Friday, October 8, 2010

Yoga---a war story

Yoga---a war story

Namaste (that’s yoga for hello, have a nice day).

My past several blogs have focused on the healthy writer. I’ve written about eating healthier, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep.

Today, I’m writing about yoga. Relaxing, calming, yoga.

If you are reading this blog for some helpful yoga tips, or to learn more about yoga, you’ve come to the wrong place. Check Wikipedia.

I must be one of the few people left on the planet who had never practiced yoga. But when the community I live in began offering weekly classes for $4.00, I decided to sign up.
First, I needed a nice, stretchy, yoga outfit. I purchased a cute outfit in blue, and added a matching blue mat, to the cost of $50.00. Luckily, my local department store, Marshall’s, had just what I wanted.
That was the fun part.

Then came the first class and . . . balance, or should I say, my lack of balance. There was no way I could balance on one foot in a prayer position—at least not for longer than 1 second. It's been 3 weeks now, and I haven't improved.
And I don’t think my instructor likes me, but that’s another blog.

My sister in New York recently started yoga. In a recent email she wrote:
“Does your instructor make you lay down at the very end for about 5 minutes where it’s complete silence and you’re supposed to just meditate? I tend to just lay there and think about if I’m swallowing too loudly, or what happens if I cough?"

Maybe it runs in my family, but I find it hard to meditate. Perhaps one day I’ll be able to balance on one foot, and my instructor will begin to like me. Or perhaps she doesn’t like the color blue. I could always look for another yoga outfit in green, with a matching mat, of course.

Or, maybe I’ll take up tennis. Everyone looks good in white, except I don’t know about wearing those little tennis skirts.

Anyone else have any yoga war stories they’d like to share?

20 comments:

Dawn Marie Hamilton said...

You made me laugh, Joanne. I had a similar experience several years ago and never went back.

Barbara Monajem said...

LOL. I first tried yoga in college. I loved it, but when the instructor would get us to lie on our backs and relax every muscle, I would have a hard time not falling asleep...

More recently I took a yoga class that was more like a cross between yoga and calisthenics. It was HARD WORK. We didn't do many of the breathing exercises (one of my fave things about yoga), but it was great for strengthening, especially my arms.

As for balance... sometimes when I'm waiting for something I'll just stand on one leg for as long as I can... then the other leg... back and forth. Sometimes it's only a few seconds per leg, and sometimes I can manage it much longer. One leg seems to be better than the other. Another exercise I do is walking along a curb and trying to keep my balance. It's fun, and sometimes I don't fall off!!

I really like yoga, but I don't have the patience to do it alone. I have to be forced to work at it, so a class works well for me.

Autumn Jordon said...

Funny. I've never tried yoga. I'd be the one lying there, foot wiggling, thinking of all things I had to do and my bp would shoot up. I think the purpose of yoga is to do the opposite. Whacking a ball seems like a better idea.

Match anyone?

Sheila Tenold said...

You're too funny, Joanne! Yes, I tried yoga once. I'm an A type person so trying to relax outside of a bathtub gets me nowhere. That's why I have a hot tub. You have to just stand or sit there, stare at the starry sky and savor the quiet time.

For balance I'd suggest Tai Chi. Now that was fun, especially since the male instructor had a really cute tush!

Joanne said...

Dawn,
Good to know. I thought I was the only one who didn't quite have the balancing act the other ladies in my class have achieved.

Joanne said...

Barbara,
You seem to be made for yoga. Thanks for the good tips on practicing my balance. It all seems so simple, but I find it so difficult.

Joanne said...

Autumn,
I'd never tried yoga until a month ago. You sound just like me. My brain goes a mile a minute when I'm supposed to be meditating.

Joanne said...

Sheila,
I must be a Type A personality, also. I love the idea of a hot tub. My dh and I have been talking about putting one on our deck for years. We'll have to take a trip to Lowe's instead of Marshall's.

Paisley Kirkpatrick said...

If you have to stand on one foot, I'd be tossed out after a few moments. Balance is not good, falling is much easier. I am not allowed on anything with wheels, skis or anything that slightly consists with being balanced. I was born this way. ;) My challenge is just to stay upright while walking. :) I applaude you for trying.

Lee Lopez said...

I've never taken yoga, but have considered it over the years. I run, but recently sprained my ankle, so yoga might be something to consider.

Mona Risk said...

Joanne, I have never tried yoga, but I can stand on one foot for more than a minute. Instead of meditating, I think about the hundred things I have to do. I like Pilates and took it for two years. I learned to breathe the righ way. Unfortunately my belly is always in the way of most of the exercises. If I could only cut it.

J L said...

I'd done yoga and tai chi throughout the years. I used to be quite good at yoga but alas, the years have taken away a lot of my flexibility. I am signed up for a yoga class for later this fall. I take one a year, just to check in with my body and see how I'm doing.

And while in the 'corpse pose' (that lying down one) I'm always worried my stomach will rumble or I'll belch. So much for relaxing!

Joanne said...

Paisley,
I face the same challenge of trying to remain upright when walking. And I always trip on the second step of the stairway in my house. I told my dh it's the stairway, not me. :)

Joanne said...

Lee,
I run on the treadmill 5 miles, 5 days a week. I do this so that I can eat and eat and eat.

Joanne said...

Mona,
You have always looked fabulous. I've never tried Pilates, but see it advertised all the time. Perhaps when I'm done with yoga and tennis...

Joanne said...

JL,
I'm not familiar with tai chi, either. I'll look into it after I'm through with tennis and Pilates. :)
Best wishes on your upcoming yoga class.

Robin Covington said...

My only foray into yoga was with p90X and it was the night I hated. Make me run, sweat, lunge, twist -but don't ask me to meditate and relax. that's pure torture!

Joanne said...

Robin,
I totally agree. Maybe it's because we're writers, and our brains are always running for us.

Mary Marvella said...

Funny, Joanne. I bought yoga tapes, I dozed within seconds of lying or sitting still. I have lousy balance, though as a kid I would have been with Barbara, walking on walls and curbs.

My most common comment was, "You want me to do what?"

Joanne said...

Mary,
That's funny about the yoga tapes. They must be quite relaxing. I thought I had fairly good balance, until I started yoga.