Last night’s yoga class was a giant step forward for me. I pretty much manages a headstand.
Not an achievement if you’re a 7 year old, it’s just something you can do, but I’m knocking on 52, and last night I got a real sense of achievement.
We were supposed to be preparing for a headstand, so arms and head in position, and walking the feet forward.
We were told by Susan, that we would do the preparation over the next few weeks until we could walk up so our hips were over our shoulders.
When I walked my feet up, I got a gentle tap on my side and heard her say “Your hips are already over your shoulders. Slowly lift your feet”
I started lifting, and she gently put her hands on my hips in case I went over, and the next thing I heard “Congratulations, you’ve done it.”
I was really chuffed.
That’s two things I can do thanks to yoga that I couldn’t as a kid. The headstand, and urdhva dhanurasana (wheel pose).
The life lesson I’m taking from this is, patience and practice and you can achieve results you want. Life isn’t about instant gratification, if you persevere you can push yourself you achieve things you never thought you could do.
In two weeks I’ll be off to Thailand for three weeks, and I can’t wait.
I’ve got a travel yoga mat ready to go. Rolls up really small but is actually heavier than a regular mat, but really grippy. My wife is using one on top of her regular mat which has lost it’s grip, and loves it.
I picked up what was going to be be one of my books to take, M Train by Patti Smith. The other was going to be Dirty Kids: Chasing Freedom with America’s Nomads, BUT I usually take books to read that I don’t mind leaving behind/passing on, and I don’t want to do that with these, so I’ll have a look in a charity shop and see if anything catches my eye.
I’ve been looking forward to this trip for months. We’ve got 10 days at Phuket, where I’m hoping to take some more surf lessons, after taking some in Bali last year. After Phuket, it’s on to Chang Mai, Bangkok, and finally a couple of days in Dubai on the way back.
I’m hoping to come back a calmer person, and be able to blitz the piles of dvd’s etc that I still need to clear out. I’ve been slacking on the downsizing front lately and need to get back on it.
I also have to get in touch with the tattooist to arrange to get more ink when I get back. I’m planning to go and see him before I leave to talk over the design, and book a date for getting it done.
I’ve just been to my first Hatha class, and really enjoyed it. It was as different from the Vinyasa flow class I go to, as the vinyasa flow is from the Ashtanga course I went on. Really nice lunchime pick-me-up to boost me into the afternoon. I like that.
On a different note, the last couple of days have been a bit…..odd, headspace wise. I feel calmer and happier in myself than I have for a long time. I don’t know what’s triggered this, but long may it continue.
At the weekend I picked up a travel yoga mat for taking on holiday with me. Not much in the way of cushioning, coming in at only 1.5mm, BUT it’s seriously grippy, so on grass, or something it should be excellent. I bought it at Decathalon, and if you’re interested, it’s here.
So the Introduction to Ashtanga course I’ve been doing for the last six weeks has finished, and I loved it. It’s given me a structured practice that I can do at home, but I did miss not going to the class last night, so I might have to find a guided class that I can go to. Despite what the teacher said, I don’t feel that I know the routine well enough to go to a Mysore class, and I don’t want to be constantly asking “Does “X” come next or is it “Y”?”, so yeah, I think a guided class is the way forward for the moment, and as luck would have it, there’s a guided class on a Tuesday evening that would fit in time-wise, with finishing work.
Yoga aside, the weather has finally got reasonable enough that I have started cycling to work again. As well as being healthier for me and the environment, it’s healthier for my wallet to the tune of £57 a month, so that’s a good reason to do it.
Next thing I’ve got to look forward to is our trip to Thailand in a little over a month. We’re away for three weeks, and are taking in Phuket, Chang Mai, and finally Bangkok, with two nights in Dubai to break up the flight home.
I’m hoping I can try surfing again in Phuket. I took some lessons in Bali last year as it’s something I’d always wanted to try (I used to skateboard, and I snowboard intermittently) and I finally got to try it and it was as amazing as I’d hoped. So I really want to do it again.
