Saturday, April 26, 2014

Yoga Career trumping Running Career

My running is so unremarkable lately (other than for it's slowness), I might as well keep going with my yoga challenge updates.  Especially since my husband is still off having fun in San Fran, staying with my brother and my sister-in-law. 

Thursday, 4-17-14, class no. 15, 6:30 p.m.  They were actually having "yoga in the park" tonight, which is outdoor yoga and only one set of each posture.  After much deliberation, I decided I would go and count it toward my challenge if my husband would go with me.  But he said he didn't expect to be done with work early enough to make it downtown for a 5:30 class, and that time would have been tough for me to attend as well, and it was my least favorite instructor, and technically, I would have kind of felt like it was cheating to count it toward my total, so in the end, I just went to a regular class -- fully heated and fully 90 minutes.  No cutting corners for me!  I had asked instructor Mandy the other day if she would count it toward her own challenge, and she'd said no -- though possibly in the heat of summer, she might.  Anyway, instructor Mandy.  Best class yet. Small, maybe 20 people?  Felt great the entire class but I had an awkward body issue right before triangle.  You step your feet apart, lower your arms, and then turn one foot out to to the side.  As I turned my foot, I noticed massive bingo wing jiggle in my arm.  It was both appalling and disgusting, but it kind of made me laugh. But when I looked up, Mandy seemed to be staring right at me, so I thought she'd seen it and been equally grossed out.  I talked to her after class and it turned out she was looking at someone's foot placement.  She told me to love myself and said all women have it (not true, but yes, some do). Very funny that within a week of this exchange, Michael posted about this article -- The Yoga of (My) Body Hatred

Thursday, class number 15 in 17 days was also notable as the first day of the "yoga funk" being noticeable in my car.  I got in the car to go to work, and I could just smell the funk.  Yuck.  I have no idea of the source, but I remember it from my last challenge as well.  Likely sources:  my mat, the bag in which I carry my yoga towel (and in which I carry my sweaty towel after class), my towel (I have three that I rotate and I always wash before reusing), my flip flops (these definitely got a funk last time), my shorts (I only have two pairs I really like wearing, and 2-3 other pairs I will sometimes wear), my sports bra (seems unlikely, always washed and I vary between a bunch of them), or of course, the worst possibility of the source of the funky smell -- me. 

Friday, 4-18-14, class no. 16, at noon.   This class was surprisingly large, about 30 people, presumably lots were off for Good Friday.  I was actually working, but it was a jam packed day -- boot camp in the morning, work from 6:40 until 11:45, yoga from 11:45 until 1:45, quick shower, work until 2:45, stations of the cross service at church from 3 until about 3:45, then actually a trip into the office to meet with my boss and work a bit more, then home to get dressed up and then head out for our fifth anniversary dinner.   It was the teacher with short dark hair again (maybe her name is Atina?). She told the Dirty Dancing story again to get us to lift higher in the lift-style position during the spine-strengthening series.   Overall, it was a good class for me.  There were 2 teachers in class, so that was kind of cool -- almost like having demonstrators to watch.

Saturday, 4-19-14, class no. 17, at 10:30. Rene again. Ugh. I took the class fairly easy since I knew I had more yoga in the cards later in the day.   I came out of Japanese ham sandwich early on the first set, that posture seems to be getting harder for me.  And given Easter, I'd actually already done a long run before yoga, and as before, having already worked out within a couple hours of the start of class meant slow onset of sweat in class.   This time there were 3 teachers in class with me, including one of the studio owners who is amazing at all the postures.

I am noticing that I'm breaking out a little on my face and chest -- I guess I'm not being thorough enough in the shower?  I definitely take a very quick shower at night after yoga, basically rinsing off before I go to bed, but I guess I'm going to have to be more careful.  Or it's just 3 random pimples as a little "happy anniversary" present to me -- I'm lucky that I've always had pretty clear skin, so I hope this goes away soon.   

