Going Primal

Day 7

Great Sunday morning.  Brian took Ella for a  bath and I got to do yoga!

Not much to report w/ the yoga.

As far as the 21 day body transformation (Mark’sdailyapple.com)…these are my goals:

80g of carbs or less (no sugar or grains)

90g of protein or more

Plenty of fat

Plenty of whole foods

No processed stuff

I’ll let you know how tomorrow goes. Today we went to a Halloween dinner party for kids at a friend’s house. Peanut butter M&Ms… Need I say more?

Night night.

Drishtis and Bandhas

No alarm today.  I woke and went down the stairs.  Found “yoga” music on Pandora and zipped through the practice.  This is getting easier.  I could feel a reminder of the lift, the magic, the flow, the twinkling lights, the many retreats attended that left me not just renewed but new.  I have been so blessed with so many experiences to reconnect to as I go through the poses I begin to float a little.

I wish I could take a mental snapshot through the whole practice and pass it along.  The sun salutations felt like they took longer today.  I’m aware that I am not doing all the yoga “push-ups” w/ every vinyasa or sun salutation.  I can’t fold in half very well in the morning.  I am much more stiff in my neck in the mornings as well.  I LOVE trikonasana or triangle pose, the way it unhinges all that gets stuck in my hips.  I used to think the hardest part of the practice was after boat pose.  Now I think there’s barely any practice left after boat pose.  🙂  Though again, I am aware part of it is because alone, I just don’t quite kill myself the way I do in a class setting.  I’ll get there. I signed up for a workshop next month.  Ashtanga for Women.

I used to teach Ashtanga, count in sanskrit, know all the names of the poses in order, drishtis (where you gaze), bandhas (muscles you hold).  It wasn’t that long ago.  Here I come!

Halloween

Day 5

Last night was trick-or-treat night.  I had a little too much candy for dinner.  🙂  I think my whole family woke up with a sugar hang over!  Ella was wearing her new sunglasses saying, “Sun off me!”  I did not do yoga in the morning.  I did not do it in the afternoon.  I did not do it before dinner.  Or after dinner.  I didn’t do it until right before bed!  Whew!  Got that in under the wire.  I ate too much Indian food for dinner too.

It was the end of the day and I was convincing myself that I didn’t have to do it today.  I could just skip today.  I’ll just roll out the mat and sit for a few minutes of meditation.   Then I remembered yesterday’s pick a “pray-for-us” someone and help yourself get focused.   I needed a big one today to stick me on the mat.  Once I did the picking and started the practice it flew by.   I feel capable and strong.  There are some poses I can’t do but so much is changing already.  Specifically, back in the summer, I started the everyday yoga doing only the practice to the hurdler’s stretches and feeling sore for days after.  Now I do the full practice w/ all vinyasas.   I can finally hold back bend for five breaths again.  I could not even get up into back bend five days ago!

These are links for the yoga I’m doing:

Ashtanga Yoga Origins

See the poses I do at Ashtanga Primary Series

Pray for us

Day 4:

Today was hard. Maybe I’ve said that everyday. Today was hard. I got on the mat. I got off the mat. I got on. Off. I felt a little like shattering glass. Even when I was on the mat I was someplace else. I lost track of where I was in the practice. I sat for periods of time just wanting to get off the mat. I was preoccupied w/ everything else. I had to cook eggs, had to get stuff in the mail, had to start the laundry, had to continue an argument in my head. There was a point when I was done. I couldn’t continue. I knew I had a lot riding on it given that I’m writing the blog. So, I prayed. The immediate answer I got was a gentle, “Get on the mat and do it.” I managed to finish. I didn’t do many vinyasas between poses, but did a full practice.
My heart was missing.

“Pray for us.” So, there’s this thing that happens in part of the mass sometimes where everyone responds faster than the preist or Pope with “Pray for us” repeating, like a chant. I’m hearing that now. “Pray for us.” I’m hearing it like a suggestion: “Pray for us.”

I can devote these sessions to someone…someone who needs prayers.  Through this, I might gain back my focus.

Enjoy Life!

Day 3
Another day of yoga down! High fives!

So, I really pressed myself into a corner yesterday and even though I have a monster sore throat and coughed up some stuff w/ blood in it and Brian yelled at me to go to the doctor…I did it! I did it!  Aside from my morning drama about a sore throat, I could feel underneath it all, I was fine. I had to get on the mat.

Now, I did whine for a while in the morning so I got behind and Ella woke and I didn’t finish the cooling sequence.  I’m going to have to live with that.  Maybe I’ll do it later?  We’re potty training. I want to get there and let her go pee pee. So anyway. I’m pretty psyched b/c I had to hit myself on the head pretty hard w/ the stuff I wrote yesterday to get me on the mat today. And dang, it worked.  Now I’m all happy and proud of myself. At least for now.

