Skimlinks Test

The Healing Power Of Crystals | Rubbish Or Reality?

Hey guys and gals! How are we all doing today? 

For about a year now I have been seeing a meditation/reiki practitioner. The first couple of times I went I was very unconvinced by the whole thing but recently I have found myself really benefitted from the sessions and able to practise the skills learnt myself. In my last session a few months back we worked with crystals. She asked me to choose a crystal from her collection and hold it during the session. Erm, you what?

Anyway, an hour later I had finished the session and my crystal was boiling hot. Apparently my own energy and that of the crystals (again, you what?) had ‘infused’. Holding the crystal had allowed me to dissolve my negative energy and increase the flow of positive energy and vitality throughout my body. I fobbed it off a little but you can bet the next time I went into a shop selling crystals I picked one up and I have been using it since. I’m pleased to say that I have found having my own crystal incredibly helpful and so I thought today I would explore the idea of healing crystals and whether or not the benefits associated with them are rubbish or reality. 

Luna is definitely a fan! 

What are healing crystals?

The healing power of crystals has been celebrated throughout history, being traced back to the ancient Egyptians who once believed these gems had the power to restore health. Recently, these supposed ‘healing crystals’ have seen an increase in popularity as more and more of us are convinced that crystals have energy properties that can work within our own energy systems. Krista Mitchell, a crystal healing teacher and author of the book Change Your Energy: Healing Crystals for Health, Wealth, Love & Luck, has been teaching people how to heal themselves since 2004 and is convinced that these natural means of restoring energy are the way to a balanced body and mind. In theory this means that if your life and emotions are a little out of whack, say you’re starting a new job or have an exam, these rocks can help to restore a sense of emotional balance. ‘Crystal healing’ is a term that applies these ideas to a certain type of therapy. This involves placing gem stones on your body or in nearby places to help draw out negative energy.

All sounds pretty good, right?

But what does science say?

Hate to be the one to break it to you, but science remains unconvinced. The truth is, there is zero scientific evidence that that crystals have any healing properties. In fact, the majority of scientists out there would probably fob it off as B.S. Let’s be honest, this probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to you – it certainly didn’t to me – so why do I bother? Well, they might not heal your ailments, but they might soothe the soul.

My Experience and the Power of Placebo

When my mental health was at its very worst, crystals did nothing for me. I needed professional and medical support and there is no shame in that. Healing crystals are not going to suddenly heal your bumps and bruises, they are not going to cure depression, but healing crystals have worked wonders on helping my find a sense of calm. Now, I don’t want to sound all Eyal from Love Island but it’s true. As I have learnt how to control my emotions through support and a lot of hard work, crystal healing offers me the opportunity to be mindful and present and explore resources beyond present options.

It didn’t happen straight away and it took a lot of perseverance, imagination and acceptance. Just as with mindfulness, my healing crystal acts as a physical reminder to quieten the chaos going on in my mind and reconnect with the present. The crystal is not magic by any means, I know it is all coming from inside my own body and mind but I am convinced that through openness and a belief in the potential for calmness, I have found a way in which I can reconnect and enjoy life without the stresses of the outside world.

I keep my crystal next to my bed and when I attempt to practise meditation I will hold it in my hands. If I am feeling particularly stressed I will hold my crystal and take a moment to contemplate and reassess the situation. I have found this is what works best for me. Some people keep their under their bed, some have them in their bag or even in their bra so it is with them at all times! I like to keep mine in my bedroom in ‘my space’ as a way to literally and metaphorically escape.

Which crystal is for me? 

Depending on how deep you want to go, each crystal supposably has a different intent and you can therefore choose a crystal based upon your purpose. My crystal, for example, is Rose Quartz. This stone is known as the love stone and is meant to help to enhance your self love and positive energy, opening you up to all different forms of love. I just think it’s very pretty.

