Week 1 of 'Bike Sustainably to Yoga Class' has ended with minimal mishaps (as in I survived bicycling on the road). So far this challenge has been WAY easier than 'yoga every day'... and boy have I been enjoying NOT having to practice every night. Ya know what though... I kinda feel like I'm missing something- weird.
In any case, as I mentioned, Thursday I attended my first Sivananda class (with the embarrassment mat who shall remain nameless... cough-MrCrumbles-cough). My plan: to walk to The Yoga Loft straight from work with a fellow yogini- L. It wasn't too bad, we arrive SUPER early, sat in the studio and chatted.
I had no idea really what to expect. I read the description online but my research ended there. It was developed by Swami Vishnudevananda in India... and that's about all that I can gather. The International Sivananda Website along with The Yoga Loft's description is pretty darn vague and maybe for a reason? I was a little nervous, as I am for all my new yoga class experiences.
It was *very* different from any type of yoga class I've ever attended. We moved in 'slow-mo' (practicing my dance moves!) which was difficult and in my opinion not done enough in most yoga classes. I love moving mindfully, but at the end of this class my muscles had been clenched for so long that it was painful. My back muscles STILL hurt from Thursday's class.
There was no flow, which I found a bit sad (and practiced 'letting go' of my yoga expectations), after the class I felt ready to actually *flow*. The teacher- Paul- was fantastic and extremely approachable after class. When I mentioned how it was my first Sivananda experience he muddied up the waters even further by saying 'Well I just teach 'yoga', and really every class is different- sometimes we flow, sometimes we don't'. Alright. Now I have even less knowledge about the tradition...
As L. and I left the building I got ready to walk home in the misty misty fog... and heard the little 'beep beep' of my car horn. Yep, Andrew had driven over and waited patiently in order to give me a ride home. Aww... so cute, except this was my *sustainable* yoga week! The first thing I said (ungrateful me) was 'but I'm supposed to WALK home today!'. Le sigh. What could I do, he'd been so thoughtful. So class 1 was 50% sustainable.
This Saturday I attended the four hour Great Canadian Yoga Stretch finale event. I almost punked out- until the organizer emailed me confirming my attendance. Yep, I am a sucker for peer pressure.
I got up at 7am on Saturday morning, donned my classy bicycling helmet and rode my yoga butt over. I was a bit nervous that since it was only advertised through one studio (as we know that Halifax studios don't communicate well with each other), that it would be a 'one-studio lovefest'. It kinda was, but it was fun nonetheless.
AND I was a super 'eco' geek which caused a bit of embarrassment on my part. The organizer (who is ridiculously kind and friendly) proudly handed me a plastic bag containing paper hand outs, a plastic bottle of water and other trinkets. I had a moment of 'Ahhh sh*#, what do I do?' followed by:
'Umm, not to be a total weirdy, but is it alright if I don't accept this? Thank you very much for offering gifts, but I'm kinda an eco-geek and not really a fan of plastic bags or bottled water. Thank you very much though'.
She didn't even blink an eye. Looking around the room though, I was a bit disappointed with all the plastic bottled water, plastic bags and lack of composting facilities to put my eaten apple.
Randomly people started showing up taking pictures for local papers and such... and then a camera guy showed up for the local tv station and started filming at the BACK of the class. We all know what posture he managed to capture right? And who was in the last row? Yep, my parents and cousin actually facebooked me last night to announce that they had seen my downward dog butt on tv. Great.
Bicycling back home (Andrew was not in fact there to pick me up) was not very pleasant. Lots of traffic+ rubbery four hours of yoga legs+ really steep Chebucto Road= walking my bicycle. I tried really hard to do the whole 'I am a vehicle, I will not hug the curb, I am a vehicle...' mantra but the cars just kept squeezing by! I actually had to take a nap when I got back I was so exhausted. (I have no idea what will happen to me when I have children... yes I know).
So that's my week 1! I have realized that should I bike to certain studios they either don't have bike racks out front or they do and I don't feel comfortable leaving my bike out there unattended... This is going to be an issue I'll have to resolve (i.e. take off my dringdring bell). It's going to feel kinda like when you park illegally and 'hopehopehope' that when you come out you don't have a ticket...
Any Sivananda Yogis out there?? I'd love to hear your thoughts :)
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