I should have stayed in bed!

Why am I blogging at ten past seven in the morning? Again I up at 5.30 and on my mat with my tea at 5.45am, but what a crap performance, if England perform as awfully this afternoon as I did on my mat this morning their World Cup is over. Not just was I stiff, I was rigid, aching shoulders, tight hamstrings, stomach full of wind (no the Maltesers ran out on Monday). The whole thing was a trial, my mind and body both calling me back under the duvet. I managed to plough slowly through to Marichyasana B, it took 75 minutes, which is kack 😦 , no heat, no flow, just thoughts going through my mind of WTF am I doing this for?At the Shala there would be a teacher, shared energy, heat, the odd smile from a mat neighbour, I can’t ever imagine practice at the Shala being this dire

Tomorrow has to be better, trouble is its practices like todays that will inspire me only to stay in bed tomorrow.


17 Responses to “I should have stayed in bed!”

  1. Maria Says:

    When u have those “WTF” thoughts, its time to take savasana. Its HARD to keep the motivation up and I REGULARLY go thru motiviation slumps. The problem is that its circular. I’m there going “WTF I am doing this for I feel like shit”, a nano second later I’m thinking ” No I have to do this, if I dont I will feel like shit”, so I plough on for an asana or two, and then the thoughts come back again. The problem that just disrupts my practise so much, that what I’m doing is not benificial, I’m just throwing shapes. If that wasn’t bad enough then the guild sets in “OMG. I’m not a real yogi (whatever the hell that is), I’m a bad person, I’m not dedicated” etc etc. Ultimately, if we are practising out of a sense of guilt, that is not benificial or positive. The energy that goes into that practise is coming from a negative place. That just brings about stress to the breath, to the body. Not good.

  2. Maria Says:

    oh ya
    i commented via iphone to your post from yesterday – but for some reason it didn’t go up on the blog. it was just to say Whooo Hooo adieu les bleu…. it couldn’t have happened to a nicer football team (or federation) 🙂

  3. globie Says:

    Hi Maria,

    I think it depends on the surroundings too, I get the WTF thoughts at the Shala sometimes, but its easier to refocus the mind and I know once I get going I will be glad I carried on. Practising at home is whole different ball game, having made the effort to wake up and get out of bed onto my mat, if I then don’t have a good practice it feels like a waste of effort and sleep. When I got to Mari B, I just thought this isnt happening, I feel as stiff, cold and knackered as I did at the start. I didnt even have a Savasana!

  4. globie Says:

    PS Maria, so pleased the french got their just desserts.

  5. daydreamingmel Says:

    No savasana, why not?? It could have turned everything around… Can’t imagine why you would skip it especially after an unhappy practice. When my practice goes south for whatever reason I try at every point to think that it can and might improve (this being in direct conflict with the inner voice insistently telling me that the practice is BAD and I should quit while I’m behind…), and if all else fails I console myself with the fact I might have a rocking savasana. Give yourself that at least 🙂
    Maybe if practice goes this way again and you feel really negative you can try some seated meditation or gentle hatha style stretching to wake the body and mind up gently and find some contentment before you go to work, rather than storing up the memory of a bad practice? Because after all, the ability to go off piste is the main benefit of a home practice over a shala when where you can’t just start hanging out in pigeon or with your legs up the wall just because you feel like it…

  6. Maria Says:

    Agree mel
    its easier to be a “criminal” at home 🙂
    In fact that really works for me, and it gives the body a “rest” without it being strictly a rest. I usually do one “gentle” 45 min practise a week, usually after two days of ashtanga. Or if I have a practise the “goes south” (what an apt way to describe it 🙂 )
    Lots of hip openers, or even holding lunges like virabidrasana 1 and 2 for a long time, spinal twists, nice back strengtheners. It works . Plus I get over the “guilt” by knowing that I am ON THE MAT.

    Curious Kevin – do u do any sitting /meditation work? even 5 minustes simple meditation or ujayii pranayama before u start asana could help.

    Or maybe instead of trying to do everything check out the David swenson short forms and alternate those with full practises? Then u could do some sitting plus the 45 min short form and throw in some extra b/bend or pasana work, and you’d have a lovely 1hr – 1hr 10 min practise? This has worked for me in the past, and last time I was in YT Paul suggested an adjusted practise for me to do a ccouple of times per week which shortened my time in asana, even though i was still working on all of the things I needed to put effort into in b/bends and 2nd

  7. globie Says:

    Hi Mel,

    I just got to the point of this is crap, I’m done for today, it was a feeling of frustration and disappointment, I just pulled the rugs back over the mat and went and made some tea, I thought I don’t feel like I need Savasana. I have a bit of an all or nothing thing with practice, I think the mistake was setting out to do a whole practice, maybe would be better to set out to go to Navasana and then keep going if its ok, but to be honest it felt bad from the start. Going to work on a bad practice doesnt make for a good start.

