Sunday, April 24, 2011

Weekend Practice

Saturday and Sunday classes are usually the hardest days. Saturday because it's level 2 with a very good teacher, and because I'm usually out later on Friday nights. This past Friday night found me sitting at an adorable restaurant eating a cheese plate at 10:30pm, so I was sleepy for class. And freezing due to the weather. By the end of it I was awake and properly warm. We worked towards bird of paradise. I was the hatchling version - still curled a bit and wobbly on my feet. More practice of aparigraha (non-attachment to the outcome.) Then I took a 2 hour nap later in the day. Heaven.

Today's formal class was cancelled on account of Jesus rising from the dead, so I found a Shiva Rea DVD for some flow. She's a bit hard to follow, but the flow was fun and creative and I did about 45 minutes. After that I practiced my inversions. Still trying to get all the parts working together to hold me up away from the wall. I might need my teacher to not help me balance, but to watch while I try to do it and give me pointers - hips forward (or back?), toes up, hug in, core in, claw the ground. Something.

The funny thing about this one - this was at the end of a long line of attempts, I said "I'm done" with resignation and then there I am - up, for a few breaths.

Surrender. Aparigraha. And learning lessons that keep coming, since I clearly need to keep learning them.

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Secret Is At Your Fingertips

Today's class was so lovely. Some nice strong vinyasas to start with. I finally realized that if I dig in with the tips of my fingers I can counter balance my weight when come down from plank to chaturanga and go much slower and actually hover in chaturanga. Who knew the secret to yoga was at my fingertips? (And if they knew, why didn't they tell me sooner!)

We moved into hand stand, where again I tried using my finger tips (in addition to bandhas and core) to balance away from the wall. Working on it. Then on to forearm balance, better balance on that one. I just love that pose.

Now I'm at the office working on slides for a presentation. Hoping the yoga brain settles down a little so the slides don't turn into "just do yoga, it will solve all your problems."

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Side Effects of Yoga

My lululemon groove pants are getting too big. I wash them in hot water and put them in the dryer until the cows come home, but all Saturday morning core planks have left them suitable only for home practice. Are there tailors who can tailor groove pants?

We won't speak of the 3 pairs of Ann Taylor pants sitting in my closet fresh from the dry cleaner that shant be worn again, lest we inflict on the world a case of Dumpy Bum and Baggy Crotch. Or the J Crew cords that fit me for a fleeting moment before my bum disappeared into the Sag.

Good bye, dear pants, I loved you well. And I will love your smaller siblings, too, just as I have learned to love all those core planks on Saturday mornings.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I put my weight into the Weight Watchers online tracker this morning and was rewarded with a bouncing star which meant that I had lost 15 pounds! (15.2 to be exact.) I have a ways to go but I am practicing aparigraha, which is the sanskrit word for non-clinging. I'm not clinging to the weight, and I'm not clinging to an outcome. I'm not clinging to the fact that 2 summers ago I was a lower weight than I am now. I'm just doing the things I need to do each day that keep my body healthy and happy and properly fueled. I'm just doing this for myself.

Last July I posted about How I Lost Zero Pounds With Yoga (and more). It's true. I didn't start losing until I joined Weight Watchers and really cut back on my food intake (and moved out of the house I hated.) What yoga does do is make all my pants too big even if the scale isn't moving much. And it makes biking better and easier. And it makes life better.

Yoga last night was lovely. We stared with some core work that my teacher loves, then moved to gomukasana (cow pose) to open our shoulders and then worked on pincha mayurasana. My right shoulder felt very good in it, and the teacher helped me balance for a bit. One of my favorite things is watching my friends get up into pincha mayurasana. (Shout out to Sprouts!) It is such a gorgeous pose and too see other people float up into it just brings me such joy.

I have a dozen and a half eggs in my fridge from my sister's chickens, and some asparagus and kale. I'm envisioning a fritatta for dinner. Lunch - leftover chicken and rice from Pa, along with the remaining bits of amazing potato salad that he makes with homemade mayonnaise. And some cut up oranges. Breakfast - english muffin with almond butter and banana.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Fathers and Daughters

I went to visit my dad yesterday up in Maine. He lives in a little cabin in the woods and my sister and her 2 children and I went to see him. He was busy cooking for us when we arrived.

I showed him my video of my forearm stand with my feet on the table. "Wow", he said. Then - "you aren't supposed to use the wall."

I suppose one could get annoyed at that response, since my father can't do that pose at all, wall or not. But, I have realized that fathers are just humans, and not imbued with the magical ability to say and do the things we wish they would say.

And I know he loves me more than anything, even though he says "you aren't supposed to use the wall." Plus, he makes us homemade ice cream.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Now I Do This

(The videos look stretchy, but when you hit play they will look normal)

Sometimes I do this now. I figured this out last weekend.

And when I can't balance yet in handstand or forearm balance I try to do things like this, and wonder why my back doesn't bend more, and why that hurts my shoulder so.

Over the winter I did this, at almost the top of a moutain

and looked like this before we got to the top when the weather was nicer.

I've also lost about 16 pounds, although with all the yoga my pants keep becoming too big even when the scale doesn't move that much.

And now that I've figured out how to post videos, I will probably blog more. Because on Saturday and Sunday nights I practice my inversions and tape them so I can see what is happening.