Monday, August 31, 2009

Day 7: Ugh

I didn't want to practice today. After the luxury of a led class, I had a hard time getting started. Eevory was taking a nap, Mia was having quiet time and I knew it was time to get moving. I cursed my way through the sun salutations. Groaned through the fundamental asanas. Mia started banging on her bedroom door so I opened it and put up the baby gate so that she could watch but not climb on me. She exclaimed, "Mama yogin!"

Translation: Mama yoga-ing

"I'm trying, baby. I'm trying."

Sort of. My practice was a mess. I had no energy, no enthusiasm, no balance, no humor. I wasn't even trying for a decent Chaturanga Dandasana.

I stopped at Navasana.

Eevory woke up and joined me on the mat for finishing so I skipped headstand. She likes to pull up on me when I'm in headstand.

On the bright side, now I know that I can force myself to practice when I'd rather curl up in bed and pull the covers over my head. That has to be progress. I either rewarded or consoled myself with some yummy Late July Vanilla Bean with Green Tea between Rich Chocolate Cookies I bought last weekend because I had a coupon. They were delicious.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Day 6: The Prodigal Yogini

Today was my return to a full primary class. I returned to my first Ashtanga teacher. It seemed appropriate since I'm starting over. There were only two people who I knew from my former Ashtanga life. In the last six years since I practiced with her I've been through a lot and clearly she has, too. Her teaching style was at the same time comfortingly familiar but softer. Gentler.

I settled in next to one of my yoga buddies and we exchanged stories about our kids. There were a couple other people who I knew, but don't know me. One I knew because I took her prenatal yoga classes when I was pregnant with Mia and because she practices with my friend Liz. Another is friends with my friend Ravyn so I've seen her around. I was happy being relatively anonymous.

Before class I scanned the room. I wasn't the roundest person in the room, but there weren't many who were rounder. I imagined my twenty-something self would have been mortified to be one of the chubbiest.

I did manage to bind in Marichyasana D, but it wasn't pretty. My Navasana was terrible. Lolasana just wasn't happening. It's not just that I've lost strength in my core. I've lost sensation. I can't feel the places that need to be engaged. Utpluthee? Not for more than one count at a time. Lift. Drop. Lift. Drop. Lift. Drop. I felt the same way after Mia's birth. I was starting to get sensation back but then I got pregnant again so I have no expectation of how long this is going to take.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Day 5: Marichasana C

I know, I know. If I was all the way to Marichasana C, why not try Marichasana D? I could barely bind in C on my left side, so I decided go to finishing. Baby steps.

Today Tom got Mia to sleep, for real this time, while I got Eevory to go to sleep. Then I had an entire practice without baby or toddler interference. Eevory woke up at some point and Tom held her.

Even though Tom has zero experience with Ashtanga, I found myself trying harder than I had the previous days since he was watching me. What can I say. I wanted to impress my husband.

I don't feel like I've made any gains in strength yet. If anything, I feel like I'm moving backwards. Soreness from the previous days keeps me from pushing too hard. I'm still far, far away from a decent Chaturanga Dandasana.

Flexibility is coming along. My hamstrings stopped screaming at me in Adho Mukha Svanasana. My calves, always tight, are starting to lengthen a bit.

I'm going to try to go to a led primary class tomorrow. If the girls are having a rough day, I won't abandon Tom with them. If I do go, I'm expecting a thorough ass kicking.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Day 4: Janu Sirsasana C

Sleeping Eevory

What a miracle! Both baby and toddler sleeping at the same time. I situated myself in the hallway so I could keep an eye on Eevory. (We cosleep with her)


Somewhere in the middle of the fundamental asanas I hear, "Mama! Need to go poop!" Is this kid saving up for nap time? Jeez. Turned out she had already gone poop in her diaper. After cleaning Mia up, situating her in the living room with some toys I was pretty cold so I did a couple sun salutations to warm up again.

I wanted to make it to Navasana, but after Janu Sirsasana B I started to feel a little winded, so I stopped after Janu Sirsasana C. Maybe I'll make it to Navasana tomorrow.