Categories: fitness, life, travel, Uncategorized, yoga
Tags: ashtanga, Bangkok, Chang Mai, cycling, Dubai, Phuket, Thailand, travel, yoga
So last night, about half an hour after leaving my yoga class, something happened that I’ve never experienced before. I had the usual post-yoga buzz that I normally get. I feel lighter, and happier and calmer, but then for about 5 or 10 minutes I felt really really emotional.
I’ve never experienced that after a class before and don’t know if it’s connected with the class or if it was co-incidental.
It felt like there had been a wave of pent-up feelings that just flooded out. Afterwards I felt really good, like a weight I wasn’t aware I was carrying had suddenly been lifted.
Whatever the cause I feel great this morning.
Last night was the 5th week of the 6 week introduction to Ashtanga course, and it was awesome.
By the time we’d finished, I felt. physically “lighter” is the only way I can describe it. It was an incredible sensation. I can still feel it this morning, but not as intensely. It’s as if my physical body has woken up. That’s the feeling.
The teacher is hoping to get a slot in the studio so she can run a beginners Mysore class, that will allow those of us who have never been to a Mysore class, and find the idea daunting, the chance to get into the practice knowing that everyone else in the room is in the same boat. It’s a good idea.
So that’s week four of the Introduction to Ashtanga and I’m loving it. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the vinyasa flow class that I’ve been going to regularly, but this is giving me some structure that I can use when I practice on my own.
On Monday night I went to see Warrior Soul at Audio in Glasgow. I’ve seen them twice before, once waaaay back just prior to their debut album coming out, when they supported Metallica. I remember thinking back then that they blew Metallica off the stage, and Monday night just reinforced that. They were outstanding.
Was at the second class of the introduction to Ashtanga course that I signed up for. So that’s Sun Salutations A and B covered, and breathing, and moving with the breath.
As with last week, I can really feel it in my upper arms this morning. Not sore, just tired in a “I know I did some exercise last night” kind of way.
By the end of the six weeks we’ll have covered enough to do a Half Primary Series class, and we’ve been told that going to a Mysore class would be good, and that it’s not intimidating like we’d think it is (not having been to one before).
I have to admit, at the moment I’d not be confident walking into a room where I *think* everyone but me knows exactly what they’re doing, and I’m the idiot in the room. Again, I know that’s my projection and it’s probably far from the reality, but at the moment, I don’t think going to a class that isn’t lead, would be anywhere near to inside my comfort zone. Which in itself is probably a good reason to give it a try.
Anyway, here’s a photo of the sky over Glasgow this morning when I left for work. It’s was stunning.
So if anyone isn’t in the UK, in Scotland, were were pretty much snowed in for the most of last week. Huge dump of snow. Transport ground to a halt and police were telling people not to drive.
On the plus side I got 3 days off work that I never expected, and went into the snow covered Pollok Estate with my camera (pics to follow once I sort them out). We even went sledging in Linn Park, which was great fun.
Tonight, I’ve got the first of the Intro to Ashtanga, course that I’ve signed up to. It’s the same teacher that takes the Vinyasa Flow class that I go to on a Thursday. I’m looking forward to this. A bit of variation never hurt anyone.
Before Christmas, I had a brand new experience. A corn on my foot. On the toe next to the pinkie toe on my left foot. I tried corn plasters, and after a fair bit of pain and hobbling about, after about a week, it fell off.
Well, a couple of weeks ago it came back with a vengeance, so this time, after some cajoling from friends, instead of resorting to corn plasters and limping, I made an appointment with a podiatrist, and this morning, she sat me down, took a scalpel to my foot, et voila, no corn, and no pain.
It actually feels odd not to have that burning stabbing in my toe. It’s also a relief.
That’s my foot all good to go now, so I can now start to ease myself back into running again, which I’ve really missed. I can also turn up at the yoga class and not worry that people are grossed out by my mutant toe 🙂