This is NOT me…
At no point in my athletically challenged life, has this EVER been me. Even when I was kicking dupa in my Muay Thai kickboxing training, I was NEVER this flexible. Ever. And that, my friends, is the whole point behind yoga.
I started going to yoga classes off and on almost 2 years ago. The first class I ever attended was taught by an amazing instructor who had one of those mesmerizing voices that just lulled you into a state of total relaxation. As she guided all of us newbies through the poses, all I could think of was how the heck am I ever going to be able to nail these poses and not make a total fool of myself when I faceplant? An hour and a half later, in a Legs Up the Wall Pose, I was powerless to keep the tears from flowing. Now, I had heard about these spontaneous emotional outbursts happening in yoga classes before, but never would I have thought that I would have been the blubbering idiot. To my credit, I kept it under control until I got out to my truck. Then the floodgates opened. On the ride home, I tried to take a step back and figure out what the hell had just happened. Was this some kind of emotional release? Was I just going off the deep end? Had an errant fuzzy flown in my eye and crying was the only to get it out? To this day, I still have no idea, and it’s never happened since. It did, however, leave me with a nagging feeling that I better get my butt back to class and figure it out. So over the next few months I grunted, groaned, whooshed, and faceplanted my sweaty limbs into poses I never thought possible.
Fast forward to yesterday. In an anti-true-American -ast-forward-through-our-life style, I decided to stop, slow down the dollar machine, and get my head back in the yoga game. The decision to get back to class was in no small part thanks to the fact that my fave instructor shows no mercy, but is one of the most encouraging, upbeat women I know. The fact that even though she’s had two kids, (and I know genes play a big factor), she has a body that even a fitness competition queen would envy. What more motivation does one need? So what if she’s five years older than me, has worked in the fitness industry for years, and spends her days eating vegan? I can look like that too! All I have to do is this!
Apply reality brakes here.
In my defense, after having been out of the studio for way too long, I found it pretty easy to leave my lack of confidence at home and check my ego at the door. To be perfectly honest though, I couldn’t entirely leave that nasty little self-competitive devil outside the room. One thing I am able to do is not compare myself to the other students, (other than the occasional, “How the heck does she do THAT?!”). For anyone who ends their practice with my favorite – Savasana (does that REALLY surprise you?)…
you know how you’re supposed to let all the negative energy go. As I tried to imagine a warm, bright, mystical yoga light settling itself into my battered and broken IT bands, I felt the dollars finally slowing down for a moment. Was this yoga stuff really working? Was my little Dumbo buddy in the corner
throwing out some kind some kind of yogic mellowing power into the universe? Either that or someone sprinkled Xanax on the plant in the corner. Regardless, as I sit here nursing some VERY sore muscles, I remember what Super Teacher Sandee says as we bring class to a close: try to remember this feeling of peace and see how long you can keep that feeling going through the day. Be thankful for our bodies and our ability to practice. So as I take those words to heart, and try to remember that peaceful feeling when dealing with yet another one of my medical divas today, I say thank you. Thank you to Sandee for making me stop and concentrate if only for a few moments, on what I’m capable of doing. Thank you to my hubby, for putting up with my moments of zen-like spacy-ness each time I come home from class. Thank you to the Wonder Mutt for always being SO happy when I walk in the door after class, regardless of how bad I’ve been sweating. Most of all, thank you to whatever power is out there in the universe which allows us to bend, stretch, twist, balance, plank, jump, and especially run.
I’m really starting to think there just may be something to this whole yoga thing.
Enjoy the ride.
Have you ever had one those “moments” while working out? Tell me about it!