About you :
My name is Cristina and I am originally from Quito-Ecuador in South America but moved to the US back in 2001. I currently live in Miami, FL and I absolutely love it. I spend most of my free time doing yoga, acro yoga, handstands and playing around with my friends. I also have a full time job and I am a mother to a beautiful 11 year old boy, so my life is pretty busy most of the time.
How did you get introduced to yoga ?
I first got introduced to yoga 6 years ago while going through a break up that left me in really bad shape. Yoga is what saved me from the depression I was going through and after taking my first yoga class I never looked back. Getting started in yoga was not easy, I was not an athletic person at all, I was skinny, but out of shape.
Doing pushups hurt my wrists, I was weak overall, however, watching my body get stronger after each day I got to practice was amazing. As beginners we are always worried about what other people in the class are going to say or think if they see us not being able to do anything, however, once you realize that no one is there to judge, you learn to stop judging yourself.
When did yoga get “serious” ?
I wouldn't consider my practice an obsession. I identify my practice as my true passion and as a result I would say my practice got serious when I realized that I could not only help myself but also help others that might be going through similar situations.
Can you share your biggest challenges? :
Some of the biggest challenges I've found with my yoga practice have been trying to get my family to understand why I love what I do so much. My family is very square minded and they believe in a structure to happiness that consists on studying hard, working hard for someone else, and just the standard beliefs that our society has us thinking.
How do you handle pressure ?
My practice is not based on pressure, but the pressure I sometimes put on myself. I love practicing and when I do get to share this with others, it is an absolute honor. I believe that if you do things with the right intentions, you will never have to worry about pressure.
Can you share your thoughts on self consciousness ?
The one thing you always have to believe is in yourself. If you are confident, you have it all. It takes time to break through the monkey mind and that negative chatter that sometimes we find ourselves talking, however, as long as you become aware of this, you will be ok.
What was your most embarrassing moment (in regards to yoga of course ;)
I don't believe I've had an embarrassing moment, but I guess there was one time when I was learning forearm stand and during class I fell and hit the mirror and spilled my water and made a bunch of noise. After this incident, I learned that there was nothing really to be embarrassed of. A real yogi is not that one that doesn't fall, is one that gets up after we fall and tries again.
How did your passion influence your life in other ways ?
My yoga practice has influenced my entire life. It changed everything in a very positive way and when I look back at the person I was before and compare it to the person I am now, I can clearly see that I am stronger, healthier and happier.
What does your daily routine look like?
A day of training for me is waking up for Sunrise yoga, eating a healthy breakfast, doing a couple of circuits at the barz/park/house, eating a snack, taking a nap, eating lunch, beach training again with stretching, handstands, acro, legs, arms and abs. My days usually start at 6-7 am and end at 9-10 pm.
And what about your flexibility training? Where does that fit in?
To train flexibility, the best thing is stretching. Stretching in the morning and stretching at night, stretching everyday.
What keeps you motivated?
I stay motivated by my own self practice and also by surrounding myself with like minded people that inspire me into being a better version of myself.
What are your future plans/goals/dreams?
I don't worry much about the future, I would love to own a yoga studio one day and teach as many other people as I can. Help them find that light within them that sometimes gets dimmed by life situations.
Any tips for passionate yogis starting out?
Start somewhere, we all did it. Don't be shy or scared to try new things, give yoga a chance. Learn to embrace the process. Appreciate your journey and those that cross your path. Stay focused and most importantly find what makes you happy and do a lot of it.
Anything you’d like to share?
Follow me on IG @highonyoga! Website coming soon.