Yoga for Weight Management

Kind of thought about this subject because with Thanksgiving coming up, everyone seems to be rather caught up in how to curb the calories and burn fat … in anticipation of the turkey day around the corner.

While I have ranged in (non-pregnancy related) weight from 115 lbs. all the way up to 145lb; I probably look and feel the best at 120lb to which I am 10 lbs. over this year – I call it the “Freshman 15” ish affect of going to Yoga Therapy program which has entailed so much reading and HW that studies ironically takes away from the actual practice of the yoga that I used to. the luxury of practicing 1-2 hours a day was … a luxury and now with that gone, I find that my weight has creeped up and up as I am eating as much as before. But I am not worried as I know, after this program, when I again have more time, I can practice more and regularly like before. Even though I am 15lbs. over the so called “ideal” weight I had maintained pre-studies, I am

Still, not fat? Compared to those days when I dieted and aggressively went about doing pure Cardio and caloric burns, my weight is down because … yoga manages the level of cortisol which affects our eating and sleep. When we don’t get enough sleep, we tend to gain weight; and when we don’t manage stress well, we also gain weight – so no matter how much cardio and sweating you do, ultimately the first two factors contribute to our weight management success. So again, ironically, when I stopped the incessant, feel-high rat running in the cage mode of exercise and actually went off to softer side of yoga … funny, I lost the last 10 lbs. I always wanted to shed. Yes, that’s the 10 lbs that like a yoyo creep up or drops down for me – all dependent on the amount of rest and restoration coupled with mindful exercise.

Thanksgiving can be a lovely holiday but it can also be a stressful time for many – I have a dear family friend, a beautiful mom who her sons called their “SUN” for her sunny and bright disposition – so sorry – who had a cardiac arrest day after Thanksgiving. She was carried to ER on an ambulance but … I got a call of her departure and attended her funeral – this is couple of years ago. Did you know that Heart Disease is the number one cause of death for women? It’s not all overweight men with metabolic syndrome. So … I did not know that…back then. She collapses. This, despite the fact that she engaged in regular aerobic exercise, vigorous cardio workouts at a gym and frequent walks … I wish I had shared my knowledge back then to give her more ease … but back then, I didn’t have that knowledge. Myself too, going along with the hype, beating myself up, whipping myself into shape. A bit of challenge is good as we all want to have the motivation and the drive to improve ourselves – that striving BUT really, how much of that do we really need. Don’t we have enough of that already?

It behooves us to find that softer side of yoga where you balance the effort and ease to calibrate a program where you are no longer agitated. Your nervous system is humming harmonious, your hormones are at an optimal level, your immune system is strengthened and body/mind connection strikes a homeostasis. Surprisingly, the scale will then give you results you would not have expected. I am not saying we should be sedentary and just breath; we do need to exercise, yes. But how do you want to engage in that exercise? The body can be whipped into shape, you can beat it up into shape but in my experience, why beat yourself up? Why not dance or belly laugh into health? I’ve found that our body-temple actually responds really well to positive affirmations, kindness, tenderness and most especially to acceptance.
With Abundance of Love all around – to HEART health! Namaste:)

Brain weight … 3lbs or 1300 gm-ish

and the HEAD weighs about 11-12 lbs on the average. Which means ? When we realize that a 3 months old baby weighs about 12 pounds, it’s a bundle of joy up there. It’s not an uncommon discomfort to carry those all familiar knots in the shoulder girdle region (which controls the most mobile joint for that full range limb, the arms) and the neck – literally we are saddled with heavy burdens on our shoulders or with TLC and erect posture with open chest, a bundle of joy. You might hear the the creaking, cracks of a stressed neck if you have a posture that does not carry the head gracefully …or have to engage in work that requires you to stoop or curve your back in such away to cause blockages of energy up the spine.
Neck grinding and cracking? What would alleviate that – shaking your head ? No, steady, gentle and well calibrated … stretching would help.
Engaging in self-study and then … act of self care, proceeding with mindful care in the process – in fact, enjoy the PROCESS not so much about the full expression of the pose.

Just going over the basics of basics in class to reclaim more freedom in that trouble spot this week – feel better.
BTW, if you are becoming an anatomy nerd, then this site might actually be FUN !