Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I Lied

I lied. I am going to tell you what I ate today. Because when you are keeping track of your food you want company during such a boring chore.

Pre-ride breakfast: english muffin with almond butter.
Post ride: small bowl of grape nuts.
Snack: Chobani pineapple.
Lunch: cheese ravioli & pesto (from farmer's market) with asparagus and cauliflower.
Dinner: bread & cheese upon arrival home (famished) then kale, leek and mushroom frittata, Harpoon Summer Beer.

The key to today was being mindful. Paying attention (via tracking) to what I was eating, noticing what the computer thought I should eat v. what I knew I should eat due to the bike ride (a couple hundred extra cals), making sure I used veggies as the base of my meals and remembering that more protein at lunch makes me happier.

I boiled one of the two dozen eggs I picked up at the farm down the street. Those will be a good addition to my days.

I was awake at 4am this morning (birds, not insomnia) so I'm foreseeing an early bedtime, another early morning and a bike ride with my new sunglasses.

Pardon the Interruption

There is really nothing more boring that talking about weight loss (or lack thereof) because it is a meaningless goal (for me anyway) but just for today I will track what I eat in Sparkpeople. I will not let that overtake my life but it is just so curious to me that I've been doing so much exercise and activity these last 3 months and have not lost an ounce. And my eating habits are the same. Would I weight 250 pounds now if I hadn't been doing all that stuff?

Anyway, I biked 14 miles this morning. My sunglasses dropped an arm at some point during the ride, so on the way home I was riding with them on like they were opera glasses, with the remaining arm wedged between my bandanna and my helmet.

I'm not going to start listing what I'm eating because, again, boring, but I can tell you it will consciously involve more vegetables.

That is all. Have a nice day.

Monday, June 28, 2010

What's My Motivation? (with a happy ending)

So, I just go the proofs from the photographer and all I can think is who is that person? Am I really an amazon with a tiny head but giant face? Do I really have that stupid look on my face all the time? Why do I go out in public? Is despising the way you look in photos a good reason to want to lose weight? Does being motivated by self hatred make a goal any more attainable?

It seems like such a shame to waste the talent and time of the photographer and make up artist.

And then I start to sink into "well, no wonder I'm single" but that's just self-indulgent and stupid because what you look like has little to do with whether someone will love you.

What's the saddest is that this is what I felt like every day 20 years ago. And it still flares up. And it still sucks just as bad. And it's still so much harder to change what's in your brain rather than what's on your body.



Edited to add that after this I biked to the beach and swam for 45 minutes. My mood is much improved. Nothing a little sweat, some endorphins, and the rush of cold water from the sea won't cure.

Passport To Prana & Studio Review

My friend Stacey and I recently bought Passport to Prana cards so that we can take a free class at 37 yoga studios around Boston (probably fewer than 37 since we'll mostly likely skip the hot classes.) We went to our first one yesterday.

I had been to Healing Tree Yoga in Quincy before, a few years ago. It's just slightly too far and through too much traffic for me to go to it regularly but it's a nice studio. Clean and well lit, but without lockers for your things so people's bag clutter the edges of the room. It doesn't have the nice cork flooring or high ceilings that my usual haunt has, and when class first started the air was absolutely still and I wondered what people have against a nice breeze and some fresh moving air.

Thankfully as class went on, an Anusara class, the instructor turned on the fans and the air since we were working quite hard on our Kali energy. It was a great class - with lots of grounding standing poses, and a fun trip into Wild Thing, a sort of upside-down down dog + side plank + back bend. I could tell during class how much stronger I've gotten these past few months. We also did some more dhanurasana, bow pose,

The class I went to a few years ago had an instructor who stayed up at the front of the room and basically did her yoga practice while we followed along. I don't like this kind of class since if I just wanted to watch someone and not receive any assistance I would do a DVD. In Nikki's class yesterday (as in other classes I've taken of hers) she'd demonstrate a pose for us, and then walk around the room checking our poses, offering suggestions, rooting our hips back into their sockets, reminding us to pull the head of our arm bones back and not letting us just hide in the back of the room to go through the motions.

It was the perfect class for a Sunday morning.

