Yoga Practice with a Cold

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I was as sick as a dog through Christmas and New Year’s: what a way to start the New Year. Tired, lethargic and irritable, my yoga practice suffered. I still fought through my practice, even when I couldn’t do kapalabhati or ujjayi. I yearned for the breathing, the prananaya part of yoga that I love and this made it difficult for me to complete my asana practice. The bottom line is that I should have taken a break. I needed to rest and relax but felt guilty about missing my practice. Because of this, my cold hung around a little longer.

When the body’s immune system is compromised, one should listen and respond accordingly. I missed my inversions so I was stubborn, bullish and pushed through my yoga practice. The benefit to this was
that I focused on my nonexistent meditation practice and spent more time in savasana. Being sick was actually a good time for me to meditate, go inward and feel what my body had been trying to tell me: that I needed to chill out.

Yoga’s benefits are that it helps to stimulate the immune system, detoxifies the body and boosts the mood. Like everyone, I was running around like crazy during the holiday season and it caught up with me. My immune system was compromised, my emotions were all over the place and I got sick. And then I kept doing yoga because it makes me feel good and I needed a little more of that this season. What this experience has taught me is that I have to trust my body, it knows best. Next time I’ll listen more intently.

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