Have you ever tried yoga? No? Not even in the safety and comfort of your living room? It’s not as boring or pointless as you might think. In fact, yoga is actually really good for you. Here’s what all that stretching and balancing can do to improve your physical fitness and mental and physical health.
SAY GOODBYE TO FOOD CRAVINGS
It’s hard to stop yourself from inhaling an entire pizza after an intense workout (be honest). Yoga can actually help you fend off food cravings as you relax and breathe. Deep breathing enhances the mind-body connection. It makes you more self-aware, both physically and mentally, which is important when trying to tell the difference between appetite and hunger. Having an appetite for food (craving it) is a lot different than being hungry, and the more you practice separating the two, the less likely you are to give in to eating food you’re not actually hungry for.
RELAX FROM THE INSIDE OUT
Among yoga’s many benefits is that of relaxation, and it’s not just because you’re often sitting still or holding certain positions as you control your breathing. The reason you sometimes feel anxious and overwhelmed is because your body is over-producing too many stress hormones. When you do yoga, it helps to reduce the levels of stress hormones in your system, making you feel less stressed.
DO YOGA, BUILD BETTER MUSCLE
You pretty much build a little bit of muscle with any exercise you do, but yoga is a little bit different. Learning to stretch, balance and more doesn’t just help you become stronger – it combines strength-building with flexibility. The more flexible you are, especially while building muscle mass at the same time, the more you can protect yourself against strain and injury later.
Yoga, over time, improves your posture. When you sit and stand up straighter, it doesn’t just straighten out your spine. It actually puts your lungs into a position that allows for better air flow in and out of your body. Deep, steady breathing isn’t just good for relaxation. It also helps get the proper amount of oxygen to different parts of your body, especially your brain. Think clearly and remain calm.
Yoga can improve so many different areas of your health that it only makes sense to give it a try. There’s not necessarily a right or wrong way to do it, but you can learn and practice anywhere, any way you want to. It may not be as intense as you’re used to, but who knows? You might really like the change of pace.