Miraculously, I made it through the day with dignity still in place. (That is questionable, however, considering I have now announced to the world my bowel movements…). But all in all, the day is done and no accidents in class were made. Phew! The tablets i took this afternoon may have helped with that, so I’m taking no risks with dinner tonight. Cereal and tea it is!
Today was a considerably crappier day than others where I have felt a little out of sorts. Aside from the usual problems of sitting for long periods, come lunch time I actually had a whole body ache. I was worried I may have the flu. And everything was so stiff. I described myself to Owen as a rusty door hinge which, if opened, will crumble. I can’t seem to fathom how I can go from doing some of the most intense back and forward bending asanas and then within a few hours I can barely move. (This isn’t always the case. As i mentioned before, today I was particularly off). I intend to chat with Bharath about this to get his view.
Regardless of how I felt, I was determined to attend the evening class. And I did. I knew I was not so unwell that meant training would do harm. In fact, I knew training would do the opposite, and I was right. The first few rounds of Surya Namaskara were torture however I knew the more rounds we did, the more my body would begin to open up. It’s honestly the most amazing thing to witness. I think a lot of people (who don’t practice) see photos of practitioners in all sorts of amazing, strong asanas and so they give up thinking they will never be able to do that. Even a simple forward bend. People can barely touch their toes so they immediately assume they are not flexible and never will be. It’s so very untrue. What people don’t see is the hour of preparation which that practitioner has undergone in order to move into that asana. Not all, but absolutely most. Forward bending (Paschimottanasana) is a challenge for me. One moment I may have my chin on my shin, perfectly in line, then the next moment i can barely reach my toes. So I think it’s really important that people who are beginners or considering trying yoga, not be intimidated by all the people who appear as though they are effortlessly moving into asanas. They have worked hard to get their. Prepared their bodies well and, don’t always reach that asana. Some days the asana won’t come because the body doesn’t feel it. But with proper training and technique, as well as a teacher who assures it is ok if something isn’t working for you today, will see the beginner achieve asanas they once never thought possible. I promise you. One just needs patience.
Bharath has also told us, “…what you have learned, you have to unlearn.” What he means by this is, we have all learned poor form, become dependent on arm strength, for example, rather than learned to engaged the pelvic floor and core. This is what we need to work on. From here, one can fly.
An example of disbelief turned belief: Tonight we have begun training for Pincha Mayurasana. Quite an advanced asana. At first I thought it was impossible for me to do, especially considering how I have been feeling today. But, sure enough, I was up there (not gracefully by any means, but nevertheless I was there). At the moment I still need some assistance, as I don’t yet have the core strength required, but the point is I’m working on it. WIthin a few days we will all be in Pincha Mayurasana on our own which is exciting. But - this would not have just come for us. We are working for it. Remember this if ever you feel intimidated about yoga, or by other practitioners who appear more advanced.
Also remember, as this mornings post demonstrated, yoga is not all glamorous. There are no anorexic models in our class who don’t have a hair out of place with full face of makeup. There are just men and women who are sweaty and stinky, with camels toes and wedgies, belly rolls and the occasional ‘letting go’. This is reality - but the energy amongst all these people is incredible and certainly something not to be missed.
So with that, I shall say good night as I think an early one is needed for me.
“Grass is for sissies!”