Archive for June, 2008

Mari D – kind of

June 30, 2008

Quite a warm day, which meant the upstairs of my house was quite hot from being closed up all day. Didnt take many Surya’s to begin to sweat, standing were done quite quickly, its seated that naturally put my brakes on, especially once I get to Janusirsasana, where I have to coax my hips and knees into playing ball. I have taken to taking about 10 breaths in Janu A, as I find my hips settle down and begin to relax out, thus taking the pressure off the insides of the knees, which then on a good day helps Marichyasana B & D. Well it kinda worked today, B was a struggle but after Mari C, found my foot came higher up the thigh and after a bit of faffing I managed to bind myself in Mari D on both sides, not an elegantly done pose I’ll admit, it would probably go on the “How not to do it” page of Yoga Journal, but I was bound for about 3 breaths.

They say from little acorns great oaks grow, just wish the bloody squirrels would stop eating my Marichyasana acorns every time it seems to start happening.

Backbends were not bad at all tonight, especially after a few Ustrasanas, really had that feeling of the chest opening, rather than the bottom of the back compressing. Urdva Dhanurasana itself was fairly grounded, so had a play around with standing drop backs, I am definitley getting further and coming up with a measure of control that wasnt there before the retreat in Turkey.

Tonight I found the solution to Savasana oversleeping, by putting my dinner in the microwave for 10 minutes before laying down, the ping signalled the end of my practice and time for my dinner! Tomorrows dinner goes in the conventional oven, so if I drop off it will probably be the smoke detector in the hall that wakes me up, neee naw, neee naw!!!

Space – the UHP frontier

June 29, 2008

Up too early to get the bus to AYL for practice. Not a great practice for miriad reasons, I didnt know any of the teachers and they obviously didnt know me or my practice, so not much adjustment. After a day off my knees and hamstrings were not interested in coming out to play, so Mari D was a non starter, despite the shala being hot and sweaty. My body just felt compressed, didnt get that feeling of space opening up. Talking of space, although I didnt get adjusted in UHP today, I did get knocked out of it by accident by the yogini on the next mat, not her fault, just too tightly packed in there, I was fairly balanced until the knock and lost the plot with UHP after that.

My knees are a constant frustration when the seated poses come around, I love the twists, have always been able to do them, but my bloody knees objection to lotus today, despite being warm, meant Marichyasana B just about happened, but D was never going to, grrrrr. The one good adjustment I got today was in my new favourite pose of Supta K, easily grabbed my own hands and feet adjusted into a cross over my head, I don’t find this pose the least bit uncomfortable now and thanks to Susan’s advice last week about breathing into the back, I actually exited the pose without it taking all my energy, though I was dripping and couldnt manage Titibhasana.

Closing backbends were not bad, done in the “Finishing Room”, met V there on her way into the starting room. Then stood at the front of my mat experimenting with dropping back. Its weird, though my hamstrings were not good today for the forward bends, I was able to engage the front thighs and managed to drop back a fair way on my own with control. I am at the point of needing some regular help with this now, I have lost the fear factor and now just want to get further.

So not a great one, but I am glad I did it, though I am looking forward to practising next Sunday in a place with more space. Train home packed with teenagers going to a music festival, got given a “traffic light” lollypop, havnt had one of those since I was a kid, why do adults think they are too old for things like that! Got my well deserved Pain au Raisin on the way home, OMG they are delicious, though my sticky fingers are not doing much for thsi keyboard!

A telling off!

June 28, 2008

Is what I got from the massage therapist, for leaving the neck crick to fester for so long before seeing her. The lumps, bumps and knots in my neck and left shoulder made graunching and popping noises as she used her thumbs and elbows to try and release them, along with heat from her hot stones. Her elbows are pointy and painful as she works them deeply into the muscles to release the knots, She remarked “That must be painful“, I could barely answer, but I could feel my whole shoulder releasing down my back. My neck is tender now and I feel a bit spaced out.

She recommended Tiger balm at night, but said I was doing the right thing with hot and cold power showers in the mornings. NO practice today she said, I wasnt intending to, but she told me to go home, chill out, drink plenty of water. Tomorrow’s mysore practice will probably have to have a very modified Setu Bandhasana’s and Matsyasana’s, she also said that although the weight in headstand is taken by the arms, the neck is compressed, so maybe not to do that either. She also noted how much more firm and hard the muscles in the outside of my thighs have become, I had noticed my legs look less like the soccer players too, all this practice is having other side effects, she said to relax them more. At least she is a yogini herself and knows what we do to our bodies.

So her I am following her instructions, chilling out, blogging, drinking water, though using this keyboard is probably detrimental to my shoulders.

As far as Mari A

June 27, 2008

I got on the mat, standing asanas were not bad, I enjoyed the twists which help my grumbling guts. But 7 days on the trot is too much, so by the time I got to seated I was tired and as its not very warm today  the ambient temperature hardly brought out a bead of sweat. As my knees were not as warmed up they definitley did not want to play Mari’s B & D, they were nowhere near getting into lotus, so I decided that this was a good place to move onto closing poses. Did some wall walking and mini drop backs and contrived to do 3 not very good Urdva Dhanurasanas, well they felt not good, especially compared to the ones I was doing in Turkey 2 weeks ago, which were strong, centred and bendy and followed by proper drop backs with Abby. I need to do them more often with a teacher. Rest of closing and Savasana, though minus Matsyasana, as I dont want Cristina having even more damage to undo in the morning.

Practice did wake me up, I had drifted through the day, bored in front of a work pc and tired from having done not much, yoga turned me on again. At least my favourite dinner had defrosted and was very nice. I finally just found a hotel in Hong Kong for my stop over, which I think I just booked, but am waiting final e-mail confirmation.

