I started doing yoga about eight years ago. I’ve never been especially hard core, but I’ve been regular (like the guy on the Metamucil commercials). Yoga gives me a chance to put my sweat inducing, heart pumping cardio workouts to rest for the day and to focus on balance, strength and flexibility. I used to be a gymnast, and with yoga, I can revisit the ways my body used to be able to fold, move and hold itself. Long before I started running, I realized the benefits of yoga and how it would keep me strong and stretched out as I got older. Once I became a runner, yoga was a necessity to counteract how stiff running makes me (that’s what he said).
Here is me trying to show you how I do Warrior II pose in my living room. For all you pros out there, don’t mind my form.
I go to two different yoga classes. One is a class taught at my gym. A typical Vinyasa (flow) style. The instructor is knowledgeable and brings many spiritual and contemplative elements to the class in addition to the physical challenges. She is comforting and approachable. Sometimes she gives us a treat during savasana (“corpse” or resting/meditative pose at the end of class) where she comes by with lavender lotion and rubs our necks. It’s heavenly and if she and I were lesbian lovers I would ask her to do this for me all the time and not just on my neck.
This class is predominately women. Walking into the studio there’s a lot of chit chat about kids, injuries, our cycles and the like.
The other class is taught at a hot studio with temps always kept between 100 and 107 degrees. People take themselves very seriously. Everyone is incredibly focused and intense. There is no talking, no smiling. The styles and instructors vary, but they’re all good. I usually attend Vinyasa or Bikram classes. I LOVE the hot room. The way my muscles can stretch and deepen into all sorts of contorted postures. How the sweat pools at my feet. How cleansed I feel afterwards.
Here I am trying to push Lucky away while Emma takes pictures.
Sometimes for me yoga is like being in church. Not because of the spiritual aspect (although there is that comparison) as much as the fact that you’re not supposed to laugh. Or fart. But, people do all the time. I don’t expect you to believe this, but I have never farted during a yoga class. Not even by accident. I did, however, crap my pants once. Just kidding.
Today I went to the intense yoga studio and two interesting things happened.
First of all, the girl next to me in the 100 degree room was wearing skinny jeans. She did 1.5 hours of yoga in a HOT room in skinny jeans. That’s gotta be one stinky…. I’ve never seen anything like it. So, I did what any curious Yogi does and Googled, “yoga jeans” when I got home. And, they do exist. To be honest, her jeans looked like they were a standard skinny jean from Kohl’s, not pants meant to do yoga in, but what do I know?
Second of all, when the class started and I rolled out my mat, I noticed a spider crawling towards me. Oh, sweet spider who I now must kill. It went under my mat. I’m not a a pussy about spiders, but I don’t really like them crawling on me. So, when this guy went underneath, I smashed him with my mat. I pulled up my mat to find dead spider securely crammed into the material. All was well.
Fast forward to the end of class. I am in the changing room. A girl comes in and notices there are ants on the floor. She says, “I saw an ant near my yoga mat during class and thought about killing it, but then I realized there as no way I could kill a defenseless ant, especially during yoga.” The other women nearby all nodded their heads in agreement as if to silently say, “You go girl. A precious ant should never meet its demise at the hand for foot of a human being. Least of all in a peaceful environment such as yoga.”
I smirked to myself thinking of the smushed spider still on my mat. I’m a bully. A murderess. A killer. The peaceful and non violent lessons of yoga are clearly lost on me. But, I can do Triangle pose in my living room.
Ever heard of/tried yoga jeans? Do you kill bugs just for the hell of it? Do you fart in yoga?
Feeling scared for all the insects in Costa Rica,