Increase Activity with YogaPosted: May 14, 2013 in Getting Active by Craig Primack MD FACP
Your medical weight loss program is the perfect time to make all kinds of positive changes in your life. From the way you eat and exercise to the way you handle stress, now is your chance to start taking steps towards a healthier, happier you.
For many people, yoga can be a big part of this. Yoga is much more than just a workout—for thousands of years, people all over the world have been using yoga to not only build a strong and flexible body, but a calm and positive mind as well.
Meet Tim. He started medical weight loss about a month ago, but he’s still having trouble getting into his exercise routine. Tim wants to lose about 50 pounds and has always had weak knees, which means that running and many other forms of exercise are uncomfortable and difficult for him. He also has a stressful job that makes it difficult to find time for the gym.
When Tim told his friend Samantha that he was having a hard time exercising, she invited him to try yoga with her. She started doing yoga about a year ago and told Tim about the many ways it had changed her body and her outlook, like:
- Stronger, more toned muscles all over
- Better flexibility and balance
- A calmer state of mind
Tim had heard of yoga before, but he was a bit skeptical. Samantha explained that yoga isn’t just for gurus, hippies and hyper-flexible fitness freaks—people of all shapes and sizes can do it.
Samantha told Tim that all he needed to get started with yoga was:
- A good teacher. Yoga is an accessible, low-impact workout, but it can still be intimidating to beginners. By attending classes with a patient, attentive teacher, you can get a good foundation to delve deeper into this great workout.
- A few basic supplies. Because yoga will bend you into some unusual positions, it’s best to wear comfy, loose-fitting clothes. It also helps to have a yoga mat, but you can rent or borrow these from most yoga studios when you attend a class.
- A little determination. Though yoga has many benefits, it will take time and practice to experience them. The best approach is to do yoga a little bit every day. Practice what you learn in your classes and supplement your knowledge with online videos, DVDs and books.
Tim took Samantha up on her offer. Now that he has a few classes under his belt, he’s been practicing on his own at home every day, which makes it easy to find time for exercise in his busy schedule. He’s also less stressed at work and feels stronger every day. As you lose weight, think about giving yoga a try—if you’re like Tim, it will make a big difference.