See that post title could mean anything.
Is it weird that when I wrote that, the first thing that came to my head was the conversation I heard on breakfast radio the other day while driving into work about Kegel exercises and how it is basically like stopping your…errr…flow??
Probably not as weird how the radio host went onto say how guys can also now do Kegel exercises (and if in your mind you’re as confused by that as I was, don’t fear. We’re still biologically different) and it’s comparable to holding in a fart. Apparently it does wonders in the bedroom AND you can do them without anyone even knowing.
Unless you do actually fart, then you’re screwed.
(But not in the good way either )
All class here folks.
But no, this is not what this post is about. (Unless you want it to be. I’m totally cool with it plus I know how to use Google)
This post is about how I have taken up yoga.
And again, the first thing that comes into my head when I hear that is the far away booming voice of Captain Planet declaring “With your powers combined….I AM CAPTAIN PLANET!”
You deprived children you.
Captain Planet was all sorts of awesomeness back in the 90’s. I hear they are planning to bring him back via BIG SCREEN! Tell me you are excited!
Anyways, after my niggling knee injury which has kept me from getting high (runners high people), I was on the lookout for some other type of activity that I could do to heal my leg and work on those balance issues.
And then one day, sifting through the million and one emails I get every day from Groupon, Scoopon, Jump On It etc etc (is anybody else as obsessed with these deal sites like me??), I saw a deal for 12 classes of Power Yoga in South Yarra.
The catch – you had to use it up in 6 weeks – that is twice a week from the first class.
Yep, I’m a maths genius.
Now, I’m no commitment phobe, but I do have a tendency to flake out of things when things happen…wait…that’s basically the definition of someone who avoids commitment.
But, I decided that this was a sign from whatever higher being there is basically telling me to get up off my ass and take the opportunity to try yoga out.
So I did.
And I LOVE it.
I have been to two classes already in the last two weeks (and yes you sharp eyed people, that also means I’ve missed two classes. Both for very good reasons) and I’m kinda hooked.
Firstly, the yoga teacher has a body TO DIE FOR. Lean, strong and toned. If yoga does that to a person, then I am thinking this is a good thing.
Secondly, this yoga was HARD.
It’s a Vinyasa flow style of yoga which pretty much means that the movements kind of meld into each other in a flowing way.
The word Vinyasa actually means “breath-synchronized movement” and the teacher will instruct you to move from one pose to the next in time to your breathing. You can hold certain poses or perform a sequence (like a Sun Salutation sequence). It’s a lot more dynamic (thus sweat inducing and calorie burning!) then your meditative style of yoga and it can be done in a heated room as well.
The first time I got there, I was nervous. Nervous because I was wearing form fitting crop pants and I normally don’t wear these because, I DO think my ass looks big in them. All the other people there were also part of the deal but they seemed more relaxed and toned with small asses.
Just my observation.
Also, as I have mentioned before – I have horrible balance. So I had visions of me lumbering around the mat like an elephant while other people calmly moved from pose to pose and I spent most of the class lying on my back or tripping over my own feet.
We started off in Child’s pose and then moved onto the Sun Salutation sequence. Not expecting the constant flow of the series of poses, I found this to be harder than I imagined. All thoughts of cockiness that yoga was easy flew out of my mind as I moved from Warrior I to Warrior II and felt the burn in my thighs.
We did a few more poses that had me grinning and thinking sleazily “Ohhh yeah. THAT’s why they say yoga is good for the bedroom”(Frog Stretch and Plow pose anyone???).
It was actually really liberating to focus on nothing else but my breathing, holding the pose and just being relaxed. It forced me to remove all thoughts from my mind.
“The mat doesn’t lie” said the yoga instructor as she moved around us to occasionally adjust our pose or make us push that little harder.
“Everything you have out there brings itself in here.”
And it was true.
I struggled and sucked completely at all the balance moves (Tree, Dancer) to which she said was because I struggled with balance in my life.
It was DEEP, man.
It actually made me grit my teeth and try all the harder to perfect it and I’ve sworn a challenge to myself that by the end of the six weeks, I WILL do it.
By the time I left after spending an hour of bending myself into a pretzel shape with a warm, noodley-like feeling, drenched in sweat, it was, you might say – enlightening.
Well, let’s not go there yet, but I do have to say that I did enjoy it. It DID make me want to almost treat my body to this and feel for just a small moment in time that nothing else mattered but myself and my body. That no matter what was happening with my life, that I can come to this place and just BREATHE.
I may not turn into a tree-hugging, organic-cotton wearing hippie just quite yet (and no offense to those who are tree-hugging, organic-cotton wearing hippies) but I’m very thankful that I decided to take the chance to do this. It feels right.
And hopefully, by the end of it I can get some balance – both on and off the mat.
Have you ever done yoga before? If so, most hated pose? Forgive me if this is TMI, but Kegel exercises – yay or nay?