It’s a common misconception that I’m really into intense yoga classes and super bendy poses. But actually, the opposite is true.
My life is high intensity, and therefore my yoga is not.
I had the pleasure of spending three days with Jules Mitchell last weekend and I walked away with a wealth of info that’ll go a long way in helping me write my book. But I also walked away with one more thing that was quite unexpected … my new favorite restorative yoga pose.
Ever since my first restorative yoga class with Tara Lemerise, I’ve been in love with this style. When things get crazy in my life, my work, and/or my training gets super intense, the last thing my body and nervous system needs in MORE intensity. I understand enough about anatomy and physiology to know that the answer to managing high stress situations is never “hey, let’s just add more stress”.
It is a well-known fact of exercise physiology that in order to get stronger, at some point you have to stop applying stress in order to give the body time to repair and adapt to the load or training stimulus. You can’t just keep piling it on and expect your body to keep improving — that’s just not how it works and it’s actually quite cruel (need I remind you that you are not a machine?).
And when it comes to day-to-day life stress, the same idea applies — as the stress in your life/work/relationships/travel schedule increases, it’s wise to decrease the stress you voluntarily apply so your body has a chance to manage the influx of stress hormones. In other words, chill TF out.
As the saying goes, “happy nervous systems are healing nervous systems.” To read more about my thoughts on why it’s a terrible idea to use high intensity exercise as a means to deal with chronic stress, check out this post I wrote for Fit Bottomed Girls.
So for this week’s Fave Things Friday, I’m sharing this amazing pose with you. And PS, this also does great things for my lower back.
It’s two yoga blocks under my feet, a sandbag on my knees, and a blanket under my head. Set a timer for 5 minutes and relax. Try it out and let me know what you think.
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