Forgetting how to yoga

I used to do yoga at least once a week, usually free videos on my rest days, or when my friend was teaching a free class at a studio a few blocks away from my apartment. I would put on a free video from doyogawithme.com, and practice barefoot (sometimes in my underwear) on my carpet. If I went to a free class, I would borrow a mat. My mother thought this was unacceptable and in an act of kindness, bought me a yoga mat. I have probably used it 3 times since then and have never taken it to a class! Oops.

Sp recently I had been prioritizing running or strength training over yoga and had not practiced in weeks or even months. In a very JV move, I assumed that my natural flexibility (hello Asian genes) would be enough for me to pick up intermediate level videos on doyogawithme.com. My favorite instructor is Fiji – she kicks your ass! She’s amazing though, and whilst balanced on one leg with her arms out, calmly tells you to lift your leg. I remember trying one of her longer classes (around 50 min) once with my boyfriend and we both were sweaty (but relaxed) messes afterwards. I had been limiting myself to her 20-30 min yoga for runners series – there are pre-run, post-run, and injury prevention videos.

I was ambitious today. Too ambitious. I had saved this video months earlier as one I wanted to do when I had plenty of time.

It is 75 minutes of fast sun salutations and flow yoga. I made it through 55-or-so minutes before letting texts and gchats distract me. I tried getting into it after the break but my arms and legs were jello and uncooperative. Typically my personality would let that get to me and I would beat myself up over not being able to finish or being a quitter. I’ve been trying to be more positive and encouraging to myself though – thus I think I did a pretty good job for being out of practice.

Yoga is one of those things I have a love-hate relationship with. Well maybe not even that strong? A like-ambivalent relationship. I want to be good at it, and I find myself enjoying it when I practice, but there’s something missing. I’m not in love. It’s never a priority.

Since I like running and strength training, both pretty repetitive activities, I feel strange saying that yoga seems very repetitive to me – especially since there are many different types of yoga. Maybe I don’t have the patience to go through three rounds on the same sun salutation? Maybe I don’t like the way my body moves during yoga but appreciate how it feels afterwards? Whatever it is, I’m unsure about how to pursue everything.

I’m going to try to complete my yoga goals this week of trying it on days I usually strength train, and then go from there. I would love to be able to do some of the more complicated back bends and balancing moves and reap the calming restorative benefits of a yoga practice.

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