I made it through my first week! It was like my own personal hell week with all the chaturangas I put my body through. I was pretty sure I was going to collapse on my mat, but my body held strong (YES!) With that said, I’m pretty sure I rolled up an arm along with my mat at the end of class at least once (because it fell off).
Despite my struggle, I could feel my body getting strong as the week went by; having a yoga practice four days a week is paying off! The vinyasa sequence got SLIGHTLY easier and by the second day of me doing utthita parsvasahita, I could actually hold my leg up without my hip flexor screaming for mercy. It turns out that the first day I was using my flexors instead of activating my core muscles and keeping them engaged during the entire posture; basically I was overworking them.
I find it amazing that despite the fact that it is a mysore room and Elizabeth is watching everyone doing their own thing, she has the ability to see all. I don’t get away with much- she is an amazing yoga instructor. One day I was struggling and I happened to be breathing with my mouth open during my sun b series and she caught me (oops) and gave a reminder to keep the mouth closed. She also seems to constantly remind me to keep my arm over my head during utthita paravakonasana b. Each day I’ve been learning at least one new asana and I work to hone what I learned the days before. I do a lot of repetition to help drill the series into my little brain. This week I learned all the standing Ashtanga yoga postures of the primary series. Next week we will be working on backbends.
Although the 84 mile round trip is not ideal and it makes for a long day, being gone from 7 in the morning until 8 at night, I have to admit that I am really loving this!! I genuinely look forward to the end of my work day, and the drive on 95, though icky, is worth it to get to get to my yoga practice. I use the drive time to attempt to decompress and by the time I roll out my mat and find myself standing on it, I can’t help but feel like I’m home.
The heat of the room is like a hug to my soul and the rhythmic breathing of those around me is like music that soon lulls me into my own practice, only broken by the occasional thump and direction by Elizabeth. My inhales and exhales, though ragged at times, lets me know that I am alive. As my muscles tire and my mind begins to wane, my willpower takes over. I smile, because now I know… I will survive.