jazzfish: Exit, pursued by a bear (The Winter's Tale III iii)
[personal profile] jazzfish
I'm notoriously bad at determining whether I like doing something, particularly something that's new to me. It took me at least a year before I could say "yeah i like viola," for instance.

But sometimes there's a commonality with other things that makes it easier. For instance, maybe a month ago Erin took me to a yin yoga session. Yin involves a lot of slow-ish easy movement and resting in poses for several minutes at a time, and focuses more on getting a good stretch going than on any real muscle effort. It felt deeply similar to t'ai chi, which got taught as part of Performance Lab back in university and which I took to pretty readily.

So when Erin offered to take me to a hot yoga class I didn't immediately balk. Arguments against included "heat" and "sweating," neither of which I am fond of, and "weird physical movement stuff," which I'm ... let's say less opposed to now than I would have been six months ago. And I think of myself as exceedingly inflexible but maybe that's just my legs? Balance isn't too much of a problem for me, at least.

That first class was 90 minutes. This may have been excessive. I had to stop several times and keep my head down to avoid blacking out. (Low blood pressure; have had for years. The blackout thing sometimes happens when I just stand up too fast, or on the first or second bite of a meal.) By the end I was entirely drenched in sweat.

It wasn't entirely unpleasant. Sweat bothers me less when I'm dealing with fewer clothes or when I can shower right after. There wasn't much muscle strain at all. I couldn't do things that involved touching the ground from a standing position but I know that; the other things I couldn't do involved grabbing my ankles from behind, and leaning over backwards from my knees. The teacher seemed pretty fantastic.

I couldn't tell if I liked it or not. I was pretty sure I didn't /dislike/ it, at least. Over this past weekend I signed up for a month-long trial, and we did a hot session followed by a yin. That ... was good, I think? Still hard to tell.

Today I had the bright idea to get out to a 6:15 AM session. In theory I can do this on days when I don't go running. Normal running days are M-W-F, but I'd gotten plenty of sleep the couple of nights before so it seemed like a good day to experiment with waking up too early.

I mean, I didn't really expect it to be too early. I set the alarm to beep at 5:20, but I've frequently been waking up a little after five and not getting back to sleep, and I figured the light from the light-alarm would wake me up. Nope. Woke up to rreep rreep rreep, which may be my least favourite sound in the world.

I managed to get out the door with my bus pas, and get myself to yoga on time. I did /not/ remember to do things like "put my contacts in" or "shave" (my thinking must have been "oh i'll shower there afterwards i don't need to do any of that stuff"), or pack up my wallet to bring with me. Dammit.

The class itself? Good, I think. I could do the grab-ankles-from-behind thing; turns out what was stopping me was a weird pain in my right side just above the hip, and that was less this morning. Likely related to some hip problems I've had since before we moved out here, due to wearing a too-large wallet in that pocket for too long. Still can't really bend backwards from kneeling without a block behind but that's no surprise.

It's interesting seeing what my body can do, how it responds to various stretches and poses. I'm enjoying that. It's not unrelated to my enjoyment of my improvement in running. I'll never be /good/ at it per se but I can appreciate that I'm getting less terrible and how that feels.

i am also somehow not appalled by how i look in the big mirrors at yoga. which is kinda neat.

I mentioned t'ai chi earlier. I don't know exactly why I stopped doing that, sometime before I left Blacksburg. It's of a piece with other things, though.

I was happy with my rescue workplant at MSTR. I had to leave it behind when we moved north, though, and I just ... never replaced it. Didn't even occur to me to do so. I've only noticed now that I've been taking actual care of a plant that Kathy gave me last spring, and enjoying watching the new leaves uncurl etc.

I'm spectacularly bad at recognising things that I enjoy, particularly when they're things I'm not enjoying with someone else. This is a known failure mode; it's just ... not one that's seemed worth tackling.

On the other hand, I'm pretty good at recognising things that make me feel like /me/. I've used this formulation in the past, most often to describe being at a writing retreat or a con. It's a sense of fitting into place.

Maybe the coming months of relatively-empty-schedule will be a good time for keeping that in mind. Figuring out how to pay attention to where I'm at, what I'm doing, whether it's actually something that I want to be doing or that makes me happier, or like myself more. I dunno. Seems simultaneously trivial and excessively aspirational.

Start with a month of yoga, then. Keep aware of whether it's good for me, whether I'm getting something out of it (and "in a better mood" is most definitely something).

Will see, I guess.

Date: 2017-04-04 12:29 pm (UTC)
okrablossom: (apples)
From: [personal profile] okrablossom

Date: 2017-04-04 11:05 pm (UTC)
kailing: self portrait of me in front of my bedroom door, with purpled [and blued] hair, being very heart shaped (Default)
From: [personal profile] kailing
excited; hot yoga is something i have always wanted to try. and i thinkt he blackout/high headed thing is very common for this particular new thing?
much good luck!

Date: 2017-04-05 04:06 pm (UTC)
novel_machinist: (Default)
From: [personal profile] novel_machinist
"I'm pretty good at recognising things that make me feel like /me/."

I think that's an excellent place to start.

Date: 2017-04-04 12:37 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sartorias.livejournal.com
I love yoga, but the idea of hot yoga is a total turnoff. If I get overheated, I get nauseated and lightheaded. Blech.


jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
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"Jazz Fish, a saxophone playing wanderer, finds himself in Mamboland at a critical phase in his life." --Howie Green, on his book Jazz Fish Zen

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