This surgery journey has been no walk in the park–literally or figuratively. (But I can walk around the block now!) Rather, it’s been an enlightened stroll with baby steps.
Before the surgery, once I had a proper diagnosis of my fibroid, I scaled back my exercise routine. I did this because I found I didn’t have the same energy as I used to, plus I just felt like it needed something gentler. Instead of circuit/interval training and cardio being my main plan, I did less of it and added yoga. I felt if I was too tired to go to the gym, I could at least do 30 minutes of yoga at home. Plus, I just felt this pull to yoga, although I wasn’t entirely sure why.
It ended up helping me more than I thought. I needed it mentally, as it turns out, because I was a ball of emotions from stressing about my upcoming operation. Several times I had to sit on my mat and just cry out whatever I was feeling, be it happy, sad, or scared tears. Yoga has always had a way of reinforcing my mind-body connection more and I love that.
Yoga also helped relieve the pressure in my abdomen from the fibroid. It wasn’t a cure—that hefty chunk would still remind me later of its presence–but it helped in the moment. I always seek natural treatments before medicine, so to have a little bit of relief in my belly was bliss. When I did the poses below, I felt lighter and freer.
One of the wonderful aspects of yoga is that it can be modified to meet you where ever your body is. I strongly recommend looking up the modifications for a pose if you find it is too hard to complete. You should never feel like you’re overexerting yourself to the point of pain with yoga. It’s about accepting where you are with the pose, which really is a great exercise for life in general.
(Enter personal disclaimer: I am not a certified yoga instructor, just someone who’s enjoyed yoga off and on for many years. You may wish to consult your doctor before trying these poses.)
My routine would start with sun salutations, followed with standing poses, interspersed with more sun salutations. Some of these poses helped open the hip/pelvis area as well.
The second half was on the floor and a bit easier, focusing more on opening the hips, pelvis, and spine. The floor poses I found very helpful for relieving the pressure, but I’ve included some of my faves in both areas. I firmly believe the standing poses helped me getting back into walking and getting up post-surgery.
(I’ve linked these poses to my fave yoga site, Yoga Journal, which will give you clear instructions and info on how to modify these if necessary).
The standing poses:
The floor poses:
And here are some poses I didn’t do, but in hindsight think these would equally be beneficial:
It’s been just over 4 weeks from my surgery, and I am so missing my little yoga routine. I’ve now been cleared by my doctor for all exercise, but feel the need to gently ease into activity. I will be resuming this again soon but at a lesser pace. My body is gonna love it.