How To Get Flexible

Are you the least flexible person in the world? If so, you’re not alone. Here are 4 easy steps to becoming more flexible.

New clients regularly tell me that they’re the least flexible people in the world. I always chuckle a little. How can it be that so many people hold this same title?

Jokes aside — most people have never been taught the right way to stretch. Because of that, they’ve never been successful in increasing their flexibility and the result is, they walk around feeling stiff and uncomfortable.

I’m here to tell you that, yes, you can be flexible.

You just need to learn a few simple techniques and you will be on your way to touching your toes. Ahhh — can you taste the freedom already?

Let’s dive in.

1. Understand that everyone has a different baseline level of flexibility

Some people are genetically more flexible than others, and that’s OK. According to Paul Weitzel, we can all increase our flexibility to about 20–25% past our baseline¹. With consistent stretching, anyone without a stretching routine can become significantly more flexible than they are right now. This doesn’t require that much time. You only need to stretch 10–15 minutes per day to experience results. Knowing that we all have different baseline levels of flexibility, we shouldn’t compare to others.

For example, I will never be able to do a side split, while a dancer or a gymnast might be able to easily and may even set a goal to do so. As a non-performer and non- professional athlete, there is no reason to set these kinds of goals. Most of us benefit more by keeping ours bodies safe and functional. There is nothing in my life requiring me to do a side split, so I get to live a happy, normal life without pushing past my physical limits. Keep your goals reasonable and safe.

2. Learn the proper techniques from a professional

There are a few major mistakes that people make when they stretch. One of the most common ones I see is when people try to stretch their hamstrings by standing and bending forward. Most people assume the way to stretch their hamstrings is by bending over with very straight legs and trying to touch the floor with all of their might. The issue is, most of the time, your back rounds excessively and the hamstrings don’t actually lengthen in a safe and effective way. This also compromises both the spine and knee joints.

The best way to stretch both hamstrings is by bending your knees, bringing your hands down to a block or other prop, arching your upper back by pulling the shoulder blades together, drawing your belly button in, and reaching your tailbone up to the sky (aka sticking your butt up in the air). In yoga, we call this a half-forward fold, or ardha uttanasana. If these instructions seem confusing, it’s because correct body alignment is a lifelong practice. This is why we need to be taught by a skilled teacher.

3. Make it routine

I used to be really inflexible. My coaches in high school would tell me I needed to stretch more. The only time I stretched was during soccer practice when they made us at the beginning. Once I started doing yoga around the age of 18, my flexibility increased dramatically. This was because, in addition to going to yoga classes, I started stretching almost daily for a few minutes. I made it a routine.

Everyone can increase their flexibility with a routine. You have to put in a tiny bit of effort, but it’s so incredibly worth it. The freedom that you experience when you get rid of stuckness in the body is indescribable. It’s light, airy, and oh so good!

Most of us have no idea how good we are meant to feel.

Because of that, we don’t prioritize stretching. It gets brushed off as something we’ll do later, but then later never comes. If we truly realized how much freedom we could experience from a 10-minute daily routine, we would put at the top of our list.

So, you have to try it first. You won’t feel the benefits after 1, 2, or 3 days. You need to stretch daily (for the most part) for 2 to 4 weeks. If you miss a day here and there, it’s no big deal. Consistency is key, so do your best and you’ll reap the benefits.

4. Focus on mobility AND flexibility

Flexibility refers to the ability of a muscle to passively lengthen through a range of motion. Mobility is related to the joints and their ability to actively move through their full range of motion. Flexibility and mobility go hand in hand. We need a healthy dose of both.

Think about your shoulder joints. There are several different types of movements that the shoulder joint can make. For example, to know if you can externally rotate your shoulder joints effectively, lay flat on the ground, take your arms out to your sides in a T shape, and then bend your elbows so you make a goal post shape with your arms. In a healthy range of motion, you should be able to easily and comfortably rest your forearms, shoulders, and backs of your hands on the floor by your ears.

