In my yoga classes I often tell my students to be sure to honor their bodies throughout the practice. I encourage them to listen to their bodies cues, back away from pain, and take breaks as they need to. I want to help them to recognize what their bodies need to maintain a state of balance and health. Sometimes the answer is a vigorous practice and other times it’s slowing down for a restorative practice.
As I type this I am lying in bed nursing an aching foot I had surgery on a week ago. When I had the surgery the doctor told me I would need to spend three weeks without exercise, with my foot up so that it can heal. He went on to tell me the biggest challenge he sees from his patients post surgery is that they don’t listen to him and do too much, too soon following the surgery.
The first few days were quite painful so I had no issue staying in bed reading books, writing, and napping. As the days have gone on and the throbbing slowing went away, I knew my body was doing the work and I was healing. So much so that when my family was taking off for a few days away at a ski hill, I ditched my plans to be pampered by my mom and decided to go along for the ride.
I’ve never been one to say no to an adventure. I love to ski, travel, meet new people and explore. Ski trips are all of those things wrapped into one great adventure with the beauty of the mountains as the cherry on top. How could I resist?
So here I am, day three of our trip and I’m lying in bed missing out on adventure because I over did it. I neglected to listen to my body and pushed myself too far before my body was ready. All of the cues were there that I was doing too much but I chose not to hear them.
My scenario today is a bit more extreme, but how often are we all guilty of doing this? How many times have you pushed yourself to exhaustion instead of slowing down or taking a break? Honoring our bodies is a practice, which means it takes work, and we have to consistently remind ourselves how important it is. If we don’t, our bodies we be sure to find a way to let us know.
What can you do to honor your body today?