I completed all of finishing and even had a few seconds of Shavasana before Mia needed to go potty again.

Sleeping Mia

Mia finally did go to sleep.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Day 3: Home Practice

When we got home from our playdate with Mia's friend Max, Eevy was asleep so I decided to start my practice early.

I encouraged Mia to occupy herself with some crayons and other toys.

I made it to Ardha Baddha Padmottanasana before Eevy woke up. I made it to Virabatrasana B before Mia started to hang off of my back leg, so I decided to move on to finishing.

After Salamba Sarvangasana, Mia stood on Isis the cat, so I called it a day.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Day 2: Home Practice

Sorry about the photos in this post. They were taken with my iPhone. Easy uploading means I'll probably continue posting iPhone pictures, but I will try to get some real camera pictures up occasionally.

Here's today's set up. Mia is in her room having quiet time since she's on a nap strike. Well, she naps about every other day. On the off days she just has to spend quiet time in her bed. Eevory did not want to take a nap so she's at the head of the mat in her exersaucer. To my left I put an assortment of toys for when she became bored.

Shortly after Surya Namaskara B, Eevory became bored and fussy so I let her out to crawl around.

After Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana B, I hear Mia calling me. I find her in bed, naked, yelling, "Need to go poop, Mama!" I scoop her up, dash to the bathroom, put her on the toilet and take a brief Shavasana on the bathroom floor while Eevory cruises along the edge of the bathtub. I remember I used to get irritated when the person next to me was breathing too loudly.

My body felt heavy today. I had a harder time with the sun salutations. I couldn't keep my body off the floor in about a third of the Chaturanga Dandasanas. Parivritta Trikonasana was also exceptionally hard. I've always been befuddled by that particular asana, but today it just seemed impossible. In regards to that posture, a teacher once told me I was hopeless. A rock star visiting teacher once looked at me and said, "Where do I begin? Wow!" while my (at the time) regular teacher giggled next to me. I feel disoriented when I attempt it. It feels wrong. I also discovered that Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana is much harder when my previously size 2/4 legs are now a size 8/10. If that's not motivation to lose weight...

My girls after practice

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Day 1: 15 minutes

15 minutes of practice today. I heard that the YMCA on Town Lake had Ashtanga classes. Armed with my free guest pass and both girls in our new Joovy Caboose, we arrived just in time to check into childcare and rush upstairs to put my mat down.

I can usually get a feel for how serious a class is going to be based on what the other students are wearing. This group was a mixed bag so I didn't get a good feel for the level of the class. More shorts than I was used to seeing in a yoga class. One guy. I was wearing loose, long black pants and a t-shirt since I was too self-conscious about my extra padding to wear any of my yoga clothes. I'll have to to get over it since practicing like that would have been miserable.

The instructor, Lisa J, said that this was a short forms class so I immediately wondered if she was a student of David Swenson. I was anxious to see if she was going to use his modified sequence since the class length was only an hour. Unfortunately, I didn't get to find out.

Just as we were finishing the last sun salutation, I heard "Jennifer? Someone from the nursery here?"

I walked out into the hallway with her. "Your baby won't stop crying!"

"The big one or the little one?"

"The little one."

"Let me grab my mat and I'll be right there."

I arrived in the nursery to find both girls screaming inconsolably. Apparently, when Eevory (seven months) wouldn't stop crying, Mia (28 months) joined the cry parade. I spent ten minutes calming them down then told Mia it was time to go home. She threw herself on the ground screaming, "No! Stay here! Mia wants to play here!"

I checked my breathing, relaxed, put a once-again screaming Eevory in the stroller, put a flailing and kicking Mia in the stroller, and could only smile and shrug at the people gawking at the spectacle we were creating all the way from the nursery to the car.

We'll try again on Thursday.

My biggest obstacle to attending a yoga class is childcare. If someone would open a reasonably priced Shala with a nursery, I'd be there six days a week. But it seems that the only facilities offering childcare are gyms. So, I'm going to cross my fingers and hope I can find a way to make both my girls happy at the Y.