When we work on mobility, we focus on being able to activate our muscles through end ranges of motion. For example, military presses with or without weights are a great way to actively train our upper body and maintain good mobility of the shoulder joints, particularly in external rotation.

We also need to stretch the muscles around the shoulder joints, upper back, and chest to keep the muscles healthy and flexible. However, if you only stretch those muscles and never stregnthen them, you compromise the joints. We should always be training our bodies through different ranges of motion, including weight bearing and stretching.

Bottom line is — keep moving. Mix up your routine and be consistent with movement. Your body will thank you.

Flexibility provides benefits beyond injury prevention and being able to show your friends you can touch your toes. It affects your nervous system and your entire way of being. It makes you more relaxed, equanimous, and level-headed.

You may not realize now how stiffness affects you, in fact, some people don’t notice it in their daily lives. But once you start to increase your flexibility, you get to experience the physical clarity that leads to mental clarity.

There’s only one way to find out!

To learn more about Sophie, her services and programs, visit her website here.



5 Morning Habits for Success

The key to productive days is a healthy morning routine.

Your morning snooze habit might be holding you back, big time. It can be tempting to hit snooze 7 times and scroll through your phone before pulling yourself out of bed, but eventually, this leads to a lack of focus, exhaustion, and burnout.

Learning to take control of your morning and developing a morning routine can be life-changing. Sound dramatic? Well, you’ll just have to see for yourself!

Most highly successful people have morning routines because it sets them up to be mindful and productive throughout the day. A solid morning routine increases your focus, gives you more clarity, and makes you happier.

Here are 5 things you should do in the morning if you want to be successful:

1. Drink a glass of water

Your body needs water after a night of sleep, no matter how long you slept for. Aim to drink around 8 ounces of water first thing in the morning. You will feel immediately feel more energized and refreshed.

2. Wash your face

One of the first things you should do in the morning is to wash your face with cold water. If you didn’t feel significantly more awake after the glass of water, this should do the trick. Of course, brushing your teeth and using the bathroom are good additions to this step, but I’ll leave that up to you!

3. Move

You don’t have to go on a run or do a full workout — unless that’s your thing — but the goal is to just move around enough to get your blood flowing. You can simply do a couple of easy stretches. Reach your arms overhead and stretch to each side. Take a forward fold. Keep it simple and don’t overthink it. If you’re into yoga, sun salutations are a great way to get moving in the morning since they are simple, set sequences that don’t require much thinking.

4. Meditate

Before you stop reading this because you think you don’t know how to meditate, just wait one second. Meditation doesn’t require that you are a monk or a long-time yogi. All you need to be able to do is sit or lay down for a few minutes in silence. Everyone can do this, you just have to try. For some of us, this is really daunting!

It’s important to know that meditation is a practice. No one is good at meditating after the first try, or even the second or third. It takes time to become comfortable with silence. Give it time, don’t give up, and the results will amaze you. Nothing good comes easy.

5. Journal

Get out a journal and write whatever comes to mind. This will help spur your creativity, elevate your awareness, and increase your focus. Journal entries don’t have to be fully comprehensive recaps of your life. I used to think I needed to write everything that was happening in my life. Don’t write what doesn’t inspire you. You can write a few words or even draw a picture. Maybe you need to just plan out your day. What matters is that you’re spending time with yourself in quiet reflection.

These five steps are just a guideline to help you develop your own morning routine. It’s important to remember that everyone’s different. What works for one person might not work for the other. Find what works for you, and don’t be so hard on yourself if you slip up every now and then.

Need help implementing a morning routine? Download the free morning routine workbook here.

To learn more about Sophie, her services and programs, visit her website here


The Best Workout Routine for Busy People & Entrepreneurs

Short on time but know you need to get in shape? Looking for an effective mind-body routine that won’t take too much time out of your day? This is the solution for you.

I used to be exhausted all the time. I thought I needed to exercise daily to be healthy and fit, so I would squeeze in running, yoga, the gym, etc. every chance I could get. The result?

Burn out!

I thought I was taking care of my body and mind, but really I was slowly wearing myself down.

