Danica’s balancing act: Yoga’s peaceful challenges

September 10, 2015 | by Danica Patrick

Life, I’ve learned, is all about balance.

It’s working hard, then taking it easy. Eating really healthy, then having a little chocolate (and wine). Pushing back, then giving a little.

Yoga is a physical way to see the struggle for balance — use your strength to get into a pose, then let go.

Confession: it’s not easy for me to slow down. So yoga has been a challenge in that respect. It has been good for me. In its calm, quiet way, yoga forces you to focus on your breathing and stay in the moment.

You can’t beat the payoff, either. How awesome is it when you finally master that handstand you’ve been working on?

When I started practicing yoga about 12 years ago, it didn’t seem like much of a workout. Over the years, though, I’ve seen the cool, difficult things you can do with yoga and it has become one of my favorite ways to train. I’m having fun with it.

Not only has yoga increased my flexibility, it has helped me improve my mental focus as well. And the positive vibes coming from the yoga community — both in person and on social media — help me see that the glass really IS half-full.

If you're new to yoga, I recommend starting slow and working up to the more difficult poses. You could hurt yourself if you try to do too much too fast.

I balance my workout routine with CrossFit. It’s intense. You push yourself to your limit, compete to win and kick ass! I love it.

The balance I try to find with yoga actually extends to all parts of life. In my day job, I’m constantly challenging myself, pushing the limit, working under pressure.

Then, I balance out that stress. I go on vacations (fabulous rewards for hard work, I highly recommend them). I take time for myself. I go for walks with my dogs. I go out with the girls. I cook — one of the best ways to relax!

Remember — without balance, it's easy to get stressed and eventually burn out. Stay positive! Namaste.

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