A Thirty Day Yoga Challenge With The iHeart App
The first month of 2017 is wrapping up and so many of us are still hanging on to those New Year’s resolutions. Some, like myself, enjoy thirty-day challenges to dive head first into new habits, which is no surprise as it typically takes three weeks, or 21 days, for a routine to become a habit. In December, I discovered the iHeart pulse sensor that measured my internal age based on the stiffness of my core and spine. Through the use of their application, I was able to identify my aortic pulse wave velocity - or, how quickly my heart beat travels down the aorta. If you've been following along, you know that I was quite shocked to find my internal age at a whopping 37 years old! With that information, I knew I needed to make a change so I set out on a thirty-day challenge to lower my internal age.
The iHeart measures spine and core flexibility, so seeing that my internal age was much higher than my actual age (37 vs. 24) I knew the first place to start on my thirty-day challenge - the back. When I first began practicing yoga, I steered clear from twists like they were the plague. Interestingly enough, a common phrase at my yoga studio is: “If you don’t like it or it makes you feel uncomfortable, you should do it.”
Ah, it clicked. I didn’t like twists because they made me feel uncomfortable. I lacked the mobility to feel comfortable within these postures so, of course, I sat down and got to twistin’ first integrating a gentle yin-style practice.
Yin is a gentle, yet challenging yoga practice that allows you to drop into your own body, listen and be present with anything and everything that comes up in the body. It is a seated practice within which poses are held for 3-5 minutes in order to bring mobility to the joints and ligaments.
After one hour of practicing postures such as sphinx, supine twist, and camel, I was ready for my iHeart evaluation. As if I had read the answers before the test, I was happy to see that my age had lowered by one year. Fast forward one month and 15 hours of yin (I spent 30 minutes every day) and I am excited to say that I’ve lowered my internal age to 21!
If you’re wondering, yes, I totally feel* like Benjamin Button.
Adapting My Practice
My practice has shifted greatly since the entrance of iHeart and will continue to shape to what the finger pulse sensor paired with my body’s sensations tell me. It’s a constant shift in what I feel in my body, whether that be tightness or open mobility, and I know this is a lifelong journey we all have to take. I feel gratitude for the iHeart, as it has helped to point me in the right direction and ask my body questions I never knew to ask.
Working with iHeart has been more than a quest to lower my internal age. With the knowledge provided by the app, I’ve become more conscious of the inner workings of my body. When I practice yoga, I listen to every inch of my body - what feels tight, what is more open, where I am able to find mobility. It has forced me to go outside of “going through the motions” and adapt my practice to my lifestyle. While I can say I am thrilled to have lowered my internal age at the end of this challenge, I am more proud that I now have a tool that has made me more conscious and intimate with my body.
With this incredible tool to help me along the way, I feel confident that I am not only treating my body right but extending my lifespan. To order yours, visit their website at www.goiheart.com.
This post is sponsored by iHeart Personal Health Tracking Device.