Wanda Conte : RYT 200

I didn’t find yoga…it found me….infused my spirit…sparked an amazing journey in my life!

Yoga was something I admired from a distance but never thought I would ever enjoy. You see, athletic or physically gifted are not typically words used to describe me. Previous attempts to increase physical activity in support of healthier life choices were eventually abandoned as they were not realistically sustainable. Gym sessions were not motivating and usually left me feeling empty and emotionally depleted as chubby childhood memories filled with negative messaging of shortcomings and imperfections haunted my psyche. Always being told what you “can’t” do because you’re too heavy has a way of defeating a person, dampening the spirit and crushing the very essence at the center of being. Thoughts and feelings of this nature can be difficult to remove as they have a way of hanging around even after losing approximately 80 lbs. But yoga changed that for me and helped me find ways to reprogram decades of negative thinking on what I “couldn’t” do! Physically, mentally and emotionally!

As if by design but seeming so innocent, yoga found me one day while walking through town. My awesome curiosity drew me to this very nice yoga studio where I took my first yoga class. It was an all levels class so I thought I’d give it a try. Ha! As the class began I thought I had lost my mind! Remember me, the not-so-physically gifted person…here I was trying to keep from tipping over or collapsing during the first downward facing dog of the class! But somewhere during the class my perspective shifted. I realized the instructor was sharing kind and wise words and the room was filled with good vibes and the most infectious energy. I had to persevere and continue. And before I realized how long I had been in the studio the class was coming to an end. As I laid on my mat in the final resting pose it dawned on me I managed to make it through the entire class…although I will admit, I made more than a few child pose visits to the mat that day! And I actually felt good. Inside and out. But the most beautiful part of my experience happened once I got home. I continued feeling the infectious energy and aura from class. It was still present, true and authentic. That had never happened during any other type of physical activity. Never before!

Almost two years later I recognized a desire for more yogic knowledge. As a education advocate, yoga academics appeals to me. I yearned for a deeper understanding and appreciation of ancient texts and words of wisdom sparsely revealed during various asanas so I completed yoga teacher training. Now I enjoy teaching, learning, sharing and experiencing yoga whenever, wherever with whomever!