It’s 6 a.m.
It has been dark for over 12 hours and it feels like I haven’t seen the sun in a while.
Did I really sleep? Or is this a dream?
It’s my early morning yoga practice….to.fit.it.in!
With this week’s early morning mat time, it got me to thinking about what is the best time to do yoga. Two things came to mind…
When I took an academic yoga class in my undergraduate degree, I recall that we were not suppose to eat prior to practice. Or at least this is was the professor asked of my 21 year old self. Did I follow that “rule”? Not exactly. But it begs the question, should I be doing yoga first thing in the morning before eating anything?
Which leads me to my world of exercise physiology and working with registered dietitians where not eating before exercise (particularly when first rising) is pretty close to a complete no-no. Breakfast is about “breaking the fast” so having something, small as it may be, is recommended.
So the timing with food idea may have some flaws. And maybe something to explore at a later date.
As for the second thing, it too stems from my exercise physiologist self. When is the best time to exercise? Old thought is first thing in the morning to rev up the metabolism but today’s research doesn’t support a specific time of day. What I do recommend is to pick a time that works best for you…or the individual.
I guess that is what I had to do for practice this week. It was at 6 a.m. that worked best.
But I have to say, waking up during practice - because that was what was happening - was absolutely lovely first thing in the morning. I made it to my mat in the dark with not much difficultly and I found a gentle morning video from Adriene that slowly led me into practice.
At that hour, my best intention to set was all about self-love. Being kind to myself throughout the practice as my body came to life.
The practice ended with no savasana which allowed the energy from the practice to continue to flow into my day. I loved how energized I felt and was keen to get going to the day. Missing savasana was a small price to pay for the peaceful and tension-free way to start my day.
To be sure I had a bit more insight into the timing of practice, I went to my go to Google search which took me to a great article by Yoga Journal. It said,
Since an important part of yoga practice is getting to know yourself and how you change from moment to moment, it makes sense to let your energy inform you about how to practice according to the season or time of day.
What a great idea!
Sometime practice just has to fit in. Other times, I can dictate when it fits best for me. Although, I am thinking the early morning might be something I’d like to try. It provided a calm and quiet time that I so need in my life.
Morning yoga, maybe see you again soon,
Aspiring Yoga Teacher
I've practiced yoga since I was a pre-teen and have always found it to keep me centered. I will be a teacher one day and this is my journey to discover teaching and practice.