    When I go off piste into criminality at home I tend to have already made my mind up to do that, I actually did a proper 2S last night when I got home as far as Laghu Vajrasana so i could play backbends!

    Maria, although I do other “illegal” stuff at home I still tend to like my practice to have some structure, its rare that I just do random stuff, in a way becoming a fully indoctrinated ashtangi has stopped my yogic creativity, I seem to have lost the art of making it up as I go along.

    I never sit before practice, I wouldn’t know how to meditate, I just tend to get on with it.

  8. Ursula Says:

    Hi Kev,
    I wanted to check if you watch soccer…..I am watching…….
    This evening the German team is playing…..oh oh oh this is exciting.

    Home practices have different challenges. I think it is worth to establish a home practice however it might look like………
    Have fun….

  9. Maria Says:

    hey kev – fingers crossed for ur guys

    ok ya I see what u mean. I guess because I teach I have devised a number of practises that teach over 45 minutes, so for me its not really “un-structured”, in the sense that I’m making it up as I go along.

    I agree though the discipline, repitition, the simplicity and regularity of the ashtanga practise is one of the things that I love most about it. And it makes it easy to do. Well, at least on the days that you feel like that LOL


  10. globie Says:

    Hi Ursula, no way will they let us watch the football, but we have the radio on 🙂 Will watch your team play tonight.

    Maria, its the not having to think about what to do next that can make it a kind of meditative practice, when your body knows where to go without being told. One morning it may happen.

  11. Maria Says:

    fingers crossed!!!!!

  12. daydreamingmel Says:

    “I thought I don’t feel like I need Savasana.” OR – didn’t deserve it? I think you are too hard on yourself. In the past I sometimes used to get up, do about 3 postures & then take savasana. It still felt more beneficial than staying in bed!
    I find that days when I don’t practice “properly” for whatever reason I intuitively go for whatever postures I *feel* coming up, so again you don’t have to think about it. Never once have I stood on my mat and wondered what to do next…I think maybe if you concentrate on removing any judgement from your practice for a while you might find there are some gifts waiting for you 🙂
    The other thing I was taught by Noah is never to pre-decide what your practice is going to be (if you’re going to shorten or lengthen it). sometimes of course time dictates but try going with intuition and never ever beat yourself up just because 1 day didn’t flow. And as for not knowing how to meditate – nor do I with any great technique, but I’m finding I have started to crave just sitting and breathing. Maybe try it at the end of your shala practice, post savasana… sit for a few moments in the space you just created & listen to your breath. No rushing off for breakfast!!!

  13. globie Says:

    “Didn’t deserve Savasana” is maybe not far off the mark in some ways, the practice I had done didn’t seem to warrant laying down and my mind was telling me to get off the mat and just forget it.

    I used to be able to do intuitive yoga, but doing ashtanga I like the way in theory on a good day one posture kind of leads into the next, also that you always do the ones that are physically and mentally more challenging, which if my mind had its way I would always side step.

    At the end of practice, especially on a Sunday when I have been pushed to some extent by the teachers, even in my “deserved” Savasana my mind in conjuring up pictures of P.Val’s Pain au Raisin. I have done some good mind on the breath exercises with Dena, but they only seem to work when I do them with her. My child never stays on the chair!

    Maria we won, Germany next, oh shit!

  14. Maria Says:

    Ya!! well done – talk about leaving everything til the last game!!! – but usually england takes some time to warm up. germany – pah – not the force they used to be. I hope hope hope that it doesn’t come to peno’s. The old track record is not so good in that dept…….

  15. Helen Says:

    Hey kevin, well done for getting on the mat. That really is all that matters. It’s a practice not a performance. It doesn’t matter how you do. It is different every day. The real practice is to observe without judgement!

    I am curious as to what could be so bad that it caused you to leave your mat. Not saying it was the wrong decision. I just mean that it doesn’t matter if your bendy or not. Observe the body and observe the mind and breathe. Repeat.

  16. globie Says:

    Hi Helen, “a practice and not a performance”, so true. It just felt like a waste of time, usually even if practice starts off stiff it usually gets better as you go along, but that practice I just seemed to be getting stiffer, no heat being generated, no flow, everthing seemed to be missing that makes it a practice. Today was better 🙂

  17. Pat Says:

    I agree with Mel and Helen. Sometimes we need to break our attachment to how much asana we do in our practice. I heard a story of someone who arrived in Mysore, then immediately fell and cracked her tailbone. She was barely able to walk. But she went to the shala every day and did Samasthitih. And yes, she WAS doing yoga. And nobody challenged her and told her she was bad. I think we can be our own worst enemies in this regard and that it takes a certain amount of maturity to accept that any practice done with the right intention is perfectly fine! Yes, we can be disappointed if it feels like our bodies are in utter revolt. But at the end of the day, the senior teachers all say that what matters is that you showed up on the mat to do your practice. And what happened today is just fine. Sometimes the hardest posture to modify is our EGO!
    Again, look back and see how far you’ve come. Of course, you “deserve” Savasana!

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