03/06/2015

YOGA AS A BEGINNER: MY JOURNEY SO FAR


I've been doing Yoga for almost two months now and if you follow me on Twitter you've probably realised that I've become pretty obsessed with it. It's had such a positive impact on both my mentality and pain levels already and for someone who's always hated exercise I've been pretty astonished to find myself really wanting to do it every day. I was always a bit cautious about doing Yoga as a Fibromyalgia and Joint Hypermobility Syndrome sufferer as the various medical professionals I've seen over the years have had conflicting advice on whether it would be beneficial for me or not, but I've found a way of making it work for me so I thought I'd share my experience so far incase anyone else has been thinking of giving it a try...

I'll start with the 30 day Yoga With Adriene challenge which I've seen lots of bloggers and youtubers rave about. I decided to give this a try at the beginning of May as Adriene is very motivational and I thought it would help me to get into doing Yoga every single day which was one of my goals for May. Now I really do love Adriene; her youtube channel is an amazing way of doing Yoga at home and she's such a positive and inspiring person. I managed to do up to day 7 and I really was loving it but oh my goodness it was hard work and I went into a pretty horrendous Fibromyalgia flare so I had to take a few days off as I'm always very cautious of doing more harm than good, and unfortunately I think that was definitely what was starting to happen so I decided not to continue with the challenge. Adriene's videos are very active and like a proper workout which leaves you feeling very challenged, pushed to your complete limit and incredibly sweaty (I'm sexy and I know it!), so I wouldn't really recommend this for any fellow chronic illness sufferers.

The Yoga For Beginners DVD is a completely different story though and I cannot recommend this enough for anyone who is looking to improve their core strength and flexibility and wants their Yoga sessions to be focused on relaxing and stretching rather than a really active workout. This was only £10.99 on Amazon and it has both a beginner and more advanced section so is the sort of DVD you'll be able to get a lot of use from throughout your Yoga journey. The woman who guides you through each session has a very soothing and peaceful voice and I love how it's set on the beach with the waves in the background so you kind of feel like you're there with her. The routines are all very easy to follow and the beauty of doing it at home is you can go at your own pace and decide how far you want to push yourself which is perfect if you're a little nervous about starting Yoga like I was. I'm completely hopeless at doing Side Plank Pose as it hurts my wrists too much so I always skip that as it just doesn't benefit me and I don't have to feel guilty for not doing it as there's no one there to tell me off!! The longest session on the beginner section is 30 minutes so they're all very manageable and can be easily fit into your day and another plus of doing it at home is if you need to take a breather for a few minutes you easily can :)

My favourite routine is 'Seated Hip Openers' as I have very tight painful muscles in my legs and hips so although this one is the hardest work and my legs were like the jelly the first time I did it, I can feel so much benefit every time I do it as my legs always feel thoroughly stretched afterwards and have been slightly less painful recently. I also really like the 'Strength and Balance' routine which is 20 minutes long and the 'Backbends' routine which is 10 minutes long and I usually do these together in the morning; I've noticed a huge improvement in what I've been able to do on each routine and my shoulders are more level now than they used to be (one always used to sit a lot higher than the other) plus my neck and back muscles have been feeling a little looser. 'Gentle Unwind of the Day' is 30 minutes long and is really fantastic to do in the evening after work as it really calms and relaxes me whilst giving me a good stretch. I've noticed an improvement in my sleeping since I've started doing this one too as I'm able to get more comfortable in my bed and my mind is more relaxed so I'm not laying there worrying about things which feels like a pretty huge achievement for someone who suffered horrendously with painsomnia virtually every night for two years.

From my experience so far I've found that Yoga really needs to be done every day to get the most benefit from it, but this is easier said than done sometimes, particularly when I'm battling severe exhaustion and pain levels. I've had a few times this month when I've had to take several days off from it to rest, so I'm hoping to manage to do it more regularly in June but I'm trying not to pressure myself too much as any little amount of Yoga is better than none. Now I'm not saying that yoga is a magic cure for Fibromyalgia because it isn't and I still have a huge amount of pain and stiffness a lot of the time, but it feels like a little step in the right direction and has allowed me to do exercise for the first time in about four years which Doctors had made me believe would never be possible again, so I'm feeling the most positive that I have since my diagnosis four and a half years ago which is a pretty wonderful feeling :)

11 comments:

  1. I really want to try yoga just for the health and wellbeing benefits! You've persuaded me to give it a try each morning :D I love that you're enjoying it and that it's really benefitting you! xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

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    1. I'm so pleased I've made you want to give it a try, I really hope you enjoy it if you do get into it :) Let me know how you get on! xxx

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  2. Great review! I need to get back to doing Yoga :P

    www.maireem.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you :) I hope you enjoy it if you do start doing it again, I just love it so much! xxx

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  3. I used to go to a yoga class at the gym but I was awful at it! Great review and love your blog :') xx

    Lauren | shynature.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thank you lovely :) I imagine classes are a lot harder, I like doing it at home as there's no one to criticise me/push me too much so it's nice and relaxed :) xxx

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  4. This post has definitely made me want to give Yoga a try now, that DVD sounds really great! Glad to hear you are enjoying this - lovely post x

    emily x ❤ | emilyloula

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  5. I have tried yoga but sometimes I find the moves a little difficult and I'm not the most coordinated of people haha. I should start with a more beginner level video, or even join a few yoga classes at the gym (which I fully intend to join when I move to somewhere cheaper) :). I could imagine the less intensive version helping a lot with joint problems.

    Sarah xo | PolkaDotLemon

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  6. Such a shame that Yoga with Adriene was too much for you and your fibro lovely, she's such a babe isn't she. I've just got into Yoga and I honestly don't know what I did without it :)

    Elle
    www.theellenextdoor.com
    xx

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  7. I just got an Amazon voucher so I am definitely buying that beginners DVD right now. As you might remember me commenting before my mum has fibro so we are gonna get yoga-ing (that's not a verb is it?). Thank you for reminding me and I am happy to see you're getting on with it so well! :) x

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  8. I haven't really got to doing yoga properly. I've tried pilates a few years ago and it was the best experience!
    I might just try yoga out, it definitely requires a lot of discipline.

    Love,
    Dreamygamine.blogspot.com/ xo

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