Today is slated to be hot and muggy, thank goodness I'll be in the office in AC all day! Hopefully a thunderstorm will roll through and cool things down later.

Saturday, June 26, 2010


My yoga teacher is out of town this week and even though there is a sub, I'm skipping Level 2 today because it just wouldn't be the same. I'm going to work on the house, on getting rid of all clothes that are not flattering or don't fit or that I don't wear. I will be ruthless.

I got new photos taken for work yesterday. It was very fun. I was feeling good after a yoga class, then I went and got my hair done. I love having my make up done. There is something so soothing about having someone brush and dab at your face for half an hour (except the mascara part which almost made me puke for some reason) and then you look at yourself in the mirror and your face is smooth and flawless and radiant and you look like a news anchor woman. I immediately wanted to buy all of the make up that made me look like that, but I didn't.

Then we did some head shots, and went outside for some more photos. Here's me and me with the photographer and the make up artist. What a fun day!

Please note, my face is not usually that color. It's just the extra makeup for the photos.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

These Are Better Days

...better days are shinin' through.

That tricky Universe.

I decided to go to lunch time yoga today. I can't go tomorrow night and I figured that it would be a good complement to my bike ride. Well, when I got there the teacher announced that a photographer was coming to take some pictures for a magazine. Eek! My hair! No, actually, I thought "Cool, maybe I could be in a photo doing my sweet yoga moves."

And sweet moves we did. After warming up we decided that headstand might look nice, oh how about some urdva danurasana (upward bow), some ustrasana (camel) perhaps, a nice janu sirsasana (head to knee), and paschimottanasana with our feet together. Oh, and my new supta padangusthasana in which my angusta is in my hasta. What fun to just play around with our favorite poses. And have the photographer (who said she could do padmasana/lotus because "Oh, I'm 19" which gave us all a laugh) saying "wow, that is so cool."

I really hope one of the photos of me makes the cut. What fun that would be.

And then I went shopping, again, for things for my summer wardrobe. I went to the right store, with the amazingly helpful and funky ladies, and came away with 8 pieces that I feel and look fabulous in. Albuquerque mind, indeed, as Sylvia Boorstein puts it.
But it’s a sad man my friend who’s livin’ in his own skin
And can’t stand the company
Every fool’s got a reason for feelin’ sorry for himself
And turning his heart to stone
Tonight this fool’s halfway to heaven and just a mile outta hell
And I feel like I’m comin’ home
~Bruce, of course.
What shall we do tomorrow? The bike seat is fixed. Maybe another ride? What are you doing tomorrow?


I said I would and I did.

The bike is going to the shop for a visit today. I rode the hybrid since the roads were wet, but I forgot that the seat post sinks about an inch as I ride so I had to stop 3 times to adjust it. I put it in the back of the SUV right after the ride, and I'll take it to the shop after work to see if they can fix it.

I can't say that the crankiness is entirely gone, but I can say that I will go out with a renewed vigor today to find some shirts/jackets for my photo shoot. Visualizing the perfect thing usually works, so I'll try that before going.

Maybe it's the barometric pressure?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


(Photo source. Tittibhasana)

Ok, this is my resolution. First. I'm going biking tomorrow. I've set out my biking clothes, and will prep the coffee and set my alarm for 5am and get up and bike. 13 miles will bust this funk out. (Ha. I said bust.)

Second. I am getting rid of the shirt I wore today. I realized that every time I wear that shirt it makes me feel like crap. So it's leaving. Along with it's cousins, the Dumpies.

Third. I found a bunch of websites that cater to the large bu sted woman and I've ordered some shirts. We'll see. Bravissimo, Carissa Rose and AJ Rumina. I also found the Red Violet Project which is a woman attorney starting a company to make clothes that fit women like me. Maybe my dream of creating Tits and Asanas, my yoga clothes line for women with bra sizes Danurasana, Down Dog, Eka, Firefly and Gomukasana, is more doable than I think (These ideas are mine all mine. Do not steal them. Or maybe the line is called Tittibhasana.)

Fourth. I think 3 resolutions is enough. Well, really there are only 2 resolutions and one random paragraph. Although I do know that I need to get on my yoga mat on the days I don't go to the studio, I'm not quite ready to resolve that yet.

