I mentioned before in Fighting Fatigue that I started (or rather restarted) a normal yoga routine. My oh my, I did not know what I was getting myself into so now I have decided to bring you into it, too!
I made the mistake of following Instagram posts, pinning on Pintrest, and watching some YouTube videos of yogis before starting. As I watched these magnificent feats of strength and flexibility I thought oh this won’t be so bad! I can totally figure this out! It will be a nice light exercise for me in the evenings. I can jump right back in where I left off. They made it look so easy and smooth. In hindsight, Olympic athletes make their sports look easy so I don’t know what I was thinking.
As I think about the idea that yoga would be an easy activity to take up, my mother’s voice is ringing in my head singing “wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong” to the tune of “ding dong ding dong” from The Carol of the Bells. It was my mom’s favorite way to playfully tell me when I was wrong.
So here is my prepared little set up from last night! Note my welcoming purple yoga mat, my comfortable and equally colorful yoga leggings, and my ready-by-my-side obnoxiously large cup of water… also wonderfully colorful! I was ready to go and nothing was getting in my way!
Well, a lot got in my way. Mostly me.
As it turns out, if you start doing yoga you should not stop for any reason! All that flexibility and strength I gained from my regular yoga that I was doing a few weeks ago turned into rubbery stiffness. It felt like I could sense the ghost of capability in each pose while my muscles screamed in agony. In the last yoga session I did before taking my hiatus I had almost managed to get my heels down to the floor in downward dog and had succeeded in keeping my balance during Eagle Pose.
Yesterday, I couldn’t even hold my plank properly for 15 seconds. I had a 33 minute session planned and at 21 minutes my whole body was shaking quite literally. I know that shaking means you are growing and getting stronger but that doesn’t at all make it more pleasant in the moment. Finally, at 26 minutes I had to tap out. I was short of breath (asthma makes any exercise more rigorous, darn you lungs!), my body was shaking, and my poor mind was in a daze.
I pushed too hard too fast. I learned the valuable lesson that if you do decide to take a break, ease back into it rather than trying to pick up right where you left off.
Despite all that, I still felt really good when I got my heart to slow down and my breathing regulated again. Besides a few sore muscles, my back and neck felt better than they had in days and my mind felt calmer. Exerting all that energy was the perfect way to give away some of the anxiety and stress I had been accumulating inside me.
I would say my reintroduction went about as well as could be expected!
Now for day 2 but tonight I will go a little easier on the intensity. 🙂
Here’s to building a habit and staying accountable!
If you have any tips on yoga, habit building, or just want to say Hi I would love to see your thoughts in the comments!