pose) and a supine twist actually resulted in practicing more than ever. Telling myself I was just going to do a few minutes often resulted in long, free-flowing creative practices and progressing in my asana practice. And other days, it was just nice to take minutes out for a quick seat and a few moments inverted.
I admire the dedication of the many fierce yogis in my community who are so regimented and dedicated to their practice. I miss the time in my life where I did a 2-hour ashtanga practice each day and I predict I will go back to it in my future. But as a full time grad student, yoga teacher, partner, addictions counsellor, recovering from an injury (who also has a full time job), I can't always swing it. The ex-varsity athlete, kinesiologist inside me cringes at the idea of suggesting non-specific workouts, but the thing is- most of us aren't professional athletes. And those of you who are, I admire you to the moon and back. Will Gadd has had a successful athletic career as a professional climber, ice-climber, paraglider and kayaker; and if doing "something" works for him, it works for me!
Big love to everyone who finds ways to move, practice and embody truth amongst the chaos. xo.