Also, I think that there must be people who feel at home in their body no matter what the size. I envy those people. Just like I don't spend time thinking about arm hair or my nose or scarring. Maybe I'll just think about my nose and how it never crosses my mind and start there. Strangely (or not) I used to be really bothered by my arm hair in high school. And I also hated my body 40 pounds ago. I would really like not to consider it at all.

And I still don't know what I'm wearing for my photos on Friday.

Some Days

Some days I feel at home in my body and love it. Today is not that day. Today I am annoyed and bothered and wishing either that my body was a very different shape, or that there were more places to buy clothing for the well en dowed woman. Some place to get shirts that aren't too short, that have a waist and don't look like a muumuu. Apparently those shirts that do exist cost around $100-150 and are mostly oxfords or shells to wear under a suit. I think oxfords are uncomfortable and I don't wear suits. Although maybe I'd find them comfortable if they were made to fit me, and maybe I'd wear shells and suits if they actually fit.

Why can't I just have a normal body that can wear cltohes off the rack? Ha. I said rack.

Then I just start to think "oh, it's because you are fat. If you lost weight things would fit you."

I am also wondering why I cut my hair off and thinking that it's either too long or too short but it's just not right. Or I don't know how to do it.

And I'm wondering why I'm getting my pictures taken on Friday when I take pretty much the worst pictures in the whole world. And am full of body hate.

And I know I should be appreciative about what my body can do and not what it looks like, but I'm not there right now.

I keep making changes and having weird regrets about them. And they aren't things that I think would change my life and I'm then disappointed that my life hasn't changed. They are just things I want to change. But maybe slightly underneath I think that if my hair is shorter or I have a new computer at work or my office is rearranged something else will change. But it doesn't. Only the thing that has changed has changed.

This shall pass. I hope. Or maybe I can pass it if I get on my bike or my yoga mat.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Yang and Yin

Last night my physical exertion finally caught up with me and a sleepy blanket of exhaustion came over me. I lazed on the couch with the Boy and watched a movie.

Yoga yesterday was awesome. The morning class was the perfect level of exertion and just what I needed to stretch me out from the bike ride. We practiced wheel with a strap around my upper arms to help me keep them in, and then once I was up the teacher pulled me up further and forward so I could feel where I'm going. I love those adjustments. And in paschimottanasana (seated forward bend) she gives me this amazing assist to where my face is almost on my shins and my hands were fully past my feet, clasping at the wrists. She even adjusted me in savasana, tucking my shoulder blades under, pulling my arms and legs gently out, and then pulling on my head slightly. It's pretty much like a massage during yoga.

After class I hurried to the farmer's market to stock up on hummus, pasta, kohlrabi, and cauliflower then ate lunch, changed and went back to the studio for the yin workshop.

Yin yoga is essentially holding floor poses for 5-7 minutes to promote deep release in the connective tissue. The quieting Yin, to counteract the active Yang. I can't say it was "enjoyable" since even pigeon pose starts to be uncomfortable after that long, but I think it was good for my body and my mind. And defintely a contrast to the Yang of my bike ride and morning yoga class.

Today I met my mom for a walk by the ocean. I almost rode my bike there but figured I'd give my poor sit-bones a rest for another day. We walked for about 45 minutes, slowly, and enjoyed the breeze. She pointed out to me the spots on her arms where she'd had pre-cancerous lesions removed recently as we both put on SPF 30 sunscreen. I need to be much more mindful of reapplying throughout the day if I'm biking. My shoulders are burned and that's not good.

Later I ate ice cream for lunch (homemade from a little store in town, Grape Nut. Yum.) along with some hummus and pita and an amazing cheese thing from the hummus stand with apricot preserves. Then I watched 87 episodes of Bones and did what felt like 13 loads of laundry, interspersed with opening and closing windows depending on whether it was violently raining or not.

Now I'm eating 2 bowls of steamed cauliflower with olive oil and shoyu, and sauteed kohlrabi and garlic scapes. I think that counts as my 5 veggie servings for the day.

I'm going to fold the clean sheets, revel in the fact that every item of clothing I own is clean and set out my yoga clothes for the week, along with a set of biking clothes just in case.

