Train Yourself to Do Yoga Everyday – Advice from a Recovering Binge Yogi


Having a daily yoga practice is not that hard. But letting go of ideas and convictions around what that daily practice should look like can be messy, emotional, ego-ridden, and sometimes mind-blowingly hard.

The main reason people struggle to develop a daily yoga practice is because they are holding on to some idealized version of that experience will look like. People often blur the lines around what it means to practice yoga and what it means to exercise. Yoga is a collection of tools intended to support human well-being and happiness, and some of those tools exercise the body. If you really want a consistent daily yoga practice, you need to let go of the idea that your yoga practice will also be your exercise routine. Your yoga practice will need to overcome illness, injury, and fatigue. For most people to develop a consistent daily practice, they have to be willing to start at a place that might feel painfully small and almost pointless.


Because, over the long-term, smaller consistent amounts of yoga are more beneficial than longer bouts done less regularly.

Years ago, I was more of a binge yogi. I would go through phases where I did copious amounts of yoga, attending multiple classes a day and reveling in the high of my practice. Then, a few weeks or so later, I would go a whole week without doing any yoga because I felt like I was just too busy to fit it in.

The teacher training program that I took in 2009 placed a very strong emphasis on practicing every day, and with my binge yogi tendencies, I found myself floundering under that demand. Moderately practicing yoga wasn’t nearly as sexy; I felt like trying to do so didn’t honour me and my rhythms. At that time, a different teacher of mine taught me more about tapas and the importance of consistency and suggested a 5 minute daily practice to start.

It changed my life. Five minutes a day was doable and I did it. And, I kept doing it. Over time, my minimum daily practice has built up to 40 minutes, and it still blows my mind that I have been able to achieve that baseline consistency in my practice. I don’t question the things I used to question. I just do my practice.

I often write about the power of consistency because it has been a striking force of transformation in my life. The key is having the courage and the humility to meet yourself in the place where you are truly able to be consistent.


To start, your daily practice should be determined by your answer to this question:

On your most busy, stressful, and overwhelming day, how much time do you have to practice yoga?

Be really honest when you answer that question. For most people, I suggest 5 minutes to start, but for some people, it might be best to start with 1 minute. Often people respond to my 5 minute suggestion from the motivation and enthusiasm that comes with beginnings and say, “I think I can do 10-15 minutes.”

I raise my eyebrows, stare intently, and say, “Really?”

The aspect of the yoga practice we are working with is tapas. A translation of tapas is: consistency in striving towards your goals. The key word here is consistency, because consistency builds commitment. The more consistently you do something, the more likely you are to keep doing it.

So, in beginning a daily practice, the most important part of the practice is consistency, and the key to achieving consistency is, again, realistically answering this question:

On your most busy, stressful, and overwhelming day, how much time do you have to practice yoga?

When I look at you and say, “Really?” You should be able to confidently respond, “Yes, Sarah, I will be able to do this much yoga every single day.”

Once you have determined the minimum length of your daily practice, I recommend committing to a specific type of practice for that time. For example, your daily practice might be five minutes of pranayama (breath work) or five minutes shavasana or two minutes of asana focused on poses that stretch your hamstrings.

I suggest having a journal or calendar to record your practice and hold yourself accountable. Something I often do is visit to create a printable PDF calendar.

The final step is simply not going to bed until you have marked off your practice for the day. If you come home from the bar at 2am in the morning and you haven’t done your five minute meditation, then you take 5 minutes and mediate.

Can you do more yoga than this during the day?

Absolutely! You can indulge in hours of yoga practice if you have the time and desire. This approach is about building a consistent foundation of yoga to develop a daily commitment.



Living Yoga Tapas Yoga


  1. Dar says:

    Thanks for this blog Sarah! It’s a wonderful reminder that daily proactive need not be longer than one can consistently manage.
    I am hereby committing to 5 minutes to start because I’ve already pictured you staring at me with raised eyebrows.. 😉

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