As a yoga teacher, this subject isn’t new to you. You already know how you feel with and without your yoga practice but do we always know how to support it? How can we feed it?
Have you yet tried to avoid gluten and wheat, go cold turkey with caffeine, follow strict vegetarian/vegan path and swap your cappuccino for a non-dairy chai latte?
Decades ago I got deeply hooked on yoga, the asana practice as the physical exercise, endurance training for my body and mind, and yoga philosophy as my path. I passionately studied Sanskrit (what a linguistic paradise!), Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, Bhagavad Gita, Vedic and Tantric approach to yoga.
How do I feed my practice?
I’ve attended yoga, mindfulness and meditation workshops/classes – as many as possible; practice different styles and attend new classes. You will always learn something new.
I’ve experimented with yogic diets: Ayurvedic, vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free, wheat-free, raw food – tried it all. It was an interesting experiment, at times metamorphosis and evolution. It was hard and challenging. I was harsh on myself and strictly stuck to the plans. I felt in charge of it and disciplined until I realised that in that disciplined lifestyle, blinded and determined by the discipline, I was missing the point. I had no time or energy to remember what drew me to yoga and what I was intending to get out of that discipline.
That brought into a personal revolution – to rediscover yoga and my reason for it. Today, I practice less, but I live more “yogically” than ever; I drink an odd cup of latte, enjoy fish and chocolate. I eat mindfully and feel more healthy. I feed my yoga practice and it feeds me back on all levels: mentally, physically and spiritually. Be sure you know why you practice, and ask if you’re being too hard or controlling with yourself. Feed yourself with your practice.
Every time I am on the mat, I feel the joy and privilege of it, and I refer to and implement practice, literature and philosophy into my daily life. By all that experimenting, yoga and I have bonded, creating a deep, intuitive connection within me.
How do you feed your practice, and how does it feed you?