It was fun to figure out what my body could do this week, and to keep pushing it just slightly beyond where my mind thought was possible. I aim to keep that up. But tonight I aim to just lie here and watch more TV. Just a little more Yin before the Yang of the week kicks in.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Keep Calm and Carry On

I forgot to write about my Thursday night yoga class. I was the only one there (so sad how many folks are missing out on this amazing studio) and she had planned hip openers and ab work. Perfect for the pre-bike ride. I should do more ab stuff at home, my core is not very strong and it will help with so many of my poses.

We did a bunch of ab work, and in supta padangustasana (reclining hand to big toe pose) I was able to hold my toe instead of using a strap. That's progress. And when we were doing standing padangustasana at the wall, I was much stronger than I'd been in the past.

We worked on hanumanasana, monkey splits, and some pigeon. Which is still one of my favorite poses.

My quads are kind of sore and tight today. I thought I was going to skip yoga, but then I realized that the reason I want to skip is because I'm afraid I'll be weak and fall over in class, which probably isn't going to happen. My pride was trying to keep me from going after feeling like such a failure in last week's class.

So, I'm going to go to Level 2/3 this morning, and then go back for the Yin Workshop this afternoon. Because life is short and bodies are made to move.
"Treat your body like an instrument rather than an ornament" ~ Alanis Morrissette

Friday, June 18, 2010

Forty Eight

Things I learned on my 48 mile bike ride along the Cape Cod Rail Trail today.
  1. Sunscreen needs to be reapplied after swimming at mile 24.
  2. Swimming at mile 24 is awesome, even if you are swimming in your biking clothes.
  3. There are maybe 4 enjoyable miles during a 48 mile bike ride.
  4. The best parts of a ride like this are planning it and being done with it.
  5. Padded biking gloves make all the difference in the world.
  6. Yoga helps make your wrists stronger.
  7. Yoga helps make your quads stronger.
  8. Bringing clean dry clothes for the ride home are the key to a good post-ride experience.
  9. Changing into your post-ride clothes in a parking lot is easier if you have a dress.
  10. Swearing and cursing and calling on Jesus helps get you through some tough miles.
  11. If I ever think I want to do this again, please flatten my tires and take away my shoes.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


I rode 13.5 miles total (a few minutes over an hour). The road ended at the ocean and I couldn't go any further. So I stopped and took a photo and turned around.

I have to say that yoga and hiking have made a huge difference in my biking. First of all, I barely feel like I worked out, and this is only my second ride of the season. Second, my wrists didn't hurt at all. This is huge, and due to all my yoga where I'm strengthening my wrists. Third, my lungs didn't burn.

It was just a lovely, early morning, ocean side ride. If I can get out a little earlier, I think it will be better, because by 7am everyone is driving out of the little sea-side town and I was sucking exhaust fumes for a bit.

Now I just feel so good! And of course now I want to drive to the Cape to ride my bike 50 miles on Friday.

We'll see!
(the .2 is because I had a post with the same title last year. So this is version 2)

The Keys To Success

For some reason (birds. singing loudly) I am up at 5:00 a.m. and going biking soon. So, I thought I'd share with you some of the keys for early morning exercise success.

1. Get up as soon as you wake up. Don't lie in bed reading on your iPhone for half an hour and then go back to sleep.

2. Put on your workout clothes right away, while you are still too sleepy to realize what you are doing. Even your socks. Bonus points if you set them out the night before.

3. Turn the coffee maker on. Let the dog out. Feed the dog.

4. Go get your bike out of the Shed of Decaying Squirrels and try not to think about waking any sleeping squirrels that might jump on you, or fly out of the rafters at your head, or crunch beneath your feet.

5. Fill bike tires. Go back inside and have coffee and wake up and then bike.

I'm not sure what the post-bike steps are since I haven't gotten there yet, I just know that last summer I was biking 13-15 miles in the mornings (in the rain!) so I know it's possible. Especially since the birds don't show any sign of hushing up in the mornings.

Also, reading this post by Emily of the Front Burner on my iPhone at 4:30 a.m. totally inspired me to get up.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

A Not Unsatisfactory Hike

It rains on the weekends here. Apparently that's its new thing. And I finally had enough of it and decided to go hiking.