A few other examples are as follows:

  • Amethyst: It helps to control disruptive and addictive behaviours and allows you to enhance your intuition.
  • Citrine: This the stone of success and enhanced your individual power.
  • Soladite: This stone helps to clear up any confusion and maintain concentration.
  • Aventurine: This is known as the stone of luck – whether that be luck in love, fortune or your career.
  • Aquamarine: This beautiful stone helps us to brave the unknown and can lead to increased creativity.
  • Clear quartz: This stone is known for encouraging focus, balance, positivity and clarity.

If you’re wondering which might be best for you, you can take this quiz. Not sure how accurate these things are but it’s worth it just for a bit of fun! The Energy Muse blog is also full of loads of great information about crystals and their healing powers if you are interested – I would really recommend taking a look!

‘Everything in Life is Vibration’ – Albert Einstein

Whether simply placebo or natural healers, I believe that your thoughts are in line with the vibrations of that which you surround yourself with. Healing crystals have provided me with some sort of accountability to make time for myself and that’s good enough for me. 

Jamie x 

 

Sources: 

https://www.elle.com/uk/life-and-culture/culture/articles/a31572/what-are-healing-crystals-how-to-use-them/

https://www.hellomagazine.com/healthandbeauty/2018022346560/what-are-healing-crystals/

https://www.holisticshop.co.uk/articles/introduction-guide-crystals

https://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/a19934992/what-are-healing-crystals/

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/sonimacom/do-healing-crystals-reall_b_12117920.html?guccounter=1

Take This Crystal Quiz to Find the Healing Crystals For You

 

 

Sunshine Blogger Award.

Hey guys! Something a little bit different for you today (and on a Wednesday! 3 posts in one week? Christmas came early this year, ey?) I am so honoured to have been nominated by the lovely Emily for the Sunshine Blogger Award! She is an incredible blogger who has been such an inspiration to me and I am so glad to have her as one of my blogging friends. I would seriously recommend checking out her blog as she is a fantastic writer with such a big heart. I wish her all of the success in world. 

sunshine-3001

 

This award is all about bringing positivity to the blogging community, and inspiring others to do the same. As it is voted for by other bloggers, there are a few rules that you have to stick to (not being a party pooper guys – they’re fun rules!).

RULES:

Thank the blogger who nominated you and link their blog so others can find them.
Answer the 11 questions which the blogger who nominated you asked.
Nominate 11 bloggers and ask them 11 different questions.
List the rules and display the Sunshine blogger award logo in your post and/or on your blog site.

Okay, let’s get started!

EMILY’S 11 QUESTIONS:

Why did you pick the blog name that you did?

So my blog is called jamieleejenkins.com (not very imaginative, I know). No surprises here but it’s called that because, well… that’s my name. I toyed with the idea of having a more exciting name but I am the most indecisive person in the entire universe and I couldn’t find something that I thought summed up my little corner of the internet. I decided therefore that the best option was to let my Mum decide and go for my name – what could possibly sum me up better? 

Name a blog that inspires you.

Without a doubt ruthinrevolt.com! She is such a ray of sunshine and I am so inspired by how hard she works. Ruth in a fantastic writer and her content is always so motivational. I would serious recommend checking her out as she deserves all the love and support in the world.

What is your favourite aspect of your blog?

I love having my own little space on the internet that’s mine. Writing has always been an absolute passion of mine but I used to really struggle with technical stuff. With a lot of hard work, I managed to pick up loads of new skills and I am incredible proud of how I have managed to develop my little blog. It’s never been about stats for me, but hearing how my work has helped my readers is so motivational and makes all the hard work worth while. I adore my blog and everyone I have had the pleasure of coming across through it.

Best blogging tip?

Everyone says it but it is so so true – Be authentic and love what you do.

When you love your work it really does shine through in the writing and it is such a great thing to see. I guess from this I would also say give yourself a break if you need it. There is no shame in having down time and no content is better than forced content. 

If you were only able to watch one film for the rest of your life, what film would you choose and why?

I am going to go with Forrest Gump. I think it is such a beautiful film that has me laughing and crying in the same scene. I adore the story line and think the acting is incredible. It has some really important lessons of love, life and loss. As Forrest said, ‘life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get’.

