About

Why I Teach Yoga

The short of it-
  • I enjoyed unhealthy habits that eventually caught up to me.

  • Experienced a few surgeries and couple hospital stays.

  • Changed some of my ways and became a runner.

  • I ran a marathon.  Tried to keep running but injuries prevented it.

  • Went to physical therapy, had a massage, and ended up in a yoga class.

  • I loved how yoga made me feel and I wanted to share that with as many people as I could so I joined a 9 month, 230 hour yoga study program and received my certification in August 2019.

Yoga Certification-

  • 230 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Certificate

  • RYS 200 Yoga Alliance Registered Yoga School

  • Yoga Alliance Registered and Certified

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Family and Interests

Family-
  • Daughter, Wife, and Mother

  • Married in 2002.

  • Mom to Dillon, Selena, and the four legged Yellow Lab mix, Freddy.

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Interests-

  • Enjoying the outdoors with hiking, camping, paddle boarding, rollerblading, running, walking, gardening, golfing and yoga.

  • Jigsaw puzzles and salt water fish.

  • Movies, shows and board games.

  • Spending time laughing with family and friends.

  • Writing, reading and listening to music.

  • Being creative as much as I can and whenever I can find myself inverted I'm interested!

 

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The long version-

For me the only reasons to quit smoking were money or health issues. I didn't have any health issues and if you know anyone that smokes, there is always money for cigarettes, who needs to eat anyway? Then it happened…

After 29 years the health issues began, the first one was neck pain which had bothered me for a couple years. I had cortisone shots for the pain because they said that if they did surgery I would need another one 10 years after that would permanently cease all mobility in my neck and I was only 38. Then I got my annual cold, which in my case always turned into bronchitis. I was 39 and hospitalized with pneumonia for 5 days. After I was better I continued to have breathing issues. I went in for several more tests and they finally discovered I had the beginning stages of COPD. I knew I needed to make a change, so I started the process of cutting down on my smoking habit. 

Eventually the shots in my neck stopped working, so I made an appointment with the neck surgeon’s assistant on a Monday. She ran a few strength tests and discovered I was losing strength in my right arm. Apparently when this happens it doesn’t come back. She immediately fetched the surgeon and he said, “We’ll do surgery on Wednesday.” I was able to push him out a day to give my employer a little more notice. My surgeon said I should quit smoking in order to fuse on my own, so I did. I now have the super power of setting off metal detectors and I’m fused from C3 to C7. After a couple days in the hospital I returned home with the strict order to get up and walk every 30 minutes.  My mom had recently given us her treadmill so I walked and walked and walked and walked some more. Soon I was up to walking 10 miles a day.  My sister-in-law invited me to walk our local half marathon, The Eau Claire Marathon. I didn’t even know what a 5k, half marathon, or any of that was. She told me I would be walking 13.1 miles, which was close to what I was doing everyday. I just needed the approval of my surgeon. He said, “Sure, I think that would be ok if you walked a mile and ran a mile.” I laughed – I was a professional smoker, I couldn’t run. I told my sister-in-law I could join her but I was too late and she already had a replacement. I was bummed out, but my husband encouraged me to do it alone. He said that if I wanted to do it I didn’t need a partner. So, I signed up last minute and started walking my country neighborhood ensuring I could make it the whole way. My fear was not finishing. 

Race day came and I found my place to start. There were signs with posted times to help runners know how long it would take to finish. I had no idea! Though I intended on walking, I was shoulder to shoulder with running people, I figured I must have started in the wrong spot, so I ran too. I continued to run, and everywhere I looked there were people cheering, taking pictures, music playing, and holding encouraging signs, bells ringing, horns honking, and people clapping. I felt like a star, so I kept running. Pretty soon I saw a marker that said, “6 miles” and I was shocked, amazed, and felt even more like a star- I hadn’t stopped to walk once. I finished that race, my first race, my first half marathon in two hours and 15 minutes. That was May 2016. 

Don’t get me wrong I’ve always been active, but NOT a runner. Running and smoking never mixed but walking, hiking, volleyball, rollerblading, cartwheels, and water-sports were acceptable smoking activities. I continued with my new running addiction but nothing compared to that first half at the Eau Claire Marathon. I had to get back there so I continued training, setting my eyes on a marathon for the one year anniversary of my running journey. I trained six days a week and weight trained 3 days a week, only missing a couple days in 11 months for an illness. Setting and achieving goals has always been a rewarding process for me, so I tracked my progress on a poster, a calendar, a notebook, Strava, and on Instagram. I made it to the starting line, the most challenging part of running a marathon is making it through training without injury and showing up to that starting line. I ran the race finishing all 26.2 miles about a half hour slower than I’d hoped but still ran the entire thing with a smile on my face, that’s not a joke, in four hours and 25 minutes. 

What’s next? Obviously there is a resting period for your body after running a marathon but then what? I continued running a few 5K's, 10K’s, a couple half marathons but wondered how far I can go… maybe an ultra, that’s it- I’m going to train for a 50 mile race on my 50th birthday. I told my husband and not much later is when my body started rejecting my runs, even a few miles my hips, my knees, ankles, calves… I was falling apart all the sudden. I had a sports massage, physical therapy, and still continued to be in a lot of pain. I thought maybe yoga? So, I set out to find a place to try out. My strength trainer suggested the best place in town. I walked in and bought a membership. They thought I’d try it first but I wasn’t about to pay full price for one session so I was all in for at least a month. Plus, can you really tell after one time? I knew I had to give it time to see if it made a difference..

Those first yoga classes were challenging, yet rewarding. There were times I drove home smiling the whole way, even though during class I wondered what in the world they meant by, “resetting your breath in down dog” like it was a resting position. First of all, I had to look around to see what down dog was and secondly, there was no resting about it. I continued 3-6 classes a week, trying a variety and enjoying every aspect. There was something happening, not only to my physical body, but more importantly to my outlook on life. I suppose it’s hard to explain, and saying I found more gratitude or loved more sounds simple. It was simple, but not in the way if I just read you a quote right now…  “May you live all the days of your life.” – Jonathan Swift. It sounds simple enough to just do that, but is it? That’s what started happening to me the more I came to my mat. The simple advice, statements, truths, suggestions, quotes started to happen in real life. I’ve read so many inspirations, quotes, self improvement, DIY, make me a happier person literature, but I found that something more happened when I came to my yoga mat.  Maybe it was the connection between my body and my breath, maybe it was how I cleared my mind, or maybe it was being more present.  Whatever it was I wanted more!

My place of practice, The Yoga Room, offered a Yoga Study program.  About a year and a half after walking in that door I started my nine month, 230 Hour Yoga Teacher Training, and was certified in August 2019. I quickly learned that learning never ends, it is a practice that grows and grows. I continue to educate myself with books, online opportunities, podcasts, in person workshops, and my personal practice.

Yoga has been a blessing in my life and it is my passion to share that with others. We are told when we do good for other people it brings us the most joy and that is the only way I can explain why teaching brings me so much happiness. 

And that is why I teach yoga.