Part of being a yogi is keeping up with a regular practice. I’ve always kinda sucked at this, so I recently updated my routine.
It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and especially now that I don’t have a regular go-to-work-in-the-morning job, it became something I needed to do.
So, for the last month, I have woken up, NOT grabbed for my phone, poured myself a giant glass of water with a slice of lemon, I’ve done a bit of yoga, ranging from 10 minutes to one hour, and I finish the morning routine with five minutes of meditation and a quick journal entry of something I’m grateful for. Little bit cheesy, but it can’t hurt.
I love this new routine. And it has been really easy to adapt to. I’ve felt good about sticking to something, and the ‘not being on the phone’ part, means that the minute I’m awake, I’m up and out of bed, rather than scrolling mindlessly through social media and getting stuck in a Graham Norton YouTube spiral.
Travelling tends to mess with routine.
When I knew I was going on a two-week long trip, I also knew I wanted to keep up my morning ritual. Mostly because I know how easily I can fall into old traps.
For the first few days, I did it! But now, a whole week in, I may have started to fall.
Small hotel rooms, and days packed with kilometres upon kilometres of walking, and seeing and eating, has meant that I’ve slacked off.
But in the truest form of denial, here’s how I’ve been managing the ‘routine.’
Wake up, don’t look at phone:
This is easy. There is literally no time in the morning to scroll mindlessly. If I’ve been on my phone at all, it’s to take photos, and upload them in one foul swoop at the end of a destination. That way, I’m not being distracted daily with lots of notifications (which I do love to get, I mean, they’re travel photos, everyone loves a bit of that!), but my beloved Graham Norton has been placed on hold.
Drink water with lemon:
This I actually have done every day except for the last two mornings when we’ve been staying with family. I bought some lemons at the farmer’s market on our first day and they have seen me through this whole trip. Whilst staying with family though, we’ve been woken with fresh coffee, fruits, breads and conversation. The lemon water won’t mind.
Again, I’ve been pretty good. *Squints eyes and grits teeth.
The length of time I’ve been able to practice has been a lot shorter, but even to move my body for ten minutes feels good. When I travel, I usually like to find a local studio to take a class, but since we’re really all over the place, it’s not happened this trip. Plus, my mama’s come all the way from Australia to travel with me, and I want to spend as much time with her as possible.
The mat has made its way out a few times, and in some cases, it’s been in front of the most beautiful locations. Yoga on the rocks of Hvar island overlooking the Adriatic? Thank you very much!
For those of you who find it a bit tricky to squeeze some mat time in on vacation, here are some tips:
Wake up earlier than you want to, and if you don’t want to, don’t worry about it!
Hallways work a treat as a space. As do beaches, balconies, and whatever amazing locations you visit when you’re away.
Didn’t pack a mat? You can use a towel.
Yoga doesn’t always have to be on the floor. Do some seated yoga while you’re in transit on those trains, planes and automobiles.
Yoga poses for photo-opportunities count.
Bed yoga counts. Always.
Five-minute meditation and gratitude journal:
Maybe I’ve not set aside an exact time to do this, and certainly the journal hasn’t moved from my backpack, but actually, meditation and gratitude has been a part of this trip.
Every time I’ve been at an incredible location, I take some photos, the occasional yoga pose and Alex hating (but graciously being) an Insta-boyfie, and whatever else I need to do… and then I just take it in.
The incredible beauty of mountains, and coast lines, and architecture. The delicious taste of local food and wine. The brilliance of cultures past and present. Take a moment. Take a breath. Meditate on the surroundings and be grateful that you’ve found your way to these astonishing places.
The routine will be there again when I’m home, but while I’m away, it’s less important to feel like a dedicated yogi and more important to just feel.