Where do you write the majority of your blog posts?

I’d love to say something cool like in a coffee shop in central London but that would be a massive lie. I do love writing out and about as it gives me some great inspiration and makes me feel like a proper little professional but the majority of the time I write sat at my desk at home whilst cuddling my puppies.

What is your favourite item that you own?

This was a really hard one but I am going to go with my MacBook. I honestly could not be without it. It helps so much when it comes to blogging and keeping in touch with the community and it is where I watch most of my TV (I’m a bit of a Netflix addict). I was torn between this and my phone but the MacBook won because, well… it’s rose gold. 

You are stranded on a desert island, but have your three favourite books with you – what are they?

I have recently got back into reading after my degree so this is such a perfect question! I am going to do with Angels and Demons by Dan Brown because I could read this 1000 times and still find something new in it. I think he is such a fantastic author. Next, I would go for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson for similar reasons. I have only recently read this book but I think it is fantastic – definitely in my top 3. Finally, I would go for Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling (one had to be Harry Potter, right?). I chose this one because it is one of my favourite books in the series and has one of my favourite chapters ever written in it – The Prince’s Tale.

Fruits or vegetables?

Fruits! I love fruit and vegetables but I have to give this one to fruit. I make a delicious dark cherry and chocolate protein smoothie for my post-workout that I am truly obsessed with. As good as veggies are I just couldn’t say goodbye…

What is the main aim of your blog?

I want to make people smile. 

The main aim for me was to help others through my writing and make them smile. Life can get pretty tough sometimes and I wanted my little corner of the internet to be a place where readers could gain knowledge, make friends and have a breather.

Any goals for the rest of 2018? List them below, and let us help you reach them. 

Yes, yes, yes! 

  1. I want to smash my first ever job! I start next week (eek!)
  2. I would love to hit 5000 blog views and Twitter follows, which may be optimistic but let’s see.
  3. Continue with my mental and physical health journey and see out 2018 the happiest yet.
  4. Book a holiday for next summer with my savings from my job.
  5. Maybe earn a little bit of money from my blog.

Watch this space guys! 

My 11 Questions:

  1. Who is your biggest inspiration in the blogging world?
  2. When you’re feeling down what is one thing that is guaranteed to make you smile?
  3. Summer or Winter? Why?
  4. What are 3 things you have learnt from blogging?
  5. What are your 3 favourite things about yourself?
  6. Are you a dog person or a cat person?
  7. What is your best childhood memory?
  8. If you were hosting a dinner party and could invite 5 people, dead or alive, who would you invite?
  9. And what would you cook for them?
  10. What would your top tip be for practising self love?
  11. What are your goals for the rest of 2018 and how can we help you smash them?

I AM NOMINATING: Charlene, Cara, Vikki, Britt, Lupe, Samantha, Dalindcy, Rachael, Jade, Daniela, Alys

I have chosen then 11 bloggers because I adore their content and have had the pleasure of meeting them either online or in the big wide world and I think they are absolute rays of sunshine. I cannot wait to see the nominee’s responses!

Thank you so much for reading! Until next time. 

Jamie x 

header-1440x480

15 Nutrition Tips For A Healthier Lifestyle.

Eating well is hard. When I first started making changes to my lifestyle my biggest concern was how I was going to find the motivation to drag myself to the gym. Cutting back on food sounded a hell of a lot easier than an hour of Body Pump. Turns out I could not have been more wrong. I fell in love with training and the gym became an important part of my social life, not to mention was improving my mental as well as physical health. Changing my eating habits, however, now that was difficult. Two years and a personal training qualification later, I still struggle with maintaining healthy and consistent eating habits. It is not easy to have a healthy relationship with food when you have spend the large majority of your life in a toxic one. I have, however, picked up some top tips that I thought I would share with you guys to help you lead a healthier (and happier) lifestyle. 

Nutritious AND delicious.

