Posts Tagged ‘working out’

Yoga is hard

Saturday, September 26th, 2009

Anyone who says yoga is easy isn’t doing it right. One of my preparations for my Laos trip (in 2 weeks!) is to get a yoga routine down so I can have some form of exercise I can do while I’m away. I figure gyms are out of the question, and I’m not sure how much running I’ll get in so yoga is a good no equipment necessary, can do anywhere kind of workout.

Gaiam Power Yoga Total Body Workout DVDSo I bought this DVD: Gaiam’s Power Yoga Total Body DVD with Rodney Yee. I would’ve preferred a female host or at least a video instructor who didn’t vaguely remind me of my ex, but my options were very limited. I wanted an hour long total body workout and thought any yoga without “power” in the title might be too easy. This seemed perfect.

After four hours of sleep, a six hour drive, one meal for the day followed by a one hour nap, I thought it might be a good time to try out the DVD for the first time. My plan is to do it every day until I leave so I get used to the moves. I was wasted — not drunk wasted, but not at the top of my physical form. And the DVD killed me.

Every time I went from a Standing Forward Bend to a Mountain Pose, my head got light, I saw stars, and I seriously thought I’d pass out. And there was a lot of that in the beginning of the DVD. That was followed by several poses I’d never done before. I’ve only taken yoga probably less than 10 times before. I was sweating, uncomfortable, and hoping desperately it would end when I’d only been at it for 20 minutes. At one point I thought I broke something in my shoulder — doing an Upward Bow which I wasn’t quite prepared for.

But I made it through to the end. One day down…14 more to go then I’ll be doing yoga next to the Mekong River!


Monday, March 21st, 2005

i picked up one of those ipod shuffles this weekend for the gym. and i think i hate it. i haven’t even taken it to the gym yet, but i hate it. it’s slow as molasses in updating (i’m pretty sure i’m using a usb 2.0 port, but i’m going to check the hardware specs tomorrow). and the switch on the back to toggle power/no shuffle/shuffle feels like it’s made of rice paper. i guess i’ll need to fuck around with it, but as a consumer product it’s pretty hard to recover from immediate and intense dislike only minutes after you’ve been unpackaged.

Biking in my head

Tuesday, April 13th, 2004

I went mountain biking at Skegg’s Point this weekend. I ate it a couple of times — have some scratches on my shin, ankle, and some bruises on my thighs. It’s interesting how little it physically hurts when you tumble off your bike. In part because you’re travelling so slowly — I fell twice early in the ride where it was fairly steep and rocky/rutty — and because you just don’t fall that far. I fell forward the second time and the bicycle tire bounced off my helmet — and there was something surreal and mellow about it — the gentle way the tire’s spokes (it landed sideways) bounced on top of my head, and my brain trying to sort out how it is that the bike was in such a position as to bonk me on the head like that.

I was frustrated early. My body was tired on Sunday — a full week of running, weights, climbing, yoga, pilates, and working longer hours, and not getting enough sleep to accomodate it all — I was worn out. And I get angry when my body doesn’t have enough energy — it hurts and that pain and frustration translates into anger.

Shortly after that second fall though, I realized I don’t have to keep up. I don’t have to feel bad that I’m keeping anyone behind. This is only my second time out on a mountain bike and this isn’t exactly a beginner’s trail. And it’s amazing what my body can do if I let my mind go. I retreat into my head in a different way — when I got really tired riding and my breathing was
ragged, I’d slow down, inhale, enjoy the incredibly beautiful surroundings and the quiet, quiet, calm — it was a perfect day for a ride — not too hot, but warm in the shade, and my body would calm down, too, stop racing so hard.

There is a great deal of satisfaction in exhausting yourself physically, in draining everything you have to meet some end goal — to finish a ride or a run, or to climb one more route. It is much more satisfying to stretch my aching muscles than to stretch fresh ones — just like everything tastes better when you’re hungry than when you’re full — I am more aware and appreciative of my body when I can feel it in some way. And let me tell, you, I can feel it now…and it’s telling me I need to sleep…