What I Learned from 108 Days of Yoga

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Here is a list of the things I had done for more than 108 days in a row:

1. Smoke
2. Quit smoking
3. Breathe
4. Eat
5. Sleep

It’s not a very impressive list.

I didn’t intend to do 108 days of yoga. It was something that I had planned for later in the year. But we never get to plan our greatest lessons.

After doing 45 days of hot and vinyasa I decided to keep going. So overwhelming was the thought, I wasn’t ready to get into the details. It was more personal than I anticipated.

Now that I’m done and have taken some time to reflect, I may have learned a little somethin’.

1. Flexibility

I’m a reformed partially reformed control freak. When things go as I plan, I’m okay. When I expect things to go awry, I’m also okay. But when things go okay and I expect awry, I’ve been known to fuck bring unnecessary chaos where it wasn’t needed. When things go awry and I expect okay I can also get a bit stubborn. While my body is flexy, not all of me is always so willing to stretch.

Work in progress…

I got sick during my 108 days. Panic set in- all I could think of was missing a practice. Fortunately, I’m not all crazy, so there was a side of me that said chill out.

What is yoga anyway? It’s a uniting of body and breath. Maybe your yoga is to do a few restorative poses that foster healing instead of going balls to the wall in 105° heat. This thought didn’t come until after I had practiced two days with no voice in the heat, but like I said I’m a work on progress.

Change happens- it’s the one thing I can count on. 108 days taught me that I can always breathe through it.

Learning to breathe cultivated my flexibility more than any asana.

2. Commitment/Trust

I may or may not be known to twitch just a smidge when it comes to commitment. We all have out shit. This is mine.

But when you show up every single day for 108 days, you learn to trust the process. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen at the end.

Maybe nothing.

Maybe everything.

Regardless, I wanted to see it through. On the days that I really didn’t want to go, I learned the most. There were also days that when I hit my mat and felt like a rock star, only to be humbled, a crumbled sweaty mess.

But fall down seven times, stand up 8.

3. Peace

Say hey, doing 108 days of yoga is a row is hard. But, I did it. The act of practicing daily became meditative, down to the way that I prepared my yoga bag the night before. There was a sense of calm that I took with me once I left my mat.
I think I’m most grateful for this.

I realize that while coming to my mat each day is pretty much given- what will happen in that moment is unknown. That is a little scary. And a lot of fun. But no matter what, I can be with whatever happens.

This is yoga for 108 days and beyond.

Namaste y’all.

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Hitting the Wall and Other Tales of Woe (108 Days of Yoga)

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Class on Tuesday was awesome. I love the excitement that gets generated, and seeing students progress is pure joy. As soon as c lass ended and I went home to make my green juice, the tank was empty.

Emp-tee.

I was dog tired. I’ve managed to sail through these first 43 of my 108 days of yoga without any issue. This was the first day that I came up against the dreaded ‘wall’.

You know that feeling that your body can’t push forward. Everything feels and sounds like it’s happening in slow motion. Actually I was closer to that little kid kind of tired, you know when munchkins refuse to admit that their crankiness is a direct result of physical exhaustion.

Yet, I  was super productive getting a bunch of stuff done despite being dressed in my best cranky pants.

I hit my mat for an hour at home but needed to rung out, so off to hot class I went.

To say the class was a struggle was an understatement.

I slogged through half wondering if I was crazy to think I was ready to do 108 days of yoga.

Then I took a real breath. 

Unfortunately, this little moment of clarity didn’t take place until I was on my way home. I sat on the train sweat covered and achy, water bottle to my lips. (Manhattan water is amazing. This seems insane, but it’s true. The water at my studio is unimaginably cold.)

As I sipped the water on the train I smiled.

I only have to be in the moment. I was getting caught up in what I had done in the past and what I was going to keep doing in order to sail through to day 108.

What I failed to do was live in the moment and understand that my journey is about what happens right now. Right in this moment.

In this moment I breathe in. In this moment I breathe out. There is nothing else to do. Worry doesn’t exist in the now.

So, there is no wall. There are only moments when I am tired and moments that I rest. If I can remember this every day- I got this enlightenment thing locked up.

Not. Bloody. Likely.

No worries though I’ve got my mat and my breath.

This is yoga. And it happens one breath at a time.

Namaste y’all.