1. Meal Prep 

All those enviable Instagram accounts might have got the right idea. Meal prep may seem like a pain in the arse, but if you can get the motivation to do it, it is great for controlling what you’re eating and even saving money! It can’t just be me than goes to their kitchen only to realise all you have in is a tin of beans and that family size bag of pasta you bought weeks ago. Not exactly appealing (or very nutritious), which results in me either eating our or whipping together something that can only be compared to my school canteen dinners if you got there too late for the meal of the day. It might seem tough at the time but meal prepping is likely to save you both time and calories in the long run.

2. Always Have a Bottle of Water

Sounds simple enough, right? Having a bottle of water on you is going to make sure you stay hydrated as well as preventing mistaking thirst for hunger or grabbing a sugary drink whilst you’re out. Get yourself a pretty water bottle and it’s good for the environment as well – everyone is a winner.

3. Don’t Skip Breakfast 

I know I probably sound like your mother right now but hey, they are always right! Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day and what you consume in the morning plays a part in dictated what (and even how much) you then eat for the rest of the day. Make sure you are getting a decent breakfast that includes some sort of protein source to set yourself up for a good food day.

Looking for some breakfast inspiration? Check out some recipes here.

4. It’s not about Eating Less, it’s about Eating Better 

A common misconception a lot of people have is that if they want to lose weight they have to eat less food. I am pleased to be the one to inform you that this is not the case (I know, you can thank me later!). The truth is, if you cut down what you’re eating to the extreme a lot of diets expect, your body is likely to be forced into starvation mode. This means you’re going to be storing fat rather than losing it. Most of us aren’t eating too much but we are just eating the wrong things!

5. Eat your Protein 

Protein is super important and not only if you’re hitting the gym and looking at gaining muscle. We all need protein, no matter what are goals are and without it we are likely to be left feeling hungry and unsatisfied.

If you’re a vegan there are still plenty of foods you can be eating to ensure you’re getting enough protein. Check out some recommendations here.

6. Don’t ‘Diet’ 

As previously mentioned, a lot of ‘diets’ recommend lowering your calorie intake to the extreme that it is no longer healthy. ‘Dieting’ can also lead to a unhealthy mentality surrounding food. As you will know if you have followed this blog for a while, I used to be a serial dieter. I think I have probably tried every fad diet on the planet and nothing worked for me in the long term. You do not need to ‘diet’ to lose weight and lead a healthy and happier lifestyle.

7. Fat is your Friend

Fat has got a bit of a bad reputation but it is really important! I usually suggest fat making up between 20-30% of your daily calorie intake depending on your goals. Of course there are ‘good’ fats and ‘bad’ fats (we have all seen that avocado meme) but fat in itself is not a bad thing.

Here are some suggestions for ways to get fat into your diet in a health way.

8. Slow it Down 

I am without a doubt the worst at this. I think I am probably the quickest eater ever to exist in the whole entire world, but it is really not a good thing! You want to ensure you’re giving yourself time to eat and digest your food. Eating slower also gives your body time to recognise when it gets full so it is likely to mean you eat less in the long run.

9. Have an Inclusive Diet 

Eating healthy should not be boring and it should definitely not mean that you are restricted from eating foods you love and make you happy. It can be really easier to get into habits when you are trying to eat well, which can result in you eating the same things every single day. Let’s be honest, it’s a whole lot easier! However, in order to maintain a healthy diet (and your sanity) it is important to be inclusive and diverse with the foods you are eating.

10. Make Gradual Changes 

You have got to be realistic with yourself. If your diet has included a bag of crisps every single day for the last 5 years it would be unrealistic to tell yourself you are never going to have crisps again (starting from Monday, obviously). If you are looking at making changes to your diet, it is important that these changes take place gradually. This way you are a lot more likely to stick to the changes rather than binge eating or reseting your new, healthy lifestyle.

