I’ve been doing yoga every day for almost 2 years now. People often seemed shocked when I tell them, as if doing yoga every day is any different from going to the gym or brushing your teeth. Well, it kind of is… I’ve never felt as good after brushing my teeth as I do after yoga! (Plus, I can drink orange juice right away if I wanted to.)
If you’ve been thinking about starting a daily yoga practice, but feel it might be too hard, think again. You can do this! If I can do it, so can you. Here’s what I do, maybe it will help you.
Same Time Every Day
This may not be possible for everyone, but if it is, I strongly recommend doing your yoga practice at the same time every day. People, like dogs and many other mammals, are creatures of habit. Whether you’d like to admit it or not, our bodies like repetition, and it’s much easier to start a new routine if you, well, make it an actual routine.
Think about it. You might wake up, make a cup of copy, read the paper, get ready for work, and do the same things in a particular order, and your yoga practice shouldn’t be any different. I prefer to do yoga first thing in the morning. Before anything else, I get my mind right and my body warmed up. It really helps me with my mindset for the rest of the day ahead.
I used to do it right before bed, and that was fine too! Whatever you decide to do is fine, as long as you keep it consistent!
Some people look in the mirror and say “I’m awesome” every morning or they’ll do some other ritual to hype themselves up. I would definitely fall into this category of people. Mantras are an integral part of yoga that can help you outside of the 30 minute or hour session on the yoga mat.
To get started building a habit, you could try something like “my yoga practice is important to me.” You don’t have to do this once you’ve been at it for a while and you’re sure you won’t slack off or skip your daily exercise. It could be helpful though for those people who might need a little motivation.
Telling yourself that your practice is important will make you believe it and think harder before deciding to blow it off.
This one can be a lot tougher than it sounds, especially if you’re not having a good day to begin with. Just remember that yoga is supposed to help you ground yourself, stretch out your body, and calm your mind. It may not be what you want to do in the present moment, but telling yourself it’s going to help you is the best thing you can do. The best part is that it will help!
Whenever I’m really frustrated or down, I try to do a little yoga. The movement in your body and various stretches and postures all release endorphins that will help you feel a bit better. Science!
Finding a Yoga Mat That Fits Your Needs
Everybody is different, and it’s silly to think that just because your friend does yoga, their mat is the one that you should get. Or even worse, you just get the cheapest yoga mat you can find, hoping that it will work out. This logic just doesn’t make sense to me.
You need to find a mat that you connect with. For example, I’m over 6-foot tall and have a really bony body. It hurts when I’m on my knees, and even sitting on hard surfaces can be uncomfortable. I needed a mat that was extra thick and extra large. I’ve tried a few other popular standard-sized mats, but none of them really worked for me.
Yoga on an uncomfortable mat is simply no fun. I can honestly say that before I found my perfect mat, I practiced half as much as I do now (if that).
Keep At It
The number one thing to keep in mind is that this practice is here to help you. You’re the one who wanted to start it, and you’re the only one who’s going to keep you from following through. It may take a little dedication and hard work, but soon your daily yoga practice will be second nature. Kind of like brushing your teeth, only better.
If you have any questions or want to share your own tips for keeping up a daily yoga practice, drop a comment below! We’d love to hear from you.