When we think about a yoga routine, rarely do we believe it will help us drop extra pounds. Sure, we know yoga is great for stretching and building long, lean muscles, but if we want to see significant weight loss, we need to do a hardcore cardio workout. Right?
Although a yoga routine doesn’t burn as many calories as an intense run or cardio class, yoga actually can help us to lose weight. Weight loss isn’t just about burning calories. It comes down to consuming fewer calories, managing stress, paying attention to the needs and wants of our bodies, and more – all of which yoga can help you manage and control.
Yoga as a Beginning To Burn Fat
For someone that is new to the world of exercising, yoga can be a great place to begin – especially for older or overweight individuals. As a gentle practice that can take many different levels of difficulty, anyone can do yoga.
Think of yoga like a “gateway drug” to other kinds of exercise. If you’re looking for a way to begin getting active without too must strain, pressure, or complication, a beginner’s yoga class can be just the thing to get you started on the right foot.
Try to do yoga a few times a week to begin. Serious yoga-doers may choose to do a routine every day, but jumping too far into it can cause you to become overwhelmed and frustrated. Instead, opt for two or three days a week with a yoga workout.
Yoga to Eliminate Stress
When we are overly stressed, we make poor choices. We reach for comfort foods, skip working out, and we have trouble sleeping. All of these behaviors can contribute to both gaining weight and keeping the extra pounds on.
The first way that yoga can help us lose weight is by helping us manage our stress. As a mindful activity, yoga forces you to focus on your movements and get in touch with your body. Yoga also pushes you to focus on your breathing, allowing your body to let go of the extra negative energy the stress is providing.
Take time for an early morning yoga routine to help you stay stress-free all day or include your yoga workout after a long day at work to let go of some tension. Frequent yoga classes will help you stay focused on your goal of losing weight without being distracted by constant stress.
Yoga to Be More Mindful
As we mentioned, yoga forces you to listen to what your body is trying to tell you. Yoga is a workout that relies entirely on your body’s movement, balance, and strength, so you’ll never get through a yoga workout without paying attention to what your body can do.
Focusing on your body’s abilities, needs, and wants is what we refer to as being mindful. Mindfulness can help us make better choices when it comes to eating healthy meals and getting a proper workout.
Remaining mindful throughout our day-to-day activities can stop us from overeating or choosing meals or snacks that are bad for our health. It can also help us to move more and drink more water, which can contribute to dropping some extra pounds.
Yoga to Build Muscle
The muscles you build from yoga won’t be the same muscles you gain from a powerlifting session but your muscles are still constantly engaged through the entire class. Furthermore, you’re using your own body weight to push your muscles to become stronger.
As with any kind of muscle growth, your metabolism will become faster and can contribute to losing weight. To get serious about using yoga to build muscle and speed up your metabolism, you will need to continue to push yourself to complete harder moves and more difficult poses.
While yoga may not be the workout you think of when you want to lose weight, it can help you to realign your life with better habits and healthier choices. When incorporated into a full exercise plan and paired with a healthy diet, yoga can help you drop pounds, eliminate stress, and become more in touch with your body.