11. Fall in Love with Cooking 

Being stuck in a shared University kitchen does not particularly inspire me to go and whip up some delicious and nutritious meals (if you have ever shared a kitchen with 7 other students, you will know exactly what I am on about). However, when I am in the comfort of my own kitchen at home, I actually love cooking. This means I am more likely to spend time in the kitchen whipping up healthy, balanced meals rather than just chucking something in the microwave. Cooking is not for everyone but I promise you that you can learn to love cooking. Have a google and find some delicious recipes that inspire you to get in the kitchen or make it a social thing – host a dinner party, make it a date and cook with your partner or friends – anything to spice up your time in the kitchen.

12. Police Your Portion Size 

I know I said it is not about eating less but rather eating better and for the most part that is true. However, that does not mean that you can scoff 300g of pasta in one sitting because it’s ‘healthy’ (trust me, I speak from experience). Even seemingly healthy foods are not calorie free! Fruit for example has loads of sugar and so should be limited and don’t even get me started on almond butter. It may be a delicious, healthy snack but don’t let yourself be fooled!

13. Eat More Fibre

Might not exactly sound delicious, but fibre is an really important part of your diet. Most of us are only getting about 18g of fibre a day when it is recommended we get 30g. You can get fibre from loads of different foods – berries, avocado, cereals, potato skins! Let’s not beat about the bush, without enough fibre you’re not going to be pooing, which is no good for anyone.

Struggling to get your fibre in? Click here for some top tips.

14. Get Your Beauty Sleep 

Making sure you’re getting enough sleep sounds like a weird nutrition tip, however, research has shown that there is a link between how well you’re sleeping and what you’re fuelling your body with. One study has found that when those looking at losing weight cut back on sleep for a 14 day period, the amount of fat lost dropped by 55% (even though the number of calories being consumed remained equal!). Now, I am not saying hit snooze on your alarms and miss your morning yoga class oh no! Sadly, it is not that if you sleep you’re going to lose weight but it’s more that if you sleep too little your metabolism is going to suffer causing weight gain.

15. Be Kind to Yourself 

These tips are all well and good but that is not to say they are easy. I would be lying if I told you I stuck to these 15 tips all the time. Sometimes we are going to have days that are not too ‘healthy’ (hell, sometimes you’re going to have some weeks where you’re not going to be posting your meal prep on the gram!). 

Be kind to yourself. These things are difficult and they take practise. The most important thing when it comes to leading a healthier lifestyle is being kind to yourself. Trust me, you’re doing great. 

Jamie x 

‘Trust Your Gut’ | An Interview with Billie Anderson, an #Ostomate…

As you will know if you have me on social media, I was lucky enough to be able to go to the Cosmopolitan Self Made Summit. I had the most incredible day and met some wonderful, inspirational women I know will take the world by absolute storm! Whilst I was there I had the honour of meeting Billie Anderson. Billie’s story inspired me so much and she was kind enough to allow me to share it with you guys. Like most of us I think, I strive to constantly make my body ‘better’, either my bum isn’t big enough or my waist isn’t small enough and do not even get me started on the size of what can only be described as Mount Everest taking over my face! Talking with Billie though I realised maybe I’m a little harsh. Maybe I should start to appreciate what I do have because after all, all of our bodies are incredible… Here is Billie’s story. 

interview

So, I guess the first question a lot of my readers will have is what actually is an Ostomy? 

So I have an ileostomy – it’s my ileum or small intestine that pokes out my stomach into a bag. I no longer have a large intestine!

Why was the surgery necessary? Tell us a little bit about your experience.

I was diagnosed last year with Ulcerative Colitis, one form of inflammatory bowel disease – the other being crohns. Colitis effects your large intestine. Basically ulcers form along the gut lining and this can make it inflamed/bleed. One of my nurses once said my colon looked like it was sunburnt & grazed.

I went through just over a year of intense drug therapy to tackle the colitis. I was on 20+ different pills everyday & was having monthly IV therapy but was still rushing to the loo 20+ times a day. I went from 8st to 5st in days & the side effects of the medication resulted in my hair falling out, joint/muscle pain, insomnia & acne.

