I spent years avoiding yoga. It scared me. I didn’t know any of the poses or what they meant. I didn’t have fancy yoga clothes or a mat. What if I fell?

Then in August 2009 my friend Ryan and I decided to try a local studio for the fun of it. We visited College Park Yoga and fell a lot- and fell in love.

Sure, we looked silly trying to follow along in the flow. Luckily our teachers were patient and worked with us.

For most of the year I practiced yoga once every week, usually in the same studio. It made me stronger and helped me in my marathon training.

In June 2010 I visited a different studio and learned I could hold myself in the side crow pose. How cool! This changed what yoga meant to me. Yoga became more fun. I would show this pose off to all my non-yogi friends and they loved it. Yoga became more normal.

Now yoga is as essential to my life as breathing. It’s more than poses; it’s a way to be in touch with my body and my mind. It’s a way to challenge myself and watch myself get stronger. It’s stress-relief.

You don’t have to be anything to do yoga. Bring your stressed, overweight, athletic, anorexic, happy, sad, inexperienced or experienced self to the mat and play around a bit. I promise you’ll fall in love too!


Ashley blogs her daily life (including training for a full Ironman while maintaining a vegan diet) at healthyashley.com. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/healthyashley.

%d bloggers like this: