Tag Archives: yoga

Yoga Farts

Posted On January 21, 2017| Leave a reply

No-one warned me that yoga induces farting. Before you get all excited, no I wasn’t the one who broke wind. In order to fully enjoy this post to its fullest, read the preceding one here.

Anyway….I returned for my second Beginner Yoga Class last Sunday. I arrived 15 minutes early and was not forced to sit in the front row. I opted for the second row. Ghandi scared the shit out of me. She was sitting behind a desk in a dark corner of the room. I didn’t notice her as I unrolled my mat, grabbed by foam brick and gracefully lowered myself to the floor. Just as I settled in, she said “Hey, what was your name?”. It took me a second to locate her. I informed her she scared me, she laughed. Apparently I had not made a lasting impression on her in Class #1. After scoping out the room and noticing how freakishly quiet it was…no one was talking to each other. I was dying to chat with someone. Everyone was stretching. So, I stretched too. As I stretched I noticed the tray of salt was back. None of the intents from last week had been completely absorbed into the salt. Whew. Some dude took the spot to my right. He had a whole system for setting up his yoga space. He unrolled, re-rolled and unrolled his mat a couple of times before placing it on the floor. Then he repositioned it a time or two, moving it about a quarter of an inch each time. He took 2 foam bricks and stacked them on top of each other between his mat and the wall. Once he sat on his mat he moved his bricks closer to his mat. I thought he was finally settled so I turned my attention to the couple who were landing in front of me. Dude to my right popped up on his mat, and stripped off his pants in a single, swift motion. Thank Buddha he had shorts on. Praying to Buddha that he was also wearing compression unders! In case you’re wondering I have incredible peripheral vision. This allows me to stare at intriguing strangers without being noticed. It comes in handy.

Ghandi started our class by apologizing for last week. Apparently she was all hopped up on cold & sinus medication and she hoped she taught us the poses correctly. Like we would know….. BEGINNER YOGA! Remember last week how I told you the room was packed? Not a single space open? This class was a different story. We were easily down 6 Yogi’s. Maybe Ghandi’s pit hair was too much for them?  Ghandi taught us how to meditate. Meditating is not easy. How does one let their mind go blank while remembering to do the special yoga breathing? Since my lower body instantly rejected lotus pose, I sat criss cross applesauce. I decided to tease my chakra by having one palm face up and one palm face down. Half receiving energy, half closed off. I quickly switched to all receiving because it was more comfy. And my criss cross applesauce was starting to hurt so I stretched out my legs. I glanced around and everyone had their eyes closed, so I added that too. My mind was still very busy. Ghandi told us to give all the crazy monkeys in our brain a job. Crazy monkeys? Loved it! Pretty much described my thoughts perfectly. I told my monkeys to just breathe. Of course I spent a minute picturing little monkeys in my head! I will definitely need to revisit this meditation gig.

As promised Ghandi taught us Warrior 1 and 2 and as a gift threw in Reverse Warrior. Being a Warrior was fun. I was secretly hoping there was a Warrior Princess pose, because I would have rocked it.

Ghandi was so pleased with our progress that she took us through several vinyasas. Vinyasas are the flows…the way the moves/poses run together 😉 Are you ready? I thought I was. Here is what our ‘flow’ consisted of: Chair Pose-Standing Forward Fold-Half Forward Bend/Half Lift-Plank-Cobra-Downward Facing Dog-Crescecnt Lunge, via lifting your leg high and swinging it under you with your foot landing between your hands which are firmly planted on the mat. My foot rebelled and landed more under my belly. G suggested I use my hand to get my foot in place. Ugh. Next was Warrior 2-Reverse Vinyasa (which is back to Downward Facing Dog, then into Cobra, back to Plank. Here is when Ghandi got bat-shit crazy….she told us that from Plank we could just hop our feet back to our hands (which were on the mat) I had to laugh. Hop my feet up to my hands which were pressed onto my mat?? Hell no. One day maybe, but not today. I ‘walked’ my feet into my hands and finished out my Reverse with Half Forward Bend/Half Lift to Standing Forward Fold and finally back to Mountain Pose. Oh, did I mention that we did this like THREE times in a row? My special yoga breath was replaced with “oh my God, I’m going to die” breaths. Sweat was rolling down my back and my palms were getting slippery on my mat. Yoga IS a workout. Definitely not an hour of stretching on a padded mat in a dark room while pretty music plays in the background. I liked it.

G said we looked good, but a little practice on our own this week would be awesome. Cooling consisted of some Easy Seated Twists, Seated Forward Folds…aka…touching your toes while seated without bending your knees. Funny. She threw in a Happy Baby (still not my favorite), a Supine Twist to both sides and the good old Savasana, the corpse pose. YAY! Let me go back to that Supine Twist I just mentioned. Here’s a pic of what it looks like:

Very satisfying stretch. And unfortunately too satisfying and relaxing for the Dude who took up residency to my right, remember him? We ‘supined’ to our left and then to our right. From here we went into fetal pose. I’ll let Homer show you what it looks like:

So, we are facing to the right, which means from my fetal position I can see Dude’s backside. G tells us to rock a bit and just enjoy the stretch. I’m in yoga bliss when Dude farts. It wasn’t a loud, dramatic one. It was an airy one, but with force. You know what I’m talking about. Loud enough for me to hear and for Dude to know with certainty that I heard it, but quiet enough that no one else was privy to it’s existence. For the love of Buddha! I quickly rolled out of Fetal Position and up to my feet. I kept looking his direction as we rolled our mats and gathered our belongings. I was ready to give him my “REALLY?” face. He didn’t look my way. I’d like to say it was because he was mortified and scared of me. Dude was just too busy going back through his detailed routine of packing up and putting his pants on.

