Swap the Morning Coffee for a Natural High // Yoga Asanas
The lovely Gayatri from ASMY has got your back with a few little tips to kick those morning coffee cravings!
Do you drag yourself out of bed each morning stiff and grumpy and head straight for the coffee? Yep that use to be me. I was a complete and utter coffee addict, I couldn’t get through the day without a zillion cups of caffeine to keep me going. Then one day, on my usual caffeine high, I discovered yoga and meditation, right in the middle of James St, Burleigh Heads, yes it was that easy.
I stumbled upon a sign that said, “Free Meditation Classes”. I’d always been interested in meditation, but never actually got around to doing it. I registered for a class and here I am, 24 years later, a seasoned meditation and yoga teacher MINUS the caffeine.
It took me a while to withdraw from my habit. I tried going cold turkey, but found that I had a headache 24/7, so I had to go back to one cup a day and withdrawer gradually. It worked, I’ve been coffee free for well over 20 years now and much happier and healthier without it. For me yoga is the new caffeine!
Now instead of heading straight for the kitchen for my morning fix, I start the day with a few simple yoga asanas. My favourite morning sequence is sun salutations aka Suria Namaskar. This is an energising routine that will wake you up and have you feeling amazing in no time. Remember that the body is still waking up and usually most of us will agree that our bodies are a little on the stiff side, especially if it is on the mature side of 50, so be gentle on yourself.
Start the sequence slow moving and rhythmical if you can, synchronising the movements with your breath and keeping your knees soft or even bent. Nice deep inhales and exhales. Try to get the breath down into the lower lungs. Listen to your body. If you are really tired don’t do so many and if you are full of energy, do more. Some days you may do only one on each side and other days you may do five. It is not the quantity but the quality that really counts, so it is best to do fewer sequences, keep your focus and awareness, work with your breath and gradually build up over time.
After you’ve finished your morning sequence, you’ll feel absolutely amazing. The feel good hormones will be racing around your body, the stiffness will be gone, you’ll feel calm and relaxed, and yet at the same time, completely energised. Forget the coffee, yoga asanas does a much better job at waking you up. You’ll still feel stiff after a cup of coffee!!!
SALUTE TO THE SUN - Surya Namaskar
Benefits: Increases circulation, oxygenates the whole body, warms the muscles, releases stiffness from joints, increases flexibility in the spine, increases fitness, health and tones and strengthens the back, abdominals, legs and arms.
Cautions: High blood pressure, shoulder problems, lower back problems
Note: Become familiar with the sequence of poses before you worry about adding the breath.
1. Stand in Mountain Pose with your feet hip distance apart and hands in prayer position at the heart.
2. Breathe in and raise your arms above your head to lengthen the whole spine into a gentle back bend (Standing Back Arch).
3. Exhale and roll down into a Forward Fold.
4. Inhale as you jump or step back and exhale into a Downward Dog. Reach out into your finger tips, lengthen and strengthen your arms, back and legs.
5. Inhale as you lower your whole body down into a Bent Arm Plank Pose. Hold for the exhale.
6. As you inhale lift into a Cobra Pose or Upward Dog Pose. Keep your back soft by engaging your abdominal and keep your shoulders away from the ears.
7. Exhale into the Downward Dog.
8. Inhale as you step forward and exhale to the Forward Fold.
9.Unroll and inhale into a Standing Back Arch.
10. Exhale as you come back to Mountain Pose with hands at the heart.
11. It is recommended to repeat this sequence up to 12 times at your own pace.
Thank you so so sooo much Gayatri for the tips & flow! Be sure check us out on our social media feeds for more goodness like this! xx