Wednesday, February 8, 2012

‎"Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict." ~William E. Channing

Spartan Shape-Up, Day 202:

It was a beautiful day in the neighborhood today, BlogLand. Although, I was forced to sit at my desk and look at the sunshine all day. The window was open, though... Seriously, February in Vermont and the window was open. Just try and tell me there's no such thing as Global Warming...!

Anyway, I was scheduled for a run when I got home tonight, but ended up late at work, "quick" errand turned into a "long" errand, and the next thing I knew it was 8:45pm before I got home. Not going running THAT late (Plus, as many of you may have seen on FB... My mother *forbade* me from going out running right then, as it wasn't 'safe', etc. ... Yes, I'm almost 30. Yes. I did not go running. Mom said NO.... and I'm old enough to know she's probably right.).

SO... was trying to think of something different that I could do, inside my house. I've been feeling really stiff and tight the last few days, particularly in my (chronic!) hamstrings, so my brain seemed to think it was a good day to try a little Yoga. How hard can that be? a nice 90 minute stretching session, right?

I pop in the P90X: Yoga DVD... Yeah, I'm a beast. None of this starter Yoga... Taking it right up to the X level. OH yeah.

The first 10-15 minutes were alright... felt like some nice stretches, got my blood moving a bit... something about a sun salutation, some downward dog (my hamstrings were NOT a fan of that).... then P90X guy apparently seemed to think we were good to go, and we started into "runner's poses" and "warrior".... I was still feeling pretty badass... I'm like, OH yeah, Yoga... I got you. I squat all the time, my tree truck legs can handle this warrior thing... Oh yeah.... breaaaathe... no problemo.

... then the sequences began to get longer... each restart of the set (is the vinyasa the part where I collapse to the floor only to be told to push up and start again?!) became an effort....

So, I reminded myself of the really "hard" things I do in my other workouts... Burpees, heavy squats... surely this was no where NEAR that level of difficulty. Stop sweating, I told myself, and power through.

... "open your chest and reach straight up to the sky"... p90x guy says.... I feel the sweat running into my eyeball. It burns. I picture what this pose should look like in my head, and I fight to get my hand no where NEAR vertical. Dear Shoulder... LET Go. I reeaaach.... "10 more seconds" he says... I somehow survive that, only to be told that we're going to get back down to the floor, and then back up again for the other side... ("down to plank, push up, downward dog.....")

I tried to embrace the tearing sound that I was sure I could hear in every micro-muscle fiber. Tiny micro-muscle screaming. I'm sure of it.

45 minutes in. Halfway.

I'm not going to lie, BlogLand... It was here that I pondered if I could stop. Surely 45 minutes of Yoga was sufficient? I was not enjoying this. Then a feeling of pre-emptive guilt washed over me. QUIT? I was going to QUIT?... was the yoga going to kill me? probably not. Could I push through and just do my best? Yes. Yes I could. STFU.

Thankfully, I had given myself that pep talk right in the nick of time. Shortly after that, we did some sort of weird twisty, human pretzel thing, which involved a warrior pose, then a twisted torso, then me reaching between my legs somehow and managing to clasp my hands................

........ or..... NOT.

I swear, my fingers almost touched. Hahaha... I actually did have to pause at this moment to laugh, as I realized how ridiculous I must look to the cars going by (I have giant living room windows).  I was sweating like I'd just run a marathon, my face was FAR from serene, and I think every muscle in my body was quivering as I fought to find and maintain my balance.
Things were tearing, I know they were. haha

And so I fought the Yoga battle.... we moved onto Balance Poses. This is decidedly a weak area for me... while I have a lot of strength, I have also had a lot of ankle injuries in my life - standing on one foot is a big challenge for me, especially when I'm tired. The concept of standing on one foot, sticking the other one straight out and grabbing it was... not happening. But I wobbled, fell over, and persevered.
I AM happy to report that I can almost successfully do a crane, though (not for a whole minute, but hey.). Rawr. That made me feel strong again, for 30 seconds or so, in an otherwise generally incompetent hour and a half.

As we wound to a close, P90X guy says we're going to get into a few of the special extras.... which turned out to be some extra yoga-ab stuff... EFF you, P90X guy. I was useless through most of those (but tried). Just 10 more seconds.... Do you have any idea how long that is, sometimes?! OH my.

Although, I did find a blissful moment at the end... Corpse Pose.

Yep. Lay flat on your back, non-moving, and relaxing your whole body (Crossfitters may recognize this as the Crossfit, Starfish Death Pose). I MASTERED that bad boy.

However, I will admit... My muscled are stretched right out. My hams and quads, that are usually super tight and stiff actually feel somewhat mobile. I heard more cracks and pops during this yoga than is probably humanly healthy.... But I feel pretty good. Oddly relaxed. WEIRD.

By relaxed, I may mean completely exhausted.... but, hey, whatever gets you to sleep, right?

The Net Result: 90 minutes of Yoga sucked tremendously. I'm bad at it. REAL BAD. (Aja does not do Human Pretzel well.)
... but my body feels better.

Will I do it again? Yeah... maybe once a week? Try and squeeze a bit of yoga in once a week to stretch things out a bit, seems reasonable...

... but I am MUCH more looking forward to the new lifting program that the GT says he's got in store for me.... WAHAHA. I lift heavy things, and put them down again...

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