Find Your Center.

The term yoga comes from a Sanskrit word which means: yoke or union. Traditionally, yoga is a method joining the individual self with the Divine, Universal spirit, or Cosmic Consciousness.
Obviously, I have a very strong faith and relationship with my Lord and Savior, and doing an exercise that promoted worshiping another god would not be my thing! But yoga is such a great exercise practice! It's so important to remember that yoga is not a religion, but a way of living with health and peace of mind!
Yoga is such a positive and healthy practice to get into on a physical and mental level. 
On the physical level, yoga postures, called asanas, are designed to tone, strengthen, and align the body. These postures are performed to make the spine supple and healthy and to promote blood flow to all the organs, glands, and tissues, keeping all the bodily systems healthy.
On the mental level, yoga uses breathing techniques (pranayama) and meditation (dyana) to quiet, clarify, and discipline the mind. I've done yoga relaxation and mediation before, and it is one of the most relaxing and de-stressing exercises ever! I love it! Sometimes I'll pray, or day dream, but often times I'll block out everything and focus on my body relaxing and getting rid of all those stressers that are bogging down my mind!

One of my goals was to start stretching after I workout, and become more flexible. I have done yoga before {a Denise Austin video with my mom, haha :)}, and I loved it! Yoga gives you a sense of poise, strength, and center. I went on a search for a yoga routine, and came across the links that I am sharing below. These videos are on YouTube, so they are FREE and you can do them at anytime! :)
These videos are "weight loss yoga" they allow you to work up a sweat, get some cardio minutes in, and stretch, lengthen, and strengthen your body all at once! I did these videos the other day, and I really enjoyed them! There are some moves starting in the 2nd video {a head stand} that I wasn't really down for trying, and there may be some other moves that are more "advanced" but overall, this video is a GREAT workout and even a beginner like me could do it! 
{Information source: here}





Some Yoga Benefits:

1. Reduce stress; along with improving migraines, back pain, blood pressure and varicose veins
2. An excellent physical therapy routine-low impact
3. Increased flexibility
4. Promotes good posture
5. Strength and balance throughout the entire body
6. Yoga practice contains the central ideas that physical posture and alignment can influence a person's mood and self-esteem
7. Tone your muscles and become stronger
8. Cardio yoga helps to burn and shed the extra fat

I hope you all have a wonderful Tuesday and explore the idea of taking a step towards your health by trying out YOGA!! :)