Archive for the 'Yoga' Category


Thursday, July 24th, 2008

If you been a reader of my blog you might have noticed I NEVER do back-to-back runs unless they are only like a 1 mile run.   I have only made 2 exceptions and they involved Disney races, so of course I just had to!  In the past I did it because I wasn’t willing to sacrifice my FIRMs for back-to-back runs and I wanted to conserve the extra wear and tear on my joints caused by back-to-back runs. 

Runner’s World Smart Coach had me add back-to-back runs starting this week.  On Wednesday I have my speed or tempo run followed by a 2 mile easy run on Thursday.  In the psat I would have ignoed this and moved on, but I am following through with it this time.  I am considering it the beginning of my training for the American Odyssey Relay.   I figure Step 1 – runs on back-to-back days.  Step 2 – more than one run on the same day.  Of course Step 2 doesn’t have to occur for some time.  I figure I will start throwing in 2 runs on the same day every other week starting some time in February.  I have plenty of time to plan that out though since it is only…what…July?  I will probably start working on the training rotation that takes me from October through the WDW Half Marathon the WDW Princess Half Marathon and the American Odyssey relay at the end of September. 

In just 2 hours I will be sitting on my mat in the yoga studio preparing for my first regular yoga class.  Up to now I have only been doing the Beginner Yoga classes.  The biggest reason for the change is scheduling.  The Beginner classes are at 8 AM or 8 PM.  8 AM gets knocked out because of that whole work thing getting in the way.  The evening classes set me up for getting home around 10 o’clock and with needing to take a shower I don’t make it to bed till almost 11.  After the shower I am wide awake so I lay there staring at the ceiling for almost an hour before nodding off to sleep.  For the record, this granny-like-20-something (4 more months till I have to call myself a 30 something o_O) likes to have her head hit the pillow between 9:30 and 10 o’clock.  If I don’t I have a somewhat zombie appeal to me the next day. 

I have to remember this evening that I need to keep my yoga practice within the limitations of my own body.  Yoga practice is a very personal thing and everyone has different capabilities restrained within their own body structure.  Just because the teacher is the crazy-bendy-woman that was the assistant instructor from the Beginner Yoga series I took doesn’t mean I have to be crazy-bendy too. 

Namaste – Yoga Week 1

Friday, June 20th, 2008

Last night I picked up my big brother and drove us up to the yoga studio.  I was very nervouse going in because I am not very balanced or flexible.  However those are the two main reasons I signed up for the yoga class to begin with.  We strolled up to the studio to find MANY people standing outside.  We stood with them, but didn’t know why.  We stepped into the studio to get some guidance.  They had us sign in and then go take off our shoes and pick a spot in the studio.  I handed Mike my extra yoga mat and we rolled them out.

It was a good thing I thought ahead to bring our own mats because there were not enough to go around in the studio.  The first thing we both noticed even before we sat down on our mats was how warm the room was.  We did not sign up for a Hot Yoga class, but even when they aren’t having Hot Yoga classes they do not run air conditioning in the building at all.  The building you could tell was newly renovated with crisp white walls, indoor outdoor carpeting, and exposed steal ventilation running across the ceiling.  I imagine you could still smell the paint if it weren’t for the incense burning in the corner.  There were colorful indian paintings on the walls and candles burning across on a mantal in the front of the room. 

We sat for a while watching people walk in.  The instructor had us slide our mats around into an “English Garden” to make space for everyone because we had a full class.  Some people still needed to register so it took us a while to get the class started.  I grabbed my purse and turned off my cell phone.  The instructor heard the power down tone and asked everyone to make sure they turned off their cell phones because they will ring at the most embarrassing moment and no one will claim it as their own phone.

The instructor started class by having us close our eyes and take deep breaths as she explained what the eight limbs of yoga are.  She explained that while we were starting poses that night normally you wouldn’t start poses until you have mastered the Do’s (yama) and Don’ts (niyama) of daily living and breathing (pranayama).  But since we were in America we were going to go ahead and review the Do’s and get into some standing poses. 

As we continued breathing she went into detail on the five yamas of daily living.  She asked us to choose which one most closely resonated with us and to remember it while doing our poses.  I chose Brahmacharya, which  translates into celibacy.  She explained that in traditional practices it means just that, but in more modern practices it means that energy isn’t wasted, you give away what you don’t use and try to stay productive with what you do use.  The way she explained it reminded me of my efforts at getting others to be more eco friendly in their lives, which is why I chose it for myself.

We started out in the mountain pose.  Which from the outside looked like we were all standing there with our arms up in the air.  Whoever we were concentrating on muscles from our feet all they way up to our finger tips.  This was helping to build heat our in our bodies and prepare us for moving into the warrior poses.

Mike and I both did pretty good with warrior 1 and warrior 2.  For warrior 3 we worked as partners.  Partner A held Partner B’s arms as they balanced on one leg trying to make a straight line parrallel to the floor with the bodies from their finger tips to the toes of the non-balancing leg.  Mike balanced first and put a lot of his weight ont my arms.  I actually was finding it difficult keeping him balanced.  But he did pretty good.  When it was my turn I didn’t put hardle any weight on his arms because I was concentrating on keeping myself balanced.  The instructor walked up behind me and pulled my leg up and out.  I thought I had been doing pretty good with the length and height of my leg, but when she was done I felt like she had given me an extra 10 inches.  Next we moved on to do the move with out a partner.  Mike did much better at this than I did.  I lose balance several times and almost fell forward on the mat. 

We continued on through several more poses including the traingle, forward bend, and several other standing yoga postures.  You could feel the burn in many of the poses, and she had us stand and take several deep breaths after every move so you could feel how the posture effected your body. 

At the end of the class you lay on the ground in the dark and perform a relaxation exercise to let the benefits of your practice settle into your body.  We are all laying in the dark, totally relaxed, and then we all here someone’s cell phone start ringing.  We all start laughing since it was just as the instructor predicted, right at the most embarrassing moment. 

We left class feeling great and realized that both us stopped minding the heat in the room after we got moving into the poses.  This morning we both woke up feeling worked but not sore.  When I was walking Tillie I noticed how open my hips felt and how I was standing more upright.  We are both excited about going back next week.  I was actually going to try to go on Sunday, but I am volunteering at a local race, so I might instead go Tuesday night since I have a free class pass that I can use.

A New Adventure?…Maybe.

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

When I first lost all of my weight one of the staples of my diet was a weekly trip to a local deli for a shrimp salad sandwich on whole wheat with lettuce and tomato.  Today I found myself craving one, so when lunchtime came I headed up the street.  I realized quickly that it has been a really long time since I have made this trip.  I am guessing probably over a year.  As I turned the corner next to the deli I found myself staring at a new neighbor for the deli.  Well, actually it isn’t a new neighbor because apparently they have been there for 9 months and I just didn’t know it. 

A yoga studio has moved in next door to my deli.  I quickly memorized the web address and then headed into the deli to get my sandwich and Sun Chips (now made using solar energy).  When I got back to my desk I immedeatly brought up the website to discover they are having a beginner’s yoga series starting this week for 5 weeks that teaches you all the basic postures.  Just last week I started working to reincorporate yoga back into my routine, so I find it highly coincidental.  I am seriously thinking of joining up for the 5 week course and getting someone else looking at my yoga posture to make sure I am doing things right.  I’ve got 2 days to decide whether to get my yogi on or not.