When I began practicing heated yoga regularly, I was ecstatic because I realized I could workout and get connected with my body in one succinct hour of self-reflection and sweaty movement. The more I practiced, the more centered I felt and the less reactive I was to life. Everyone in my life could see the difference.

But it wasn’t too long after becoming a yoga teacher that I rediscovered my yearning for endurance and strength-based activities. The problem was that I couldn’t fit it all into my busy schedule and I wasn’t willing to give up my yoga practice.

That’s when I started experimenting with a hybrid routine of yoga and HIIT (high intensity interval training). As a yoga teacher and personal trainer, creating these routines became a fun and rewarding activity. Plus, I was able to help my clients get more fit, flexible and clear-minded. Since then, I never looked back.

Here’s the format: 20–30 minutes of Vinyasa yoga, 10–20 minutes of HIIT, 10–20 minutes of stretching and relaxation. What’s so great about this hour of mindful movement? You get to work on your flexibility and mobility in addition to your strength and endurance without sacrificing time. It’s a fully immersive mind-body experience.

The best part? You don’t need to leave your house, you don’t need any equipment, and you only need to do it 2–3 times per week!

Think about how much time this saves you. If you are a busy entrepreneur, you probably struggle with the fact that there are only 24 hours in a day. You most likely feel like you work all the time and can’t possibly fit the gym into your schedule every day. I get it. And I’m here to tell you that you don’t need the gym every day. All you need is a few hours each week, a mat, and an online trainer.


HIIT is a form of interval training that alternates periods of intense anaerobic exercise with periods of rest. HIIT recruits your fast-twitch (type II) muscle fibers, which can help increase the size and definition of a particular muscle.

The science on the benefits of HIIT for physical and mental health is promising. One study found that regular engagement in HIIT results in fat loss and significant skeletal muscle adaptations (1). Another study found that HIIT increased cerebral blood flow in young and old participants (2).

In other words, HIIT is beneficial for your brain and your body.

The best part? You only have to do around 30 minutes of HIIT per week to reap the benefits. If you’ve done HIIT before, this isn’t hard to believe. HIIT is hard. But it’s also short, so it goes by quickly. You can stop running on the treadmill or climbing the Stairmaster for an hour. Instead, do 10–20 minutes of HIIT.

Why Yoga?

While HIIT recruits fast-twitch muscle fibers to increase your power and strength, yoga supports mobility, flexibility and strength. The combination of the two is crucial for a balanced body and mind. Vinyasa yoga is an incredible way to increase flexibility and strength. So when you begin with a strong Vinyasa yoga sequence, you have a chance to warm up the muscles and joints for more powerful movements.

Stretching activates the parasympathetic nervous system, aka the “rest and a digest” nervous system. This type of activity is crucial for the health of your mind. Yoga proves — time and time again — that it leads to healthy relationships and healthy habits. When your nervous system is balanced, there is an overall greater sense of contentment and ease in life.

Why Both?

The combination of Vinyasa yoga and HIIT provides a well-rounded workout and brain reset all in about one hour.

Working out from home eliminates the time you would spend commuting to the gym or yoga studio, saving you a ton of time while whipping you into the best physical shape of your life.

You can’t just work all day every day and not experience high levels of stress and burnout. It’s impossible. We all know that eventually, this can be very detrimental; as burnout will result in lack of productivity, irritability, and unhappiness. We need to find time for quiet reflection to be the best version of ourselves for our families and the people we love.

It’s been said that the best asset an entrepreneur can have is good health. Yoga gives you the mental clarity you need to show up fully in your business and personal life. HIIT gives you strength and endurance that leaves you feeling empowered and energized. The combination of the two is powerful.

So stop worrying about squeezing gym time into your busy schedule 6 days a week. Take that stress out of your life entirely and workout from home. Schedule 2–3 hours out of your week and find an online coach or trainer to help you reach your goals. Make the switch, and you will see and feel results.

Do you want to experience the transformative results of a Yoga HIIT class?

To learn more about Sophie, her services and programs, visit her website here