Monday, April 10, 2017

Last Fire and Go Yoga

Today, with the bright sun sparkling on the new leaves of spring, it is hard to remember the recent cold spell and the wonderful heat from our wood stove.  I found myself in a slow rotisserie on my swivel stool near the fire as I played with the new camera updates on my phone.  Could this be the last fire of the season?  

Puck looks adorably orange in the new "retro" setting on my camera.  

Max also prefers to see himself as retro rather than old!  He enjoys a slow roast by the fire as much as I do, and we take turns with the stool.  It's not long before I give it over to him and retreat to a more comfortable distance.  

Welcome to my yoga studio.  It's also our TV room and guest room with a comfy couch turned trundle bed loaded with pillows and blankets.  With an electric baseboard heater and a closed door, even on days when the fire stays un-lit, it's warm enough for some yoga.  My battered pink mat lives handily in the top of the closet that holds our winter coats, the vacuum cleaner, and the baskets of kids toys.  

My mother gave me yoga socks.  They were fun to put on, with each toe having it's own snug sleeve complete with non-stick grips arranged in fun patterns.  They take fun pictures too, but I'm afraid they look better than they function and I felt more stable in my bare feet.  I need all the stability I can get!

I've never taken a public yoga class.  I've mentioned before that I started doing yoga at home with a yoga therapy for back pain DVD, and now take advantage of free on-line yoga instruction by Adriene.  I'm hooked.  I'm still amazed at how much better my back functions just because I get down and roll around on the floor for a half hour at a time.  Adriene says to find what feels good, and I take her at her word.  Sometimes it feels good to push a little harder and feel quivering muscles and increased heart rate (almost like exercise - ack!), but most of the time it feels good to just flex, stretch, and breath.  It's surprising, really, what I've figured out about my body - where I am weak and where I am tight.  I thought I knew myself better than I do.  

The hardest part is prioritizing that half hour, and making time to roll out that mat and make it happen.  But every time I do, I feel good.  Adriene has several free thirty day programs, which are basically thirty short routines that are intended to be done one each day.  It's brilliant, because by the time I did a little yoga every day for thirty days, it was easier to make it part of my daily routine.  Like brushing my teeth and cooking dinner, it's just something I want to do for myself.  

Unfortunately Fortunately, for all you friends and loved ones, I want you to do it too!  I've coaxed and badgered and pestered everyone trying to spread the yoga love.  I can't help it.  It's such an easy way to improve life, I can't figure out why I meet so much resistance.  I'm not blind to the yoga stereotype (I mean, hello, my name is Rain), but with Adriene, she's silly and corny enough that a little hippy-dippy nonsense doesn't interfere with flexing, stretching, and breathing, at least for me.  And honestly, some of the things that seemed weird at first have a way of making more sense the more I think about it.  There's an aspect of yoga that exercises the emotions and the mind, if your open to it.  If not, at least it's a good stretch, right?  

All this is to say, that starting April 24th, myself and some of my closest peeps, including Brandon, are going to begin Yoga Camp, and do a yoga routine each day for thirty days.  We will be doing the routines in the privacy of our own homes, but just knowing that we are trying to do it at the same pace will motivate us to keep up with the program.  I sort of want to write about our experience as we go, although when I mentioned this idea to Brandon, he seemed doubtful.  But, who better to talk about my new yoga passion with than myself, right?  Especially since no one else seems as interested. Ha!  

Please, join us if you can.  You can watch Adriene's short intro video here.  Go Yoga!

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