It’s that time of the week again and time to talk about how our habit challenge is going. This last week we had to try an exercise we hadn’t before.
I think we’ve covered the importance of moving your body more in weeks 1 and week 4 if you would like to have a read. Essentially it’s all really good for you and reduces your risks of heart disease and diabetes. Just by upping your heart rate a little.
I wanted to do something more exciting than what I ended up doing, like a beginners gymnastics class, or a ballet barre class both of which I’ve been dying to go to. But last week was extremely busy again and the only time I had to fit in some exercise out of my normal pilates and walking the dog routine was the last day.
I went with an at home yoga class. The benefits of yoga are well known but we might as well state some of them here. It’s good for increased flexibility, muscle strength and tone. Improved breathing and great for heart health among many other things. There are many varieties of yoga, much like meditation so it can be hard to pick one to start with. The most popular kinds are haha, vinyasa, bikram and ashtanga. They all focus on flexibility and movement and the breath. You can be seriously badass with yoga, just check out this lady.
Yoga has a stigma of being associated with skinny privileged affluent white girls but it’s really accessible to anyone, just look at people like Jessamyn Stanley who are challenging the stereotypes we have of yoga in the modern age.
HOW DID IT GO AND WERE THERE ANY PROBLEMS?
I’ve tried yoga once or twice in the past and just did not get into it at all. I understand that the spiritual side of it appeals to some people but it doesn’t really to me. Part of the reason I love pilates is because it’s just focused on strengthening your core. So I did my research to find a variety where I could just focus on my body. I found a lady called Tara Stiles who created a version of yoga called Strala Yoga which focuses on an overall concept of moving with ease. Now that sounded appealing to me.
I guess part of the reason why I thought yoga would be a good idea is because recently I’ve noticed how I can’t straighten out my legs into a straight line while they’re up in the air and I’m trying to do a scissors move in pilates. Thank you desk job and sitting all day. I would really like to feel flexible.
So I downloaded a Strala Basics class, an hour long class focussing on the essential movements. I set up my yoga/pilates mat in our bedroom, shut the door to keep the dog out and started doing my thing along with the video on my laptop.
The Gemma Correll illustration above is pretty accurate on how it went. I got very sweaty pretty quickly. Discovered I’m very wobbly and that you really need to be quite strong to do a lot of the moves despite it being the basic class. And while I have been improving my arm strength recently I’ve still got a long way to go. It wasn’t overly difficult, it just required a lot from my arms and attempting to be co-ordinated. I did feel like I was flailing my limbs around a lot of the time - nothing particularly controlled or elegant there.
It was all going okay until my partner let our little dog into the bedroom and she decided it would be a great idea to lick my face while I was upside down trying to twist my body around, and then she started laying underneath me wobbling her little legs in my face to play and I couldn’t move otherwise I’d step on her. Thank you, Piggy. So I stopped about 45mins into, distracted by the doggy, sweat running down my face, and decided to go have a bath. I’m definitely going to have another go as I paid for the class, but keeping the dog out the entire time next time.
Join us for the next challenge - eat veggie/vegan all week.