Top positive review
An Overweight, Self-Conscious, Stressed Out Skeptic, with No Coordination, Tries Yoga
Reviewed in the United States on August 2, 2016
I tried a yoga class several years ago and loathed it entirely. I have severe ADHD and a high stress job and I just could not get my brain to turn off. I found the whole exercise mentally exhausting and I had zero interest in trying again. I'm currently in the middle of a year long weight loss plan to lose 100 pounds [25 pounds down, y'all!] and needed a workout to improve my flexibility and strengthen my core, while being low impact. A friend recommended yoga. I laughed at her and then saw her results and shut my mouth. The added bonus to yoga was that it was supposed to help with my stress level - which my friends all agreed was a bit too high - and, although my last experience was not pleasant, I begrudgingly agreed to try it again. I had no interest in participating in a class again and looking like an uncoordinated spastic pigeon in front of other people, so I thought it would be best to find a DVD so I could do all the funny positions in the privacy of my own living room. [Happy baby pose... really?!?! The only person who needs to see me like that is my gynecologist.] I read dozens of reviews and found that the reviews for Jessica Smith were very much what I was looking for - calming voice, nice music, no chanting, attainable poses, etc. I bought this DVD and an accompanying Jessica DVD that was more advanced [I'm an overachiever, what can I say?]
It took me several days to work up the courage to even try my first workout [Did I mention I REALLY hated it last time?]. I started with the relaxation option on the Beginners and Beyond DVD. It started off fairly easy and advanced as the DVD went along. I felt a little stupid with my booty in the air and my shoulders twisted on the mat but I felt it working and so I pushed through. I survived with no bodily injuries and felt incredible afterwards. I was so relaxed by the end I couldn't believe thirty minutes had really passed. The stretches were difficult to start [I'm not the tiniest person in the world and my muscles have never stretched that way] but she found a way to add modifications that I found very helpful and possible. The next day I was sore but in a very good way. I could tell I had used muscles I don't usually utilize.
Speaking of the next day, I had an emergency at work - think community-wide PR nightmare. It was one of the most stressful days EVER. Previously I would turn to chocolate and eat my feelings but all day I found myself thinking about getting home to do yoga. "WHAT?!?!" my brain could not comprehend such nonsense. I even commented to a friend how bizarre it was that after one day it was all I could think about. So, I went home and did it again. During my second attempt I was able to see improvement in my stretches and felt myself gaining better balance and body awareness. I felt all kinds of gooey inside when I finished. I literally sat in the floor for ten minutes and couldn't believe how much better I felt after just two sessions. Then I went to bed and absolutely melted into my pillows. I slept better than I have in months. This all may sound like an exaggeration but it's absolutely true.
I'm hooked. I think I officially have to call myself a yogi now. I cannot wait to go home and do my yoga again tonight! [Life goal: do a handstand! I totally think I'll eventually get there if I keep going!]
I will absolutely continue using Jessica Smith's products and recommend them to anyone who is starting out and feels a little bit too chunky or uncoordinated for yoga. You're not! I promise! So what if your fat rolls keep you from reaching your toes! Mine do, but the whole point is reaching for those toes in the first place! In fact, I have a feeling these DVDs will never become "too easy" as there is always room for improvements and harder modifications - no matter how thin and coordinated you become!