I headed about an hour out of Boston to Wachusett Mountain, a ski resort in the winter, with hiking trails in the summer. And a Subaru car show extravaganza on June 13.

I took the Balancing Rock trail up to the Old Indian Trail to the summit. It was drizzley and very very misty. I couldn't see very far ahead of me, and actually had to ask a parking attendant where the mountain was. She pointed up at the fog, and off I headed.

It was a nice hike. Less hilly than when I go to the Blue Hills, but very pretty and with less people (and less litter.) It crossed ski trails on the way up, but I couldn't see more than 100 or 200 feet up or down the mountain, so I'm not sure what it looked like. And when I got to the top (where they were testing the chair lifts) I had no idea what the view looked like. I sat in the windy mist and ate some yummy pasta and studied my map for the 90th time.

I like to study my map when I hike. I kept it in a zip lock bag in my pocket and took it out at every intersection, even those that had signs. It makes me feel like I'm building a new skill when I read a map. It's part of the Midstate Trail, which is what those yellow triangles mark.

It was a rather un-steep hike, the only very steep part being at the very top, where it was rocky and wet. On the way down, I lengthened my poles to give me more balance. And I un-strapped my hands from them in case I needed to let them slide down some rocks ahead of me so I could follow scooting on my bum.

By the end I looked like this.

The car show made my after-hike changing a little more difficult, but thanks to my trusty changing skirt, I was in dry pants and on my way home in no time.

The hike was 3 hours, and I would probably go back again in sunnier weather to try some more of the trails.

Now I'm making some pizza dough, and will add pesto, arugula, fresh mozzarella, vidalia onions, mushrooms and maybe some kale.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

There's A Tear In My Ear...

...'cause I'm lying on my back crying during savasana.

Saturday morning yoga just takes it all out of me. Whatever strength or grace I thought I had gets left in a puddle of sweat on Saturday mornings. Today was revolved poses, which make me feel even more unsteady and uncoordinated. My legs are exhausted from holding me up in such an unsteady state, and by the end I couldn't even get up into my last urdhva danurasana, I was just done.

I'm trying to just chill for a bit without feeling like I have to jump into all my Saturday chores, but it's hard to chill when the house needs cleaning and you want to go buy new shower curtain liners.

And twists leave me agitated. They wring out long stored stuff that makes me edge.

So, I'm going to lie around and watch Jillian Micheal's Losing It, and then I'm going to rally and march on.

Friday, June 11, 2010

A Very Busy Day

Today feels like it went by in about 5 minutes. I was leaving my house this morning to meet some new folks, and next thing I know I'm hobbling back home and kicking off my heels wondering where the day went. I got a ton of stuff done and found some great opportunities for work.

Now I'm having dinner which is: 2 eggs over easy and chopped steamed asapargus over rice with a little pesto dabbed throughout. Yum. And contains veggies. I may be eating this for every meal.

I did some outside yoga today after I got home. Some sun salutation with jump backs (the grass is more forgiving than a floor), parsvottanasana (side angle bend), then practiced a whole bunch of hand stands, kicking up from the easy side and the not easy side. And doing some cartwheels to get my body used to being upside down.

Then the mosquitos came to join in and I stopped.

I think I will be having nutella ravioli for dessert. Yoga is at 9am tomorrow. I hope my ankles stop hurting by then.

A Few Things

A few things.

We did handstands yesterday in yoga class. I had gotten to class early and the teacher thought I was going to be the only one in class so she asked what I wanted to work on. Handstands! And not just so I can be like Kathryn Budig and do handstands every where I go. Well, maybe a little bit.

There was one other person in class, a woman with a fused spine who is very strong and adventurous despite her physical limitations - so she's a good person to be in class with.

We did lots of plank, dolphin, down dog - building up strength in our lats, and arms. And trying to push back up from chaturanga, which I still can't quite do. But my arms are getting so much stronger.

