You will have noticed that it’s been rather quiet on Ordinary Cycling Girl these past few weeks. There is a very good reason, I promise. Life, as ever, has been busy, but aside from that, I recently made an exciting decision to start my yoga teacher training!
Regular readers will know that I have a number of back issues which all started when I was a teenager. At fifteen I had my first surgery to my lumbar spine. I have had numerous other surgeries since for degenerative disc disease including an artificial disc replacement, which had to be removed a few year later. I now have metal rods and plates in my lower back to stabilise and straighten a lumbar scoliosis.
Last year, I had another disc pinching a nerve and was I really struggling with that blooming awful and all too familiar nerve pain down the whole of my left leg, my groin, hip and into my foot. Those of you who suffer with sciatica will know exactly what I’m talking about! I also have some arthritis in my facet joints and this too was giving me pain and stiffness. I don’t mind admitting it was all getting me down and the thought of having to possibly undergo more surgery wasn’t helping.
My surgeon suggested strengthening the paraspinal muscles so, with his approval, I thought I’d try a return to yoga.
I’ve dipped my toes in and out of yoga since recovering from my first back surgery, but, with one thing and another, it’s never been something I’ve consciously made an effort to stick at. Studying, more surgery, two pregnancies and well, I don’t know, I guess I never thought there was time to commit to it. I can’t tell you how much I regret having not made an effort to ensure yoga was part of my life until now.
Over the last twelve months, I’ve been doing three to five hours of yoga per week. I started attending three different hatha yoga classes a week and OH MY GOODNESS, WHAT A DIFFERENCE I’ve noticed! I honestly can’t tell you how happy it makes me that I don’t wake in pain any more; that I wake up and feel like getting out of bed and have the desire to be active, to live! Yoga has made my whole body stronger and I’m emotionally stronger too. Yoga has become not only medicine for my back, but medicine for my mind and my soul too! It’s my little bit of calm in my busy life; my little bit of calm in what is a crazy world right now.
So, I am now nearly half way through my yoga teacher training with Sun Power Yoga and I’m so enjoying it. I’m not going to lie; it’s an intense journey both physically and emotionally, but I know yoga is my future, especially in terms of looking after my back, keeping it strong and keeping me active. It’s made the world of difference to my quality of life and honestly, I love that time on the mat! It makes me feel amazing inside and out! And I love seeing my progress.
My decision to complete yoga teacher training was initially to deepen my own practice and understanding of yoga. I felt ready for a new challenge and a new focus. I really wanted to do something for me! So, this next few months will see me completing 200 hours of Yoga Alliance teacher training. Excited? Yes! Yoga teacher training marks the start of new beginnings for me and new challenges. I know there are some exciting times ahead and I can’t wait!