JiaZhen_My Yoga Journey

Let’s face it, we all started somewhere! For me, it was in 2012.

I knew I wanted to lose weight, but running was too boring, swimming takes a long time, and there’s no way I’m ever going on a diet.

Growing up, I had a major lack of self confidence. Ever since I broke my leg in an incident when I was a kid, the weight piled on due to lack of mobility over the 6 months I was in a cast – and it never quite left. I was teased and bullied in school and that perhaps led to my feelings of insecurity. I had been such an immensely awkward kid around most people that my teacher in secondary school thought I might have a need to go through speech therapy! Go figure.

Fast forward to my late teens, that was in 2008/9 – my Mom actually went for a trial at this Yoga studio chain and fell in love with the practice. I had just graduated from university and had a bunch of spare time so I went along with her just for fun. On and off, I wasn’t taking it seriously. My mom was consistent though but my non-consistent stint never really did anything in my weight loss journey. Not that I really had one in the first place. By then, I had perhaps accepted my “fate”.

“I’m gonna be fat forever, so whatever. I may be the last one to hike up that hill in the ODAC (Outdoor Adventure Club) camp, but so what?” But deep down, a part of me felt a little dissatisfied. I know I can be healthier. There is a way to boost my stamina.

November 2012. That’s when my personal Yoga practice journey started. I signed up for an unlimited membership at a Yoga studio and since then, I’ve never looked back. Thanks to my mom though, she was the one who introduced me to the practice of Yoga. In the first year, I was addicted to Hot Yoga – especially Hot Vinyasa – flowing in that hot room made me so tired, there was once I wasn’t able to lift my arms above my head to wash my hair right after class! Through it all, I felt motivated to go for class only because I was really seeing results. The weight kept going off. 79kg, 76, 75, 70, 68, 65kg. I plateaued.

Before Yoga, After Yoga

Then my practice evolved.

At first my motivation was weight loss. Now that the weight was off, why am I still at it? Then I realised…

Yoga is a never-ending journey. 5+ years on, I’m still working on postures I was practicing when I first started.

“Nothing comes out of nothing” – Disney’s Christopher Robbins. Putting in the hours, a strong motivation to get into the healthy weight range – and what do I get for it? A boost of confidence, an increase in stamina. A healthier outlook in life, And a lot of happiness. Conquering that lack of confidence really helped me in my daily life. I felt better, emotionally. A lesser fear of judgement and a little less afraid to try.

Conquer the Fear. Practice with Mindfulness.

I started to tire of Hot Yoga, and started to practice Intermediate postures that I feared and failed. Confidence to try. Confidence to progress in my Yoga Asana practice. Confidence to be accepting of where you are at in this moment.

And in 2018, confidence to learn how to teach!