Anyway, I was trying to do the handstands at the wall, kicking up from down dog and it just wasn't happening. I had no confidence, no momentum (which I still need at this point) and no success. So, while she was working with the other student on half handstand (where your legs are at right angle to the floor and are flat against the wall) I left my mat and just started kicking up into a handstand in the middle of the floor like I used to when I was 5. And soon enough, there I was on my hands. So, I went back to the wall, kicked up, touched the wall and stayed up for a few breaths, feeling just how strong my arms have to be to keep me up there. Then I kicked up again to make sure I could do it.

Of course I have a million miles to go on this journey, but I now feel like I've seen where I'm going and can visualize myself there. I can practice in my yard, against a tree or on the grass. I can practice kicking up with the other leg, I can trust that my wrists and lower arms will not in fact crumple under my weight (yes, that was a big part of my fear of getting up into handstand.)

My hip & sciatic pain are gone. I went in for a half hour massage yesterday morning. Just the right amount of time for my magician of a masseuse to get all in and around my hips and relax and separate the muscles, and generally improve the state of things. My right bum is quite bruised from the acupuncture & cupping, and my right back thigh has a dark bruise the size of a quarter - that must be the point where I nearly jumped off the table. Lots of things going on back there apparently. Thankfully thong bikini season is a long way off.

And lastly - I seem to have gotten so comfortable with things being uncomfortable that when things start to go right and I feel safe and secure (because work is steady and good, housing situation is falling into place) I get nervous and want to cry. Because I think it can't last, it must end, there's no way I can feel that at ease before something goes wrong. But I am allowed to have things go right. There is no shoe that's going to drop. There is not need to balance out the good by having something go wrong. It's possible for life to be easy and profitable and lovely and full. It really is.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


(I can't remember where that image is from, but I love it.)

A stressful day is over, and went well. I had to go to Court which makes me nervous since I don't go often and as I stood at the table with my client, I could feel the floor pulsing with my heart beat. But it was very quick and at the end we got what we came in for and the judge gave us a big smile. All is well that ends well. And it gave me a chance to practice my mindfulness during my anxiety (what is my body feeling? what thoughts am I having?). It was like going into urdva dhanurasana (wheel pose) when I didn't think I could.

I decided against yoga class tonight. I really just wanted to be at home. So I ate some bread and cheese and then decided to do yoga.

Some down dog, plank, mini push ups in plank, forearm balance, then a nice headstand and then shoulderstand. Then I took a 20 minute nap. That might be the best yoga practice ever. And the sound of the rain only improved it. And my recently altered top held up very well through all my inversions, never once needing to be tugged up or over anything. That pleases me.

I'm going to see my massage therapist tomorrow morning to see if she can't work the last kinks out of my hip. I got some nice cracking back there today (the best way is when I turn around in my car in the morning to back out of my driveway and use the passenger seat back for leverage, heavenly twist!) and I think the cross-legged seated forward bend I did today at work really helped to stretch that hip out and loosen things up.

The dog is snoozed on the rug, and I'm about to head up to bed to read.

Night night & namaste.

The Cranks

The crankies have set in. I know what it's from. Some things at work that are nudging at me, but will be finished soon. The feeling of being utterly alone at times. The waiting on the new living space. The sore hip. The sore knees (where did those come from?) The fat. Bah.

I'm having the urge to get rid of all my stuff. Or at least start packing it all up even though I'm not moving until September.

I want something different. I want something new. I want something other.

But for now I'll go take a shower and go to work. And finish up old things and make a plan for something new.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

My Hips Don't Lie

This shooting pain down my leg? It's not really about my hip or my sciatic nerve, or my piriformus muscle or any of those things. You see, emotions live in our hips (as Shakira knows) and when things aren't right and I'm not saying what needs to be said and doing what needs to be done, my hips don't lie either. They just start hurting so I get the message. And they send burning shooting pain down my leg, around my knee and into my ankle.

Acupuncture helped. The needles into my hamstring made me jump a bit, but after they were in they felt fine and soon I was dreaming on the table. She also did some cupping on my lower back, and a bit of massage.

Then I went to yoga and my teacher spent some time showing me the hip muscles in the anatomy book before class. She also had me wrap 2 straps around my hips at my sacrum and pull them snug, like a girdle, to give my sacrum some support. This felt really good and I wore the belts (with the ends tucked in) for about half the class.

