My yoga journey began later in life that I would have liked. While I was familiar with the practice, I never thought it would be the thing that changed my life forever. (Dramatic, but true).
In 2012, a friend of mine had gone through the CorePower Yoga Sculpt Teacher Training Program (YSTT) and started the Yoga Club at our small, all-women’s college. While I was pounding away on the treadmill every day (hating my life, and hardly benefiting from the strain I was putting on my body), Grace would be leading a group of college yogis through chaturangas, down-dogs, and warrior poses.
Weeks into watching her class from afar, Grace finally convinced me to come to her class instead of hopping on the treadmill - she claimed it would provide a low impact but effective alternative to running, and would help with my flexibility and recovery. Afraid of being "bad" at something and letting my innate uncoordination shine through for everything to see, I was entirely intimidated.
It only took through the second Sun B Salutation - I was hooked.
The next week was fall break, during which I spent seven days back home in Minnesota, taking advantage of CorePower’s free first week of classes. Again, hooked. The workout was something I had never experienced before. It offered a flow that I could easily learn upon repetition, a level of muscle engagement I’d never known, and a strong community that I felt I belonged to. CorePower became my obsession.
By the next summer, I was enrolled in CorePower's YSTT so that I could join Grace in leading the Yoga Club. At that time, I was only 20 years old, and just started to figure out who I was. Teacher training was the spark that ignited that process; it changed and challenged me. I had always been the shy, soft-spoken girl that was slow to show my true personality to anyone I didn’t know well. For this reason, YSTT was terrifying. During the first few sessions of training, I stayed in my bubble, careful to stay as unnoticed as possible. This quickly shifted, as the instructors forced me (in the kindest, most yogic way possible) to trust not only myself, but the others in the room. The group we formed (my original Omies!) was a strong one that always had each other’s backs. They helped me find my voice, come out of my shell, and show that I don’t have to be the quiet person everyone always thought I was.
I taught for my entire senior year at school, making it the best year by far. I was fit, happy, confident, and centered (which is something not many 21-year-old women can say). Yoga helped me catalyst myself into the real world with a level of confidence that I’d never had before. I believe it is the cornerstone of the woman I have become.
Today, yoga continues to be impactful in my life. I incorporate a flow (whether it be 15 or 75 min long) into each day to help me stay grounded, focused, and healthy. Yoga is what I wake up for before the sun rises, what calms me when work or relationships bring in stress, what allows me to be honest with myself and my body, and what has ultimately changed me as a person.
My yoga journey is continuously flowing. While I have not taught yoga in over three years, I have come back to my goal of teaching yoga in Chicago. I recently (today, actually) enrolled in CorePower's Power Yoga Teacher Training - a program that will allow me to teach all formats of vinyasa yoga. Many yogis participate in teacher training to deepen their practice and learn more about yoga and it’s meaning. Many are hoping to find their voice and confidence. While I know these will be amazing results of completing this round of teacher training, my ultimate goal is to share my passion with the world through teaching.
I recognize the power that a good yoga practice has on my muscles, my energy, my mindset, my relationships, etc. (the list goes on and on). I have not gotten to this place in my practice alone. Rather, I have found some amazing teachers at CorePower that have helped me transform my practice from simply a daily workout routine to the thing that keeps me grounded in life. I want to be that person for others. I want to show them the amazing benefits that yoga can have on their life. I want them to come to my class and know that they’ll be transformed by the end – in mind, body and spirit.
One of my favorite aspects of CorePower Yoga is the community that it has built. For years, I spent my post-graduate life searching for a place I belonged. It wasn’t until I found daily practice with CPY that I truly became part of a community of people that I wanted to be around (constantly). I was addicted to the “we’re all in it together” feeling that was so evident in class, and this community feeling led to the formation of FitCityBlonde - and now, FitCityFamily. I have high hopes for this blog. It is our platform for creating a stronger, healthier, and more supportive #fitfam (or #fitcityfam as we say) than ever before. Will you join our family?