14

Nov

Why Yoga Should Be Included in Your Weight Loss Journey

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If your weight loss journey feels a little stale, it might be time to change things up. Doing the same types of exercise, over long periods of time, can cause plateaus. It can also make working out a bore. Boredom and plateaus are hurdles many people face when trying to lose weight. Combat these hurdles head-on by including a weekly yoga class to your workout schedule. Here are 6 reasons why yoga will help you reach your health goals.

Stress Reduction

When most people think about losing weight the first thing that comes to mind is diet and exercise. It makes sense; you need both if you want to be successful. However, there is another culprit at play for most overweight people. Stress! Stressed out individuals are more likely to gain weight, especially in their midsection. This happens because stress releases hormones that support weight gain. Another reason is the stress-eating that may occur. Some people stress-eat when they are overwhelmed, angry, and sad. Yoga is an excellent way to reduce those negative emotion, creating a calm mind, body, and spirit.  

Pain Relief

Yoga poses help stretch the muscles while making them stronger. This causes the muscle to release lactic acid, which helps reduce pain and inflammation. Doing yoga will also increase strength in the muscles responsible for balance and stability. Both of which can help reduce the risk of injury throughout all of your workouts. 

Flexibility

When most people think about yoga a picture of super, bendy people come to mind. The truth is that flexibility takes hard work and time. When you see someone doing the splits, know that it took a long time to get there. One of the best benefits of yoga is the increased flexibility and range of motion. Increasing your range of motion will make all your daily tasks easier and safer. Older adults with a high level of flexibility find that they are able to age in place and be independent longer. 

Strong Muscles

If you have never tried yoga, you might be fooled by the Zen-like expressions on peoples’ faces. It is actually quite challenging and depending on the class you choose to attend, you might be leaving a puddle of sweat on your mat. Some forms of yoga are done in sauna-like conditions, just to induce more sweat and calorie burn. Most long-term yoga practitioners have long, lean, and very strong muscles. Each pose uses a person’s own body weight. Body weight exercises are one of the top ways to increase muscle strength, so you will get a great workout.

Balance

Balance is another great benefit of yoga that will reduce the risk of injury. Of course, many people do yoga to increase their mind-body balance; we’re talking about the physical side here. Many poses are done specifically to increase balance. Moves like tree pose, warrior 3, and half-moon, are all done on one foot. Having incredible balance will reduce fall-related injuries throughout your life.

Convenience

Another reason yoga should be included in your weight loss journey is convenience. You don’t need expensive equipment to get started. All you really need is a non-slip surface, your own body weight, and one of the hundreds of free videos online. Stream a class online that is suited for beginners.

Yoga is an exercise that will grow with you. As your flexibility, strength, and balance increase, you will transition to more advanced poses. The best part is that it will get you much closer to reaching your goal weight.

It is important to listen to your body and talk to a health professional before starting any new exercise routine.