Stretch to Feel Good-My Super Fast, Super Easy 5 Minute Routine
Some odd things started happening to my body when I hit about 40. I had an eerie warning from an older friend when I was about 35 who told me his body hit a wall at 40. I shrugged it off… I felt eternally young. Then I hit 40 and I realized what he meant! My body got a bit more aches and pains. Digestion slowed down. Metabolism REALLY slowed down. Sheez… “what happened?” I thought! Now I don’t want to put a negative idea out there for anyone that has not experienced such things, but I did find one really important way to stave off the way my body felt in the mornings and through the day. STRETCHING.
ITS OK TO KEEP IT SIMPLE
I have a cool sister that is a yoga instructor. She is very limber, and can do all sorts of exotic yoga poses and such. I am envious. I have never been very good at such things. After trying to do fancy yoga, I gave up and just learned some basic stretches. Now this isn’t to knock yoga, because I am a big fan of it. And I support those that master it, or even get reasonably good at it. In fact I incorporate some of the simpler yoga stretches into my routine. But for me I find that just doing some simple stretches is perfect. I simply get up and part of my morning ritual is to spend about 5 minutes doing some slow deep good stretches. I do about 5 leg stretch poses. Then I do a couple for my shoulders and arms. Then I stretch my neck and back. I top it off by doing a few poses that I learned from a special back therapy treatment that really helps my spine. I do this morning and night… and it makes all the difference. No, I don’t feel 25 per se, but I do feel tons better!
THE MORNING STRETCH… THE WHOLE DAY FEELS BETTER!
So if you don’t stretch, I challenge you to start doing a few basic stretches each morning. Just start doing a few at first. And see if your WHOLE DAY doesn’t feel amazingly better! Observe your body… where does it feel tight? Really feel it. Are there areas that feel off center? Painful? Stressed? Once you identify those areas, do stretches to pull and lengthen those muscles. It’s rather fun! I’ve invented many stretches on my own just by thinking about it. Through the years I just keep adding stretches from books, yoga classes, stretching videos and friends. Mine are easy ones. Some keys for me are to stretch slow, relax INTO the stretch until if feels GOOD. Don’t overdo it till you hurt. It should FEEL GOOD not painful. Try not to bounce but REST into the stretch and breathe and make it into a sort of enjoyable meditation.
MY STRETCHING PRINTOUT
I am providing a simple sheet (see link below) I drew up years ago showing some of my stretches.
Yoga Stretches Printout
I have since modified this quite a bit and have added several new ones. However, this might be a fun sheet for you to look at and start with if you don’t have any experience in stretching. I am also interested if you have stretches that work for you… or stories or ideas on this topic. We would love to hear them!