I have always been very active, but never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would become a yoga fanatic. My idea of staying active always involved running and/or weight training at the gym; not stretching or meditating on a mat in a room with a group of people. I had always identified yoga as being very slow paced and too “deep” for my Type A personality. Well, my preconception of yoga was drastically altered in February 2009.

It is difficult to believe how much yoga has changed my life both on and off the mat in the last 14 months. I suffer from severe digestive problems, which is mainly triggered by anxiety and stress. After numerous years of disappointment with medications and doctor recommendations, I vowed to take the natural path to healing my body. Through diet and exercise I was able to relieve many of my symptoms, however I knew that I still needed to overcome the mental and emotional aspects of my condition that were contributing to a great deal of stress in my life.

Hot yoga was the key. The deep yoga breath and asana sequences have helped me find a deep sense of calm within. I have developed the ability to free my mind of the racing thoughts that used to keep me up at night. When stress arises in a particular pose; I am able to recognize how I am feeling, be okay with it and move on to the next posture without placing judgment. I recognized that improving my health issues and spiritual well-being had a lot to do with mental strength and changing my thoughts and outlook in certain situations.

I feel that my passion for yoga and wanting to heal others the way that I have been healed by the practice truly fuelled my decision to pursue teacher training earlier this year. One of the biggest things I took away from training was to focus on the present and not worry about the past or the future. I have learned that in both yoga and life you need to check your ego at the door and know that wherever you are in any given moment is where you are meant to be! Namaste