• Congratulations, Mark Nicolas!

    Grace Yoga (GY): What is your personal reason for starting your yoga practice?
    Mark Nicolas (MN): 2 years ago, I suffered from a hip injury that prevented me from running, playing basketball, or any physical activity for a year and a half.  I consulted my doctor and also saw a physical therapist.  It got better with the help of PT but I was still experiencing pain.  I had always wanted to try Yoga because of the stretching, recovery, and meditation.  I started back in January 26, 2018.  I did the Gentle, Hatha and Yoga Basics classes.  After 3 weeks of Yoga, practicing 4 to 5 days a week, I noticed that the pain went away and I was able to walk 4 miles a day and slowly got back into my running.  I was very happy to be able to run again and wanted to keep my hip and body healthy, so I started practicing daily.  I attended the basic classes for couple of months and eventually moved to practicing the L2 and L3 Vinyasa classes.  I love Yoga more than running now. 

    GY: How does your yoga practice influence your life off the mat? Are there lessons you learn from yoga that you can bring to the rest of your life?
    MN: Yoga allows me to stay focused, be present, and accept what my body can or can’t do today.  One thing that’s sticks in my mind and is a constant reminder to me is “you do you”.  You do what works best for you and what makes you happy. 

    GY: Our theme this month is "New Growth", honoring spring and the renewal that comes with it. As someone with a consistent yoga practice, what advice do you have for other students who are looking for some "new growth", or ways to develop in their practice?
    MN: What has worked for me is practicing as often as possible, which is daily.  Even when I’m out of town for work or pleasure, I make sure I drop in to any yoga studio, or even self-practice if that’s not available.  By practicing daily, you discover new poses, new flows, and certain old poses, arm balances, and inversions that you were not able to do in the past and now you are able to which make them new to me.  Just practice! Practice!

    GY: Please tell us a little about yourself: career, family, background and anything else interesting you would like us to know.
    MN: I work as a freelance computer consulter since 2008.  I service small businesses and home users.  My mom works as a Medical Record supervisor and my dad is retired but works as a part time mechanic.  Both reside in Vallejo.  I visit them as often as I can. Besides Yoga, I love to run.  I sign up for out of town running events and make a vacation out of them.  I try to participate in a running event at least every 2 months.  I used to be an avid cyclist.  I did 2 century rides and a couple of metric century rides.  Hopefully I can get back to riding next year.