Thursday, November 8, 2012

28 Day Ashtanga/Running Challenge - The actual point

So, yesterday we had a "snow" storm here. Basically it was really heavy wet snow - snow-cone-snow, if you will. I stayed home from ashtanga and planned to practice here. Unfortunately the only place I could find to practice where there weren't other people was down in the basement. And once there I found that ceiling was so low that I could not reach my hands over my head! Ha Ha. We have lived in this apartment for the better part of three years and I never noticed that before. Tonight is more of the same. Max is home sick, again, and I cannot leave him alone in the apartment so I will not be going to class again today. Life gets in the way of our best laid plans. So I will practice at home tonight. Upstairs with my ashtanga dvd - going as far as I have in class. Then tomorrow when Max is back in school I will start this challenge all over again! I promised myself 6 days in a row for 28 days. And since I have not done that I have to start at the beginning. It may take me months to get to 28 consecutive days (not including Saturdays when there is no mysore class - or moon days - the new and full moons - when the studio is closed). A lot of this challenge is about getting used to going to yoga six times per week. But more than that it is about keeping my word to myself. I so often let myself get behind and to put myself last. I make promises to myself that I do not keep because somehow something else gets in the way. Most of that truth is evident in things like Max getting sick and bad weather. But it is still a point that I want to stay with - no matter what else is going on - to treat myself well and to put myself first. My kids are older and can, in a lot of ways, fend for themselves. When I am well-rested and I have eaten well and exercised I am a better, happier person. I feel it and the kids notice it. And it is not too late in life to find this path. And to really practice self-care. So, I will continue to strive for 6 days in a row. I will begin training for the 5K. And I will be posting more about how this challenge is shaping me and changing me. That, afterall, is the point of it. Be well, Keisha

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Ashtanga/Run Challenge Day Two

Okay, I am techinically writing this on day 3. I really did not want to go to yoga yesterday. I am not very strong, yet, so I was not looking forward to a few positions which really hurt my arms. Upper ward facing dog into Downward dog is horrible for me. And thinking about that position brought fear into my heart. But I made a commitment to myself to go through this challenge and so I went. And that transition was a lot easier. Was I still filled with pain and dread when it was time to push my hips back into downward dog - yes I was. But for a few moments I could actually feel how it is a restorative pose. Now for confession time - I did not start to run yesterday. I was too cold. So I decided to start my running program on Saturday. It is the one day when I do not have yoga and it seems like a good day to start. As I go through this journey I will be posting more information about ashtanga (there is so much there for me to learn - and it dovetails nicely with the Hinduism homework I had for the month of October.). That is all for today, ummm, yesterday! Be well, Keisha

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Ashtanga/Run Challenge - Day One

Technically, as Vivian is fond of saying, my first day of ashtanga was this past Friday night. But I only decided to stick with the 6 days a week ashtanga challenge this past weekend. So here we are. I am pledging to go to Yoga class 6 days a week for the rest of the month for 28 days, because it takes 28 days to change a habit. I can not go on Saturdays as that is a led class. And since I am new to ashtanga and don't know all the poses it would not be useful to go on Saturday. So let me explain for those of you not familiar with ashtanga - it means 8 limbs and the third limb is asana or a physical practice. There are a series of postures that you learn one at a time from your teacher. The practice is called Mysore after the home of the main guru of ashtanga - Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, also known as Guruji. I was first introduced to ashtanga 8 years ago. I loved the workout ashtanga gave you and I liked the one on one time you received from your teacher. After doing research and reading and watching movies (I highly recommend Ashtanga NY), I found an ashtanga studio here on the Upper West Side where I live. Literally two blocks away from my home. And what's more they have a Mysore schedule that fits with my life schedule and a student discount on the monthly cost. Perfect. I am a big fan of my teacher, Zoe, and so far I am maintaining my discipline of getting up and going but it has only been two days after all! And I am sure that if I keep to it it will become a regular part of my day. Now about the running. I registered for my first 5K with the hopes of expanding my running program over the next year. Where it will take me, I am not sure yet, but I am pledging to run 3xs per week using the Couch to 5K program. So this is the first day of Ashtanga and the first day of running begins tomorrow. Check in if you want to track my progress! And please feel free to post comments or to offer support or advice! I would love to hear from you. Here are some useful links about ashtanga and running. Ashtanga Guruji, Upper West Side Ashtanga, Ashtanga NY (available for stream on Netflix) Running Progam Couch to 5K, Cupid Run See you all soon!