Meet Fiona. Our lovely friend in Dubai. Fiona has been joining us for the past few months and we love her energy during our classes. We interviewed her for our blog and here’s what she answered for us…
Hi Fiona! Tell us a little bit about yourself! Who is Fiona?
Fiona: My name is Fiona, I'm a teacher, I'm 37, single. I have a cat and a dog. I'm not completely sober but I am curious and have been inspired by Alex’s journey for quite some time.
How did you meet Alex?
Fiona: Met Alex as her page called Sober Yoga Girl, popped up on my Instagram. It might have been when she first started out as she only had a few hundred followers. The strangest thing about it is, I was doing yoga, as a means to distract myself from excessive drinking. I wasn't really enjoying yoga (at that point) and was still heavily drinking, so I was very curious as to where Alex was coming from. I resonated alot with her previous party life style and the fact she was a transitioning teacher and following her passion.
What inspired you to start practicing yoga?
Fiona: I'm not really sure why I felt inspired to do yoga. I had friends who had done it for years, and I didn't see the point in it, or had any patience for it. As yoga has become more mainstream, I started to see how yoga was changing and helping people, not only for their physical health but I was observing that those people were becoming more centred and grounded, and that's what really inspired me. They seemed happier.
Have you ever had any experience with yoga before joining the MLPC?
Fiona: I tried yoga for one week back in 2017, and it was a hot yoga class and I couldn't do it. I found that particular studio not very friendly to new comers and I felt really out of place. I then came across a lady called Che Dyer who was running a lovely yin class from a church in London, I then followed her on Instagram and was beginning to see past the commercial side of yoga (London is full of fancy yoga places). She is a lovely down to Earth lady who is so passionate about helping others through different forms of mindfulness and shares alot about her own personal stuggles. Again it felt so different to the pretentiousness I had previously been exposed to. When I came to Dubai, I started at a studio close to where I live and their instructors are amazing. I then joined another one close to me and all their instructors are so helpful in helping you advance in your practice. I have seen the biggest improvement in the last 6 months with the MLPC and this yoga studio.
Alex and Fiona in Dubai
What’s your connection to the MLPC?
Fiona: I finally after about a year of following Alex, decided to join her Christmas special. I loved it so much much. Alex is such a lovely teacher and her voice and the things she talk about, like her experiences, things she has learned, really help you to reframe your way of thinking. I then joined a few of the sober yoga sessions, and again was able to see the impact she had on so many people, from all walks of life. From her class I joined a few others, like Emma, Rachel, Matt, Leigh and I love this community so much.
How did you end up being so committed to yoga?
Fiona: I'm not sure why I am so committed to yoga, I just feel like it's a habit now and if I don't do any for more than a week, my body misses it. I do sometimes find it tough, especially half way through a session but I think its the community in the MLPC, and in my local yoga community that keep me going.
Did you face any challenges during the month of October?
Fiona: This month was tricky because we had two school inspections, and for some reason I felt the urge to buy a bottle of wine, which I drank over 3 days. I was snappy and tired for almost 3 days. I think it was because I was not having time to get to yoga and I used buying a bottle of wine a release of the ongoing pressures of work.
What are the biggest benefits you’ve reaped from your yoga practice?
Fiona: I feel alot more centred, my yoga practice has improved and I do feel more flexible. I feel like I'm less judgemental of others and are more tolerant to others and their situations. I also have alot more compassion for myself and feel worthy of love and happiness.
What’s your favorite posture?
Fiona: Strangely my favourite pose is boat, only because as hard as it is, I'm eventually going to have killer abs !
What’s your most difficult posture?
Fiona: I cannot to this day, no matter how much I try, do the wheelbarrow, but I won't give up.
What is your favorite type(s) of yoga? And why?
Fiona: I like hatha, yin and vinyasa. I enjoy Hatha because I have practiced this the longest and I am familiar with the poses so I can focus on really deepening the stretch. Yin is just fabulous and really helps me to switch off from everything. I'm beginning to reap the benefits of vinyasa also.
Any words of wisdom to those just starting out?
Fiona: For someone starting out, do lots of research and get recommendations of yoga teachers and their styles. Be kind to yourself and don't feel silly if you feeling a bit slower or cant do some of the stretches. No need for expensive yoga pants/mats. Any clothing which is comfortable for exercise is fine, and the cheap exercise mats you can buy in the supermarket are fine for someone starting out.
Alex talks alot about how much this community means to her. She has impacted and helped so many people whether it be with their wellbeing, sobriety journey, or improvements in yoga practice. I also love this community and feel happy and proud to be part of it.
Thank you so much Fiona!! We love and appreciate your presence in our classes.
To learn more about our 30 Day Sober Challenge go to this link. Show your love by leave a comment or a question in the comments section below.
See you soon and until then, may you all be safe, happy, healthy, and free.