You might have seen me post on Facebook about not having done yoga for over a year now. Yes, I admit it that my yoga practice has totally gone out the door – it is always the first thing that I drop when I get busy, plus when I changed gyms, I no longer had access to classes so that didn’t help! I must be the most useless yogi ever, despite loving it and always feeling better when I’m practicing regularly.

It’s one of those things that is fantastic if you do it on a regular basis…but challenging if you don’t. I’m not the most flexible person either and my strength training doesn’t help much with this either. Because I also don’t stretch regularly. I know, I know, no chastising me! It’s on my to-do list.

So you can imagine I was both excited and a little apprehensive about when I had the chance to do some more yoga classes at my local Fitness First. They gave me a month’s membership to try some classes and yoga was naturally first on my list. I went and did the morning hatha yoga class on Saturday at the Dee Why club.

Hatha yoga is generally thought of a being more gentle and a good style for beginners (and those who haven’t practiced for a year). But it felt much harder than what I remember hatha yoga to be!

Yoga-quote. What yoga is all about for me

How the class went…

First we started with our breathing – focusing on breathing through belly (breathing through your chest is a sign of being stressed apparently). Next we flowed into some cat / cow poses, opening up the arm and curling through the body. We then moved into the downward dog-cobra-child’s-pose flow; not difficult, but I admit my downward dogs were a bit of struggle as I was fatigue from my week of training.

Then the real challenge started as we moved into the warrior poses and ending up in something that felt like I’d been tied in a knot around my own legs. I was pleased to find that my balance poses were still pretty good at least (I’ve always liked being a tree). Some squats and floor poses followed and finally we finished with savasana (lying flat on your back) which has always been my favourite pose! I was aching at this point and it felt so good to collapse on the floor!

Yoga-selfie. Circa 2012 when I was practicing a few times a week

Ten thoughts from a Non-Yogalite on Yoga

  1. Every time I do yoga, I am challenged by the physical aspect.
  2. I have to remember to breathe through my stomach and not my chest. Apparently chest breathing means I’m holding stress (I thought it was just where my lungs where).
  3. I still don’t have the breathing down pat, and often get caught up in trying to ‘force’ postures rather than let my breath control it (apparently I can breathe away the burning quad pain in warrior one after legs day).
  4. I feel relaxed, sore, exhausted and exhilarated all at once after practicing yoga. It’s a confusing but cathartic feeling.
  5. I can never decide if I should wear my long leggings or hot pants. I like to keep the muscles warm, but inevitably always end up hot and sweaty about 10 minutes into the practice. Hot pants are normally the right choice, but most other Yogalites seem to opt for long pants…I feel the odd one out on this, but then, my body temperature is always off.
  6. Yogalite is a name I’ve coined for any person who does Yoga enough to have purchased their own Yoga mat. Extra points for having one of those Yoga mat carry bags. I still use whatever is supplied in the room.
  7. I do feel ten times more flexible, calm and centered when I practice Yoga at least twice a week. But it is always the first thing I drop when I get busy. I call this Yogirony.
  8. I find Yoga classes at gyms a far better option for me. I have tried doing my own practice with iPhone apps instructing…but somehow I never get further than 20 minutes before my mind wanders. In that group fitness room however, I’m accountable and 100% focused on the now.
  9. I always walk out feeling incredibly inflexible, although more flexible than when I went in. Slightly smug that I can always find at least one other person in the class who looks more inflexible than me though. I do believe these slightly competitive thoughts are reason that I’m not yet ready to be a Yogalite…
  10. All that said, I love Yoga and I love even more that it’s a place where you can just be who you are, where you’re at whatever the level and there really is no judgement in that room from anyone. Unless you’re slightly less flexible than me and then I am probably judging you ūüėČ
Yoga-kitten. Better at yoga than me.

Note: this post is brought to you in partnership with Fitness First; all opinions are my own and are not influenced in any way.

Tagged with →