Yoga – A New Experience This Time

21 Jan

For the longest time I’ve known I SHOULD do yoga.  But I just didn’t want to.  The couple of times I had done it were very unpleasant…..long, painful and seemed like they would never end.  And another time I had a cold and so all I could focus on in the downward dog was how my nose was running down by nose.  Who would want to repeat that?

Lately, however, several people have recommended that I do yoga since my muscles are tight and painful.  And that I take a day off from working out at least once a week.  I’ve known both of those things.  But it wasn’t enough to get me to do it.

This morning, however, I actually considered taking my recommended day off from the gym.  Then I thought well, maybe I’ll just go do some abs and stretch.   That’s kind of like taking a day off, isn’t it?

A funny thing happened this morning.   I heard my son get up early.  It’s still Christmas break from college and he usually sleeps late.  “Why are you up?”  I texted.

“I’m going to yoga at 8:00,”  he said. “It’s a good class at the Fairfield Edge.”

“I’ll go,” I texted back before I could change my mind.  Going with him would at least be time together even if I hated it.

I immediately got nervous.  What if there’s no room?  What if the regulars are mean?  What if we are late?  I won’t know what to do.

But when we got there everything was fine.  There was room.  Everyone was chilling.    And the guy just talked for the first 8 minutes.

“If your ego is telling you this is a waste of time because I’m talking, then you are not present,”  the instructor said.  Of course mine was telling me that.  We weren’t moving.  WTF I was asking myself.

“Get in touch with your body.  Feel it.  Feel the ground.  Ignore the little voice in your head.  Relax.   Breathe.”

I actually felt myself letting go.  There was nothing to do but get still.

When he finally started doing the poses or exercises or whatever they are called, he said something amazing.

“Don’t force it,”  he said.  “Just do what’s comfortable.  It’s not a competition.”

Really?  I don’t have to show how flexible I am?  It felt different to just relax and keep my body comfortable while doing the different moves.  It was pleasant.   It felt good.

And at the end, I stood up and felt great.  My body didn’t hurt.  It felt loose.

“I don’t feel like I did anything,” I told my son.

“But you did,” he said.

I guess I did.

I talked to the instructor at the end and asked him if it was too late for me.  And do I still need to work out now?

“Strength and flexibility are equally important.  You need to do both or you will not be able to walk or move as you get older.”   They are?  I’ve never worked on flexibility.   I guess that’s why when I get out of a car I look like a cripple.  And going down stairs is not good either.

“Those big muscle guys out there can’t even sit down in my class,” he said shaking his head.  “They came in once and then left.  They never came back.

I could barely either, I thought.  Uh oh.

“They will be sorry later.  It doesn’t take a lot of time to maintain flexibility.  Five minutes a day.”  he continued.

OK, OK, I thought.  I’m sold.  He gave us his email and said he would send us some exercises we could do at home.   And I walked out of the gym.

I’m sold.  If I can feel this good every day, I’m in.  Wow.  And it happened by accident.

Glad my son happened to wake up early today.




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