A massage then a leisurely Saturday beckon, followed by practice at AYL on Sunday and a diversion to grab some more of those delicious Pain au Raisin’s on the way home.

Revenge of the UBO’s

June 27, 2008

Yes I know I should know better now I’m nearly wheat free, but as my favourite dinner had not defrosted in time for dinner last night I had to delve into the freezer and find something cookable from frozen, which is why it had to be a UBO dinner (Unidentified Breadcrumbed Objects). Alas 20 hours later my stomach is letting me know that it is not happy. My stomach is getting that pregnant look and is aching. Hopefully it wont stop me doing practice in 2 hours time.

3 to go

June 27, 2008

3 hours of the working week left. Hardly any management present today, the nuts are running the Nepotism UK Ltd asylum. The inmates are drinking lots of tea and generally counting down the clock until we escape.

I hope its a nice sunny weekend, Cary is getting married tomorrow, may the sun shine on her big day. My weekend will begin with practice when I get home tonight, followed by one of my favourite dinners. Saturday I have an early appointment at last with the massage therapist, I hope she sorts my neck out. Sunday the joy of a mysore practice among other like minded souls.

One too far

June 26, 2008

I got home really tired, but still got on my mat, I seriously thought about stopping after the Surya’s, but ploughed on slowly, taking just 3 or 4 brearths in each pose. It was good to do the poses, but I didnt have the energy and hardly any momentum, I found it hard to engage the muscles and bandhas and the breath was dire. By taking less breaths at least I kept going, though backends lacked the degree of bend they had a couple of days ago. I wonder if I should of had a day off.

Am watching the match and blogging, not exciting, unlike last nights game. Fridat tomorrow, another week got through.

 

 

Repetition

June 26, 2008

Last night was the 5th day in a row I have managed full primary. I also seem to be getting quicker. My practice does need to have parameters though. During the last week I have practised as soon as I get home, knowing dinner and some nights the football are on, this has given my practice a kind of momentum, knowing that although there is time, that there is not much to spare, so I have to “get on with it”. During the retreat and last Sunday although again there was no time restriction, the focus was there because your practice is being observed, so I tend not to dawdle. I think these are the reasons why last saturdays practice felt so dire, there was no time limit at all, there was no mental pressure from having a teacher watching and so the tendency to dawdle and faff, lose momentum and heat and eventually the energy and momentum/enthusiasm drained away.

I plan to practice today and tomorrow, yes I know thats 7 in a row, but Saturday is definitley a day off, I have the appointment for my neck with the massage therapist and no doubt she will instruct me to chill out for the rest of the day, I don’t want to undo any good she does. Then Sunday it will be back to Mysore practice, hopefully with a renewed energy and focus.

Metal & Heads??

June 24, 2008

My 14 year old niece had an accident on a trampoline at school a while back. Her neck has been a problem since, plus headaches. My sister was recommended to take her daughter to a local Chiropracter, coincidentally based at the same place I go to see the massage therapist. During his treatment he noticed she has earings, as do many girls her age and recommended that she take them out for a while. He showed my sister some interesting video of the effects metal can have on the body, whether these are real or not I don’t know, but one showed a woman who couldnt touch her toes, but when she touched her ear ring she could suddenly reach much further. A second film showed a guy who had difficulty reaching his arm above his head, when he then touched a metal tooth filling he could reach his arm up. Could there be substance to the effect metal can have.

 I was wondering if I should start taking off the “om”pendant I always wear, especially at night to see if my neck crick is any better in the mornings, though I hope Cristina’s brilliant thumbs will click something back into place on Saturday, even if it hurts as much as when she put my rib and intercostal muscle back any pain is gonna be worth the gain, ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

 

 

Preparations

June 24, 2008

Second day running I have come home and got straight on my mat and completed full primary series. It seemed easier today, even though my guts have got the gripes, though thankfully not a full blown IBS episode, but I think it was good for allconcerned that my practice was solitary! My knees are weird beasties, when I do Arda Badha at the beginning of seated my foot rests halfway up my thigh, my knees wont go further, then once I have eased them into the Janusirsasanas, spending more than 5 breaths letting the hips relax outwards, I find that I can do Marichyasana B in half lotus, all the preceeding poses are preps for the half lotus poses. Mari D I managed half lotus but no bind today, but at least the lotus wasnt painful, though the morning may be another matter. Another day of being able to bind my own hands in Supta Kurmasana, though I think this good run of binding may be due to my dropping surprisingly below 9 and a half stone. Its not often I weigh myself, but the electric scales next to the shower must have been nudged and come on, so I jumped on out of curiosity.

Lots of backbend preparations before Urdva Dhanurasana and dropping back attempts. I am thinking of getting a measure of some kind to tape to the door, then I will  be able to see how far back I get, ie how potentially near the floor I am, Its hard to tell when 5 out of 6 practices a week are done in solitary.

I find that my flight back from the retreat in Bali has allowed me, because of the bank holiday the chance to stop off in Hong Kong for 3 days, so am now manically trying to find a reasonably priced hotel, if anyone knows one that is clean, preferably with free wifi and a good breakfast, let me know. Also is there anywhere good to do practice in Hong Kong?

Talking of breakfast, yes I know I only just had dinner, shepherds pie in case you were wondering, but I was in Waitrose at lunchtime and saw they do Sundays afore mentioned Pain au Raisin, I picked a couple up, then looked at the price £1.19 each, are they taking the piss or what, I got 3 for less than that in a London Sainsbury’s.


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