Saturday, May 30, 2015

Old Lady Yoga: Week 2

Last week, I wrote about how old lady yoga kicked my ass. At the invitation of my mother-in-law, I went back to the same class today and this time, the class didn't necessarily kick my ass but it still smacked me in the face.

Can we all just take a moment to look at the smug smile on the ref's face?

Last week, I could feel right away that I was going to be incredibly sore and I definitely was--I spent a few days hobbling around which was interesting considering I have a baby and my home office is on the second floor of the house. Now, my muscles feel exhausted but not painful which feels good but the real test will be if I'm able to get out of bed tomorrow morning.

Overall, I feel like the class went well for me. We did five each of the A and B series and my plank pose didn't start to collapse until round 2 or 3 of the B series.

I will take whatever victory I can.

My mother-in-law told me that my warrior 1 looked great which made me feel really good since I felt so stiff going into class today. Apparently having my home office upstairs and needing to go up and down the stairs 30 times a day has been helping to give me some leg strength.

The Oatmeal and I have something in common.

The most difficult pose for me was definitely downward facing dog. I felt almost homicidal as a result of my legs and my shoulders aching but, as the yoga instructor said, downward facing dog is a great diagnostic pose and I fully agree. My need for the pose is directly proportional to how much rage I feel while doing it.
Look, science agrees with me.

Overall, I'm glad I went. I like going to this particular class and I'm hoping to go more in the future. Perhaps by the next time I go, I'll actually enjoy downward facing dog.

Or not.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Day 2 (Again): Listening to My Body

After getting my butt kicked in class yesterday, I didn't want to lose my enthusiasm for restarting my yoga practice. However, my body seems to disagree as I have been hobbling around all day.

Doing laundry has been interesting.

Thinking about when I practiced yoga before, I noticed that I didn't really listen to my body. I pushed my Edelman shoulder too hard, I delayed rehabbing my knee, and I generally didn't give my body a chance to heal after a particularly strenuous practice. I want to learn from my mistakes to make my practice stronger as I go forward.

With that in mind, I opted instead to focus on meditation today. I sat in cobbler's pose so I could at least technically call it yoga and for ten minutes, I just focused on ujjayi breathing. I've always found the ocean very relaxing and doing the "ocean breath" helped quiet my mind. For at least a few minutes of my meditation, my gaze was so focused inward that I wasn't aware of all my physical aches and pains.

Lifting my arm this high makes me want to cry.

Day 1 (Again): Old Lady Yoga Kicked My Ass

I debated with myself about how to label this post in terms of what day of yoga I'm on. I did over 70 days of consecutive yoga but I stopped when my son was in the hospital and never restarted. In terms of his project, I'm technically continuing it but after a three month hiatus, it seemed more appropriate to start over but this time I'm going in with more knowledge about my limitations and how yoga makes me feel.

Yesterday, my mother-in-law invited me to a yoga class she was going to be leading. She knows about my lapsed yoga challenge and that I've been wanting to get back into it. My mother-in-law told me that the class was full of older women--not challenging, she said, but it'd get me back on my mat. As my body has atrophied into that of a 90-year-old since I paused my challenge, I thought the class sounded like it'd be just my speed.

Let's do this!

What I forgot about yoga is that it's not exclusively a young person's sport. For every 19-year-old in Lululemon pants, there's a yoga practitioner who looks like this:

"Suck on this, AARP."

To make myself feel better, I'm telling myself the class was hard because I haven't done yoga in three months but OH MY GOD EVERYTHING HURTS.

Nope, can't get up today.
I'll be an adult tomorrow.

When the class started, I felt proud of myself that I was successfully doing five circuits of the Ashtanga A series. I wasn't collapsing when I lowered myself down from plank pose and even though my legs weren't as straight as they used to be during the forward fold, I felt like I was still doing well. Then when we moved on to the B series, my shoulders started to give out during plank pose and I discovered that my Edelman shoulder is still a thing.

You son of a bitch.

On the plus side, I received compliments on my locust pose so at least I was able to do a good job in something other than savasana.

I'm apparently really good at being a bug.

I'm planning on doing a little yoga later but I'm going to have to be mindful of my shoulders . . . and my back . . . and my hips . . . and my legs . . .

Can I do a whole practice of just savasana?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Update: I'm Still Here! I Promise!

I promise, I haven't forgotten about this blog or my yoga challenge!

But if I had, it would be this guy's fault.

After my son was hospitalized, I took a hiatus from this blog in order to take time to focus on him. He's been sick on and off and he's needed some extra love from his mom. However, he's doing better so I'm aiming to start my challenge back up again (although I suppose it's going to be more of 365 non-consecutive days of yoga rather than a year of daily practice--unless I extend it. But one thing at a time). Before I do though, I wanted to post an update on how I've been without daily yoga.

In a word: yuck.

Physically: EVERYTHING HURTS. My muscles are stiff, my back is out of alignment, and I feel like every day I discover new aches and pains. Sure, I had the occasional sore day while doing yoga but overall I felt better.

Exhaustion: I am so freaking tired and not just because I have a baby. I had more energy when I was doing yoga . . . right? Exhaustion makes it difficult to remember my own name.

Mentally: My brain fog has been particularly bad. This could be due to how tired I've been but I've been having a hard time focusing.

I keep thinking of that quote about how it's important to spend ten minutes a day in meditation but if you don't have ten minutes, sit for an hour. Basically those who think they don't have time need more . . . I think. I'm excited to get back into daily yoga . . . right after I take a ten minute hour long nap.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Days 77-79: Inpatient

My challenge is temporarily on hiatus while my son is in the hospital. He'll still be here for a couple more days and if I'm feeling up to it, I might try and look up some poses that don't involve getting on the floor because hospital floors are just about one of the most disgusting things I can think of. But if not, I'll get back into my daily practice once he's discharged and we're home. At that point, I'm definitley going to need some yoga so it'll be great to get back into it.