Surgery really is the last resort & my colitis was very aggressive. I was just passing pure blood which meant that I got anaemia. I couldn’t walk more than 5 feet.I think around 2 in 10 people with colitis have to undergo surgery so mine is a pretty serious case

But essentially colitis sapped everything good from my life! I couldn’t leave my flat without crippling anxiety about having ‘accidents’ in public spaces. I lived off bagels & chocolate buttons for 6 months because everything I ate was painful! The medication ruined everything I loved about myself – my hair and skin – and I lost so much weight that I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror without crying.

What was the surgery like? 

The surgery was tough. I was in hospital for 12 days – I had all sorts of tests & meds thrown at me pre-op to make sure it was the right thing. I could’ve saved them some time – I was always going to be leaving colon-less. I was so unwell that surgery was going to save my life, not take it away.

How has the surgery impacted your life?

Having my colon removed was the best thing I ever did. I needed to try all the medication, go through all that pain & hit rock bottom, so that I knew it was the right thing. I mean it’s not easy deciding to shit out of your stomach into a bag for the rest of your life at 21 but its impacted everything! Firstly I’ve been able to do more 3 months post-op than 2 years of colitis. It has given me the chance to do something positive with my life – to try & help other people like me. I’ve found the most inclusive & strong community since getting my ostomy. So it’s been a huge positive.

Soon I’ll be medication free, I’ve put all the weight back on and I am actually healthy again!! It may have taken a while to get used to but I can eat pizza & drink wine for the first time in 2 years & that’s more than enough to be thankful for! Mostly I am grateful for life (sounds so cliche) but it really makes you see how health is a luxury you don’t realised you have have until you don’t have it anymore. I’m lucky to be alive (my colon almost perforated). So it’s made me thankful & grateful for what I have – my family, friends etc

So you’ve started a blog about your experience (which is fab by the way!!). What made you start the blog? What’s the aim?

So the blog ‘Trust your Gut’ (I see the irony in this now I don’t have one) started as a way of connecting people with IBD and now has moved into showing people who have to go through surgery or something similar, that it isn’t a death sentence. When I first heard about the surgery I was so against it but in hindsight, even though it’s scary, it’s such a good thing! So the blog is about showing the life you can have when your insides are on the outside!

When I met you I was super inspired by your positive outlook. I wonder what you’ve taken away and learnt from this experience?

I’ve certainly changed how I look after my body – I realise that the ‘ideal body’ for me is right in front of me. I used to obsess over the gym – having a rounder bum, toned legs etc etc. But being unhealthy for a long time and now being well again, makes me see that I am happy with my body for the first time ever! It might not be conventional and I certainly doubt people aspire to look like me but I love my bagged bod!

If you were talking to someone who was going through surgery, what would you want them to know?

I talk to a lot of people who are about the undergo surgery and my first advice is always to highlight that it isn’t the end of your life! Surgery is tough (it doesn’t get licked on by kittens) but surgery pain will end… the colitis was never ending agony.

And also to give yourself time – it’s the best healer for the mind & the body.

Another is talk to people – I spoke to so many people pre-op who had gone through it before me & that took the fear out of it.

interview 2

Inspiring, right? I want to say a huge thank you to Billie for sharing her story with my then and allowing me to share it with you all now. Her strength, courage and positive outlook is incredible and it really made me appreciate the body that I have got. If you want to read more about Billie’s journey you can check out her blog here. It truly is fantastic and I would highly recommend giving it a read. You can also find her on Instagram and share her incredible journey with her. 

Jamie x 

cropped-jamie-lee1.png

Why You Should Be Doing Yoga…

As you will know if you follow me on Instagram, I have been experimenting with yoga. I will be totally honest with you, I am really rubbish at yoga. It takes a mix of both physical and mental strength, resilience and the ability to not laugh when you fall over trying to cock your leg in the air. These are skills that I am unfortunately lacking in… Despite this, yoga has loads of benefits and so I’m going to try and stick with it. I thought I would share with you guys some of the reasons why you should be doing yoga. 

