A conspiring life: Days away from the mat

Life is piling on Bobbie and me this week. Lots of little (and not so little) things all happening at once.

The result? No practice for four, maybe more days in a row.

Unused yoga mats, via bestyogamat.org

I believe I’ve written before that, a year ago, this would have been a big, big deal for me. I was still at a point where I felt like my Ashtanga Momentum (or AM, which often would lose steam due to the a.m. practices) was pretty shaky. The thought of missing a few days inevitably led to thoughts of, “Will I make it back to practice?” (AM, like prana, also is fueled by coffee.)

Today, I’d say I’m mildly annoyed that even Thursday is up-in-the-air for practicing. And Friday, at best, will be a fairly short one at home.

That’s a major improvement. I would have been freaking out a while back. (Truth be told, when I wrote it all down and see that even Friday is tentative, I’m a little sketched out.)

So, what’s changed? (Or at least changed a bit?) Well, in keeping with the beloved blogging tradition of lists, here are 6 reasons.

  1. The practice has set. Like plaster or grout, I think the practice is established and more or less permanent and here to stay. It is part of the routine, part of my daily expectation. I don’t feel like I’m dabbling anymore.
  2. I’ve learned that sometimes rest does do a body good. While I am still struggling for advancement — as measured by looser hamstrings and more open shoulders — I now know that giving the muscles some time to “take stock” of what they’ve been doing can help move me toward my “goals.”
  3. There’s a shala in my life. A year ago, there wasn’t. (Omkar is about to celebrate its year anniversary, in fact, this Saturday.) So I know the external impetus from that will be there.
  4. I’m not eating wheat. I mean, seriously, if I can not eat wheat for a month, I can recover from a few days off practice.
  5. I know there are other ways to practice yoga than just asanas. That’s been a progression this year. Maybe the harmonium comes out tonight. Or maybe, worst case, I just manage to sit quietly for a little while. My reading all fits into the slow progression toward… whatever I’m trying to progress toward.
  6. We’re doing this blog. So… I have to keep having something to write about, right?

In other words, it all will be OK. So, really, the only thing I’m actually upset about is that all these things in life conspiring against our practice also are forcing us still to get up early. What’s up with that?

Posted by Steve

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Two Ashtangis write about their practice and their teachers.

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