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Wednesday, May 17, 2006

My Practice

Pigeon Pose -- Friggin hard. I can not get anywhere near touching my forehead to my foot (this model's jelly-like bones probably help her flexibility). On a good day, I can reach back and grab my back ankle, from there I just pray for divine intervention.

I am so sore today, and it's not from running (my newly established prepare-for-marathon-training-schedule has me running on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday are for yoga, and Saturdays for spinning); it's from yoga. Yoga days are supposed to be my easy going days, and don't get me wrong, I had a great practice yesterday, but lord, did we work! It doesn't help that I did ab work on Monday and then we did several poses yesterday that also worked our abs -- ouch! My stomach ached so bad yesterday night that when I sneezed, I thought I might cry (and maybe pee myself).

Today, I am sore not just in my abs, but all over. My hip flexors got an especially good workout in yoga yesterday (lots of deep lunging poses) and my back got all stretched out (I love back bends, but they can still leave me achy the next day). Lots of people, husband included, don't understand how yoga can be a workout (a man who can't bend over and touch his toes), and in a way, while I'm doing it I don't realize how hard my body is working. But some poses are very difficult, and the trick with yoga is that you have to hold those difficult poses; it's the holding that makes it hard.

That, and trying to keep peace of mind (and remember to "breathe"; dammit, I don't want to breathe, I want to pass out). Everything in yoga is supposed to be about "your practice" and "challenging yourself but not being focused on the end result" and "you're not in competition with anyone, not even yourself." Sometimes the mantras are nauseating. Still, because it's so different from running where I am focused on the end result and where I am definitely competing, especially against myself it helps give me a different perspective on exercise. That's why I like yoga, it's so different from what running demands of me physically and pyschologically, but it's also why yoga is a challenge for me.

I ache today, yes, but that means I pushed myself, challenged my muscles. Today's run might be a little stiff, but I'll get through it (with a little help from some motivation called "coffee").


Running Jayhawk said...

Holy cow.

I've been procrastinating signing up for yoga...that's so scary! WILL THEY MAKE ME DO THAT? There's no way I could even get close to that pose. I'm screwed.

psbowe said...

That looks painful...I used to be flexible too.
Yoga is great. You'll get there, even if it's crazy.

Josie said...

I'm just getting started with yoga...any insight will be helpful!

Liv said...

Wow, I am obviously "lazy yoga" girl - I pretty much consider it an easy stretch session. Maybe I need to take a class so it can kick my ass a little bit.