Monday, April 28, 2014

Serious Thoughts From My First Yoga Class

I'm trying to be more well-rounded (see what I did there?) in my exercise regimen, so I recently decided to give a yoga class a try.

You know how in the movies when they do a stereotypical clip of yoga it's always someone contorted in an impossible position with their legs wrapped around their head? Yeah, that actually happened just like in the movies. The class went from "hey, I'll try that" straight to "LOL NOPE" faster than you can say “sun salutations.”

During this class, I found there's a certain peace involved in being completely out of your depth. You can joyfully hold yourself absolutely not one drop accountable for the desecration and unavoidable failure that is growing by the moment.

That's not to say that I didn't do my best to follow along. My determination must've been a glaring neon sign in the room full of peaceful and impossibly flexible women. As the instructor sweetly said for me to relax my face, I'm afraid my inner response was a less sweet, “Excuse me, I'm trying not to fall on my Asgard here.”

I learned that black underoos under your black yoga pants is a great idea. Apparently, when those pants are stretched to their limit in some amusing pose they become see-through and everyone gets to see your underdrawers.

Relatedly, if you are on the edge of the classroom, the entire class gets to stare at your caboose (underduds and all) for about five minutes. When the teacher tells everyone to “focus your eyes on a single point” you'll spend those five minutes wondering how many people chose your butt as a focal point.

Since I have the maturity of a 10-year-old, as I was thinking about butts, I suddenly remembered the “wind relieving pose” and laughed inappropriately. The grownup part of me turned the laugh into a well-timed cough (“allergies”). In case you need it, here's a handy guide for what to do if you fart in yoga class.

I'm learning that yoga is as much a “mind” practice as it is a physical practice. I'm not sure whether the mental (fart jokes, anyone?) or the physical practice is more difficult.

Doing yoga directly after watching Captain America: The Winter Solider was a questionable choice. It's really hard to clear your mind for meditation when there is a grand finale nerdsplosion going on in your brain.

When all was said and done, the instructor gave us each a piece of chocolate. It sort of felt like we were getting a treat for good behavior. I'm not sure I earned my piece.

I really enjoyed the realization that I am doing better at being kind to myself when trying new things. I also felt a small bit of satisfaction in not taking myself too seriously.

When you start to take yourself a little too seriously, do yourself a favor. Do the wind relieving pose and let it all out.  


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