Next class I will arrive 20 minutes early and position myself between two nice ladies who wouldn’t dare toot in yoga class. Namaste my ass.

Live Creatively,

 

 

 

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{nah-mas-tay}

Posted On January 9, 2017| 2 Replies

Yesterday I took the first step in becoming a real life Yogini. I’ve been an imposter for years. I wear the yoga pants, the yoga pull-overs and the yoga scarves. I even own a pretty nice yoga mat. So why did I actually take a class you ask? Because Sunshine can touch her toes and pull her leg up behind her head. I cannot. She thinks it’s funny that I can’t. I was able to at one point in my life, but not anymore. I’d like to silence her giggles, so off to Beginner Yoga I went.

I only decided to do this last week, so the Yoga Studio in my town was booked. I took it as a sign from Buddha that I should maybe learn at a studio where no-one knew me! So, I traveled a few towns away. I allowed PLENTY of time so I could arrive early and grab a spot in the back of class. No-one needed to see my booty in my worn out yoga pants. My plans were spoiled because I couldn’t find the studio. Seriously the sign on the door was so tiny. I drove by it twice before noticing it. I guess big, sparkly signs are not very yogaish.

I had about 5 minutes until class was due to begin. I rushed to the door and flung it open. Guess what? There’s no lobby. No reception area. Not even room for a door mat. The door opened INTO the actual studio. Bam! And the room was full. Heads spun to see who was blasting through the door. Ugh. I half-smiled and assessed the room. There were at least 20 people sitting on their mats. Barefooted and ready to honor the universe. I noticed a small cubby and coat rack to my left. Off came my boots, my scarf and my coat. I stuffed my over-sized, non-yogaish purse in a cubby, grabbed my mat and had no choice but to head to the front of the room. By front, I mean mere inches from the instructor’s mat. Hi Yogis, I’m Mandy. For the love.

My teacher (I’ll call her Gandhi) looked to be about 24 years old. She had a ring on her toe, one on her thumb and a very large one going through the center part of her nose. She’s way cooler at her young age than I will ever be. Guess what else she had……

Hairy Armpits. Not hairy as in hadn’t shaved in a few days or even a few weeks. Full on bushy hair. And lots of it. I’ll admit I had to stifle the church giggles and was so thankful I hadn’t dragged a friend with me to class. I just don’t get it. I actually think men should shave their pits as well. Not pretty. But very yogaish I sure. Did I mention how close my mat was to hers and her hairy pits? Awesome.

Gandhi was very cool. She said ‘shit’ and ‘hippy dippy’, had a bunch of tattoos and rolled her eyes. If I was 20 years younger and had an ounce of her coolness we would be best friends. With Gandhi’s guidance in 4 short weeks I am going to develop a deep and lasting sense of awareness for my body, find my satya (truth) and become ahimsa (non-judgmental). Girl has her work cut out for her!

First thing Gandhi had us do was write our intent on a small piece of paper and put it in a tray of salt that was adorned with a candle. I’m not kidding….

Thank Buddha she explained what the hell she meant by our ‘intent’. Basically, why we are taking the class. The paper wasn’t big enough for me to tell my story about Sunshine’s crazy flexible legs and my jealousy of them, plus I am pretty sure jealousy and ahimsa do not go hand in hand. I tried to cheat off my neighbor, but he was quick to fold his paper in half and head to the salt tray. I wrote “To get out of my comfort zone”. Not exactly my intent for joining the class, but it was true. I stuck my card in the salt tray and headed back to my mat. In case you are wondering, the salt is going to absorb our intents and remind us of something which I cannot remember for the life of me. Gandhi will have the tray out at each class. I am too practical to buy into the whole ‘salt absorbing our intents’, but it was pretty to look at and looking at it will remind me that being out of my comfort zone is good. I’m certain Gandhi is going to read our cards….I should have made mine more profound. Dammit.

Gandhi taught us how to breathe so we sound like we’re a bunch of sighing teenagers. The yoga name is Ujjayi. Man, did it feel good to breathe like that! She chose me to be her model for Mountain Pose. I was pretty awesome at it. So thankful she didn’t choose me to model the Plank. Ouch. Gandhi assured me that it was totally normal to shake uncontrollably while holding Plank. Throughout the hour I was a child, a cobra, a dog, a happy baby, a boat, a cat and a cow. Whew! During Child’s pose she told us to push our belly into our thighs. Instant success on that part for me…they were already touching each other. Boat pose was a total bitch. It reminded me of  when I had to reach up and grab behind my knees while in labor. Gawd. Gandhi encouraged us to “challenge” ourselves and remove our hands from behind our knees and just hover there on our tailbones with our core all nice and tight. No amount of ujjayi breathing could make Boat pose easier! Happy Baby pose made me feel really fat and in Downward Dog I was forced to stare down my own shirt. I am sure by the end of week 4 all of this will work itself out, right?

I was however a rockstar at the Sun Salutation and even made it through a vinyasa more than once. I have to admit that my favorite pose was Savasana. It’s the corpse pose. Flat on my back, all stretched out, eyes closed and breathing. If Gandhi would have quietly left the room I think we all would have fallen asleep!

I really liked the class. I felt relaxed and stretched. And maybe a bit taller. I brought home my cheat sheet so I can practice before next week. Gandhi has promised to teach us Warrior 1, Chair and Crescent. Sadly I’m pretty sure Crescent does not involve those yummy rolls.

Namaste…..we are united, we are the same, we are one.

Live Creatively,

 

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