Yoga for Breakfast
I'm so excited to have recently joined the team of yoga practitioners at OMBE and to lead two Sunrise Yoga classes from 7-8AM Tuesday and Thursday mornings. The benefits of an early morning practice are numerous and will hopefully outweigh the reasons to stay wrapped up in your bed. If you need some motivation to hit the snooze button less, read these benefits of starting your day with yoga.
1. You’ll require less caffeine. Although you might need a little espresso to get out the door, you will probably be able to skip the second or third cup of coffee. Yoga marries the breath with movement, awakening the body and the mind. Utilizing yogic breathing techniques in the morning will help you start the day with balanced energy. This balanced energy will help you avoid the afternoon slumps that send you to the nearest Starbucks.
2. Jump start your metabolism. Flowing through several sun salutations will create heat in the body and increase your heart rate helping to fuel the body’s internal fire. Tapas - the third niyama of the Yoga Sutras- refers to the internal heat that keeps the body fit. The flowing postures of vinyasa yoga coupled with the ujjayi breathing technique will create an internal fire. The food you consume shortly after your yoga practice will be converted into fuel and used quickly. You will probably find yourself hungry at more balanced intervals as yoga aids the digestive process.
3. Live authentically. Our yoga practice is thought of as a “work-in” as opposed to a work-out. The more we pay attention to our breath and the sensations of the body, the more we learn to trust our intuition. A morning yoga practice sets the tone for your day and allows you to show up for the day’s events from a centered place of calm. You will be less likely to speak out of turn and make hasty decisions when you have allowed yourself that time in the morning to check in and listen to your inner truth.
4. Beat the blues. Yoga practiced in the morning helps to bathe the brain in “feel good” hormones such as serotonin and dopamine. Beginning the day with conscious breath and movement helps to wash away any mental cobwebs. The rest of your day is likely to be more productive as a result. As the days grow shorter it is important to rise with the sun to maximize the amount of daylight you are exposed to. Sunlight helps to regulate your circadian rhythm –your sleep/wake cycle. Getting to a morning yoga class will give you a reason to be outside for 10-20 minutes early in the morning (the most beneficial light of the day.) According to Auraviva.com, “Even when it’s cloudy, the open sky is 10 to 50 times brighter than typical indoor lighting.”
Allison Jones, RYT Registered Yoga Teacher
Allison Jones graduated from Wellesley College in 2005 with a B.A. in Philosophy. Always a spiritual seeker, Allison found a great deal of peace when she discovered yoga and Buddhist meditation. She was inspired to become a yoga teacher to share the joy that the practice has brought into her life with others. She completed her teacher training with Open Doors Power Yoga in Weymouth, MA. in February 2009. Allison is also working on a Master's degree in Counseling Psychology with a holistic specialization at Lesley University. In her spare time she attends meditation retreats at Insight Meditation Society and Cambridge Insight Meditation Center.