Tag Archives: yoga life

Yoga Beyond Asana

I have done yoga a grand total of twice since my last post (That’s day 4 and 5, people). Not even close to my “daily practice” I was talking about last Wednesday. Life happens. Some people have the time in their day (or the discipline to make the time in their day) to squeeze yoga in between all their other obligations. Perhaps yoga is not high enough on my priority list (trust me, it is) and other people are more passionate about their practice than I am, but I don’t think that’s it. I think that I am a full-time college student and a part-time worker, and the part-time typically manifests itself as three full days of work on my three days off of school, not to mention I have to take care of (feed, clean up after, etc.) my wonderful dog (and my wonderful boyfriend).

I know I say I’m busy a lot. I think part of me wants to justify my lack of asana practice to myself because I follow so many wonderful people who find the time to practice every day, and I have a hard time not letting their “successful” practice affect my perception of mine. But I KNOW that’s not how it should be. My practice is mine. Practicing asana only four times in a week doesn’t make me a better or worse yogi than anyone else. Asana is only one small piece of what yoga is. I talk about my asana practice online, I post pictures of my advancement through asanas online, but that is only one segment of my yoga journey. The rest is personal, things I don’t think or want to consistently publish online. I just wish I could separate success in asana from success in yoga, because that’s not what it’s about. Maybe I’ll never gain a huge following because I can’t put my foot behind my head or do a handstand. My yoga is still just as valid as anyone’s.

Like I said, I think part of me is justifying my lack of asana practice recently. I am excited for the day I accept that I do asana when I can (and trust me, I love my practice. I rarely ‘skip’ practice simply because I ‘don’t feel like it’) and realize that yoga extends far beyond how many downward dogs I fit in a week.

Namaste.

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Tales of an Ashtangi

I’m sure that those of you who consistently read my blog posts have figured out by now that I am a woman who doesn’t know what she wants. A few months ago I was diligently weight training 6 days a week and now I’m suddenly a “dedicated yogi”? What gives?

To be honest, I don’t know. I have been spending a lot of time trying to figure out me. Who am I? What am I that isn’t what other people want/expect me to be? What DO I like? So, yes, right now I am a dedicated yogi. I love yoga. I love reading about yoga, I love doing yoga, I love how much happier I am on the days I’ve done yoga. Literally nothing bad has come into my life since starting a dedicated practice, and I hope that I stay committed and it always keeps me this happy and excited to be alive.

All that being said, I am officially starting 100 Days of Yoga TODAY! I’ve been thinking about this for a few days now and since it’s still stuck in my mind, I decided to roll with it. I tried this before on Giveit100, then I moved back to the states from Greece and my whole life went way out of whack and never quite got back to the same calm routine I was used to while I was there. I won’t be using that website again and I will not be including pictures/videos every day, just because my yoga space is not very picture-friendly and I do yoga alone most days, so it’s just not reasonable for me to expect to get a picture every day. I will try to include them when I can, especially when I do a new pose for the first time or if I get super excited about something, i.e. first time holding Grasshopper pose (Parsva Bhuja Dandasana). This is Big News for me because I tried it just a few weeks ago and couldn’t even get into the prep pose:

Look at that smile :)

Look at that smile 🙂

I’m also not going to dedicated myself to daily posting, because I know I can’t commit to that with my schedule. I plan to shoot for 4-5 days a week, and if I get six, good for me. Most days will be Ashtanga, but I have started taking hot yoga at my local studio, so that will count as well. I am going to dedicate myself to posting MOST days, catch-ups allowed, and I am dedicating myself to NOT GIVING UP until I reach 100 days, no matter how long that 100 days lasts.

I am also planning on re-vamping the blog to make it more yoga-centric. I have a lot of yoga reading in my future, so maybe I’ll even be able to TALK about what I’m doing past “yeah, I really like this!”

That’s all for now, beautiful people. Namaste.

Hot Hot Hot

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Last night I went to my very first Bikram yoga class. My boyfriend had work yesterday, and my living situation right now is really, REALLY stressful, so I was determined to find something to do out of the house. I’ve been searching for a yoga studio close to where I work for a few weeks now with no luck. For some reason I didn’t even consider studios around where I actually live until last night and I am SO upset it took me this long to find a place to take classes because IT. WAS. AWESOME.

I think part of the reason I loved it so much was just because I haven’t really spoken to anyone outside of my coworkers, customers and my boyfriend for a LONG while now. It has been so hard on me to not really have any friends in Memphis. Whatever the reason, I’m hooked. I’m only going to be in Memphis for two more weeks but I bought a new student unlimited pass for way cheap and I’m going to go as many times as possible. Luckily, there is a studio in Oxford that offers Ashtanga AND Bikram classes, so this is definitely something I’m going to continue to pursue when I move. I love doing my Ashtanga primary with Kino, but I know if I plan on seriously going forward with Ashtanga I need an instructor’s guidance.

Anyway, back to the class. It was hot. I was so unprepared for how hot that room was. It reminds me of hot Mississippi summers when you just walk outside and start sweating. I was sweating on parts of my body I didn’t think possible. There were a few points that I had to just stand and take a few deep breaths, but I would say I kept up with the class pretty spectacularly for it being my first time. For a while during the class I wasn’t completely sold on it, but after we finished I knew 100% I would be going back. In fact, I’m going back tonight.

I recently read an article (that I absolutely cannot find right now) about being comfortable with whatever “is” at the present moment. Not expecting anything one way or the other, just noticing what is happening and accepting it as it is. That article stuck with me when I read it, but I don’t think I really understood until last night in class. I mean, it was HOT. Incredibly, uncomfortably hot. I spent the first twenty minutes just thinking about how hot it was. But at some point, I said to myself that yes, it was hot, it was going to stay hot and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it except leave, which I had decided not to do. That meant that I had to stop fighting against the heat and just let it be. I had to let myself just be. And I did. And it was awesome.