Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Om it Out

Before I took up running, I tried a myriad of things to lose a pesky 10 pounds. None of it ever worked until I took up running, but the one exercise that stuck with me was yoga.

Generally I'm a pretty neurotic/anxious/tense person. I have to wear a night guard while I sleep because if I don't I will clench and grind my teeth to oblivion and need dentures before I'm 40. When I played flute, I would grip the instrument so tightly that I got imprints of the holes in my keys in my fingertips.

You get the picture.

Yoga seemed like a good idea for me. I thought it would help me learn to relax while increasing my flexibility and putting me on the path to some awesome abs. My mental picture of my life with yoga was kind of like this:

Relaxed. Mind at rest. Gorgeous.
 At my previous job, we had Fridays off during the summer, so instead of sleeping and laying around all day I opted to try out the Friday morning yoga class at the good old Y. The class was called "Fitness Yoga" and it absolutely kicked my butt. But I went back all summer and when I had to work on Friday again I started going to either the Saturday morning class or to a Tuesday night session called "Vinyasa Yoga" at the Y near my work.

It took a few months, but I did start to notice differences in my body once I started yoga. I became much more aware of my posture, particularly when sitting at my desk at work. I notice when I begin to clench my jaw unconsciously and tell myself to relax. My life with yoga doesn't quite equal that mental picture up there, but sometimes in the immediate moments after a class, it gets close to feeling like that.

Then I walk out the door and call my husband who hasn't started dinner yet and the calm feeling goes out the window.

Anyhow, nowadays I'm pretty faithful to my Tuesday evening Vinyasa classes at the Downtown Y. I love our instructor, Penny. She focuses on a particular goal for the class each session, so there is a lot of variety. Once 5:30 hits, she welcomes us to class with her customary words and tells us what we're going to focus on. I always smile really big to myself when she says, "Tonight we're going to do hip openers" and inwardly groan when the announcement is "Tonight we're going to do some back bends."

This evening's class was just fabulous. Lots of vinyasa flow going on and I was kind of nailing it. I did a decent eagle pose and a side plank, which I usually cannot do at all. My favorite pose of the night was intense side angle, which I managed to actually bind like this:

Tonight was also the first time that I wore my new Lululemon Deep Breath Tank.

I'm completely in love with this tank top. I paired it with a pair of bright pink yoga crops and didn't want to take it off.

Tomorrow is another 8 miler with Prabir, which I'm looking forward to. The weather has continued to be crazy warm and tomorrow's forecast is a high of 70 so conditions should be perfect.

Do you do yoga? 
Is it crazy warm where you are now? 

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