Monday, February 8, 2016

8 Facts I Learned While Trying Yoga

I've been to approximately 6 yoga classes over the past 6 months. I really thought I'd try to embrace it. But first I realized I had to embrace the actual art of discipline in working out. Wamp wamp.

But alas, those classes have obviously given me enough confidence, and material, to share with you a thing or eight I've learned from doing yoga. All six times.

1 - I've Gotten Old

I was a dancer my whole life. I could kick myself in the face on drill team without even stretching. Flexibility was my "thing." And I honest to goodness thought I'd never lose it. 

Yeah. Joke's on me. 

The instructor says to fold my body in half and I get about 20% of the way there and start howling like a hound dog. And not only do my muscles ache - and not move - but my JOINTS. Oh the joints. Yoga should end with a namaste and a bottle of bayer apirin. And yes, I'm fully aware it's because I'm just out of shape, but out of shape means it's my fault. Old age is the universe's fault. So I'm sticking with that. I've gotten old. 


2 - (In yoga) I can't tell my left from my right

Okay. Hear me out. But in yoga I am constantly making the L symbols with my hands to decipher my left from my right. And you know why? Two main reasons. 

First of all - I can't think that fast. "Put your left ankle over your right knee and twist so your left shoulder is toward your right hip and extend your left arm over and look right." 

I'm sorry - WHAT? I seriously have to replay everything in slow motion. You tell me to relax and get all "zen" but then give me instructions like that? No ma'am. When I'm relaxed, "head and shoulders, knees and toes," is just about all I'm good for. 

And secondly - they'll give you instructions after you're already twisted up like a pretzel. It's like those mind games you used to play in elementary school. Your arms are all intertwined with your legs and then they tell you to do something with your left hand. Well where on earth IS my left hand in this jungle gym of a body you created?! Too much mental, people. And I don't have time for it. So if you sit next to me in yoga and you see me rocking the L hands - don't hate. And feel free to cheat off me. 


3 - I'm apparently a shallow breather

If you've gone to yoga, witnessed yoga, or have heard any remote stereotype of yoga, you know it's all about the inhales and exhales. Well, folks, I must be a shallow breather because almost every time I take a big inhale.....I yawn

So I apologize to all my past and future yoga instructors. I'm not tired, and I'm not bored. My brain isn't used to getting enough oxygen. It's a reflex. 

And I would be polite and cover my mouth by my hands are usually twisted around my body. #andwhosefaultisthat


4 - I do NOT understand the words that are coming out of your mouth has its own language. Did you know that? Because I was not aware. 

I'm thinking it's going to be like any other workout class I've ever attended (you know, in english) and we'll do some Warrior 2 and Downward Facing Dogs. Then home girl tells me to practice "surya namaskara." 

I'm sorry....say what now? 

But sure enough, people start moving altogether in one motion. So me and my deer in the headlights look followed suit. And quite frankly, that's still my method of survival in yoga classes. And probably will be unless someone knows where I can get a "Yoga for Dummies" dictionary.


5 - Amateurs need to stay at the back of the classroom

Almost lost my life learning this one. I was borderline late to a yoga class, so I was forced to set up mat on the second row. No biggie, I thought. I can modify; I got this. 

Then the instructor says something in some jibberish I don't understand (see #4), and when I look up to see what everyone else was doing, I almost lose my nose to the girl in front of me who suddenly kicks up her feet to do some handstands. Literally the entire front half of the room starts kicking into handstands like they're practicing to be dadgum trapeze artists. So while I'm curled up on my mat dodging flying legs, I look to the back half of the room where people are holding a pose and breathing. 

Stay in the back half, young grasshoppers. Stay in the back half. 


6 - The...umm...bodily noises

So it's no secret that yoga is good for the outside, good for the inside, and gets internal things "moving," but HEAVENS I didn't know people were that vocal about those things. 

Call me immature, call me childish, but the first time I heard someone let one rip in that classroom, I about came undone. I got out of my pose and looked around to see if someone, anyone, else heard that. But to my shameful dismay, everyone carried on as if it never happened. 

Noted. One must be mature in yoga. If a flatulent bodily sound occurs, one must remain calm, stay in pose form, and (bless your heart) inhale. 


7 - Do they make tempurpedic yoga mats?

WHY are yoga mats so thin!? I mean you are lying, lifting, and shifting on a hard wood floor and the only thing they give you is a tiny half-inch yoga mat? That just hurts. My joints. Really badly. 

 And while I realize yoga on an air mattress wouldn't be quite as effective, is a 2-inch tempurpedic too much to ask? I mean the commercial shows you can jump up and down and the wine glass won't fall over, so I think it's sturdy enough for a person's surya namaskara? Am I right?



8 - I am REALLY good at restoration yoga

So in my six classes I've learned that there are very many different types of yoga. There's power yoga, vinyasa, hatha - and while I still do not entirely know what all of those types mean, if it's a restoration yoga? Sign. Me. Up. 

I went to a restoration yoga where they gave you body pillows as a prop. I mean they called them "bolsters," but whatever - it was a body pillow. I would know. I sleep with one every night. 

So you get into a stretch position and then curl up with your pillow. 
And then they turn off the lights. 
And then they come give you mini-massages. 
And then they put amazing lavender smelling oils on your arms. 

I mean, it took conscious effort to not start drooling on that bolster. (I've never claimed to be a pretty sleeper). So while yes, I have been to those yoga classes that all but kill me they're so hard, I've also learned that I need to work in a "restoration" yoga class at least once a week. You should take care of your body you know... that's all I'm saying. 


So there you have it. Eight random thoughts that have occurred to this amateur while she learns the ropes to this yoga thing. And yes, this blog occurred to me during the class, because my brain doesn't meditate. I don't care what you say, some people can turn their brains off and some people cannot. I assure you I cannot. 

I just wish they'd let me bring my planner into class. I can make some mean to-do lists in a 60-minute yoga class. 

Happy Monday everyone!

Until next time,


  1. I'm dying!!! I had SO many of these thoughts in my first yoga class last weekend. They would kick us out if we ever went together... "you want my hand and foot where now??"