Saturday, April 15, 2006

Yoga: Get Thee Into A Pretzel Shape

Had my first yoga class last night in a couple weeks - I've had to work late at the day job, so I've missed it.

An hour and a half of yoga is a lot of yoga, and for some reason, the last half of the class was enormously frustrating. I couldn't get my leg up off the floor and balance on one hand and the other leg. I couldn't bring myself up off the floor while twisting my torso so my knees rested on my elbows and I could support my weight with my hands.

And for some reason, I found it hugely frustrating that I couldn't do this.

I mean, after my third session of yoga, I should be a yogic master, right?

heh

It's like picking up a pen and after writing three short stories expecting that I should be able to write the Great American Novel. I had this same issue with my first three months of boxing. I grew up more or less sedentary, and it was only when I was 19 that I really started to pursue anything like regular physical fitness. So it's absurd to get frustrated. I know this.

But it still happens.

Deep breath. I did a lot of deep breathing. I can't be superwoman right out the gate with everything I try, and just because I'm not, it doesn't mean I should quit. It just means I need to work harder.

That's something that's struck me all along the whole "I want to be stronger" route: I realize that there are people who've been active and sporty their whole lives. I'm not going to roll into class and be as good as these people without any effort. I'm going to have to work a hell of a lot harder. Think of how much I'd resent some soccer player who stomped into a writers' class I was in and expected to be just as good as everybody who'd been writing for ten years.

I'd likely laugh.

The pursuit of a strong body is something I have to pursue with the same mindset I've used to be better at everything else in my life.

I didn't ever think I could lift 30 lb free weights. I started with 5 lbers. If I started with 30 lbs, I would have quit. It would have seemed impossible.

It's not impossible, though.

Just really hard.

And often frustrating.

2 comments so far. What are your thoughts?

La Gringa said...

Hey, my friend recently underwent the procedure for donating her eggs, which entails quite alot of pain and weeks of hormone shots. Afterward, she was pissed st herself for not being able to do some crazy yoga stance that entailed standing on your head with your knees planted on your triceps.

Give yourself a break!

Oh, and when you go to WisCon, look for my friends Kelley Eskridge and Nicola Griffith. They'll both be there this year. They are fun to hang out with. Tell 'em Colleen said hi.

jeff said...

every once in a while it's neato to take on something that I know I won't be good at for a while, just to try to get used to it. but I haven't done yoga again after it kicked my ass for 6 months the first time I tried it, so I don't really have a leg to stand on (or balance on while placing my arms under it and behind my head or something)...