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Fitspirations Bubbles Paraiso And Alyssa Valdez Share How Yoga Changed Their Lives

They both urge everyone to try it at least once!

Ever since the quarantine began, we've all had the chance to explore working out at home, with our loved ones, or even alone. With the wide variety of online workouts we can do these days, there's really no excuse not to break a sweat even while we're staying home to stay safe. Just recently, to further celebrate International Yoga Day, Nike Yoga held a virtual yoga class with two fitspirations, two amazing ladies who embody what it is to be fit and what it's really like to love themselves dearly.


We caught up with volleyball phenom Alyssa Valdez, as well as yogi, triathlete, and Beyond Yoga Serendra Managing Partner Bubbles Paraiso to share what it is about yoga that changed their lives for the good, and asked them why they urge everyone to try it at least once as well. Read on to learn more!


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Alyssa Valdez
Alyssa Valdez | @alyssa_valdez2


ALYSSA VALDEZ

Metro.Style: When and how did you get into yoga?

Alyssa Valdez: Yoga was actually part of our training way back in 2019 but during the ECQ, we were reintroduced to yoga to reduce stress, anxiety and depression. As a team, we do it once a week but I do it at least three times a week.


MS: Why do you do it? How does it help you physically, mentally, and emotionally?

AV: Honestly, at first, yoga was intimidating for me but after a few sessions, I started to like it because it keeps me calm. It was also my alternative to pure meditation. As an athlete, I see a lot of improvement physically by doing yoga. As a matter of fact before, I used to say “no” whenever someone would ask me to do push-ups due to a shoulder pain. However eventually, I was able to do it gradually with the help of yoga. As I progress, yoga has been helping me to be mentally tough as well. Whenever I see myself struggling with a certain yoga position, it saddens me. Despite this though, yoga still teaches me to accept myself and turn my weaknesses into strengths.  


MS: What sets yoga apart from other forms of exercise?

AV: I like yoga as an exercise because it integrates my body, mind and spirit. It helps me see myself as a whole. 



MS: To the people who find it hard to keep up a yoga routine, what do you advice?

AV: Give yourself a chance to try it. Once you start trying it, it eventually becomes a habit. So, keep on trying and I’m certain that you’ll get there!   


MS: In embarking on a yoga journey, what are the three most important things to keep in mind?

AV: Yoga is for everybody. Explore—find the classes and styles that you will resonate with. Celebrate even the smallest achievements!


MS: In a time where things have been unpredictable and distant, any tips for staying healthy and connected?

AV: Surround yourself with loved ones, create a to-do list, exercise and meditate, keep a journal!


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Bubbles Paraiso
Bubbles Paraiso | @bubblesparaiso


BUBBLES PARAISO

MS: When and how did you get into yoga?

Bubbles Paraiso: I first started practicing yoga in 2009 but I only went sporadically. My practice really began in 2013 after getting into a car crash. I figured it might help me heal from my physical injuries and it did. My practice deepened in 2015 when it was yoga that I turned to while trying to heal from a heartbreak.  


MS: Why do you do it? How does it help you physically, mentally, and emotionally?

BP: Yoga keeps me grounded. yoga is beyond the poses or the inversions. It is beyond the mat and the asanas. Yoga, the physical practice and the philosophies are what keeps me from getting anxiety, or even depression. The way that the breath and body connects and brings my mind into a state of clarity—it has helped me become a better person in more ways than one. The process of being on the mat and carrying it outside of—there is magic in the practice. I wouldn’t be the resilient, compassionate human being that I am now if it wasn’t for the teachings of the yoga practice.


MS: What sets yoga apart from other forms of exercise? Do you recommend everyone to give yoga a try?  

BP: Yoga is not really a work out. It’s a work IN. It is a practice where you connect the mind, body and spirit. It’s not really about touching your toes—it is beyond that. There are no words to even describe the magic that happens when you practice—you've got to experience it yourself. I think everyone in the world needs to practice yoga. It’s for every body. You don’t have to have a certain body type or skill set to practice yoga. You don’t need to be flexible or strong. Yoga will take you there. All you need is to show up on your mat.



MS: To the people who find it hard to keep up a yoga routine, what do you advice?

BP: Just show up. Whatever time of day, wherever you are. If you can’t commit to an hour, then just do the bare minimum. 10 mins. Pranayama breathing is yoga. Just a few sun salutations is yoga. Meditation is yoga. Yoga does not mean one hour of practice doing different poses. There are a lot of things you can do that are considered as yoga. You don’t have to commit to do it every day. Start with once a week. Let the practice grow on you. It’s going to be up to you to want to keep on doing it regularly. There is no magic word as to how to motivate someone who "doesn’t have time" for yoga because honestly, how bad do you want it? We always find time to do the things we want to do. Stop your excuses and JUST DO IT.  


MS: In embarking on a yoga journey, what are the three most important things to keep in mind?

BP: Breathe, be kind to yourself and don’t force your body to do poses that it’s not ready to do yet. Trust the process.  


MS: In a time where things have been unpredictable and distant, any tips for staying healthy and connected? 

BP: Just breathe. Connect with your friends, connect with loved ones. Exercise and sweat. Try to enroll in a yoga class. Better if it's interactive so the teacher can see you and guide you. Don’t stress out on the things that you can’t control. Eat your greens. And ultimately, be kind to yourself.


Keep yourselves moving and active with home workouts powered by Nike. Explore a variety of workouts from yoga, strength training and more! Just visit https://www.nike.com/ph/ntc-app to download the Nike Training Club App.

 


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