Saturday, 4-19-14, class no. 18, at 4:00. A double!  My first double in more than a year.  Paul, the long haired dreads looking surfer type guy was the instructor.   This class was by far, the best class ever for me, but it was weird because I think it was the worst energy of any class I've ever taken.   The class was fairly small.  I did my best balancing series ever.   Locked legs, balanced, kicking. But throughout the class, there were people talking, tons leaving the room, and tons sitting out some postures.  It was a little funny because an older woman was a couple rows back from me wearing black shorts.  And when we were sitting with our legs apart toward the end of class, I saw there was a hole in the crotch of her shorts and so there was a big white circle showing -- glad she was wearing underwear.  Besides the balancing series, I was thrilled to see how close my forehead was to the floor.

Sunday, 4-20-14, Easter, class no. 19, at 9:30. Not as strong as last class, but I went for it more than usual.  I feel like my last class before this one raised the bar, and now I need to push for that level every time.  Today was a new to me instructor, Heather, who doesn't look how I imagine a yoga teacher usually looks, but really did a good job and is someone I see around the studio pretty often, she's often around.   Before class, I'd told her how weird the afternoon class had been yesterday, and she said she had the same experience with her class on Saturday -- tons of people walking out. And she said when that happens, class members blame the instructor on yelp. Haha. Well, Sunday was strong.  She made the comment about yelp in class and encouraged people to stay up.  She also was the source of the funniest moment in yoga this month.  I laughed like crazy during sevasana. She announced that during class, several eggs had been hidden in each locker room. Then she realized how bad it sounded -- so basically:  a sweaty Easter egg hunt in your skimpy clothes in the bathroom after class. Haha. I seriously couldn't stop laughing. I didn't find any eggs in the locker room after class, but I stayed on my mat to cool down for a while after class.

Monday, 4-21-14, class no. 20, at 6:30, the instructor with the short dark hair again (Atina?).  Unfortunately, because of a late phone call at work, I almost missed class.  I was actually running in flipflops (totally dangerous!) to my car, and then driving like a maniac, and then running into the studio.  I barely made it.  But again, a good class.  I was most thrilled to have my forehead grazing the floor.  I also noticed during the day that I am getting yoga callouses -- weird kind of dry patchy skin -- on the tops of my feet and on part of my knees.  Oh well, totally worth the progress that I feel like I'm making. 

Tuesday, 4-22-14, class no. 21, at 6:30 with Julie.  Two people came into class very late -- during awkward posture -- and stayed!  They were first-timers, but inside, I was kind of seething.  I have shown up at this studio before during half-moon pose and not been admitted because it was too late (yes, that was more than a year ago and maybe the policy has changed).  But now, I drive like a lunatic if necessary to get to class on time (most notably, just yesterday).  So it was very irritating to see that apparently that may be unnecessary.  Class overall was fine.  I felt less focused, looking around, not thinking about my breathing, not putting in as much effort. 

Wednesday, 4-23-14, class no. 22, at 6:00!  Woo-hoo for the earlier class!  Instructor was Renee again, and I feel like I've just resigned myself to the fact that since she's my least favorite instructor, I'll probably have her most often.  The most disturbing part of this class was a larger guy in the row behind me with a pink and purple mohawk who was panting and audibly swearing during the floor series until he finally left class early.  I heard him straining during wind-removing pose and I was wondering what in the world was happening.  Then I realized he'd decided to participate in about 70% of the postures but to sound like he was in an extreme weighlifting competition during each, complete with f-bombs under his breath, and then lay on his side the other 30% of the time -- how awkward for the person he must have been staring at on his side.  Overall, my class was fine.  I felt it was a bit of a set-back from my effort level over the past week's average level, but she just doesn't inspire me.  I shouldn't let that matter. 