The History 

Eurgh, history, how boring.

Trust me guys. I get you. But your girl has got to at least pretend she is doing something productive for her degree. Also, the history of yoga is really important to know as it is an integral part of the practise. In all of my classes, we have given thanks to its history and its development into what it is today, whilst maintaining the principles that existed way back when…

Developed in India, yoga is a spiritual practice that has been evolving for the last 5,000 years, so don’t feel bad if you don’t pick it up in the first session. The original people who practised yoga were called yogis (cute, right!) and started in reaction to India’s ancient Vedic religion, which emphasised rituals. See, this was not quite enough for the yogis and so they developed yoga as a way to gain direct spiritual experience with the divine consciousness individually rather than symbolic ritual. Hence the fact yoga means “union” in Sanskrit, the classical language of India.
So, what are the benefits?
Now you have had a quick history lesson, what are the actual benefits of taking up yoga. In a weight lifting world, yoga kind of gets mugged off a bit, sitting below even cardio on the ‘ways to get a bubble but’ list. However, fitness is not all about getting a big booty. I know, shocking really. It is about mental, physical and spiritual well being and, with yoga, you get all three. For all you folks scared to leave the weights room at the risk of wasting a session, or people training for a marathon who dare not dedicate time to anything other than the treadmill, have a think about yoga. Yoga is a highly restorative activity that helps to better align the body, which can help with a huge variety of different sports. Being renowned for it flexibility benefits, yoga is a great way to prevent any shortening of the muscles that can come with repetitive training such as running. Although not typically associated with strength, maintaining a decent level of muscular flexibility is super important and overly tight muscles can become weak because they have an inability to fully contract and relax. Yoga, therefore, can help with both endurance and resistance training and help prevent any risk of injury. Yoga is also great for strengthening and mobilising the core, improving posture and preventing unwanted compensatory movements – positives when it comes to pretty much any sport.
Beyond being good at keeping you nice and supple, yoga actually does help to keep you fit and maintaining a healthy weight. It might not exactly be a HIIT session, but yoga does use up energy and so it does burn calories so is a great form of exercise for older individuals or people just wanting to get a little more active without signing up for the next Tough Mudder. The benefits don’t end with the gym either. Yoga has been proven to help reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines in sufferers. Research has also shown that yoga can help with insomnia, due to the relaxation benefits of the practise.
Beyond the physical benefits, yoga is also great for mental and spiritual wellbeing. As someone who has tried yoga quite a few times, I have to say that I haven’t quite got to the stage of enlightenment just yet but I certainly do feel accomplished when I master a new position. These benefits do take time but, according to science (and all the lovely people at my Ashtanga yoga class) are very real and worth sticking it out for. You might remember a few weeks ago I wrote about lifting and your libido. Well, turns out there is a link between your sex drive and yoga as well, with yoga actually increasing your sexual satisfaction. Apparently, sexual performance is enhanced in both men and women when they practise yoga, so sign you are your partner up for a class before your next Netflix and Chill session. This could also be helped along by the fact that yoga can help to increase self confidence (something I have definitely experienced!) and boost your mood.  By encouraging relaxation, yoga can help to lower the levels of the stress hormones, which has also been linked with helping sufferers of anxiety. Related benefits  to the lowering of cortisol include lowering blood pressure and heart rate, improving digestion and boosting the immune system – so grab yourself a mat and get started!
I started yoga because I was intrigued, I got a yoga mat for Christmas and I was procrastinating. I don’t love it yet. I don’t even always like it. But it offers me a way to get to know my body in a different way to any other exercise I do. It allows me to take time to push out of my comfort zone and exercise not for social media or for huge weight loss, but just for me and my body. Namaste to that. 
Jamie x 
cropped-jamie-lee1.png
Sources: 
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/reasons-to-do-yoga_us_576802c3e4b0fbbc8beaf4621.https://wanderlust.com/journal/21-reasons-yoga/http://www.yogasite.com/why.htm