I feel like if a giant would pick me up by my calf and give me a good shake upside down, he would dislodge my hip out of its socket, and could then give me another shake to get it back in there properly. Lying with a tennis ball under my hip is helping, too.

But also, the work I need to do for this is in my heart and my head.
So be wise and keep on
Reading the signs of my body
~ Shakira

A Note From Lululemon & A Shooting Pain in my Back

I sent Lululemon a link to my last post, since I think giving feedback on stuff is important. They wrote back:

Hi Leanna!

Thank you so much for sending this to us. What an amazing blog post! We get a lot of feedback about the sizing and fit of our clothing from larger chested women, and it's amazing to see such great ideas illustrated so clearly. I will be sending your blog post to our design team for them to look at. Hopefully, it will give them some ideas for future designs geared towards bustier women.

Thanks again :)

I wonder if we'll see some better designs in the future?

In other news, my sacroiliac joint is out of whack again. Which means shooting pain down the back of my right leg. Thankfully my acupuncturist is next door and I'm going to see her in 5 minutes, and my yoga class is tonight so I can get some help on poses to get it back into place and keep it there.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Hacking My Lululemon, or Yoga Clothes for the Large Chested

Last summer I went into Lululemon to find some tops. I needed something to fit the girls, which are thirty six Dx3, also known as E's. (Trying to avoid terms that will draw people googling for creepy things.) According to the girl at Lululemon, these tops were made for people like me. The tops seemed fine in the dressing room so I bought 3. After getting them home and doing a few yoga moves, I realized there was a problem. (I don't have a before picture of the s-i-d-e b-o-o-b but trust me, it was there.) There was no way I was going to yoga in this. If this was me in tadasana, what would down dog bring??
I took some stretchy material and fixed the problem.
Even leaning over, no spillage. I can salute the sun with the rest of them and not having things falling out during my inversions. I'm sure my teachers will also be happy that I'm not flashing them during class.
Everything covered as it should be! Dear Chip, this is how you actually make tops that fit larger chests (go away creepy google people.) You don't just make longer shelf bras, you actually have to add more coverage on the sides and tops.
Now when I buy tops, which is not at lululemon since I don't really want to have to retrofit a $48.00 top (or this one, which required my shortening the straps after I spent an entire class readjusting it), I do a bunch of yoga poses and sun salutations in the dressing room (or outside in the store if the room is too small) to see if everything stays where it belongs (including the clothing.)

I have found that Lucy's Power Yoga Tank fits amazingly well, and this Zobha one is pretty good, too.

And there you have it. Now if I can just find some spandex by the yard, I may starting sewing all my own tops...


Edited to Add: I had to make a few more adjustments on these after the photos were taken. I realized that when I put the tops on, I had the straps in the middle of my shoulders. But, as I raise my arms up and down and go into and out of various poses, the straps move in towards my neck, causing the fabric in the middle to gap. So, I narrowed it a bit so that it stays taut when the straps move up my shoulders as I move. I believe they are now ready for public wearing.

I just laid out 4 yoga outfits for the week. It's more work than you'd think. Each outfit needs a bra, either built into the tank or separate, then a tank, pants that coordinate with the top (not fashionwise but inversion-wise: for shirts that are shorter, I need pants that have a high waist, and pants with a lower waist require a longer tank), and an over t-shirt.

I think I may finally have a clothing system down that will have me not making any adjustments to anything in class except my poses.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

These are a Few of My Favorite Things

Yoga on Sat'days with hip op'ning poses
Working so hard the sweat runs down my noses
Flying in crow or just leaving the ground
These are the things that make my world go 'round...

Walking at World's End and passing some bikers,
Talking of times that we've been o'r night hikers,
Scheming and dreaming and planning and more
These are the things that good friends are made for...

When the beach calls
When the woods sing
When your feeling fiiiiiiiine
You simply call up your favorite peeps
and then go have 'sters and wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnnnnnnne!

A Change of Plans

I was going to hike today. My things were all laid out, my route planned, my lunch packed. My first "real" hike of the season. There was a chance of thunder showers. But then at 4am the horrible thunder and lightning started. My check of the weather on my iPhone confirmed that at my destination it was raining and would likely thunder, too. I'd been on that mountain before in thunder showers, and it wasn't unbearable but it wasn't fun scurrying off the bare top before the lightning struck. So I made the executive decision to bag the hike.