Thursday, 4-24-14, at 6:30, class with Julie.  My favorite things about Julie are that when two sisters were talking during class, she politely threatened to separate them and reminded them of the no talking rule.  And after a water break in the standing series, she checked in with everyone and asked us to make sure we had everything we needed to finish the standing series because it's distracting and difficult to have people leave their mats during the standing series.  It worked -- we all stayed in.  I've only left the room once this month, and it was quick, during sevasana to refill my water bottle, and I didn't miss a single posture.  I've  been experimenting with what works best for water.  For a long time, I was using a 33 oz bottle of cold water and a solid frozen 24 oz G2 bottle with water in it.  Then as the ice melted, I'd add water to the G2 bottle and drink from it.  But it was a lot of screwing around with water pouring.  So I tried 2 G2 bottles frozen at different heights.  The first day of that was when I left the room -- I had 2 bottles with 2 chunks of ice and no water.  But I think I've got it down now -- one G2 frozen about 1/3 of the way, then topped with water, and one G2 frozen halfway and filled with water (the bottle for the second half of class).  Anyway, back to Thursday.  Average class for me.  The best part was standing head to knee -- I stayed on a locked leg almost the entire time both postures.  I tried to kick for a little on each side, but even when I couldn't sustain that, I didn't put my second foot back on the ground.  That's major progress for me.  I also got some guidance from Julie on my locked leg -- watching the "elites" for lack of a better term, some of them had a knee that almost looked arched backwards when their leg was locked and I was striving for that.  Julie told me it was wrong and would cause pain, I want ankle, knee, hip all in one line.  So I've been closer to correct all along!  I also saw progress in the last pose before tree (can't remember what it's called, I don't love it, sweat goes into my nose and then pours out when I stand up).  I am definitely one of the sweatiest people I think.  In the standing series, sweat is dripping in an almost-continuous stream from me.  When I lay down, my mat is soaked and when I pick it up at the end of class, all kinds of water pours off of it.  Yuck. 

Friday, 4-25-14, class no. 24, at noon.  Erika was the instructor.  This class was bizarre because it actually didn't feel that hot.  I swear, it had to actually be cooler.  My towel at the end of class is usually so soaked I can wring it out, but not this time.  I also drank markedly less water.  It's weird that just last night I was thinking about how I'm the sweatiest person in the class.  Only 16 of us in the class, about 4-5 of whom were male, and 2 women were named Danielle.  I thought that was funny.  On Monday, in talking to my boss about the Boston marathon, I said that the temperature had gone up 15 degrees in an hour before the elite men started, and at that rate, it would be over 100 before people finished.  And my boss replied, at that rate, we'll all be dead by tonight.  Anyway, at that rate, about 1 in 5 women must be named Danielle! 

Saturday, 4-26-14, class no. 25, at 9:30.  Instructor was the one with short dark hair (Atina?) again.  Class was okay but I was back to being super-sweaty and thirsty.  I left the room quickly to refill my water bottle during the spine-strengthening series.  There was a first-timer in front of me who could not get the grip right for standing bow-pulling, but overall, was so impressive for a first class, and for a guy!  This class was disturbing because the woman to my right (in the standing series) also had a hole in the crotch of her shorts that I couldn't not see as we went into standing separate leg stretching -- and she wasn't wearing anything under them.  Yuck!  I averted my gaze and actually shut my eyes some during the next set.  How does someone not notice that when they get dressed???!!! 

1 comment:

  1. This post was the highlight of a really stressful night at work last night. I finally got the opportunity to take a quick break so I grabbed a cup of coffee and opened my read a couple of blogs. Your descriptions of the yoga classes had me cracking up particularly the crotch holes...WTH? Yeah really how does one not notice that especially if you're not wearing underwear? Even if you don't see it you must feel a little breeze in that area!

    I am surprised at the people coming and going during yoga class as well as the talking. That's strange to me. Sometimes I do a noon vinyasa class and often times people have to hurry back to work so they tend to position themselves near the back of the room in case class runs a little late. They can scoot out the door without anyone noticing.

    Great post!