Thoughts By Natalie

back to the mat: the rest of the month

Well, I completely lost track of my yoga journal and forgot to document my feelings about each class—will you forgive me? I sure hope so. Despite my irresponsibility in journaling, I still have some things to say about my return to yoga this month—specifically regarding time, strength, relaxation and cost…

Time Commitment
The best and worst thing about yoga is the time commitment. I love that each class is an entire hour away from reality—but I also hate that it’s an entire hour away from reality. My yoga studio is about 15 minutes away, so all-in, going to a yoga class takes up at least an hour and a half of my day. And even if the class was closer, it would still be a serious amount of time. This month I learned that when I have time to spare, the hour class is great. On busy days, I found myself wishing for 30-minute classes.

Strength & Relaxation
I cannot deny the two biggest benefits I experienced from yoga this month: increased strength, and a significant amount of stress-relief. I admit, I went to a ton of gentle yoga classes because my main goal was stress relief, rather than strength-building. However, even in those classes (and especially in the non-gentle classes), I felt sore the next day. Most of the soreness was in my upper body—though I’ve always had a muscular back, I definitely don’t have strong shoulders, biceps or triceps the way I did when I was a gymnast in high school. Yoga reminded me that I love to feel strong, and also that I am capable of letting things go and resting when the occasion calls for it (something I hope to apply to daily life!!).

Cost of Membership
My biggest peeve about yoga is the cost—here in San Diego, $100 is cheap for a monthly membership, and that is simply not in my budget. Unfortunately, I won’t be continuing at my studio because the $39 special only applied to the first month. It’s a bummer that yoga is so expensive around here, but rather than feel sad about it, I’m looking forward to trying other studios when they have specials, or doing yoga at home through guided photo sequences or videos. And of course, since running is so cheap, I plan to pick that up again and start doing this sweet little cooldown at the end (when I remember, at least).

How do you feel about yoga? What do you love and hate about it?

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Image via Only Lulu

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