Thursday, February 9, 2012

Yoga slacker

For work reasons I didn't swim Wed morning. I'd slept poorly, and it was a long, very busy, very interesting day. I'm quite please with it, at least until shortly after yoga class started.

Recently I've been getting my yoga groove on. Breathing in time with the movements has not only been making more sense, it's feeling more natural. My balance and flexibility have improved dramatically since I started.

But somehow I lost that groove, and very quickly after that I realized I was just going through the motions. I'm sure you've had workouts like that, and yes, I consider yoga properly done to be a workout. This is what it was like when I started. Without any focus, without any real sense of real body awareness, it was just no fun at all. I finished the class because really, you can't walk out part way through. But I didn't really get anything out of it.

It's just one of those things. Some days you're on, and some days you're not. I think one is the price of the other. My usual strategy for this sort of thing is to dial it back, see if I can get the flow going at a lower intensity, or change the workout plan to something better suited for how I'm feeling. I think pushing hard when you're not feeling the love is running a much higher risk of injury. In other sports that might mean a slower pace, or less intensity, or working on technique, or just plain packing it in.  Those things are hard when your yoga groove is AWOL. In fact, I'm not sure what to do there.

Thursday I woke up and knew I wasn't going swimming in the morning. I was feeling all beat up. Even tonight I'm still feeling a bit beat up, and will be going to bed soon. Rest is important. Let's see what tomorrow brings.


  1. You are absolutely correct (as usual). I have only recently started a beginner yoga class, and have enjoyed it progressively less and less. Due to a number of physical limitations, I can't do a lot of the postures my instructor was asking me to do. Part of the problem, I think, is that there are a number of students in the class who just keep taking this beginner class over and over. So while they are still relatively simple postures, these people and their instructor are very good at them. It got so that, the week before last, I just sat out in the lobby and waited for my partner to finish. Then last week, the usual instructor had to take another class; his replacement for our beginner class dialled it right back. And not only was I able to do a bunch of the postures, but the benefits of the yoga class lasted me for most of the week. So there you go.

  2. I've had yoga days like that. At least you went...I couldn't even go yesterday. :-/

  3. Every time I read one of your posts about yoga, I think to myself "I really need to find a good yoga class!"

    So, it's on my list again :-)

  4. Anne, sounds like your instructor isn't with the program. She should be aware that you're struggling, and be supportive of ways to help you still get the benefits. I'm not sure if she's holding the poses too long, or is tacking things on to "increase the difficulty". There is totally no shame in ending a pose early, and doing something else while the rest of the class is still holding the first. And if the instructor gives you flak about that, you need to find another instructor, end of story.

    There are lots of different kinds of yoga, and an infinity of instructors, sometimes even within the same studio. If the studio is convenient it might be worth having a gentle conversation with the instructor to remind him you really are a beginner. Or, find where the replacement instructor teaches, and go there. I am totally a fan of my current instructor, and would drive across the city to continue taking classes. Another buddy of mine also is a yoga instructor, and I really like her style. It would be very easy to take classes from a woman who is very, very experienced, far more so than my instructor, and she is good, I recognize that, it's just that the vibe isn't there. It's worth looking around.

    I don't think you would enjoy the "hot" yoga, or Ashtanga. Just saying. Approach those with caution.

  5. Yoga is tough when one arm is in a cast. Might want to talk to your instructor about getting credit for the classes you can't take, or maybe shouldn't take. Also talk to them about what you can safely do, and try to do that at home.

  6. You do, you do, you DO need to find a good yoga class! I've really become a convert. It will help your running, I'm sure of it. Plus, you can do yoga on the beach. I am drooling with envy. That would be so peaceful, most days.

  7. My biggest issue is time...WHEN would I do yoga? ((sigh))

    Oh, by the way, Tag. Your it!

  8. There are yoga poses one can do standing in a supermarket line up. Not the most peaceful and yogic place, I admit.


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