Debby has always been one of my biggest inspirations. I started following her on Instagram a few years ago. I really loved her yoga posts and I decided to give yoga a try. I am still doing yoga now. Not only her yoga pictures inspired me but also her blog and her mindset. When I started this blog, she was the one that helped me out. When I wanted to stop tracking macros, she was my inspiration because she found a way to enjoy food and have a good balance. I am so grateful that I have met her. In this interview, we will talk about everything yoga and meditation.
Can you tell us something more about yourself?
My name is Debby. I live in Flemish Brabant near to Brussels. I am a blogger and a yoga and POP pilates instructor.
When and why did you start doing yoga?
I started in 2014. A colleague of mine did a course and she said it was so cool. I wanted to try it too. I did some research and I thought it would be able to help me. I went to a class and I really loved it. After that I started watching YouTube videos to do yoga. Certain things in my life happened and I decided I needed something for me. Yoga brought me inner peace. I went a bit too fast because I wanted to be able to do all these poses and I hurt myself. In 2016 I took a step back and afterwards, I started from scratch. After some time, I decided to share my journey and teach yoga to others.
What was your yoga goal?
I had a lot of stress at work and in my daily life. I didn’t really like going to the gym. I also thought yoga looked so cool. It became my passion.
Why did you want to become a yoga teacher?
I was able to leave my past behind. I know a lot of people are struggling with depression, burn-outs physical problems… I wanted to be able to help those people. I get a lot of satisfaction and feedback. Some people tell me that they finally found inner peace. I also teach yoga to children. It’s a challenge but I love it.
What is the best thing about yoga?
Finding inner peace and physical peace. Once you find inner peace, your physical peace will follow. Your body also becomes more flexible. To me, being flexible is less important but it’s an advantage.
How do you tell yourself it’s ok when you can’t do a certain pose?
I thought it was very hard. In the beginning, I hurt myself. After I took a step back, I just practiced slowly. If it doesn’t work out, I don’t force myself. My boyfriend also helps me sometimes to get into certain poses. You can’t compare yourself to others. Some people are just more flexible.
When and why did you start meditating?
I think it was summer 2016. I was doing my yoga education and a piece of that was meditation. I thought it was super hard mentally. I felt a lot of strong emotions I used to push away. I have to admit that I don’t meditate very often because to me, yoga is already relaxing enough. If I lay down with my students, I feel very relaxed.
What are the benefits of meditation?
Finding inner peace. Find ways to deal with your problems.
How many times do you have to do yoga and meditate to see results?
They say once a week is not enough. 2 times a week for a minimum of 5 minutes is beneficial. Personally, I think 5 minutes is too short but everyone is different. It depends on your lifestyle.
Do you think everyone should meditate?
I don’t think you should push people who don’t have the patience to do it. You shouldn’t push people who are not ready for it. Some people see it as something spiritual and they ‘don’t have time for it’. Those are excuses.
Do you have tips to start meditating and doing yoga?
If you start meditating, make sure you can meditate in a quiet environment. The slightest distraction can be so annoying, at least that’s what I experienced. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Don’t give up when something doesn’t go as planned.
How did you find a good balance between being healthy, working and enjoying life?
To be honest, it can be hard, especially when I have a lot of plans. If I really don’t have time to do yoga, I don’t do it. I am very sensitive to stress. I make sure to set priorities and to make time for myself. I need to have a moment for myself for at least five minutes a day. My cats, my boyfriend and my friends are so important to me. Unfortunately, I am neglecting my friends a bit at the moment. I am spending a lot of time on Instagram and blogging. I am not so energized sometimes. If I am not able to do something, I try not to stress about it. I try to do my yoga session every day.
How long are your yoga sessions?
If I don’t have a lot of time, it takes half an hour. I don’t think a shorter yoga session is beneficial to me.
You used to be very strict around food, how did you find a good balance?
I used to be obessed about food. I wanted to be a fitgirl, I wanted abs… During my depression, I only ate yogurt, oats, salad… My friends thought I was crazy. In 2016 I deleted MyFitnessPal. I wanted to stop tracking my calories and start doing things I love. I started doing poppilates and I started enjoying food again. I can eat whatever I want. It’s not that I just let myself go and eat hamburgers everyday. I still try to eat healthy and start my day with a good breakfast. At night, I am still craving some chocolate. If you are someone who wants to enjoy life, you shouldn’t be too strict. I find it hard to tell someone how to eat. I always wanted to change things about my body. After a while, I tried to accept my body and stopped comparing myself to people on Instagram.
What are your best tips for students to find a good balance between school, free time and being healthy?
Setting priorities is super important. Planning is also super important. Do something you love and don’t forget to live. Also don’t forget school. You can also work out at home. I think if you live alone as a student, it is hard to cook for yourself. I don’t think everyone finds it easy to cook. I think you can do meal prepping, especially if you’re on a budget.
You can also for example, make a lot of spaghetti sauce at once and put it in the freezer. I would say planning is the most important thing.
I want to thank Debby again for this interview. In my opinion, she’s a real yoga expert and I love the fact that she was so open with us about her feelings.