Yoga has benefited me in so many ways over the years, including shedding extra pounds.
Yogic Wisdom – The stomach should never be more than 3/4 full
I know this sounds crazy for some of us in the land of milk and honey and all-you-can-eat buffets. In the more theoretical yoga literature, it is mentioned over and over again. The Principle is simple. When you eat, you should never fill your stomach more than 1/2 full plus 1/4 for liquids equals 3/4 total.
Sequences that really burn calories
- The Sun Salutation is an excellent way to start. In addition to being a mega calorie burner, it also improves flexibility, coordination, stamina, and mental focus. If you need some help getting started, check out my YouTube video.
- Another excellent but less known sequence for burning calories is the Rishikesh series. There are 9 Asanas total which are held for a longer period of time, anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes typically. Check out my YouTube video to get started.
Consider investing in a good mat!
It’ll make Yoga more enjoyable and productive.
Yes, a bad mat can actually limit you or to put it positively, challenge you in ways that aren’t even intended…
Like sliding in common asanas like Adho Mukta Savanasana, or down dog. If GRIP is something you seek, check out my Yoga Mat Challenge Review post here or go directly to my YouTube video:
You’re probably familiar with traditional Chinese medicine (TMC) with its explanation of energy centers and pathways. It’s explained pretty much the same in Yoga. Each of us has 7 energy vortexes or centers along the spine. Near the navel is the Manipura Chakra. Asanas (positions) that intentionally place pressure against this Chakra stimulate digestion and in end effect lead to burning more calories.
I know, I know, it sounds too obvious and a lot of us would just rather have the “Yoga Pill” if there were such a thing. First of all, applaud yourself for even taking the first step. But don’t stop there. Losing weight with Yoga, just like improving your skill level in Yoga, requires consistent practice. From my website, you can also download PDF’s of the Sun Salutation and the Rishikesh series for FREE.
Meditation is THE goal of Yoga
I asked my yoga students recently, “What is the ultimate goal of Yoga?” I got a lot of good answers but not THE answer that I was looking for. We practice Yoga to make our bodies strong and resilient so that we can sit for longer periods of time meditating, leading to understanding ourselves, and more and more of the universe. Becoming overweight could have psychological reasons. To fill the void in ourselves, we enjoy our nourishment a little too much. If we just took more time in silent meditation to get to know our true selves, this neediness might diminish. Let me give you a few pointers on getting jump-started.
- Find a place and time when you won’t be disturbed (no cell phone, telephone or notifications).
- Find a comfortable seated position that you can remain in for at least 20 minutes.
- Start off with 20 minutes at least. Under 20 minutes is futile and can’t accomplish much if anything.
- Pick a meditation that seems suitable to you and practice it every day. Try not to slack off just because it’s the weekend!
- Stick with one meditation method for a while, at least 2 weeks – 1 month before even considering a new method.
- You might find it easiest if you’re a beginner to use a CD with guided meditations.
- Vipassana Meditation Centers are available worldwide and they are FREE (donation appreciated of course).
I did a 10-day retreat and I would highly recommend it to all that really want to get serious about Meditation.
https://www.dhamma.org/en/about/vipassana is the link
I would very strongly recommend that you have a practice of your own or at least consistent practice meditating before investing 10 days of your life. Yes, the beginner courses are 10 days long. After that, you are allowed to do 3-day Retreats.
Celebrate the little victories.
I hope this has given you some fuel for your fire and the motivation to start on the path. Reward yourself! But not through a false reward system, meaning avoid rewarding yourself with food or inactivity. Don’t overfill your stomach, try out the Sun Salutation and Rishikesh series and practice regularly. And don’t forget what the yogi’s ultimate goal: Meditation. Namaste!