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Architecting Life

A morning kickstart that’s better than coffee (almost)

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I’ve always said there’s no better way to start your day than face-down, arse up and ‘relaxing’ into the excruciating pain of contorting yourself into what is – rather euphemistically – referred to as a ‘downward-facing dog’.

Well, if I haven’t said it before, I’m saying it now: Yoga in the morning is the shiz, you guys. Here’s why:

Snaps you out of your foggy stupor

If you wake up and feel like your head is filled with a Beijing-thick smog. Then strap on your smog-exterminator-pack (kind of like a portable version of this) and prepare to destroy that smoggy stupor. Coffee’s good. But yoga’s better.

Improve your fitness

Yoga is surprisingly strenuous. If you’re as active as I am, then this is going to be the only time in the week your heart-rate will rise above 60 (which, I’m told, is something your heart enjoys. It just has a funny way of showing it).

Feel like you’re having a stroke mid-python-pose? Welcome to the club. But rest easy knowing that whatever you’re feeling now, you’ll be averting that times a bajillion a few years down the track – also known as reducing your heart attack risk.

Added bonus: You can feel smug knowing you’ve already done more exercise than 99.9% of the population (give or take) and it’s not even lunch-o’clock. Go ahead and order yourself that adorable mini cheesecake. You’ve earned it.

Learn to relax

Most people assume yoga is all meditation and serene ‘hmmmming’. Most people haven’t seen the sweat pouring out of me like a burst water main while I’m mid-twins-twist. That said, Yoga does have some nice relaxation elements. Every session ends with shavasana which is a few moments to lay flat on your back, reflect on how inflexible you’ve let yourself become and try not to think about how many overdue bills you have to pay.

Improve your posture

You know that guy at the office whose nickname is Quasimodo (and not because his very-mild superpower is ringing bells)? Don’t be that guy. Yoga helps to stretch you out in all the right places (even if it feels pretty wrong at the time). Over time, all that stretching and strengthening will improve your posture dramatically. Ever seen a yogi with a hunch-back? I thought not.

Improve your flexibility

Now I’m not going to promise you’ll be able to felate yourself if you take up yoga. But I’m pretty sure that’s what they’re talking about when they say Nirvana… Nuf said.

But that sounds like a lot of effort

I know you’re probably all thinking. “Wowzer, Brodie, yoga sounds swell (because you’re a TV character circa 1962). But who can be bothered rolling up their yoga mat and actually going outside? It’s all hot/cold/blizzardy/outsidey out there. Plus, have you seen the midriffs of the people at the local yoga centre?”

I hear you.

I’m as much of an agoraphobe as the rest of you, honest. And my midriff is best kept under layers.

That’s why I want to suggest to you an amazing, pint-sized wonder by the name of Esther. Esther is an expert yogi and her guidance comes for free through the power of the internet. Here’s my favourite video to get your morning started (it only takes 15 minutes, so there are no excuses):

Seriously, Esther makes all of that stretching and sweating a little more bearable. And you do feel much better after a good yogic stretching. So get to it!

Do you have a better way to get yourself moving in the morning? Share your secrets in the comments below. I’m like a bear who has taken a roundhouse kick to the cranium in the mornings. I need this.

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