I stayed in bed and slept until 7. Got up and walked the dog in the rain (she is now sleeping happily under a shrub outside.) Had coffee.

Now I'm showered and dressed for yoga. And will then try to find rain pants so I can take a practice walk outdoors in the rain.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Jai Jai Hanuman

(photo source)

We practiced hanumanasana today! (monkey pose)
"It was the greatest leap ever taken. The speed of Hanuman's jump pulled blossoms and flowers into the air after him and they fell like little stars on the waving treetops. The animals on the beach had never seen such a thing; they cheered Hanuman, then the air burned from his passage, and red clouds flamed over the sky . . ." (Ramayana, retold by William Buck)
He lept from Sri Lanka to the tip of India. We did not leap quite that far.

We prepped with some prep poses and then got down on one knee (like in a proposal) with our front heel on the floor off the mat and on a belt (to help it slide) and our hands on blocks by our hips, and then we just slid our front heel forward so that leg straightened, our back leg slid towards the floor and our hands on the blocks helped support us since we can't get all the way to the floor yet.

The teacher said that it's the type of you pose need to work on a little every day and then you can do it, but if you rarely practice it, you'll lose the ability to do it. Like most things I guess.

Some head stands yesterday, and wheel pose for the first time in a while. The rest of class today was awesome forward bends, with some lovely assists.

Now, sleep.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I Found My Angusta!

(Angusta = big toe.)

Supta Padangusthasana (photo source & pose info)

My whole yoga career I have used a strap to do this pose, but last night my hand found my toe!

I was practicing some poses last night - some sun salutations, dolphin pose, plank. Then stretching in halasana (plow pose) and shoulderstand. I was holding my legs straight into my body as I rolled back down to lying down. As my shins were near my face I grabbed my big toes and realized I was in a sort of supta pada pose. I decided to explore it a bit. I lowered one leg down and kept my big toe of my other foot in my fingers and there I was in supta padangusthasana, with my angusta in my hand!

Now, the head of my arm bones could have been a little further back, my knee could have been a little straighter, but my hips were level, my legs strong and my body (and brain) realized that it is possible!

It felt good to be practicing at home. It's what I've been neglecting since I've been at the studio so much. And even though it was 10pm, I still managed to have a nice 1/2 hour practice before bed.

Also, my biceps are more defined which I noticed yesterday, too. Both of those things are good since I was feeling all lumpy and gross yesterday, and it was nice to see that while I may look lumpy on the outside, on the inside I am strong and flexible.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

My Favorite Pose (one of them)

This is one of my favorite poses. Janu Sirsasana (pose info & photo source), head of the knee pose. The best part is when the teacher comes over, and moves my ribs over towards the straight leg and helps me melt forward further towards my foot. Today my face was almost on my shin. I love forward bend asssists. My hamstrings love them. They are my favorite part of class. I would not have believed that my hamstrings could be this long, and yet here they are.

And here I am.

Finding My Balance

Whenever I do tree pose, I find myself thinking "I hate this pose. I can't balance. When is it over?" And of course, because I'm thinking that I can't balance, I can't balance.

I need to find some balance in other areas too.

Like my meals. I do really well some weeks having everything planned out and packed and feeling good through the whole day. Then there are days like today where I waited to long to eat breakfast (almond butter sandwich) and then lunch is beets, cauliflower and white rice. And a Sprite because my stomach feels weird and there was not ginger ale. A better choice might have been stopping at Whole Foods for some yogurt and an apple or cheese.

Let's plan better for the rest of the week, shall we?

And even my yoga practice is feeling unbalanced. Last week I went to a Foundation class on Tuesday night, then Level 1 on Thursday night, Level 1 on Friday morning, 2 hour beach walk on Friday afternoon (owie), Level 2/3 class on Saturday morning. Is it any wonder I got sick on Sunday? I need to figure out a good home practice so that during the beginning of the week I am building my stamina and not having so much of it crammed into Thursday - Saturday. I don't want to give up any of my end of the week classes, but I think I need a more intense practice on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday also.