Well, hello there!
Yes, I'm still here, barely enduring the Cold and Ugly Season in the Great White North. To be honest, I haven't felt very inspired to write lately. It's probably due to a combination of seaonal ennui, boring practices and, oh yes, 'blogosphere controversy'. Last week, everyone was abuzz with a certain certified teacher and her (un)reality show.
I'm almost embarrassed to 'fess up to my reaction to that entire debacle, but here it is: I sat in my window seat and wept. There are a few different ways to interpret this behaviour:
~I'm a bit depressed
~I'm overly attached to the practice and my own idealistic conception of it
or (and this is my favourite!)
~teensy-weensie-tiny-yoga short are just VERY SAD.
Take your pick. ;-) Moving on...
I have been practising! Here's a rundown of the past...wow, has it really been a week? Yes it has.
Wednesday: I attended Peanut's Bikram's class. I wasn't feeling particularly energetic, so I was kind of 'going through the motions'. I don't imagine for a minute that Peanut doesn't notice stuff like that. And halfway through the class, he made a little speech about how it's possible to 'do the poses without *really* doing the poses'. It wasn't aimed at me specifically, I'm sure, but I got the message all the same: "If you can, you must!"
Thursday: In a nod to the Moon Day, I did my Primary-only practice. It was okay.
Friday: Moon Day. I didn't practice at all. I think this may be the first Moon Day in about two years that I've not done any yoga. I'm beginning to like this whole 'taking days off thing'. :-D
Saturday: I practised Primary and my Intermediate. I had an ordinary, but good practice.
Sunday: Day off! I didn't even take time to stretch my hamstrings (and boy, did I ever feel it on Monday!)
Monday: I attended Almond's Bikram's class in the morning. I really enjoy Almond's classes and I've missed going to them, so this was a treat. I like the way he cruises through the dialogue. His efficiency in teaching is one of the things that helped me break out of the 'futzing habit', both in Bikrams and my Astanga practice.
Tuesday (that's today!): Back to Astanga, I practised Primary and my Intermediate poses. My left hamstring was a bit sensitive, but I had a good, futz-free practice.
In general, I'm feeling better about my practices these days and Astanga is starting to feel like a place of comfort and healing again.
For the past month, I've been practising Astanga four times a week and Bikram's two, adding up to a six-day week in combination. Starting this week, I've decided to add on an Astanga practice on Friday to bring my Astanga week up to five days (continuing to practice Bikrams one day per week).
I'm also working towards a more consistent Astanga practice with fewer breaks. Toward this end, I'm going to try to go to my weekly Bikram class on Monday, so I can practice Astanga 5 days in a row.
And here's some good news: My shoulder is healing!
Evelyn asked if I was icing the shoulder. I do own one of those fancy-schmancy velcro ice/compression packs but to be perfectly honest, I haven't been very diligent about using it. It's so cold here, the last thing I feel like doing is curling up in the window seat with an icy ice pack resting on my shoulder. But all of my non-ice-related activity/inactivity seems to be working for me.
Last week, I upgraded my Granny Vinyasas to include the transition from Upward Dog to Downward Dog. This was a big trigger point for pain when I first injured my shoulder, but there's no pain as I move through it now!
Also: I grabbed my wrist on the right side of Marichyasana C today and I'm binding to fingers in Marichyasana D (and close to getting the wrist on the left side).
And the biggest news of all: I'm doing three Urdhva Dhanurasana in my daily practice. Even better, today I walked my hands in! I walked in once in the second backbend and twice in the third. This is HUGE!
I'm pretty excited, because this means that I can begin to work towards regaining flexibility in these backbends. My shoulder was mostly pain free (there was a bit of sensation pushing up). I was able to straighten my arms and my breathing was smooth and consistent.
Finally, here's a random photograph of manhole cover on a subway platform.
Wow. I feel SO much better now!
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