I should mention that when I started this blogging — happen stance — I also started the Primal Bluepring 21-Day Total Body Transformation (Marksdailyapple.com).  This sounds like canned crap you should stay away from but in reality it is about eating food — not processed “food stuff,” and about chilling out and enjoying life a little more:  Enjoy nature, enjoy your relationships. Good stuff, really.

I asked my mom when she was dying was there anything she wanted to tell me?  (yeah, great, I was only thinking of myself in the that moment!?)  She said, “Enjoy life.”  In the aftermath of her death my life sort of crashed.  I made a little sign w/ her saying on it for my mirror.  I knew it was a kernal of truth but I just could not wrap my mind around it, much less my life.  Enjoy what?

I just want to say today, “Mom, I’m there. I get it.”  And I found a door mat at Bed, Bath and Beyond that states it for all the world to see!

Enjoy Life!

I love you Mom!

Doing the Hard Things

Today was rough. I was awake from about 2-5  in the morning. I have a sore throat. I did not wake w/ Brian’s alarm.  No yoga for me.  I’m sick today, I thought. I went through the day sick and thinking–well that sucks, on only my second day of blogging about doing yoga everyday, I can’t do yoga?!  But I moved on.  I didn’t go for my usual walk/run. I just took Ella to the park, the usual meals, the naptime prep at noon, then I put her down and when I thought I’d be able to catch a break, she didn’t take a nap.  She keeps taking all her clothes off and just playing in her crib.  So, after much consternation, pleading, more food, a lot of cleaning and several hours…she finally went down for a nap at 3:00pm.  Brian came home and went right to take a nap himself and I found myself w/ about 2 hours of time to kill.

Did I mention I am sick, my throat hurts, I feel like I’m catching the flu, and I’m grumpy!  Oh and TIRED!!!  Then I heard it:  A vague whisper in my ear, “Yooooga, Yoooooga.” Oh yeah. Yoga (eyeroll). So I watched some TV, put my shorts on, put my hair up, found my cheat sheet, rearranged the furniture and took my mat out.   I dragged my feet through the sun salutations and then I rushed, rushed as usual (for fear of “Ella waking at any moment”) but I did it all! I did all of it!

I was letting myself off the hook the whole way…I could stop here. I don’t have to do all the vinyasas…”Does God really want me to strain myself when I’m sick?!”  Then I understood in a split second, everyone gets hit hard at some point and I could choose to get on the mat like I agreed to do or I could choose to get hit hard in the future w/ something not of my choosing and probably way more difficult.  Mmmm? Great pain not at my choosing looming in my future or yoga now? OK, daily-yoga here I am!

I don’t really believe that by doing yoga everyday I avert some tragedy later (one can only hope).  I do realize though, that letting myself off the hook robs me of self-trust and an inner strength and confidence only gained by doing the hard work now.  I used to know this from sports but I lost it w/ all the talk of “competition is bad,” be nice blah blah blah.  But the truth is to really be nice, to truly love yourself (and your neighbor), can mean, at times,  asking yourself (or someone else) to do something hard.   I crossed a hurdle today.  I believe I can do this.  This is for me.  This is going to work.

More gifts of yoga.  Who knew?  Now if I can only ask hard things of others.  That’s loving, right?

The Gifts of Yoga

I’m writing this to hold myself accountable to doing ashtanga yoga everyday.

Day 1 (of the blogging, day 4 or 5 of the yoga everyday):

Today went great. I heard Brian’s alarm, heard him get in the shower, heard the voice in my head say get downstairs on the mat before Ella wakes up.  I did it. I got up in the cold and put on some random cloths and I got down there in the dark.

Yay!

The practice went well. I put on Pandora “Spa Suite.” The music was very kind and gentle and really affected my practice. I felt loving and less just smashing it out and hurriedly completing it and more like each pose was doing a great kindness to myself. That was profound. I usually only have on and off. Get it done or lay on the couch — no subtleties and certainly no “love yourself with this practice” notions. I felt like a warm rain was running rivulets over my body, slowing my pace, deepening my breath, stopping me from rushing.  I couldn’t find my cheat sheet and it was fine.

I’m impressed by muscle memory. I’m impressed by how much this practice centers and grounds me. I’m impressed by how much lovin’ I’m getting now that I decided to really do this EVERYDAY. That’s how this started. I was praying. Begging God — help me! He said — do your yoga practice everyday. And it wasn’t for physical reasons — it was to get my head right. To stop rushing, doing doing, planning planning, sweeping people aside as I do do do…gotta go and then get so grumpy and exhausted by the end of the day I’m either raving mad or asleep by 8:00! This was not a good way to love my husband.  I had to get my butt on the mat attached to the floor one pose at a time rooted to the earth b/c otherwise I might spin right off the planet.  Alone.

And I’m getting there. This is my second attempt at yoga everyday.  I’m taking it more seriously this time. God is not joking around. I figure, why pray if you don’t listen.

Thank you for the gifts.