I have to say, I am really glad I decided to take on this yoga challenge when I did; the last two days days have had all the makings of a “I’m just not going to work out today” day.
Day 30: 25 minutes of bathroom & living room Iyengar-inspired yoga
Things really didn’t go according to plan on Monday, which kinda had me worried. Like, we’re a day into this and already the excuses are piling up?! I had planned to take the Yoga Sculpt class; my backup option was a late restorative yoga class. Both are new at my studio and the owner had asked me to attend each (not on the same night) and then write about them for the studio’s blog. I was planning on getting started on Monday. Even if I didn’t make the first class, I could definitely make the late class, so I didn’t figure I’d have any problems.
Well, after a day at work that was sort of weird and left me really in the mood for yoga, we ended up having an important team meeting on Friday evening. We didn’t get started until after 5:00, so I knew I’d be cutting it close with Yoga Sculpt. Not only did I miss that class, I missed the restorative class too. I had a lot on my mind after leaving work, and I really just wanted to go home and talk to Eric and zone out on the couch, but I managed to do both, and do yoga! He had made dinner (pineapple-marinated steak + grilled corn + green beans), so we ate and talked. After enough eating and talking, it was yoga time.
One thing I’m realizing about practicing yoga at home, at least for me, is that because of the lack of a hard floor/good place to practice, I’m not very likely to do a typical Vinyasa flow class. (It’s hard to do a lot of poses when your mat is sitting on top of carpet, and it’s especially hard on your wrists.) It makes more sense for me to pick and choose poses that I can do…and then stop, move to a different part of the apartment where it makes more sense, and do a few more poses…and so on and so forth. Usually this means poses from my Iyengar classes, as those classes have a similar stop-and-start format. On Monday night, I used the living room floor and living room wall to do several poses, and then my bathroom for several turbo dogs. (The bathroom has a hard floor, making it an ideal place for poses that involve being on your hands. It’s fine for a few poses, but it’s a rather tight fit — I wouldn’t want to do an entire flow class in there.)
Since I didn’t have an instructor there to push me, I tried to push myself pretty hard, and I felt really good after I was done. Then I rewarded myself with the couch time I’d been craving.
Day 29: 75-minute Yoga-lates class
While I was happy with how things had gone on Monday, it sort of left me unsure what to do on Tuesday. I typically don’t go to my studio on Tuesday, as the classes on Tuesdays always seem to be my least favorite, or just at times that don’t work for me. I didn’t want to do another home practice (I really feel like mixing things up this month is going to be crucial) but I wasn’t sure about the classes on the schedule. There were three yoga + pilates classes yesterday, classes that have just never appealed to me. I hadn’t actually taken one…and I realized yesterday I’d actually been avoiding them.
I was avoiding them because my abs are my “problem area,” and not in the way that so many women’s magazines use that term. I don’t have a problem with how the area looks (not because I have great abs, but because I just don’t care anymore); it’s a problem area because my abs are weak. I feel really self-conscious whenever I’m in any class that has an abs section because I tucker out so fast. Everyone seems to be doing fine with it. People twice my age, half my age, people who are total beginners…I’m always left thinking, How does everyone have strong abs except for me!? I’m sure it’s just a self-fulfilling prophecy. I feel like my abs are weak, so I hate working on them, so then I don’t, so they stay weak. I’m also convinced that everyone else is secretly doing hundreds of crunches every night before bed, even if they aren’t doing anything else. How else would everyone have such strong abs?!?!?!
In an effort to avoid dealing with my abs, I looked at a few other studios I’ve been to to see if any classes seemed like a good fit for last night, but none were at great times and all would involve a drive across town. It seemed like a lot of work to avoid working on my abs. So finally I was just like, Ya know…this challenge is all about making it work, so…you’re just going to have to suck it up and do yoga and pilates this one time.
I’m actually really glad I went. First of all, I love this instructor and haven’t been to one of her classes in a while. Second, I had forgotten how much I actually like pilates. It’s ab-centric, but I actually really don’t hate it at all. And turns out, the ab section in this class wasn’t that much longer than it is in any other yoga class, and I liked the exercises better. (Probably because I actually did a respectable job of performing them!) It was a challenging class but I left feeling really, really good.
It rained all day here yesterday, which made it cooler; my apartment was pretty chilly when I got home. After walking the dogs, I was overly excited to put on leggings and a long-sleeved T-shirt. I was blissfully working my way through all of the awesome articles mentioned in “The 10 Best Pieces of ‘Pink Journalism’ I’ve Read This Year” when Eric got home from spin. He made steak fajitas for dinner and then after dinner, he grilled chicken to add to a recipe I had wanted to make for lunches this week — minted orzo salad with chickpeas and feta — while I made the pasta salad.
I am not sure what my day will be like today, so I have no idea what I’ll do for yoga today. Office yoga? Iyengar class? A free class in Houston? I’m really not sure! But even though it’s only been a couple days, I find that I’m kind of enjoying the unpredictable way things are unfolding! I don’t know why I’d be into that at a time when life feels extra unpredictable, but somehow, it’s working for me.